Arun Sharma

Untitled (coffin & ants) (2009)

Untitled (coffin & ants) comes from my attempt to see death in an optimistic way. In my lifetime I have dealt with the reality of death many times. Perhaps because of my age I have never seen death as something that a person would want to welcome. As death is an inevitable end to life, I view death as something a person would want to hold off for as long as they possibly could. Since making Untitled (coffin & ants) I have gotten a different perspective on death. I have had a chance to reflect on whether or not life truly ends after death, or if in some way, death is really the transference of energy that sustains the continuation of life. Without death the procreation of life would be impossible. The dead make room for new life. Beyond the physical breakdown of the body that nourishes and sustains other life, there is the possibility that death is simply the transition between this life and the next. It would almost be as if we are not simply human beings having a spiritual experience, but instead spiritual beings having a temporal human experience. Once this human experience is over we continue to live in another form. Religion traditionally uses some form of heaven or hell and/or reincarnation as an explanation. Also, the question of whether or not we retain our consciousness comes up, along with whether or not this life is better then the next. But perhaps giving a quantitative value to this life (or the next) is really just our way of trying to grasp at a universe that we don't really understand, and that is much greater than ourselves. After thinking about Untitled (coffin & ants), I find myself being reminded that life is for the living because death (gift or not) is inevitably going to have the last word.
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