By Kai Teo
Many people do shit with strings. Some painstakingly bind them together in intricate knots to create bracelets and necklaces, others simply use them to tie other shit up. But to create a portal that seemingly transports you to the other dimensions in your head – that’s what Joakim at GringoStringo does best.
Buddha Mag has been to shit loads of Psytrance parties, and we’ve spent plenty of hours staring with mouths wide open at the décor on the dance floors and stages, drooling a little at how aesthetically pleasing the artworks are and how much they act as vessels to the countless mind trips that cosmonauts take into their souls.
To put it in simpler, less hippie terms, it kinda means that this shit trips you out big time.
GringoStringo, or Joakim, is one of such geniuses. Different neon-coloured strings are intricately bound and overlapped, colours carefully coordinated, layers cleverly intertwined, to form massive, dream-inducing displays of visual pleasure.
These impressive displays resemble mandalas that are the manifestation of the sacred geometry of creation. In a way, this shit is made of the same kind of repetitive fractal patterns that we see in nature, such as the different layers on a single acorn, the divine symmetry we can observe in a lotus flower, and the complex, yet perfectly arranged vein network on a leaf’s surface.
And I think many of us would agree that creating perfect symmetry is fucking difficult.
The faces we (well, at least me) draw always turn out looking freaky and lifeless, because we (again, maybe it’s just me) fail to capture the proper geometry and proportion. The right eye can look like something that belongs to a stunningly gorgeous woman, but the right eye looks like its been replaced with an elephant’s penis.
But through tedious, methodological calculations and extensive planning, Joakim has been able to recreate the symmetry and intricacy of the natural world, which is why his work is so mesmerising and captivating.
So it’s basically creative mathematics, which is what the world is built on. Heard of the Golden Ratio? Yea, something like that.
Buddha Mag witnessed his work for the first time at Finfrämmad ifrån Götet, Malmö’s very own 12-hour Psytrance party, and we were immediately drawn into a tunnel of dreams and fantasy.
Our vision was greeted by a bright green, circular border that acted as a gateway that almost promised to transport us away from our current state of mind. It came with no warning sign, nor exact destination. It was, however, incredibly tempting and welcoming. “Come in, let’s go somewhere.” We took the plunge.
Jump into it and your mind starts to twist gently and ease itself into a purplish spiral tunnel that takes you away from the dance floor. Movement ceased, and the music became muffled into a hollow vacuum. You see nothing around it, no one was around you, just plain nothingness. Welcome to the black hole of your attention. It has taken everything, now it will take you.
And suddenly, a comforting warmth envelops your body. A fiery red iris that surrounds the all-seeing eye, which is now staring straight at you, observing your soul, forcing you to reflect on your own being.
A moment later, it looses its grip, as if to tell you that it has sent its message and has more work to do. The music slowly starts getting louder, and your consciousness returns to the party, you feel energised, refreshed, yet there’s a lingering feeling of constantly being watched by a higher power.
And all that, an entire spiritual journey, created only by strings and UV lighting. That is, if you give a shit about appreciating it carefully.
Joakim’s art, each piece taking about 20 hours to create and install, can often be given too little attention and easily, and callously, described as “nice décor”. Well, you can consider it pretty, but we urge you to discover his other worlds as he takes you on a journey into the unknown, into his philosophy of beauty, and probably into your own soul.
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