This is a series of images representing the Òrìṣàs African deities of the traditional Yoruba Ifa religious system that was carried to the West Indian islands and the Americas through the transatlantic slave trade. Where upon arrival slaves were baptized into the Roman Catholic Church. Forced to practice their native faith in secret the slaves masked their African rituals and deities with the practices and saints of the Catholic church. Evolving into Vodun religion found in Haiti, Santaria in Cuba and Candomblé in Brasil the syncretism of these traditions have became one of the most complex and flourishing faiths of the African diaspora. Òrìṣà also spelled Orixas, orichá or orixá are ancestors who have been deified. They are the link between the spiritual world and the world of humans. Each orixa represents a certain force in nature, elements of air, water, fire, as well as to mountains and animals. In addition, each deity has a specific attribute: a color, a metal, a day of the week, a favorite dish, a certain drumbeat, etc…. The Orixas act as mediators guiding us back to our origins of strengths and connecting us to our higher power. In the complex multi-faceted world of today we are constantly distracted. In our need to create we have built so many things that it has formed a disconnect to our natural spiritual energy. More and more we are seeking to connect back to this true essence, to tapping into that inner voice that links us to that higher power. The inner voices guides and protect you. It can be seen as our conscious, ancestors, saints, forces of nature or Orixas. This series of art works represent your Orixa, your protector, your guiding voice, your connection to those that no longer exist who have left words of wisdom and keys to unlock your natural spiritual energy.
Artist Nichole Talbott is a Colorado native with a background in graphic design. Relocated to the Bay in 2011 to pursue a career in Arts Education. She has become an arts advocate who believes that art has the power to change lives. She spends her time creating spaces that help individuals find their voice, that allow individuals to collaborate and learn from one another, spaces where they build community and re-imagine the world. Pulling from her background in graphic design Nichole likes to explore combining different mediums to build one cohesive piece not to limit herself to one style or technique. Seeing how different mediums work together to create a layered effect of complexity.