Artworks created from something more than just intuition, from life led with sensing vibrations around, aiming for a positive and spiritual well-being while being surrounded by technology. It’s Anya Rubin’s artworks. NYC based artist Anya Rubin wishes to create a global understanding about being aware of our own thoughts, feelings, being connected to ourselves from within which is our true identity, and she feels sad about identity in today’s time,that it has just become a profile picture and how our brains are lost inside the screens of electronic gadgets. She believes that innovations and technology were introduced to make our lives simpler and faster which should have resulted in a life full of gratitude, mutual understanding and thoughtfulness. But again, things seem vice versa. Anya relates this whole concept beautifully with her artworks. Let’s see how:
“Profile picture” which you also called as a mirror to our soul. In what way has it influenced different generations and how it became a series of your artworks?
I did a series of oil portraits just the head close up as that is mostly what we see on social media profile picture. Our first impression is based on the profile picture. We choose to follow based on that and we choose to like based on that. In a sense the profile picture has replaced looking into someone’s eyes making it a different way to experience the concept of “mirror to our soul”. The influence on different generations has had many negative consequences such as bullying, humiliating, harassing and promoting vanity. Let’s face it -- we filter Photoshop; enhance our profile picture in order to attract attention to ourselves, our cause, etc. All that while believing we are being authentic, but are we? Have we become a pixilated reflection of our best selves; I wonder!
Since 2013, you have been researching on how technology is affecting human evolution. What are your conclusions drawn out of it? Is it a boon or a bane?
I believe technology has created a global platform that has shifted our perspectives questioning our morals, ethics and our collective consciousness. We of all ages are constantly connected to technology. We have transferred our entire private life into a box and we have put all our trust in it.Weather it is a boon or bane time will tell. Our lives were supposed to become simpler, faster but I believe the opposite has happened. Tech is most definitely affecting our evolution but it’s an ongoing process. The generation now does not know a world without tech. I think that if we remind ourselves that we as a human race contain in us both the beast and the divine, we will aim, I hope, towards the divine. Technology is in desperate need of a moral and ethical code as I see it. However, it is up to humanity to write the code and for that we must tame the beast.
Anya, your most talked series “Eyes Closed” in which the human figures can be seen with closed eyes, which you feel is a way to protect people from the unjust primitive behavior in politics and also towards each other around the globe. You also mentioned during interview about being internally connecting while eyes closed. How would you explain the internal connection which we tend to forget at times? Also share some of your personal experience.
“Eyes Closed” series can be looked at in many ways. We are closing our eyes in shame or not to see, to meditate, to wish, to pray. When we close our eyes, we shut out the outer world, which stimulates us to take a look at our inner world. Usually the portrait appears to look back at the viewer, but in the “Eyes Closed” series the viewer is looking at the portrait and although it is said that the eyes are the mirrors to our soul, I believe that when the eyes are closed you feel a spiritual, soulful essence. If you notice while browsing social media our sense of touch is gone, our sense of smell is gone and some other intuitive sense is being activated.
Fascinating for many “Artificial Intelligence”, you talk about the faces and marking the changes experienced while using AI constantly. What do you think about it and how do you relate your art to it?
Well I have been working in Photoshop creating a type of map of the face that has the look of a computer-generated pattern. Carl Jung said “everything is pattern” and so does the Fibonacci sequence, “our DNA is a pattern that is different from a plant by a small percentage” based on this I explored creating a tech pattern of a face or figure to represent the building blocks of our current essence. I call it collaborating with the computer/AI and due to it that I am able to achieve this particular pattern that in my “Eyes Closed” series I am combining with pencil drawings.
You believe that closing eyes connects one from within and it can for sure save people from the negatives resulting in lesser number of suicides. How you plan to share such a message through your artworks? Your artworks play an important part in transforming the audience and holds big social message that may save lives.
Oh well I am not sure I can accept such credit that my message might save lives. The most I can hope for is making people contemplate and question themselves and the world.
What are the different mediums you work with?
I work with oil, acrylic, digital/ duratron light box, oil paintings, collage and drawing.
Since you do a lot of research on human nature and technology, I am sure you must have researched art market well by now? What do you think about the current art market to grow as an artist and how an artist can benefit from it?
I believe the current art market is very difficult for an artist with an individual perspective. It’s all about being part of a large group. If you don’t want to belong to a group then it is unlikely for you to succeed. Political/activist art seems to be at the forefront for mid-career and emerging artists.
Would you like to share some latest information from your research on human nature that could be helpful for our readers?
I can tell you my personal opinion on human nature. I believe that envy, popularity, aggression, narrow mindedness, what in spiritual terms are called “low vibrations” is in full force. I think people don’t hear each other; they are adamant that their way or opinion is the only correct one. We are not compromising and we don’t seem to be interested in balance. In many ways we might be degrading as a culture.
What kind of artworks are you planning to come up with in the future?
William Blake inspires me and Alexander Pushkin so I think it will have to do something with spirituality, love and human evolution. Generally, I plan to continue working in the same method/technique that I have been developing for many years regardless of the topic.
Well with these inspiring and positive thoughts, people on this planet really need to just take a pause, close eyes for once at least and observe within. One might discover what life is really meant to be for…