Mafloku And The Theme Of Childhood

Throughout history many artists have been drawn to the theme of childhood. Some, like the authors of Peter Pan or The Little Prince created stories that seized our imagination, leaving us with characters that still speak to us today. These stories share the idea that the wisdom of children far exceeds that of the adults who surround them.

Manuel Flores, a Mexican artist, known by the name Mafloku, also uses childhood as his theme. In a series of arresting paintings he has created fairytales in color.

And just as fairytales from the land of Grimm gave us the purest and simplest expression of our unconscious, so do Mafloku’s paintings offer us clues into our collective psyche.

Painted in watercolor, at first his scenes appear light and airy. A closer look reveals there’s more there than what meets the eye.

Mafloku says, “I would define my paintings as postcards from the imagination, they´re the voice of quite a few thoughts that I think haunt us all, but only some give outlet to.”

Sometimes his scenes seem innocent, as when two small children stand on the shoulders of a giant Lego-style toy, one wielding a sword, the other a trident.

Sometimes the images are ominous, as when a little girl challenges a small raptor by tugging on his tail.

Like real fairytales, Mafloku’s images ignite long forgotten and primal memories.

According to Mafloku, ”The only thing I do is let the ghosts we all have inside speak in color.”

His images resonate because they reveal something about the innocence and violence of the world twe inhabit. A world that perhaps children grasp more fully than we adults.
As for the reaction to his work, Mafloku says, “What makes me the happiest of all is that it detonates something in the viewers and owners of the pieces. This is what it is aimed to say and represent, those things you may feel either consciously or subconsciously but can’t quite put a finger on it, and unknowingly you might even share with those around you.”
Mafloku hastens to explain that he doesn’t try to control the viewer’s reaction. “That is up to whatever the viewers have seen, felt, or have within their selves.”

To see more of Mafloku’s work, visit his website at His images may awaken the child that still lives within you.

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