Art is a role as an energy booster in our life
Last year, when everyone had to isolate at home in the early days of Pandemic, there was a person around us who made and delivered food for quarantined Koreans. Literally, she was an essential worker for us. Koreans consistently miss their hometown and want to eat Korean food as they eat in hometown, even if they live in the United States, where ingredients are readily available. However, no matter how hard they try, they cannot bring out the taste of their hometown. Something is missing. In Korea, it says that it is the lack of 2 %.
As I always feel, I also left Korea in 2006 and have lived for 15 years in the other countries, and I should have cook by myself for a long time without mother's help. So, Naturally, my cooking skills improved a lot. Sometimes while I cook myself , I pride myself on being good at cooking, but I admit that I can never fill in this lack of 2 percent.
Because it needs a mother or grandmother's recipe in a word that requires more love and devotion that cannot be found in recipes that fit scientifically. The emotion is definitely essential to make the food deep flavour, but those who have tasted it will probably know what I am talking about. But I'm lucky. There are two such people in our town. Also, like the drama Jang Geum Yi, which was once very popular in Korea, it was about the story of excellent cook in the palace. She has the nickname Jang Geum Yi and is very good at cooking. I'm apparently fortunate.
During the pandemic last year, one of those people who lived close to our town took the risk and delivered the food. Besides she helped with needy students who are isolated and unable to afford food. Whenever I feel this beautiful heart in my life, I feel relieved that our world is still livable.
She delivered the house one by one and left a message.
" Eat deliciously and stay healthy and overcome the coronavirus. Thank you always. "
Fantastic food delivered with her message and her invisible warm heart hidden in the visible food helped me warmly spend the difficult time. She was, in a word, an surprising energy booster. Nowadays she has completed all her missions perfectly and successfully, and has gone on vacation for a while to help her daughter in Alabama. I always miss that food so much during her absence.
Another energy booster was the messages my Bulgarian friend sent me last year. She asked me regards very often and sent pictures of them as well. Especially on Easter, in the United States, there is an special event where colorful Easter eggs are placed in the front yard of a church or school, and children carry baskets and go around to pick up the plastic eggs. The eggs contain various candies and toys, which the children love. But last year, the event was stopped due to the coronavirus. My friend took pictures of the eggs she had made and sent them to each other to comfort during Easter. I still feel gratitude at that time, no matter why that picture was so comforting to me.
And last week, we were both sick and weary, but a neighbor who lives next door picked up his own vegetables, put them in a paper bag, and left them at the door. When our hearts were desperate and troubled, we looked at the vegetables, and they seemed to glow. Perhaps her love came out and wrapped around us.
My husband made an incredible dish by mixing freshly picked cucumbers with red pepper powder, vinegar, salt, and sugar.
And yesterday, my friends sent me a message saying that they would do some grocery shopping for us who couldn't go to the supermarket for a while. It is spontaneous, beautiful, and wonderful.
There are many energy boosters around me in various shapes like this. Without any religious or business interest, they gave strength when we were weary, courage when we were hopeless, a friend when we were lonely, and help when we needed help.
As a painter, can I paint pictures that give energy like these? It seems like an arduous task for me. Because I know their courage and the depth of their love and kindness. And I admit that it's hard to do even if I try.
How happy would I be if my drawings could at least be an energy booster for people? In order to do that, I think the first step is to become someone who gives energy to someone.
Myungja Anna Koh
Risk Weather by Girin Instruments