About “The Presence of Emptiness”
By Mery Godigna Collet

Emptiness, in a physical, emotional or spiritual way, is always defined by something.

In a physical way, we refer to an empty house, car, bottle…

In an emotional way, is part of the process of grief generated by separation, and significant changes.

Most of the times, is related to social alienation, apathy, depression, loneliness, despair and other emotions.

The western cultural approach to Emptiness is the “horror vacui” (which is Latin for “fear of emptiness”). And here we are… trying to fulfill that “space” with years of therapy or online dating or…

The concept of “emptiness” is not new. It was important to Existentialism, the “philosophic movement that gives voice to the sense of alienation and despair. There we have Kafka, Camus, Sartre…Also we found some poems of Eliot (The love song of Alfred Prufrock”), and emptiness is also present in Hemingway, Faulkner, Steinbeck…

The Buddhist term emptiness is  śūnyatā.The Buddhist philosophy, contemplates that realization of emptiness of inherent existence is key to the permanent cessation of suffering, therefor liberation.

Taoism, propose that a state of emptiness is viewed as a state of stillness and placidity which is the “mirror of the universe” and the “pure mind”. The path is to successfully empty the mind of all wishes and ideas.

The book “The Presence of Emptiness” is homage to Stephan Mallarmé. His poetry and the way is written (in layers) has influenced my work.

Mery Godigna Collet, Venezuelan artist and architect, born in Caracas in 1959. One of the most representative artists today in Venezuela. During her adolescence attend as intern at the Royal Academy of San Fernando in Madrid, Spain. She graduates at the Architectural School at the Universidad Central de Venezuela. Travels to Egypt and research about ancient techniques about the papyrus processing. This will mark her artistic production through the use of vegetable fibers. 

Her works are at the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art of Zulia (MACZUL) in Venezuela, the Galleria D’Arte Moderno Aroldo Bonzagni di Cento, the Quai Branly Museum, Latin American Art Museum in Miami, FL, the Benson Collection at University of Texas, Austin, the Mexicarte Museum in Austin, TX and Petroleum Museum in Texas.

She has exhibited at the Art Gallery of Siderurgica del Orinoco, the Museum of Discurso de Agostura in Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela, the Centro Romulo Gallegos of Latin American Studies (CELARG) and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Caracas, Venezuela. Monument Museum “La Rocca” in Cento, Italy, the Museum Pallazo Estense (Italian branch of the Hermitage Museum St. Petersburg), the Centre D’Art Puyguerin-Vayolles, Monts sur Guesnes, France, the Museum of the Americas in Miami, USA, Palazzo Delizia Di Belriguardo in Italy, University of Texas in Austin and LHUCA in Lubbock, TX.