The title is taken from a poem by Rumi. It refers to the sense of confusion and helplessness in the face of life's unpredictable twists and turns. We can't always control our environment, since there exist in it elements of both violence and grace.
In this print installation, a man is stripped of his body. His eyes are scrunched shut – he is attempting to block out the mundane and the physical, and to focus only on the ethereal. But it is not possible to escape materiality or his place in nature. The decorative panels that fracture the man's head reveal an evolutionary order: plant, bug, frog, bird, deer, monkey.
The hard-edged angles of the blue transparent rectangles, which allude to contemporary pixilation in electronic media, contrast with the arabesque lines of traditional Chinese design in the decorative panels. The hard-edged and the arabesque; the modern and the ancient; the mundane and the ethereal, all exist in tandem.
If he would stop trying to feel holy and open his eyes, he might see that contrast and balance is what gives each its power: there is plenty of grace in the world.
Etching and drypoint, outside dimensions 56" x 50 3/4"