East Meets West
120 x 160 cm
East Meets West is a major work by New Plymouth based artist Jasmine Middlebrook. Creating a genre of unique Fantasy Realism Middlebook presents her viewer with something special to behold. Beneath the blue skies of La Serenissima - the Serene Republic, stands the baroque basilica of Santa Maria della Salute, designed by Baldassare Longhena, and constructed between 1631 and 1687. This monument of shimmering white Istrian stone is an emblem of the Venetian Republic, which in its day dominated trade between Europe, North Africa and Asia.
The central female figure is a further reflection of serenity and poise. Sheltered by a pale gold parasol, fashionably attired in 1950s style, East does indeed meet West in this mysterious and timelessly glamourous subject. Whilst Middlebrook prefers viewers to freely interpret her work, when asked about the magnificently portrayed tiger she voiced the following: The tiger represents/personifies the woman's inner strength/power, calm and watchful. Grounded/connected through the touch of their hand/paw. Of the joyfully fluttering bluejays she went on to say they were: symbols of clarity, vibrancy, allegiance, curiosity, and determination ... symbolising aspirations / dreams.