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SymbolsMy latest work is this Monotype – Mixed Media painting on Lokta paper from the Himalaya. Size: 36 x 50 cm painted area: 18x33cm

I have worked with Symbols in my paintings for some years now, it fascinates me, and it is a binding between the Past, Present and Future. Like Music, Symbols are older than Words in Human History.

This painting has 9 Symbols on it of different countries / cultures.
Some of the Symbols everybody knows; like birds or animals, sun and moon. They can be more than 5000 years old! They appeal to our instinctive brain. Pioneers like Sigmund Freud and Carl Gustaf Jung already had the opinion that the Human Brain always has communicated by Symbols. The language of Symbols is of all time and all cultures. Or as Oscar Wilde once said: “All Art is Reality and Symbol in one”.

Explanation about this latest work “Symbols”
From the top left to the bottom right:

Cosmos and Sign of the Gods
Symbol of Rain, Mystery and Change
Lets the Sun comes through for Thrones of Heaven

Crane bird or Hsi Wang Mu:
Mother Goddess of the West
With her you see often her 2 guides:
1 is the carrier of her fan and the other one carries peaches
Stands for long Life and the messenger of the Gods

The Lotus, symbol from the upper Egypt:
The Blue Lotus flower has its roots in troubled Water,
it opens its Flower in the Sunrise, and closes it at Sunset
Is the Source of Life from the primordial Waters
Fertility and resurrection from the Death

The Fountain in European Art:
Is often the sign of Knowledge and Inspiration
The Water coming from the Fountain is the Source of Life,
Creation and Healing is its power.

The Circle is the Queen of the Sun, or Amar Terasu in Japanese Shintoism, the Wheel of Life from Buddhism, and my own version:
The Aureol around her Head which means the Sun, the Mirror of her is her “Shintai” or Mind, Spirit. Often seen with Sword and Jewels, they are the symbols of Power, Beauty and Wealth. The Wheel of Buddhism has 8 spooks, they stand for the Path of Enlightenment. My own version has the Flower for vulnerability and the 9th spook I added stands for the Flexibility or 9 lives of a cat.

Peach is known in the Chinese Taoism and the Japanese Shintoism:
One of the most powerful sign of Immortality and rejuvenation and long life is the Peach. T’ao also means Marriage, the peach grows in the Garden of the Palace of the Mother Goddess of the West and carries Fruit ones every 3000 years. Sign of Eternity. Fukurokuju is the Japanese God who carries a Dear, a Turtle, a Crane bird and a Peach, they all represent a Long Life.

The Hand or Hamsa/Hamesh the figure 5 in Arabic and Hebrew:
With an Amulet of a hand of Fatima,
you are protected against the evil eye.

Circle (plains of the Indian Warriors like Sioux, Crow, Blackfeet, Arapaho, Comanche, Cheyenne, Pawnee):
The Circle is the Sun, the Feathers for the contact with the Gods
and Masters of the Universe. Also it can stand for Protection and the
feathers of the Headdress of the Indians.

Erzulie or the Loa of the Voodoo (slaves from Africa brought this to Amerika):
This is a Feminin Loa, identification with the Moon, Pretty, Sensual, Vanity and Caring for the Good things in Life, such as Richness, Property, Love.
It carries the Heart in it, the Symbol of Love.

Source of Symbols: The Guide for Symbols from Clare Gibson.