Second Act: 7+ Virtues
All philosophical systems and religious traditions explore different methods to cultivate a better life and achieve various degrees of wisdom. Aristotle’s Seven Virtues redefined and sharpened the ethical values firstly proposed by Socrates and Plato. Christianity adopted some of these ethical principles and emphasised the need to embrace them and stay away from their downfalls.
In the East the Buddhist four Noble Truths aim to tame the mind and undermine our desires. Confucianism and some forms of Daoism also look deeply into ethical forms of behaviour in order to have a more functional and harmonious life and society.
Our society driven by consumerism has pushed commodities to become extremely desirable and at the same time very disposable. The fetish of the modern age has acquired a sacred, but also dystopian dimension. Thus, we have developed an unhealthy and banal competitive nature where some of the greatest forms of happiness we experience have to do with the semi-conscious satisfaction we feel when we own and have more than others.
In contrast the cultivation of virtues stands for what is called the ‘gradual path’ in the West or as the Sutra Path in the East. Based on the following methods, we can attain a harmonious society and develop a clearer mind.
Second Act: 7+ Virtues address the struggles that we may encounter when we try to follow these virtuous actions. A contemporary individual unaware and ingrained in consumerism and disembodied on the web feels at times alienated, with a sense of meaninglessness and a desire for more from life. Rather than providing a solution, these allegorical paintings offer an opportunity to reflect on our contemporary struggles from a poetic point of view. The titles, the use of dark areas, the dripping effects and loose brushstrokes aim to highlight and capture these struggles.
Striving for Patience, Oil and resin on canvas 162x130x4cm, 2021
Charity or the Queen of Time, Oil on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2021
Humility Between Heaven and Earth, Oil on canvas, 130x162x4cm, 2021
Tantric Justice, Oil and resin on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2021
Chastity in the Times of the Internet, 130x162x4cm, 2021
Undressing Prudence, Oil and resin on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2021
Shaky Temperance, Oil and resin on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2022
Hope for a Virtuous Virtuality, Oil and resin on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2022
Compassion in the Times of War, Oil and resin on canvas, 162x130x4cm, 2022