Wednesday, June 6, 2007


By Joel Ferraris

It seems amusing, yet annoying to a certain degree, to see people all over the city enjoying their seemingly "private moments" loudly in public. This display of privacy unpopular during my childhood days seems to be part of Darwin's Theory of Evolution yet to be studied by experts. This could be another stage of Darwinian Evolution where homo sapiens will eventually mutate into big-headed aliens with smaller extremities.

Here, in the full view of the public, people are so engrossed in their private conversations (and so am I), digital games, text messages and internet surfing or pry on other people's privacy through digital cameras strategically concealed.

Nowadays all things digital, remote control or sent via internet or the satellites has succeeded in compelling people to use keyboards instead of beautiful penmanship or cameras instead of sincere eye-to-eye contact. Even baby-sitting seem to go hi-tech that the much-needed warmth of the human touch are now being replaced by something else.

This acrylic painting on small, circular canvases depict people holding modern gadgets. The whole set function as a version of the game of chess adapting to the digital age where men and women with computers represent the kings and queens respectively. The people holding mobile phones sending text messages are the bishops while kids with portable play stations are the horses. On the four corners are people with their video cameras and represent the rooks. All other pieces that serve as pawns are the men and women with mobile phones busy talking.

This idea was derived from my previous paintings entitled SALEPAWNS 1 & 2 in the past that depict people who use celfones as pawns of companies in the global business competition.

Encapsulated inside plastic bubbles, these pieces are equipped with magnets to enable playing the game of chess while the artwork hangs on the wall. This makes the whole artpiece interactive and probably the guests of the one who will collect this will enjoy doing one strategic move everytime they visit their friend's house.

Furthermore, a mahjong tabletop outer frame completes the idea that this is a game of chance. (Also see ALIBI)

The whole artpiece encapsulates a deeper idea about the state of global business or global politics and strategies where all advanced technologies available are used to make one business group or country leap forward far more advanced than others.

I hope I'm wrong to imagine that the world today is in a state of stronger competition where sensitivity to other peoples' human feelings are gradually eroded and ignored what with the new kind of scientific and technological reality we are in.

As wars are being fought hi-tech, wherein one push of a button sends heartless and soulless bombs or weapons to the battlefields, bloodshed could be justified simply because of the new scientific breakthrough in inventing artificial blood to meet future demands for it. And with the recent breakthrough in quantum teleportation, battle-hardened and trigger-happy armies could be deployed in a blink of an eye right beside you while you are praying for your dear life.

I was once involved in bloody fraternity wars in our university. But one vital pause-for-a-moment-and-think reminded me of the importance of God the Father Almighty's message of love and that deterred me from hitting the enemy to the disgust of my frat brothers.

What about in the real battlefield where more people are becoming godless or have a twisted sense of religion or spirituality?

Inspired by computer games and trained in the guise of building corporate team-spirit through sporty war games using airsoft weaponry and simulating real combats people nowadays, even professionals or members of religious groups, are unknowingly making themselves available for future battles. They unknowingly allow their minds to be preconditioned through subtle ways of military training. It would be not that hard anymore, I suppose, to accept the seemingly inevitable hi-tech human conflicts or maybe people are just preparing to face robots as enemies.

With a lot of people I met now in doubt or completely not believing in God the Father Almighty and twisting His statutes, there's no doubt that one day, in one way or the other, we will fall victims to their senseless and deadly game while they intrude into our precious privacy just to pry, to buzz and to see to win in their game.

(Kindly visit FREE FLOW to see more artpieces of this series)

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