Blue is the water and the heavens; in its primal undisturbed state, it is without order or structure.
The Colors of the Primal Temple
When I paint with my brush, I am shaping ideas. Certain of these ideas are elementary. I cannot determine or change them; they simply exist. For ages, people have created countless new ideas from the blue, red, and yellow that form the foundation of our thoughts. Every philosophy, every experience, every painting is conceived of the fundamental unchanging elements that have driven human thought throughout time. The ideas are mixed with the brush and the pen, superimposed upon one another, and shaped for good and for evil, creating harmony and dissonance and engendering strongholds and battles.
As I paint, I do not express the colors that we see with our eyes. The paints on my canvas are a visceral realization of the psyche and the forces that propel it. I must tread wisely on these grounds, for if I do not let the colors be what they are but seek to reform the uncreated elements, I will paint a lie.
Even in the material realm, a whole palette of colors emerges from the blending of a basic set of energies of light. People strive to explain its fascinating complexity through additive color combination, subtractive color combination, or the primary triad of the color wheel.
The additive scheme assumes red, blue, and green as its primary colors, while its secondary colors, cyan, magenta, and yellow are the primary colors of the subtractive. These ideas underlie the immense and intriguing enterprises of graphic design, computer visualization, and printing. But when the essence of colors penetrates to the core of the human being, an ancient and visceral foundation is revealed, a foundation of uncreated and unalterable ideas—the blue, red, and gold. Artists and philosophers have pondered and grappled with these colors for ages; they have built, torn down, and rebuilt. Beautiful cities, communities, art, music, and science have emerged from combining the elementary ideas in creative ways. From the beginning, many have tried to redefine the colors, engendering discord with the visceral foundation. But the three ideas persist unchanged, the primal reason of our existence.
The colors are the oracle from the primal temple.
Blue is the water and the heavens; in its primal undisturbed state, it is without order or structure. The blood red is the birth cry of the earth, while the gold is the light that allows us to perceive it.
The blue, red, and yellow work together. Red and yellow create orange to complement the blue. The orange is energy. The blue takes it and is disturbed, and waves are formed, creating the brown earth.
Blue and yellow create green to complement the red. The green is life, but it cannot subsist without the bloody cry of the earth.
Blue and red create violet to complement the yellow. As the yellow shines, the violet hides where a wave comes and where a wave goes.
When I mix the blue, the red, and the yellow together, I create brown, the color of earth and clay, which mankind sculpts. But there is no brush or knife with which I may separate the colors from the earth and bring them again into their pure resplendence. A violent and painful cry of the earth is required. From this energy, life emerges again, sustained by the blood that has gushed out of the earth; the light shines upon the blue and the red, which mingle and mix anew; and the waters of the river tremble as the orange emerges from it.
The elementary colors combine again and again in harmony, creating a new and interesting palette each day. And herein lies the trial of the artist: I must be true to these ideas and portray them as they are. If I say with my brush that green is elementary, I would deny the essence of its own existence; it would eventually wilt into the earth, where the red still remains. If I allow orange to be primary, I would set the earth into a trajectory without direction; and if I make violet a source of creation, I would plunge the world into darkness. Even these ideas themselves are the battles and trials that I strive to realize with colors and paints and brushes and canvas. The colors themselves will show my work for what it is; I am helpless against them.