The Instruments of my happiness 令我幸福的乐器
30cms (W) x 24cms (H)
Oil on Panel
A colleague of mine is in an interesting position; she has a job with a good company, good prospects, lives in a big city, everything looks good. The quid pro quo is that the thing she loved to do was play drums in a band. Living in the city and maintaining this lifestyle means that the noise caused by playing drums is a problem so she's unable to continue doing that. I wanted to capture the regret of that. The photo film I've used because she's interested in old school cameras and photography so it was a good aesthetic device to represent the past and also to separate her from the drum-kit. I had a composition dilemma here in that I don't think it's a great practice to but a big black line down the middle of a painting and split it into 2 unevenly proportioned sections. It disrupts the focus of the painting and separates out two aspects. I also had in mind 2 rooms next to each other where you are linked to the noises of your close neighbour (which is a challenge of close quarters city living). Both sides are musical as the subject really loves music but she doesn't hold the same passion for guitar as for drums which had a particular impact on her.
I am interested here in the boundary between individual freedom and collectivism, especially when you have a talent or passion that risks imposing on the freedoms of others (like loud music). To what extent do you need to separate yourself from that in order to live fully in society?
Obviously this particular problem could go away with proper sound insulation in new buildings but that's not the point...