MANO SOTELO

MANO SOTELO

Artist Statement:

My artistic practice can be divided into two categories: observational and allegory.

For me, observational painting and drawing is an exercise in mindfulness. It directly provides me with an increased understanding of my external and internal world. In this practice, I question my assumptions, become more aware, solve problems, make deliberate decisions and ultimately recognize my accountability for the outcome. Through the process of critical observation and thinking, I am provided with direct feedback on the profound impact of my thoughts, judgments, beliefs and consciousness. For these reasons, observational practice has become a foundational component for the rest of my artistic work.

My current allegorical work, originated out of a religious upbringing; specifically, where I observed books, individuals, classes and rituals that professed to deliver individuals, and thus society, from evil. Evil can be defined as suffering, misfortune, harmful or wrong conduct or character.


Today, promises of salvation continue to be presented to the masses when we turn on the television, visit the book store, or the Internet. Although, this message of deliverance has been around for thousands of years, we continue to fail to find peace or enlightenment through any one person, organization, place, or book. If the truth were otherwise we would live in a world without conflict.
 
These paintings act as a response to my questioning and search for truth. Given this inherited and adopted state of internal and external conflict, the paintings respond to the question “who ultimately holds the key to our salvation or enlightenment?”

Faith is incredibly powerful; therefore, it is not my intent to dismiss or discredit any particular belief. Instead my objective, and evolving product, has been the observation of beliefs and values, their adoption and ultimate influence.