“Coup D’État” was exhibited in Quebec in 2012.

It is about initiation, when life is put to question, all beliefs, personas, ideals, livelihood, relationships, and raison d’être. The process of individuation is about letting go of old ways. The oracles are a kind of map, guiding between the inner and outer worlds.

My decade of travels in Mali, West Africa came to an end with the 2012 military mutiny and coup and the takeover of the northern region by Tuareg rebels and Islamic insurgents. At the same time, a major highway was being built through my home village in Quebec and I felt I had come to a crossroad. 

The paintings are oracles, inspired by the Tarot playing cards from 14th century Italy that came to be used for divination.

“Divination is applied symbolism which stands or falls on the dependability of what Carl Jung has called synchronicity, a pattern of related chances and meaningful coincidences. Listening to the voice of Nature.” ( A Dictionary of Symbols, Tom Chetwynd, HarperCollins Publishers, 1998)

There are 78 cards in the Tarot deck, 22 Major Arcana, or trump cards and 56 Minor Arcana divided into 4 suits.    

Pentacles or Diamonds: Earth, childhood, sensation

Wands or Clubs: Fire, youth, thinking function

Cups or Hearts: Water, manhood/womanhood, feeling function

Swords or Spades: Air, old age, intuition

 

The Fool is the most powerful card in the deck and represents 0: the unknown and limitless potential. Carpe Diem.

The Magpie in archery is missing the mark and making one’s way inward.

 

Mirror: 2012/2021. Past mirrors future…