Upcoming 2024 (in progress)
The newest series of paintings is titled "ICARO" (pronounced [ˈi.ka.ro]), symbolizing a magical song in the local language of South America. Today, this term is commonly used to describe healing songs performed in shamanic ayahuasca ceremonies. It is believed that the word "icaro" originates from the Quechua verb "ikaray," meaning "to blow smoke in order to heal." In the painting series ICARO, both symbolic and narrative motifs serve as significant conceptual foundations. The aim of the series is to create a cohesive space travel tool revealing the rapidly disappearing Amazonian culture, still relatively unknown to the Western world.
Kristina has been exploring the Amazon for over 10 years, and this is undoubtedly reflected her art through three main motifs (jungles, birds, and people). The essence of the entire concept of the painting series lies in the depicted motifs, and Western acquaintance with the Amazon is shaped by these aspects:
Firstly, through the vegetation, the abundance and diversity of which can still be found in the Amazon. There are still living legends that the Amazon grew from a garden, thanks to the exceptionally fertile Terra Preta soil, also known as the Dark Earth of the Amazon. Terra Preta remains the most fertile soil on our planet.
Another significant aspect is birds, which South American indigenous people consider sacred animals and talismans (parrots, toucans, and other small birds). The bird is depicted in its species-specific form in its natural environment, unfamiliar to our culture, yet very attention capturing.
Finally, the most familiar motif to us - Humans, are incorporated into the paintings. In these jungles, Western people are fragmentarily recognizable, seemingly intertwined with the ancient cultures of the inhabitants that once filled the Amazon forests. They are like silent observers, experiencing a transcendent metamorphosis between past and present. “I aim to portray the symbolism of tattoos on the bodies of these characters, representing the mindset of modern humans through frequently repeating images (dragons, flowers, snakes, hearts, inscriptions, etc.). Tattoos become visions of Icaro and Amazonian plant ceremonies, often seen by participants during the ritual. Since Icaro and plant ceremonies have healing and spiritual qualities, leaving an imprint on the individual, tattoos serve as a tangible representation of this” Kristina says.
The purpose of this series is an exploration of refined concept of jungle ecosystem and ancient stories, providing an opportunity to experience a different, primal culture. It aims to educate and acquaint Western urban individuals with an entirely different reality, where unseen plants, colorful birds, and the connection and importance of this vanishing environment to the entire Earth's ecosystem are showcased.