I find the idea of creating one’s own reality really appealing. That’s probably why I occasionally have dreams (sleep dreams, that is) about drawing, with some kind of marker or pen, a new environment around myself. Or drawing a new road in front of me that I can now travel down.
It also probably explains why I so appreciate the paintings of native Canadian Robert Gonsalves, the creator of the painting “Unfinished Puzzle” shown here.
Here, there are not just one, but multiple people, actively participating in the creation of their new personal reality. Some are still on the edge between the two worlds, but the new place is almost ready for them to walk right into and inhabit. Then again, who knows – maybe the house they’re going to walk into is the same one they’re already in. You could dream up any number of stories about what’s going on at this window between worlds. It’d be an inspirational writing exercise, along with the rest of Gonsalves’ impressive body of work.
Gonsalves has painted so many lovely images (you’ll find a link to 25 of them below) that play with the boundaries between worlds. Seamlessly shifting perspectives move the viewer’s eye from the supposed real world to the world of the illusion. The fun is in giving creedence to the supposed illusion.
Gonsalves’ bio offers these thoughts on the artist’s style and intention:
“Although Rob Gonsalves’ work is often categorized as Surrealism, it differs due to the fact that each painting, each illusion is deliberately planned and result from conscious thought…
Rob Gonsalves injects a sense of magic into realistic scenes. As a result, the term “Magical Realism” describes his work accurately. HIs work is an attempt to represent human beings’ desire to believe in the impossible.”
I don’t know about you, but I want to believe the impossible is possible. I even cringe inside just a little bit at the word impossible. Even if we don’t believe in the impossible most of the time, doesn’t the ability to think, or even feel, that anything is possible infuse us with energy? Maybe the appeal of believing in bigger impossibilities is that it makes the smaller ones, the ones we create for ourselves with our own limitations, more obviously possible.
Another Gonsalves painting that speaks to my dream life is “Bedtime Aviation.” As far back as I can remember, I’ve had dreams in which I simply put out my arms and began flying. Just lifting up off the ground and soaring above the earth. In more difficult dream circumstances, it has been a welcome method of escape. In those situations, I would often remember this option at the last moment. What a relief to remember I could fly. But it isn’t always an escape from unpleasantness – it’s often a thrill. At the very least, it’s empowering just to be able to go anywhere and see anything with very little logistical consideration.
Anyway, I invite you to visit these wonderful scenes below and stay a while in them. Who knows where they might take you.