To some, blue is just blue. It is that everyday colour of the sky you gaze at, whilst sitting in the car on the way to the mundane. To others it is a sad, cold colour – moody, thunderous and somber.
Yes blue is that everyday colour of the sky, but it is also that same sky at night. Velvety blue black and mystical. A vast universe unknown to us. It is the oceans and rivers that surround us giving life to things that give us life.
Yes it is sadness that gives voice to sorrow and oppression, but it is also joy and life that gives birth to new things. A cleansing and washing away of old ideas and systems that are not built for all. A renewal of things, but also a rediscovery of things buried and brought in by the tide.
It is comfort and meditation. A learning to slow down and really look. To pause and reposition. To live within the unknown and be comfortable there. To give immortality to fleeting moments and take shelter within its embrace. To dance within deep wells and stand under the waves of calm.
At times it is silence that hovers. A silence that leaps and spins around canopies of hidden things. Unearthing a strange atmosphere where you could almost see silhouettes of angel wings. Melodies of blue ascending and descending in a fury of brush strokes.
Yet it is heritage and culture. It is the indigo dye of the Adire fabric of the Yoruba people of Nigeria. Regal and beautiful blue patterns bearing stories and blessings adorned on the bodies of a nation like sapphire stones set in a crown.
Blue is the colour I build my worlds in, where flashes of various colours make their brief appearances. Where the black figures I create are allowed to be free and be themselves. They roam between dimensions of history and fiction. Hidden and surrounded, but seen within the safety of these havens. It is a language I have made my own.
– Ruth Ige, 2021
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