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Wednesday, December 4, 2019

SURVIVAL




Copyright @ 2009 Nancy Barra,"Remembering", Oil on canvas 30" x 24", from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.


She has remained silent for quite some time. She thought she did not have any important ideas to share with others. 

She already shared her concerns about imminent environmental problems. She expressed the irrationality of wars under the pretext of defending human rights of foreign nations, when in fact, the invaders aimed to control sovereign oil production while trying to suffocate resistance. She also reflected about how material consumerism is bewitching all of us at the expense of a poorly paid foreign labor force and damage to natural resources.

Copyright @ 2009 Nancy Barra,"A Grain of Sand", oil on canvas, 19.5" x19.5", from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.


She felt like an inconsequential grain of sand in the vast ocean, except for sharing, once in a while, some of her thoughts, paintings and photographs with other dreamers. Now, she thought: "I do not have anything of value to say anymore".

This feeling made her sad... until the people of Chile began one of the most decisive mass movements witnessed in a long time in South America. 




Copyright @ 2019, Anonymous, "March in Chile" 


A mass movement against the conditions created by an economic model that diminished the government's role in public services and encouraged their privatization.  

Education, health, retirement plans, water, electricity, mines, forests and even agricultural seeds were commodities increasingly transferred to private owners and foreign investors. This model characterized Chile as one of the most economically successful countries of South America.


Copyright @ 2019, View of Financial District,Santiago, Chile, from: vidamasverde.com

This new Chilean economy began to offer credit cards like Halloween candy to everyone with a job. People were so excited that they forgot to read the fine print on their credit card statements and sooner that later, they became a mass of credit cards defaulters strangled by increasing interest rates and stagnant salaries.





















Copyright @ 2019, Nancy Barra, "The Defaulter", watercolor on paper and ink, 12"x9", from: Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.


This time, she understood that all the themes she has reflected on in this blog, should have been specifically directed to the elite who hold the economic and political power on this planet. They are the ones who need to understand the seriousness of the plight of the people for the survival of all of us. 



Copyright © 2010, Nancy Barra, "Epiphany", Pastel on paper, 18"x14", from: Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.





















However,  she asked herself:

"Do they really care? Are they sincerely concerned about the causes of this revolt? Do they think about the consequences of their lack of concern for this mass movement in Chile and everywhere?" 


The problem is this, she thought: 

"If they are not willing to share part of their profits for the greater goodness of humanity, they and their descendants will in the end also suffer along with everyone else. They do not seem to understand this basic fact. When the environmental disaster settles in, their bunkers deep in the Earth will not guarantee their survival."

Copyright © 2010 from: https://www.vice.com/en_in/article/vb5geb/how-the-worlds-billionaires-prepare-for-the-apocalypse


She continued: "Besides, the environmental living conditions on Mars are not yet favorable for their survival, without counting the travel technology to get there." 


Copyright @ 2019 from; https://www.theguardian.pe.ca/lifestyles/local-lifestyles/atlantic-skies-mars-humankinds-next-home-367062/


She said convincingly: 

"Therefore, they better think about it, open their hearts, use their intelligence and join this present movement for justice, equality and respect for every human being and for our planet. Otherwise, no one, including them and their families, will be able to survive."


Then, she stood at the top of the cliff with her kite and said: 

Copyright © 2018 Nancy Barra,"Fearless Dreamer",Pastel over watercolor on Arches paper, 11.2"x8", from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.   


"C' mom, holders of power in this planet!  Let´s join all the people who are suffering right now and who defiantly decided to create a better future on this Earth for all of us, including you, your families and descendants!"    

                                              *******

                               Dedicated to all the children 
                                    of today and tomorrow








Monday, May 13, 2019

EGO

 Nancy Barra, "Dreaming", Egg tempera on wood, 9" x 12", from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo

"To think that I have spent so much energy in defining my identity, solidifying my self-esteem and collecting achievements to just reach the simple conclusion that I have been seeking to satisfy my ego!", she reflected that day by the ocean.

                                         What is ego


"Is it defining ourselves in terms 
of self-importance as defined by societal standards?" 
she asked herself.


"And how much time do we spend defining and defending our ego? Perhaps our entire life," she asked, remembering her mother when she looked up at the sky searching for answers.






























Nancy Barra, "Julia in the sky," Pastel, 12" x 9,  from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo


"We have that intrinsic need to feel important, valued, respected and admired, which has been the primordial cause of our anguish, pain and fear. It explains why many of our leaders throughout the history of human civilization have initiated wars, killed people, conquered new territories, controlled resources and manipulated the masses," she continued reflecting.


Copyright © 2017, "The Five Most Important Battles of the Ancient Greek Wars", from https://allthatsinteresting.com/greek-wars




















"Our ego is linked to the definition of what we are in our societies. This definition -in a broad sense- commonly includes: our gender, sexual preferences, race, physical appearance, religion, occupation or activity, level of formal education, income and/or material resources, and social background of the family/community we belong to", she reasoned.

"For example, concerning gender, women have been historically relegated after men, because our activity has been defined primordially by our capacity to procreate and raise our children, which is, by the way, the most important activity of all", she concluded.


Nancy Barra, "La Pachamama", acrylic on canvas, 16" x 12" from: Nancy BarraContemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo.


"It has been so difficult for me to just define myself as a temporary being on this planet and be happy about it!"

 
"I have struggled to understand that I am a minuscule spark of energy in an infinite cosmos! Very insignificant and magical at the same time." 

Nancy Barra, Photography: "Message to the world" Andrews' Point, Massachusetts.



