Xanadu Gallery | Scottsdale, AZ*

Guilloume - "Empathy"

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  • Regular price $3,200.00


Artist: Guilloume
Title: Empathy
Medium: Bronze Relief on Aluminum
Dimensions: 32"h x 20"w

One month prior to the celebration of our 18th anniversary, I walked out of my studio to find my wife slowly rocking to and fro on the porch swing at the back of our home. Her head hung low. She seemed sad, forlorn I would say, and even failed to look up as I approached. Now when a man is married to a woman for 18 years, he knows immediately when there is a problem. I joined her on the swing, put my arm around her shoulders, lifted her chin with my curled index finger and asked, “Que pasa, mi querida?” “Estoy abrumada,” (I’m just overwhelmed) she responded, eyes glassy with tears she was fighting to hold back. Seconds later, she lost the battle and a big watery droplet cascaded down one cheek and then the other. “Parenting, cooking, cleaning, my job…it’s never-ending.” One thing I have learned as a man is that when your woman expresses her sorrow, grief or troubles, it is not a plea for her man to “fix everything” and make it right—although as men this is exactly what we think we are being called upon to do. What has taken me so many years to learn is that what most women want at these times is empathy and understanding. So I sat with her for nearly 20 minutes and just listed as she poured her heart out. When she finished, I took her head gently in my hands and with my calloused, paint-stained thumbs wiped away her tears. Looking into her eyes, I said, “We are partners for life. Your sorrow is my sorrow, and although I have no immediate answers or solutions, I feel your pain, I support you, I have empathy for your sadness.” Within seconds, she was smiling again and told me, “Vale la pena, mi amor.” (It’s worth it, darling.) Later that evening, after dinner, I retreated back to my studio and secretly began working on Empathy. On the day of our 18th anniversary, I presented it to my wife, Gladys, in honor and gratitude for 18 years of love, partnership and, of course, empathy.