Blood and Vapor:The Crossing

bboatchildren copySome may remember a series I’ve been struggling with called “Blood and Vapor”.*   Suffice it to say, I continue to struggle with four paintings in this series that I am working simultaneously. Each touches upon  a different aspect of the theme. This one is on the periphery and explores our ties to the inevitable crossing between life and death.

“Blood And Vapor”:   Who lingers within you?   Have you ever felt an ancestral presence?  The inescapable tie of family:hundreds of individuals, yesterday and today, here and gone.  A powerful resonance or inconspicuous vapor?

Published by elenacaravela

My world is a wonder of visual candy and foreboding shadow shapes vying every waking moment for my full attention.

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  1. this is hunting ! very good piece, Elena! I have been looking at this piece several times , and still it stays on my mind. Also your latest “Stirring” ….so gooood!

  2. “You’ll accumulate the dead inside of you,and will keep quiet/You’ll pass by those bottom of the walls without looking…”( Edip Cansever ) You are an amazing artist Elena ! 🙂

  3. Although I would like to travel with them, I pity that couple of innocent souls who seem have borrowed the Charon’s boat to journey across the river Acheron. They remain unaware that it is a no return trip.

    The more I struggle, the more I believe that there is no light sufficiently strong to dispel the darkness that envelops the mystery of death. Our ideas are just small candles that blow out even before we can glimpse some answer.

  4. This is amazing! Such clever use of distortion and persepective, given the theme. Very thought-provoking piece.

  5. This is something else, I’m blown…I saw it the other day..had no words.
    I recorded interviews with my relatives, to find out who I am, why am i what I am…and this resonates totally. Your struggle is evident. Awesome!

    1. Wow, excellent idea to interview and record stories from the perspective of you family. I wish I’d thought of that. Thanks much for taking the time to absorb the content. Appreciated Arjun!

  6. Wow, I didn’t even know what to say about this one! But I am back to give it a shot. The stretched perspective is so eerie! Beautiful figures and colors, of course. So rich and spooky and full of storytelling!

  7. wow! it is very, very nice!
    it may sound strange, but I particularly like the little details – like the white ballerina shoes of the girl, somehow they add innocence to the entire complexity of the subject… 🙂

  8. I remember the series well, so nice to see you revisiting it. Perfect colors in creating an eerie feel to the scene, I especially like how you’ve exaggerated certain aspects of girls bodies (feet and arms/hands) very effective.

  9. Wow. Such a powerful painting Elena. The red to me is absolute blood and veins, stretch and sinew..I can almost see the white of deaths teeth.. also somehow I feel the quick rush of life, the pushing forwards, continual motion..having gone through the pain of grief recently this painting resonates very strongly..

    1. Thank you Cath. Yes, I absolutely intended all that you have so ably discerned. I have been wrestling with grief/mortality too ( I’m personally ok). Though this piece is not much in the comfort arena, I am working on one that approximates another aspect of the theme. I do however, feel the urge to engage with the primal helpless intensity of the matter first. Sending you the good wishes this piece is not communicating. I always appreciate your insightful comments.

  10. Elena continue the ‘struggle’ – you have skills a plenty to realise /release this series and I love what you are doing – story telling at its best – yes it resonates with me 🙂

  11. Very powerful addition to the collection. Beautiful work. I love the delicate detail of the background image.

  12. What an ambitious (and cool!) concept! Yes, I do feel that presence from time to time. I respect the ancestor veneration practices, and we try to do our part with incense and joss paper (though we need to be better about it). The perspective and colors in your painting fit the idea very well!

  13. So powerful. I love the distorted perspective and the wispy skeleton is perfect. At first glance I thought they were on a fairground ride rather than a boat. I think that’s because it gave me the same off-balance, semi-terrified, semi-excited feeling that I get from a fairground ride. Can’t wait to see the rest.

  14. Another emotionally charged painting in your Blood and Vapour series Elena .
    …I feel an inescapable atmosphere of turbulence and a certain amount inevitability …

      1. Thank you Elena .. sometimes it’s hard to express a feeling uncovered by looking at others work … I wouldn’t want to express something inappropriate to that which the artist is hoping to portray or symbolise…

    1. I’m concerned about that as well, but I’m always pleased to hear from anyone who takes the time and effort to leave a notion. And, in my opinion, you always have something perfect to say:)

  15. This is haunting and beautiful, Elena. The perspective is edgy, a feeling of tension and hanging over a precipice or unknown void . Yes, yes! It’s the perifery for sure.
    And that sinewy skeleton character is wonderful, sort of unknown in its intentions.

  16. Elena, this is quite profound in my humble opinion. The emotion hits right in the gut and probably explains why it is so difficult for you. As soon as I laid eyes on it, I thought of the many stories from my aunt and others about the treacherous journey many Americans of Cuban heritage undertook to get here. So many of them were children in rickety boats. But a second look made me realize why I could never work in pediatrics as a nurse. Loosing children is just so painful. I hope you find the emotional energy to continue though you may find some people are unable to handle the depth of the emotion so very visible. This is a really beautiful painting!!

    1. Many thanks for your important comments. The reality of children passing is nearly impossible to cope with for most of us, I think. The children in my painting represent each of us at our most vulnerable. Refugees are the living metaphor for the ultimate passing;the whirlwind of fear, hope, helplessness but also dignity and courage. I am awed by your ability to comprehend what I am after in this painting by likening my intentions and emotions to shades of similar transitions and passages. I’m not sure it’s a very good “painting”, but I am pleased that it has communicated what I struggled to bring across. Again, thank you for taking the time and energy to respond.

  17. Not only because of it’s fish-eye lens like perspective, but I feel “I’ve seen this” somewhere
    in my past —– ? ? ? —– or was that a scene in a film ? ? ?

  18. Your words ‘struggling’ had me asking straight away, if YOU decided to do the work but the muse does not wish to cooperate, why not put it down? I find that I am nearly never pleased when I decide, creation comes through me, not by my own decision–unless I decide not to cooperate and then it’s just all lost. You don’t need to answer me. I just shared what I thought of first.

    Now I am thinking of frustrating ideas and paintings inside my head that I have NO skill nor materials to get it out. Sometimes I choose to focus on this and I can get irritated. This irritation can wreck my day. It can also cause me to miss the sideways brainstorming way that I CAN express the image in my head, but the image might not be like a photograph.

    You have showings and publications and things so, I suppose you already know and/or deal with what I said. 🙂

    1. Good questions Elisa. Universal artistic dilemmas, I think. This theme won’t let go, and I feel that it has the potential to both challenge and take me in places that I think I need to go. I may fail miserably, but I can’t give up just yet. In the meantime, I continue to make things that are easily pleasing, and that little respite helps fuel me through the rough patches. Thanks much for your thoughtful comments. It makes the process that much more interesting:)

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