A colorful woman hailing from a colorful family, who has led a colorful life; the Irish-English artist Xante Gabriela is a study in mysterious contrasts. Her art is decidedly influenced by classical European painters like Caravaggio and Rembrandt, who excelled in the use of shadow and light to create mystery and pathos. Gabriela's subject matter, also like the old masters, revolves around the human body taking influence from the East and its ancient spiritual traditions.One Foot in Heaven, One Foot on Earth
In her current exhibition, Gabriela's canvasses employ an experimental technique by mixing egg tempera and oil paints. The results dazzles the eyes via a series of images depicting a young Indonesian man and girl at prayer. In "Man Praying I" the subject seem to float against dark moody backgrounds, exuding an inner glow that suggests peace. With outstretched palms, the subject holds a white shawl, perhaps a symbol of purity or a sacred gift, before him. There is a sense of peace and surrender, not as in defeat, but as in the gracious acceptance of reality.
In an age when many iconoclasts declare the old arts Ė literature, painting, sculpture and live music redundant if not irrelevant, Xante stands out as proof of the awesome power of one image and one word to defeat those either too lazy or intolerant to realize that some things are truly timeless, and, that as long as humans tread the earth and contemplate their place in the Universe, there will be a yearning and space for art in its endless varieties of forms.
An Exhibition of Paintings by Xante Gabriela
July 9 Ė August 3, 2009
Ganesha Gallery at the Four Seasons Resort at Jimbaran Bay
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