Since an early age I’ve been naturally allured to an imagery one might say of Horror, fantastic or even surrealism, either through books or films. I still remember of one of my first contacts with the darker side of things and it was through painting. When I first saw Hieronymus Bosch’s pig dressed as a nun on the cover of my father’s edition of Dante’s Inferno it opened a gate of exciting new reality that until today it has never been closed…
My innocent mind – I was 10 or even younger – couldn’t quite process what it was seeing. This instinctively awakened the curiosity to know more about this painting and the painter behind it, and of course why the nun is a Pig??? So my inquisitive mind started researching – old-school researching I mean, like going to the library or reading books from my parents collection – and found that the nun as a small detail on a masterpiece called “The Garden of Earthly Delights Triptych.”
The horror, the surrelism, the grotesque… What thrill! It was so refreshing to witness the proof that not all grown-ups are formatted the same way and that what I saw went beyond literal comprehension… I’d lose myself for hours trying to match up the different pieces of the puzzle even if it meant looking to some of the cruelest and yet imaginative tortures of hell I could possible find… That I was part of the fun. By now you must think that I’ve turn out a serial killer or something… but no, although I can ascribe most of my weirdness to Bosch.
Long story short, I still love the fact that the world he portrayal still seems to me mysterious, enigmatic, still makes me go “wow!” That still makes surpass beyond common sense to grasp a tiny bit of Hieronymus’s highly subjective and richly suggestive formal language.
Fortunately there are individuals such as Hieronymus Bosch that can make you transcend yourself, that make you think beyond the obvious, that… nurture your brain instead of numbing it.