title: medicine shield
year of execution: 2021
size: 1189 x 1256 pixels (digital artwork)
technical data: digital artwork, collage and painting
Description: For the applied technique, I chose the term „digital deconstruction“:
In my photo editor I stack multiple layers of photos that have all have previously been more or less heavily processed by various apps. Next I start eliminating parts using different selection and eraser tools. This way, interesting textures emerge. It is a beautiful way to invite unpredictable „happy accidents“. Also, the layers start to interact. In the next step, I smoothen transitions and add supplementary areas or lines, so that the elements complement each other. The pieces fuse or cross-fade at certain points and break open at other points. With enough „dirt“ left, the result presents itself as an overall harmonious impression with manifold unexpected and vivid details.
The medicine shield is a sacred object in native american culture. When a man comes of age and becomes a warrior, he and the medicine man build the shield together. The shield depicts the warrior's personal vision of life, the powers of his spirit guide, or guardian spirit, his “medicine”. It offers power, wisdom, protection. Therefore, the shield is not used in battles, but kept within reach. It is made out of several stuffed layers and ornamented with artwork, designs, and symbols with distinct meaning and power.I have a sense, that the approach of the applied technique and the deeper meaning of the motif combine to a consistent overall picture. The artwork may reveal abstract renderings of archetypal symbols: an eagle, fire, smoke, arrows and feathers...May the shield give shelter and spiritual guidance to the viewer!