Archive for December 6th, 2021

From Alpha to Omega

GC Myers-  From Omega to Alpha sm

From Alpha to Omega— At the West End Gallery

I imagined a labyrinth of labyrinths, a maze of mazes, a twisting, turning, ever-widening labyrinth that contained both past and future and somehow implied the stars. Absorbed in those illusory imaginings, I forgot that I was a pursued man; I felt myself, for an indefinite while, the abstract perceiver of the world. The vague, living countryside, the moon, the remains of the day did their work in me; so did the gently downward road, which forestalled all possibility of weariness. The evening was near, yet infinite.

― Jorge Luis Borges, Ficciones

I was dropping off some new work a week or so ago at the West End Gallery. I came across the piece shown above, From Alpha to Omega, while going through some my existing work that was in their inventory. Painted on paper, it’s a fairly subtle piece in composition and color, with muted, watery tones. Perhaps not the most dramatic or boldest piece in my body of work.

But there’s something about this piece that always captures my attention, that makes me stop and ponder it for a few moments when ever I come across it, as I did that day. It undoubtedly has some sort of personal meaning for me that triggers that response.

The title refers to the Alpha and the Omega, the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet which together also commonly denotes the beginning and ending of anyone or anything. I saw the person coming upon the Red Tree as seeing something– it’s life and existence, for example– come full circle.

Which was the Alpha and which was the Omega remains a mystery.

But I also saw the figure as coming to the end, the center, of a labyrinth to find the Red Tree. Again, the labyrinth might symbolize one’s life and existence, one which a person enters at birth and comes to the center at death.

But perhaps in this case death isn’t the center of the labyrinth, the end that is inferred. Perhaps the Omega is the finding of some truth, some sort of self-awareness or realization. In this scenario, this would symbolize an evolution from one state of being to another, with the figure representing the first state– the Alpha– and the Red Tree signifying the final and furthest state of growth that resides at the center of the labyrinth.

The Omega.

I say this feels personal but I can’t say that I am anywhere near the center of my own labyrinth. I don’t believe that we have the ability or self-awareness that allows us to recognize our own potential for being. I can say that most days I feel like I am far from the center of whatever labyrinth I am wandering around in and that if I could just get a glimpse, a tiny momentary peek, at the Omega, I would be satisfied.

Funny what meaning a small, simple painting can hold for a person. I guess making us consider these things, to make these connections so that we can see a direction or pattern in our actions, is the purpose of art.

Sounds about right early on this Monday morning…

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