You will not be surprised that with a lighthearted name the art of Ohmy Shalala would be lighthearted. And visually it certainly has a lighthearted look, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any substance behind it. What I have seen of Ohmy’s art has usually bright colors, which associates it with candy or a fantasy land or fairy like, lighthearted so to speak. But it thought I ask her what her idea was behind the art expression she made at Monkey Mind. Now to be honest, I am not much for asking interpretations and explanations because I rather have people explore things in their own way and make up their own mind, but someone – I forgot who – once said that people also require guidance. They beg for meaning and context. It might have been Jim Jarmusch who said that in a documentary Behind Jarmusch about the making of his movie Limits of Control.
The art expression tries to capture the the influence of our unknown unseen past on our selves and on what we will become and not just in an individual context, but in the wider context of family and nations and humanity. And so Second Life is influenced by unknown and unseen pasts and changed. The past in the art exhibition is expressed in the black and white image and the mask express the many changes of the selves. It reminded me of something else Jarmusch mentions in the documentary. That we are intrigued by that which we don’t know. Unexplored lands, unseen movies, books we haven’t read, people we haven’t met. The unknown is a bit like a carrot that entices the donkey to move forward and drag a cart with it.
The cornfield is a reference to Second Life legendary Corn Field a place cut of from Second Life where naught avatars were banished to.
Next to her art expression Ohmy also used the Monkey Head to make her own version of the Monkey Mind and she made a version of the Futuravi. The latter I will try and make a picture of.