Jey Gar has been painting since he was a little boy and remembers riding around on his tricycle watching his mother paint. He uses art to explore challenging ideas by continuously interpreting the work as he creates, relying on the art to reveal aspects where analytical thinking alone would fail. Jey uses this process of involving the heart and the mind to probe topics ranging from identity, social issues, emotions and the nature of reality. You can find more of Jey’s work here and here, and you can take a walk through his virtual gallery here.
This painting depicts the mind’s inability to handle the vastness of reality. This then leads to the mind and the senses cutting out, or rejecting so much from the world around us, leaving a tiny fraction which is used to project a version of reality we finally experience (depicted by the light being taken from the young woman’s right eye and then clouding her left eye). The mind possibly uses this limiting mechanism of rejecting and projecting (called maya) to construct a Virtual ‘I’ (VI) or the ‘I’ that we associate with our identity such as our name, nationality, culture, abilities, history etc. – depicted as the wispy figure on the woman’s forehead.
During dramatic life changes, such as migrating to a foreign land, this VI can become destabilised in readiness to be modified to adapt to the new surroundings.
Migration disrupted and weakened aspects of my identity (eg. familiar places, aspirations, values, friendships), but later helped me realise that such aspects are rarely stable and are separate to the essence of that ‘I’ sensation we all feel, which remains the same throughout life. Aligning myself to that deeper ‘I’ and not the VI helps adapt to life changes, and also better connect with others by recognising the ‘I’ ness we all share as opposed to our differences, such as aspirations, race or religion.
© Jey Gar, 2022