The Romantics believed that the best Art could only come after the initial outpouring of emotion was over and the artist had had the leisure to examine the feelings engendered by the event in a state of tranquility Modern artists meanwhile believe that for art to be alive it should be more visceral, and powered by raw emotion if need be. The art work by Bryan Cabrera entitled “She Loves Me, She Loves Me” obviously belongs to the latter school of thought.
While this ballpen on paper creation takes love as its subject, but it does not depict the sweet or the fulfilling side of love. Rather, it forces the viewer to acknowledge that what we call the “tender passion” can sometimes be anything but that. Instead of tenderness, this work reveals the pain that is the natural consequence of loving fiercely and deeply. Indeed, although this painting could easily be read as the aftermath of a separation or a breakup, the same strong energy could come from a tempestuous love story in which the partners are still together.
“She Loves Me, She Loves Me” is a sensational picture of blood and violence. The artist – in true modern or indeed, post-modern fashion – does not hesitate to blatantly employ the sensational to catch the viewer’s attention. This painting depicts two hands – one holding a knife that is severing the fingers of the other, which is splayed out as if in agony. Gout of blood metamorphose into what looks like red rose petals, which also fill a bowl in the upper right-hand corner. Tellingly, only the middle finger of the mutilated hand remains upraised in defiance.
There is a stark and startling realism in this picture, thanks to the artist’s skill. Indeed, this art work is all the more amazing for having been made only with the simplest of tools – the lowly ball-point pen. It has the air of a teenagers troubled doodling in schoolbook or journal, an effect which is particularly suited to the type of sentiment that this painting seeks to express. The title along with the disturbing imagery makes for a very contemporary piece that is not for the faint of heart.
Those who would like to purchase this piece or see others like it should visit Chings Resto-Kaffee in one of the nice, cheap hotels in Davao City. The Jade Dragon’s Suites is a Davao hotel that houses this charming cafe-cum-gallery that’s a favorite with locals and tourists.