:: The Dream Of Jaguar Slash ::

Whisper    Prisoner    Garden    Blade    Jaguar    Xibalba    Eros    Dying God

:: 2011 :: 120cm x 60cm :: Acrylics, Inks and Markers on Canvas ::

"I found myself in a jungle village, Amazon or Mexico, somewhere like that, a village of native people and I was the only outsider. We all sat down to take part in some kind of ritual, singing in a language that I didn’t understand yet inexplicably I knew the words of the songs. I got the feeling something was going to happen, that everyone else knew it too. Then, from out of the trees, the sound of a big cat yowling - our singing got louder, as if we were calling the cat to the village. In my dreaming mind’s eye I saw a jaguar - somehow I knew she was female - and instantly my perception jumped to the feline’s point of view. I saw that I was injured with a large splinter piercing slantwise into my right forelimb, and I limped warily towards the firelight that was the village, attractive songlines emerging from where there were humans.

"As I entered the village I saw my human self; my perception leapt back into my human eyes and I sat down in front of the jaguar with my heart in my mouth. With both of us now surrounded by song, I gingerly raised my hand slowly towards the splinter - which was the size of a small dagger - and curled my fingers around it. Her intense feline gaze pierced into me as I did so: she was watchful and ready to strike if I got this wrong. With one sharp move I pulled out the splinter, tranferred it to my left hand and waited. She hadn’t flinched. Now as if controlled by unseen hands, I moved posture to lie down in front of her, my right arm out. I braced myself for what I knew was coming.

"With steady, deliberate movements, she raised her huge paw with claws unsheathed. I bit down hard as she slowly and deeply sliced three incised lines into my arm, our eyes gazing deeply into each other as she did so. Blood flowed. Meaning and sensation passed between us. The song became the trees themselves, and I understood why she had come. In an instant I awoke."

This work was a long time in the making, springing from a dream experienced at the very beginning of the life-transformative process, but only completed as an artwork towards the end. The dream that inspired it is so redolent with transformative imagery that it fast became my source of strength throughout the emotionally turbulent months, functioning as an archetypal centrepoint around which my life could flow. The Dream Of Jaguar Slash thus forms the centrepiece to this series.

The Dream Of Jaguar Slash


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