Part 1: Cosmos.
In Greek, ‘kosmos’ means ‘order of the world’. The Greeks put Cosmos as the polar opposite of Chaos. In the mythological hierarchy, Cosmos was described as a being sculpturally organized by the laws of beauty, a superior version of the human body and, arguably, a fine blueprint for the Christian God. Cosmos was not created by any gods and was the primary source of all life, ethereal and earthly. Plato described Cosmos as ‘a shadow of the order of ideas’. On one side, it’s a beautiful grand deity, on the other, it’s a state of perfect harmony with the force of Love overpowering all others. Romans also suggested that Cosmos is where the self-conscious existence begins. But is there any wisdom in that? Do we really, as human beings, owe our critical thinking to our direct connection to the Universe?
The phenomena and problems of hierarchical ideology can be debated for hours, and they served as the starting point of our exploration of Dimension as a part of #shapeGAHSP campaign. In this instalment, we focused on Cosmos and asked a painter, a photographer and a dancer to interpret it in their art.
We start with @victoiredem , Paris-based painter with an affinity towards bold colours and dramatic shapes. Victoire works with diverse media, from traditional ones like canvas to more complex ones like shoes and clothing. Her works are inspired by such giants of modern art like Andy Warhol, Jean Michel Basquiat, David Hockney and Niki de Saint Phalle. Such inspirations can be clearly traced through her use of contrasting geometries, an interesting play on symmetry and asymmetry as well as her preferences for complex, almost overwhelming backgrounds.
Part 2: Landscape.
From the grand, vast and incomprehensible Cosmos we dive into the gorgeous sceneries that fill our planet. Lakes, seas, mountains, canyons, forests, jungles are the unique personality traits of our dear Earth. The Landscape can be either a creation of Nature herself or, the embodiment of the creative vision and passion of a human being, both are unique and carry a meaning of immense depth and the power to influence lives, opinions, spark ideas and conversations. In Plato’s ideas, The Atlantis, the Ideal State, was the land so coveted, advanced and self-indulgent, that the Gods themselves had to hide it from human eyes to stop any temptation. The similar story happened to the biblical cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, although, arguably, the triggers were different. The landscape political, social and physical shapes our experiences and has always been and will always be the topic of debates, disputes and conflicts of surprising magnitude, whether ignited by Nature herself or her spoilt children, humans.
The role of Landscapes in history, philosophy, religion and politics is unfathomable. Artists and craftsmen have attempted to interpret, describe and document the essence and power of the Landscape for millennia. Our headliner for the topic of Landscape today is Gideon de Kock, Hong Kong-based urban photographer that specializes in capturing the raw and the candid beneath the city’s glamour. Here, Gideon describes: “ A scene from Mong Kok, November 2019. A Hong Kong bus window becomes another casualty of the ongoing protests and tensions between protesters and the powers that be. A reflection, a past shattered, the “landscape” is left fragmented. The core of freedom has been removed, and in doing so has created a ripple effect throughout the community of sadness, anger and confusion.”
Part 3: Home.
‘There is no place like Home. It is also the place where we can be at our worst’. The Home isn’t instantly associated with bringing the worst in us, that much is true, however it is a place where one can allow themselves to be vulnerable, earnest and relaxed. Whether or not those qualities entail turning into a horrible beast entirely depends on the personality of the individual. The idea of home was personified into gods and deities in many religions, Vesta, Domovoy, Lamaria to name a few. Most of those spirits share common characteristics of being warm, accommodating, protective and wise – exactly how people in the past viewed or hoped to see their homes as.
‘Home is where the heart is’ it is not a physical place, but an idea rather, a mindset that allows us to feel comfortable and joyful. A home might well be a palace, of course, but it also can be a hobby, family or even a wider geographical area. For Audrey Chow, Home is dancing. Dance is synonymous with liberation and expression, and the studio is where that magic takes place.