I hope someone else besides me notices that the gold/wealth/money looks like a cross. Ironic lol. I love how everything symbolizes something else of deeper meaning. If you don't get this amazing piece of art, then you are out of the loop on life. Congrats on the DD. You definitely deserved it.
I saw a struggle between the inner childish desire to learn and upgrade yourself in a discipline of your choosing ( ), and the obligations towards work for the sake of financial security for a family one is supposed to start thinking about forming at a certain age( ). These two things, balanced together during each day, would create (/ maintain?) a sustainable, secure society ( ). And the battle is ongoing every time you are awake ( ), and you have to grasp the meaning for the consequences of leaning to a certain extent to each of the options provided. 100% certain that's not all of it (I read a couple of comments below). But it's expressive.
I love how the shape of the bodies sort of look like a female reproductive system (uterus, fallopian tubes as arms etc.) and the mother and child perhaps symbolize the ovaries/life. To the mother her religion is worth as much as gold, and she wants her offspring to value it like she does, but the offspring wants to rather be guided by logic/scientific evidence etc. To me personally, this feels like an endless battle of ones beliefs and what others want you to believe, and we seem to struggle with that till our deaths. I'm guessing the burnt out candle either represents death or burning out with frustration/confusion with ones beliefs.
Congratulations on receiving a DD, I really enjoyed thinking about this piece.
Wow, some really deep and often conflicting interpretations of the work below... and all I had was that they were trying to show ever kind of human manipulated power they could in one piece and all the people still unhappy despite it or perhaps because of it... guess I'm a bit literal minded. *shrugs*
I think Caleena has the best interpretation, but I'll add my initial response:
I thought this might be commentary on the Pro-Choice vs Pro-Life debate, and the male dominated position of power in the middle weighing the two positions. Especially considering the fact the gold bars make a cross, and the star of david in the middle: lots of religious symbolism. But the books would seem to represent secular knowledge... which I've always associated with the Pro-Choice side of the issue (the Woman) and the religious angle for the child....
Which is why I was initially confused, and then after reading Caleena's take (see above) I felt that this really was more of a focus on the traditional male provider as a collapsing ideal.
Beautiful piece. Thought provoking and well crafted.
I see it a bit differently, the kid wants education, the woman wants money, and a man has to be really strong to support all this (quite literally we see a muscular version of this guy supporting it with his arms). But the real guy is weak, thin and tired. Men who are not strong simply can't have a family (unless they find a woman who brings money instead of taking it, but that is still very often not the case). Also there is always this mysterious hand trying to grab all this (tax institution I presume ) So this guy simply wants to switch off, the candle has already gone out. And the pullstrings are red and blue, they want to take both his soul and flesh and he simply cannot endure it.
Been a while since I've last seen something this interesting.