A Floral Mind
As we came to the end of winter we can breathe a collective sigh of relief: the darkness is lifting… it’s time now for joy. In some ways, it is that simple: flowers, spring, new life, new colour. These are the things of pure unadulterated joy.
But real joy is a commodity in short supply; a sentiment that our cold, over-worked modern hearts could do with more of, particularly after a long dark winter… Enter abstract figurative painter Minas Halaj, whose work has an arresting mood of otherworldly beauty that feels so right for now.
Halaj’s most recent collection, ‘Floral Minds’, explores themes of feminine beauty and pleasure, with an emphasis on his signature motif of flowers in full bloom. His work uses unapologetic bursts of colour coupled with an atmosphere of new life, of renewal. Working with classical portraiture compositions; there’s something simultaneously ancient and modern at play in his work.
The Armenian American painter creates a collage effect through use of mixed media and juxtaposition of themes. Painting his subjects with oil along with a mix of materials – from tar to fabric, wood, appliques and more – the works feature striking and unconventional attention to detail.
Halaj speaks about his collection with thoughtful introspection: “I think we are all floral minds! Beauty is a double-edged sword - an instrument of seduction and inaccessibility… We have degraded it in mass media and yet revere it above all other qualities of life”.
So perhaps we should take a leaf from Halaj’s book and embrace the beauty of the moment. Smell the flowers, appreciate the beauty, feel the joy.
Words / JESS CLARK