Erika Balogh

Artist - Instructor of Art
University of Texas Pan-American
Edinburg, Texas USA
THE POWER OF COLORS AND SYMBOLISM

My bi-cultural background has greatly shaped my identity and influenced my artwork as well. When I moved to the United States, I left behind a traditional part of my life associated with my Hungarian heritage, my childhood memories, and my family. I entered into an utterly different culture; a more modern and eclectic society that completely changed my life. However, aspects of my Hungarian traditions continue to form my artwork and my self-presentation.

Through my artworks, I explore the power of colors and symbolism. The five-pointed star, the pentagram, is a well-recognized symbol all around the world. It has been used by many companies as a trademark or as a symbol on numerous national flags.
"Unity"
16 inches x 20 inches
digital art
2014
Symbol associations are common to all people. However, symbols have different meanings to each individual. Some symbols have universal meaning while others can vary dramatically between cultures. For example the five-pointed star is often connected with the human body. In my artwork this symbol represents the union of opposites, generally expressed as male and female, in order to generate a greater whole – a unity. But there is no perfect unity, as it is not possible to form a tiling using pentagons.
"Nature vs Nurture"
16 inches x 20 inches
digital art
2014
In this artwork the five-pointed star signifies the humankind. How much the environment shapes each individual has as much of an important role as does genetic inheritance. For example, the differences between male and female behavior is due to human nature as much as culture. The interlocking geometric shapes - the pentagon inscribed in a circle and the pentagram inscribed in a pentagon - represent the permanence and continuity of the human race in its ever-evolving environment.