Reflections on art and leadership

I use my art to reflect an artist and a senior manager in the financial services industry. I notice that the deeper I understand myself the more I succeed to impact others; in both art and work.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Subliminal TransArt concept

Origin of the Subliminal TransArt concept

It started all when preparing my exhibition in Barcelona.
I needed to ship the art work full of glass to Barcelona, and while preparing the wooden box I decided to make some simple street art on the outside.
Original wooden box sent to Barcelona

When in Barcelona I picked up the large box at the house of Charlotte's brother Marcus and brought it to our hotel at the to of the mountain overlooking Barcelona.
It was interesting to see how much people somehow noticed the odd wooden box with the large colourful decoration in the hallway. And myself I was positively surprised how the street art decoration had survived the journey, as it was just glued at the outside of the wooden box. It actually looked like it was transported, or like it had been touched by time and weather, giving it a marvellous street-look. In the end, after the exhibition I left the wood and decoration in Barcelona, but the image of the work somehow remained in the back of my head.

Then last year a friend of mine Nebahat asked if I was interested in exhibiting in Istanbul.
Of course, that seems very nice, and I started wondering which art to exhibit there.
Somehow I was a bit worried to start o whole logistics operation again, especially after the New York exhibition last year. I was puzzled and started to think maybe of new concepts, and then it struck me:
- sending art that is decorated can contain messages that subconsciously influence the people that see it while being transported
- the messages can be adjusted, asking attention for things-ideas-causes that are "fragile" in the widest sense. For example: "Freedom of speech is fragile", especially when the art work would be sent to countries where that truly is the case
- what if the art work gets lost, for example because the culture dislikes it so much that it is damaged/taken away...well, that just means I will need to make nice pictures ahead of sending.

Creation of the art works

Street art on the outside of the black box
"Fragile - What is a bad party"
I started looking for materials and decided to make 2 prototypes.
I took 2 canvases of 40x40 cm that would form the two sides. And I bought long bars of wood that would be used as sides connecting the 2 square main sides, composing a box of 40x40x6 cm.
The outside art works were made and I painted the inside canvases. I would include one abstract painting on the inside and one portrait as a sort of signature, both with oil paint.
Oil painted inside of the box - side 1
Self portrait signature


The exhibition in Istanbul got postponed and so I needed to find other destinations.
Today I sent the first box to Canada, to friends for whom I had illustrated a kids tourist guide of Amsterdam now some 3 years ago (Pedro & Slawko). In 2 working days it should arrive, and I am curious to see if and how it arrives.
The other one I want to prepare for sending to my brother who currently lives in Nigeria; a country a bit closer to the countries targeted in the first setup of the concept. I had wanted to send before, but when talking to my brother Alex, he had asked if I can add a standard so that he can actually put it somewhere where he can see it in his office. So that one will take a bit more time.

Inside abstract decoration - side 2

Happy with the concept so far and maybe soon I will see if there some exotic gallery for which I can make several of the true art works. The prototypes work and the concept actually looks promising to me.
And it includes the elements that I feel need to be part of my art:
- harvesting and expanding my skills
- an interesting/fascinating idea
- touching part of myself
- making it 'relevant' in my own journey as well as for other people.