The cases for these amulets are made of forged brass. Brass is a metal that possesses a high degree of resonance and is primarily considered a voice, the voice of a canon or a bell, both of which are powerful. In antiquity brass was considered a sacred metal that was used to make instruments of worship in the major religions from Buddhism to Christianity. This strong metal was the symbol of incorruptibility and immortality as well as unswerving justice.
One side of the amulet has 14 embossed dots representing the graduation year in the form of a circle. The circle represents union, community and a power or bond impossible to break. 14 is a number of balance, harmony, serenity and prudence. It also refers to self-initiative, unity, justice and independence. It is representative of enthusiasm along with determination. The number 14 encourages progressive change, renovation and growth, and asks us to share our knowledge and wisdom with others.
The wooden plaque of this amulet is made of oak. In many traditions, oak is a sacred tree to which the privileges of the supreme sky-god are attributed because it attracts lightening. The oak represents strength, power, longevity and height in both the spiritual and material sense. It has been the emblem of hospitality and the equivalent of a temple. Primarily, in all ages the oak has been synonymous with wisdom as well as moral, spiritual, and physical strength. Among the Greeks, the Celts and many other cultures, the oak represented the World Axis or Tree. Hercules’ club was made of oak. In the Christian bible, Abraham received the divine revelation in an oak grove. With its strength, dignity, and capacity to attract energy, the oak plays the axial role that channels communication between heaven and earth.
The oak plaques are square shaped symbolizing balance, security, stability, solidity and the heart. Each plaque has been painted with one layer of each of the students favorite colors that they mixed themselves. After applying the layers of paint, I sanded down the paint to reveal the different layers of colors. The result is a multitude of abstract forms composed of the students' own colors, own paints and own mixes.
In this world, colors are a reflection of our identities. Color can influence our thoughts, change our actions and cause reactions. It can affect our emotions, our humor, our energy and our minds at conscious and subconscious levels. Color is the vibration of light energy and it affects us all whether we can see it or not or whether we can feel it or not. In Spanish there is a saying that literally translates as “colors were invented for our tastes”. The English equivalent would be similar to “to each his own”. The Spanish idiom contains a powerful message aside from the obvious meaning of the phrase because it metaphorically implies that colors are born of our tastes. In other words, it implies that our tastes and desires are capable of creating anything, even color, for the simple reason of creating what one imagines in order to please our desires. Color affects us all, but it is also a reflection of our own energies and our infinite creative capacities. We possess the ability to imagine and everything stems from the imagination. Just like color, if we can imagine it, we can create it.
These amulets are imbued with the energy that reflects and carries all the vibrations of each student. They are composed of a powerful collection of personalities, talents, perceptions, desires and imaginings. They are meant to serve as a reminder for all that we possess and all the power that we always have at our disposition to create and mold our desires, tastes and everything we are capable of imagining.