30th July 2021 Dr. Beena
Hi everyone. Hope everyone is good and safe wherever you are. Today let me describe a bit about my painting. It is a picture of La Gomera (pronounced La Yomera). It is one of Spain’s Canary Islands, located in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of West Africa. The island is volcanic in origin and, the terrain is mountainous. There are some aspects of this island that I would love to highlight. It is sparsely populated. The mountainous terrain encourages the inhabitants to cultivate their vineyards, orchards and, banana groves. The local wine is distinctive. However, the fascinating aspect is the use of whistled language.
Recently there was some news of whistled language in Turkey. Thus, I was curious to read about whistled language. Today, I learnt that in many places where people have no easy access to each other due to the harsh terrain, whistled language is helpful for communication. Hence whistled language is still in use in the Canary Islands, parts of South and East Africa, Vietnam, Burma, Papua New Guinea, the Amazon, and many more places. In early China, transcendental whistling was a form of non-verbal communication with affinities to the spiritual aspects of Daoist meditation. Many communities in the world still communicate with whistled language.
Now you may wonder why I bring this topic into today’s musings. Well, I have this habit of sending greetings on Fridays to all my friends to let them know I am still alive:):):). Two of my friends thought the mountain in my picture was a landfill. I found that hilarious. However, when I reflected on that comment, I realised I used too much of the plastic card on the watercolour paint. It may have created a resemblance to a landfill. Now you may wonder why a plastic card is used in the watercolour painting? To construct the rough texture to rocks plastic card is used to lift the paint randomly. You can also use cling film to the wet paint to create a similar effect. So my dear friends, plastic does have some role in painting. Even though landfill reminds us of plastic waste, occasionally plastic still has its use even in art. Despite technology, we are unable to convert most of our plastic into reusable items.
Let us get back to communication in art. I find that ways of communication are crucial. We use various means to do so. The most common is still the verbal form. Now I learnt something new that is the use of whistling. However, I feel I am communicating to each one of you by my paintings:):):). Some expressed that the picture of La Gomera was ominous. Others looked beyond that mountain and found the clouds on the right-hand corner to be the Face of God:). Some loved the colour of the sky. Some observed the birds in flight. Primarily, I love the fact that I could communicate despite the wide range of sentiments. We live in unprecedented times and, need to find ways to communicate. Even though we do not live in a punitive environment, communication has become essential for our survival. Lack of communication leads to discontent. Hence please continue to find ways to enhance our communication.
Till the next episode, bye for now……. Stay in touch. Please post your comments as I love to read them. Before I forget, please read about La Gomera and whistled languages😊. By the way, this is a tutorial by Paul Clark that I painted.