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Art Show: The Self-Portrait Show

Past, Present, Future

by Shawn Marie Hardy

Banner for The Self-Portrait Show art show

Art: Past, Present, Future by Artist Shawn Marie Hardy
This is a very symbolic piece. As I get older I look back on how I have lived my life, how it has evolved, and what the future holds. I have recently been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and it answers a lot of questions for me. But it is also something I haven't come to terms with yet. I draw and paint to release both positive and negative emotions. I rarely know what I will end up with, as I work spontaneously most of the time.

The symbols here are very much representative of my current life situation. The image in the mirror that I'm holding is me as a 5-year-old child. The pearl in the oyster shell represents purity of heart and mind, honesty, integrity, and beauty. Pearls are considered to balance emotions and also to heal certain ailments, like stomach disorders, which I suffer from.

The background, void of anything except an hourglass, represents the future - the sands of time are slowly running out and what is beyond remains uncertain. The green leaf on the tree symbolizes hope.

All my life I have had a problem trying to find where I want to be. I've lived all over the U.S. and overseas and still feel the urge to move around, but not as much as I used to. My daughter gives me some sense of feeling grounded, but the roots on my knees in this image are hovering above the ground, not ready to plant themselves - this is how I am presently. The rose is love - my love of life, love for my daughter, and the desire for love in my life.

I'm normally not an exhibitionist but as this is a drawing and not a photo, I'm not that self-conscious about the fact that I'm not wearing clothes. It shows how vulnerable I feel at times.


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