"It has also been a struggle for me to be sincerely humble and recognize that it is a miracle that I am alive and that, one unexpected day, I will stop being, like it will eventually happen to all of us. Have you thought about it?", she asked looking at an imaginary audience.
























 Nancy Barra, "Interrupted"Oil on canvas 28" x 22, from:Nancy BarraContemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo 

"The origin of life and its end is the only thing that matters because it helps me to feel in unity with others, insofar as we share a journey in between with the same beginning and end". 


"Birth and death are the only two equalizers for all mankind, independently of the, I-ego", she said to herself.


                                     First cry....


Copyright  © 2017 Clinica internacional.com, Guía de Supervivencia para Madres Primerizas Internacional: Recibiendo al recién nacido.











                               

                                       ... And...




Copyright © 1890 Van Goh,"Sorrowing Man ("At Eternity´s Gate) in Wikipedia.org  



"How have I wasted my time trying to define myself and even letting others to define my worth with such a list of unending criteria and requirements? This has only helped me to separate myself from others and not realize what intrinsically unites us all. I let myself be deceived by appearances. I was wrong," she reflected, looking at the waves. 


 Nancy Barra "Reflexionando en Azul", Photography, Andrew´s Point, Massachusetts

























Leaning on a table, she said:"Years have passed. However, it is not too late. I still have time to live the rest of my life being thankful and humble." 


Nancy Barra, "Ancient Wisdom" Pastel over Watercolor on paper, 16" X 12", from:Nancy BarraContemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo 





























"Thankful enough to enjoy the beauty of nature and the gestures of generosity and creativity of many people in this world." 

"Humble enough to realize the insignificance of the "I" and the importance of the "we", she finally concluded.

                                         *****

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Millennials

Copyright @ 2016 Nancy Barra, "Future Ahead", oil on canvas, 16"x 23.5", from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo

Millennials are the Net generation, on-line savvy and immersed in social media. The average Millennial has 250 Facebook friends. They send an average of 50 texts per day and how many have not posted a selfie?


Millennials are fascinated by the digital revolution and that sense of being connected to everybody and everything in a society, which paradoxically fosters isolation. Millennials feel the illusion of connectedness provided by digital media.















Copyright © 2017 Antoine Geiger, in: http:http-//www.thisiscolossal.com/2015/11/cellphone-attention-antoine-geiger/

They find ever fewer opportunities to speak directly to another human being or to laugh together at a joke in the same physical shared space. LOL.


On the subway, most people are curved over their digital phones like an army of robots, looking at the small screens and connecting with others, reading, or just passing time with electronic entertainment.












Copyright © 2017 Vladimir Kasak in: :http://breakbird.com/15-brilliant-illustrations-that-reflect-the-craziness-of-our-modern-world/

If you would have seen this scenario just twenty years ago, you would have thought that all these people had a serious mental illness. Not anymore. This is the norm of social conduct in public places these days. The tiny minority without a smart phone in their hands all the time, those are the wierdos of today.














Copyright @ 2010 Nancy Barra,"Pensive", pastel on La Carte paper, 16" x 12", from: Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo

I think that Millennials sense that something is profoundly wrong with this trend. I am sure that some understand that something very basic is missing in their immersion in digital social networks: it is the increasing lack of kinesthetic and real human touch and contact. They seem to be losing the ability to simply look in another person's eyes when listening or expressing ideas or emotions face-to-face.












Copyright © 2014 Bansky, in:"Banksy’s New Mural Mocks Smart Phone Distracted Lovers" from website:mymodernmet.com

So, what happens when, behind this facade of digital connectivity and social "popularity", Millennials feel alone and scared in the present and of the future?


















Copyright © 2017, Ruth Ostrow in: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/life/columnists/ruth-ostrow/loneliness-can-strike-even-those-in-relationships/news-story/708d1f793e16dd71c56d102dad4c6c32

Like the rest of us, they see the possibility of climate catastrophe, an erratic job market, poor quality of food, air and water, ongoing health problems, dependency on pharmaceutical companies, increasing domination of world corporations in their daily lives and continuous turmoil and violence around the planet. Fear sets in.














Copyright © 2017 Nancy Barra "Fearful", Watercolor and pastel on paper, 16" x 12"from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo

All what is going on paints a picture of the present and the future in dark colors and unpredictable strokes.

Copyright © 2014 Daily Maverick in:https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2014-08-01-in-a-world-in-turmoil-is-south-africa-finally-growing-up/#.Wbnn-saZO9s


Elizabeth Kolbert in her book “The Sixth Extinction” tells us that so far, five extinction events have been scientifically documented on Planet Earth. She says that for the first time, we are the ones who are about to create our own extinction.

It would be the only extinction event where we, as a civilization, will be the creators of it and, at the same time, the victims. It would be the last act of human civilization: a collective Hara-Kiri grand finale, probably recorded digitally on every iPhone around the planet.

copyright © 2010, Big picture club: http://bigpictures.club/resize.php
img=http://fc06.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2010/061/1/f/Earth_Cry_by_SoolArts.jpg

Can we overcome this predicted self-destructive destiny? Can we stop the course of history by effectively opposing the powerful Orwellian forces that are leading us to our demise as a civilization? Can we really do that in a short period of time? Can we effectively use digital technology to help us achieve this? 

Will our young people have the courage to do it for all of our children?

Copyright © 2016 Matzav.com in: http://matzav.com/boo-hoo-report-says-children-of-color-are-traumatized-by-2016-campaign-the-trump-effect/












The Boom generation has been unable to answer these questions. Millennials have the next word and we hope it is decisive, inspiring and profoundly human.


Dedicated to Johnnie and Alissita