Tree of Existence
The mystery of life up to now remains a question to science. Where life begins remains the most crucial information human race isfinding for in many generations. Man defines life as the state of existence which enables usto distinguish ourselves from the nonliving. With life, comes the idea of “being” which is also termed as the Ousia. In order to understand the different forms of life, one must know how life works and how it can be explained in different medium; moreover, one of the ways to show it is through art for all art exist with accordance to life. The art exhibition titled Ousia, aims to provide us diverse kinds of artworks which will enable us to understand life through the concept of being. One piece that elucidates lifethe most is the piece entitled “Only God Can Make a Tree” for it shows intricate lines, colors and symbolisms that represents the life.
A tree standing firmly on the ground with its roots clamped deeply into the damp earth and sips water from it, a tree that provides shade for the intense heat, a tree that enables us to breathe clean air, a tree that provides shelter for little animals and a tree so simple and being given life by God. This is how life shown from the artwork, the appearance may seem complicated because of the fine ink strokes, but the substance in it is as simple as it is.
Trees are considered a symbol for life since trees represents nature and nature defines life. Because it’s too wrinkled and barky, the tree’s trunk in indicates growth. The roots in other hand describe the flow of wisdom and the support for oneself because the roots is like our feet, it supports us as we stand to face the struggles in our lives and likewise the feet also provide the wisdom as it enables us to keep moving forward. The leaves and branches of the tree are like our arms and hands which allow us to create thus, leaves make the food for the tree to grow and the branches hold the leaves upwards for sunshine to be absorbed. The pen-work made by the artist describes the complicatedness and chaos of life, but with the presence of those circumstances, a being can exist forming a nearly-perfected organism. The artist can also be likened to a God who gives the artwork, the existence. All this processes and arguments are part of life and until such time we deteriorate and life shall be given back to God again. This artwork perhaps is inspired by the poem by Kilmer which is titled Trees since the title of the artwork is from the last line of Kilmer’s “Trees”. Kilmer not only describes trees as part of life but he also likened it to a man who depends also its life on from the earth’s resources.
In relation to the exhibit’s aim, the concept of existentialism can also be a presented for it talks about the state of existence of one being as it goes through its life. One may say that the tree which is shown in the artwork was given by God, but in an existentialist view, the tree exist because it has a purpose of its own that the tree itself should create and not created because it should have a purpose. These kinds of reasons and questions are presented by the exhibit, which is why they said to us that our concept of being or existence will be being tested.Whether in an existentialist view or not, what matters is the existence. As the title of the piece says, God created the tree’s existence and only God can create a perfect tree and neither the artist nor any human kind can make himself a God thus, all man-made objects do not have life whether it moves or not. Human-made materials are reflection of God’s creation thus the artwork only reflects a tree’s image but not its existence; hence they have two distinct existences.
Life is a complex thing to define and neither of us knows where life begins. But knowing that life is important and valuable is just enough. Withthe artwork, it profoundly conveys the meaning of life through just a simple tree; moreover, the title conveys stronger about the existence and where life did came from. My realization is that in every stroke of ink has its meaning and every drop of it has purpose. One should not use a pen abusively, for its life depends on its ink. It means we must not abuse ourselves for as we make our fate, life, being and our won existence will be sacrificed also.
(c) I do not own this image credits goes to image.forwallpaper.com.