A ray of light zigzags through a heap of colors. There are a thousand of insects of all sorts laying in this painting. Bugs? Bees? Ants? These creatures appear so innocent and pretty when they are alive, look disgusting and unattractive when they’re smashed on the floor.
Here they are together, set in a circle, their bodies squished into even more smaller shape than they are, it’s a cemetery of harmony.
The blood has come out hard, splashing everything that’s around and making the scene beautiful. It’s an ensemble of fine pencil traces and spatters of what it feels like watercolor paint. The palette is pleasant, we admire the hues of roses, reds, and oranges and the dashes of darker colors such as blues and browns.
How can a disastrous scenario by its envelope and colors appear so mesmerizing? It must be the roundness of the wings, the almost translucent insects and the multitude of color samples living on the canvas.
We enter this painting by using our innocence and our childish instinct. It’s reassuring to focus only on the colors. As the eyes plunge, looking for a monochrome color that will stop us from wandering on the surface, we come to the realization that we’ve been staring at death this whole time. And that we still probably are.
This second phase hits our inner spleen, and whether we are accustomed to dig deep or not, we will keep scanning and analyzing the painting. So much lies within that space. The few centimeters between the pigments and our flesh represents how committed we are to explore our inner self. There too, it is a cemetery of harmony.
Christine Ay Tjoe at White Cube Bermondsey until Sept 11th