Aliens, those sometime friendly, but more often sinister visitors from outer space, figure large in human history. Many ancient religions as well as some modern ones believe their ancestors came from the stars. Part of the intrigue undoubtedly comes from our fascination of the other, that being completely outside our knowledge at the edge of our imagination. Onto these creatures, we can heap our own fears and uncertainties about life and the unknown.
My own interest with things alien has always been closer to home, not outer space, but inner space. The inner space I speak of lies in that nearby but mysterious space between our ears, the region called the noggin.
"Why do I choose one course of action over another?" "Why do I do such crazy things?" Sometimes it seems like an unseen alien in my noggin is calling the shots, making me think and act in ways that are counter productive. In psychology, these unconscious aliens are simply thought of as disassociated aspects of our own psyche. Plato's aphorism, "Know thyself," encourages each of us to bring those lost parts of ourselves home to the whole.
My art has always been about shining light on the unseen gremlins of the psyche and perhaps, in that sense, a belief in aliens is our attempt to come to grips with our own otherness. In the end, they are nothing but a construct of human consciousness.
Opening Friday night at Dunedin Fine Art Center is an exhibition called "Intergalactic." This diverse and exciting show about aliens will feature two of my most recent works.