Gouache on paper
12.75 x 17 in. 2018
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The Cordyceps Ignota fungi or “Zombi Fungi” takes over unsuspecting prey by branching through it’s body and bursting out it’s exoskeleton to release its spores and restart their life cycle. They often attack tarantulas, ants and other insects. I was thinking about the metaphor of this phenomena, the way negative ideas infect humans much the same way, working through their bodies and lives, then expanding outward and wider as they tear through us. We might call them the “shoulds”.
Tarantulas molt their exoskeletons as they grow, shedding off their old skin and appearing new, bendy, and soft. I wondered how this experience could interact with the metaphor, if we too could shed the bad truths we were taught about ourselves, and give up the alternate lives we “should” have lead. Those dreams we hoped for but weren’t possible, the chimera of the lives we didn’t get to live because of outside forces vs. internal ones.
This piece is my hope we can emerge, soft, flexible, and a little bit bigger than our old lives. I have this feeling that maybe with a bit work, we too can push out of versions that are just too small to hold the beauty inside, and let go of those chimera before they consume us. .