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Individual commonality

I want to explore how we can see commonality in our humanity.  I want to suggest a new and better style for communication.

I believe it is better to unite around a set of shared values.

We need to start grouping ourselves around and with people who share our morals and ethics and world view.

Our individuality can be one common experience.

"Unity in Diversity"
Khalid Balogun

Charcoal on Strathmore Paper
18" x 16"

Not all must look the same to be same.
Neither does for all to feel the same to bear same name.

Nor does synonymous nomenclature mean the same claim.
Or even similar place of birth mean the same frame.

Indeed salient is unity amidst diversity.
To view Black and White as same entity, Rose and Sun as family, Yoruba or Yabola with integrity.

Deluded we are, viewing race as the primary focus.
Feigning blind to individual commonality,
Ethnicity as qualification,
Religious background as cause for superiority.

"Give me everything"
AEneas MacRae

Digital photography
24" X 32"

A group of young people expressing their own individuality with youthful exuberance, naivety and joie de vivre.

Paul Ygartua

Acrylic on canvas
60" x 60"

In Honour of the People of the World – “Alone We Can Do So Little. Together We Can Do So Much” Helen Keller

Once again, Paul has felt the need to express himself through his eternal desire to portray the People of the World, showing their individuality, yet, the strength of being together, working towards a solution to win the war on the coronavirus pandemic. A nation’s culture resides in the hearts and in the soul of its people. We must honour all people of the world, understand their culture and reach out for everlasting peace. Without an interest in other cultures, we not only become disinterested, but we remain ignorant. 

Paul Ygartua’s most renowned mural A WORLD UNITED,  his union of the world with our five races, adorned the walls of the United Nations Pavilion during Expo86 Vancouver, Canada. The World Expos are a time to celebrate who you are and United Nations celebrated the people of the world, what we have in common, what we admire and what we want to learn – promoting our developing relations among nations, maintaining worldwide peace and security.

Part of Art Vancouver

Part of Art Vancouver

"Land of the Free"
Jennifer Heine

Acrylic, oil and cold wax.
24" x 36"

"Land of the Free" was inspired by news coverage of the brave men who were called to protect the crowds and freedom of speech at the Charlottesville "Unite the Right" rally, in spite of unimaginable provocation and moral conflict. Times of crisis, as shown again recently with the Black Lives Matter movement, can display not only the worst of human behaviour and ignorance, but also throw into brilliant relief those who are committed to helping others in the fight for justice and equality and galvanize a new generation committed to building a safer, more tolerant and enlightened future. Hopefully shining a light on such individuals helps kindle a beacon of hope in dark times.

"El Cerro"
Oil on canvas
47.25" x 35.5"

120cm x 90cm

"El Cerro" or in English 'The Hill', is the uncanny meeting place of many. Along the city cliffs of Guayaquil, Ecuador, this 400 year old neighbourhood is made of difference. At El Cerro, characters are lived in relation with others; they play - and are played by - the socio-political gymnastics of the place. Here, identities matter not despite their differences, but because of them.

I hope these will be a generative contribution to the show (and perhaps a bit contradictory) as my intention in these pieces is to present another perspective of 'individual commonality'.

In my paintings, I actually try to maintain the difference of characters to sustain their particularities. I see these characters sustaining themselves not despite their difference, but because of it. My intention is to make visible these distinctions, in order to create multiplicity. By this I mean that, for me, the character is forged in relation with others, but these relations are unique to a particular place and socio-political moment in Guayaquil.

"El Chiclero"

Federico Airaudo
Acrylic on canvas
47.25" x 35.5"

120cm x 90cm

The specificity of a hundred little things bumping up against each other in the concession box of 'El Chiclero'. A carefully mix-matched collection of trinkets and satiables particular to Guayaquil's downtown scene. Many miles from his traditional Andean territory in the interior highlands of Ecuador, El Chiclero sits at the same street corner of this concrete jungle on late nights. His familiar sales call, the fervent rattling of a chewing gum carton jingling in his palm. He is the only one who sells a single cigarette with a chiclet to follow, resisting neoliberal displacement by playing its game.

"El Naranjero"

Federico Airaudo
Acrylic on canvas
39.25" x 31.5"

100cm x 80cm

72 years of homegrown citrus clashing with sun-kissed fish and gasoline. ‘El Naranjero’ sits along the boardwalk of Chipipe, a small coastal town whose arm outstretches South America’s most Western tip and Ecuador’s once-thriving oil basin. I pass him every morning, peeling micro-economies with scaled fingers.

'"Heal The World"
Amoo Emmanuel
Charcoal and graphite on paper
18" x 24"
As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world (that is the myth of the atomic age), but being able to remake ourselves.
This piece was inspired by patoranking, a Nigerian artist, after he dropped a single that literally pricked my conscience as an artist.