Love can be beautifully depicted in a very gloomy way and Chiara Bautista's illustrations are an example of it.
We are so close, yet so far. That “forever” you once hummed to my heart is as blurry as the farthest star. My soul awaits, but your head aches. I am painfully aware that your love is fake. But I don't mind because I know it's you. All this time, I have known this for sure, and while you hold my wings in your hand , I hold in my eyes the saddest goodbyes. The ones you want to hear, the ones I will never feel. I am not leaving. I am not going anywhere. Because I stay. Somehow I know you stay too. We don't know any better. Shame on us.
And so, I whisper to the wind my fears of losing what I love and need. The breeze brings back a message with your name and a sin. Words that mean nothing but pain on my skin. And even though to me you are distress, from the bottom of my heart, I could not care less. This aching body craves nothing but you, and I feel this is taking my life away too. Your touch is freezing cold, but at least it's yours. Your embrace caresses my skin, while my soul gently mourns. I am too weak, you are too sweet. Is there an end to this misery?
Toxic love affairs are as dangerous as they are addictive, but while thousands of people hurt each other by staying in the most unhealthy relationships, silver linings can appear every once in a while. The “good thing” about being in a toxic bond is the art that can be born from these bittersweet experiences.
We have seen love inspire the most mesmerizing creations millions of times in songs, books, movies, and paintings. In the same way, the dark side of this feeling has also been portrayed in amazing works of art. This is where Chiara Bautista, Mexican artist, found her niche. But before we try to discover more about her, though there's barely any information, instead of wondering who she is or who broke her heart, let’s allow her work speak.
Fiction and feelings come to life in these mysterious and captivating illustrations, together with simplicity and an esthetic with muted colors. All her illustrations tell stories about some kind of love that was not good for anyone. And even though sorrow and hopelessness may describe some of Chiara’s fantastical scenes, they are still as beautiful as the most romantic love song.
As captivating and dramatic as they are, Chiara’s illustrations show that the reality of these relationships is anything but inspirational: it's just destructive. Sadly, toxic relationships are as popular as the healthy ones, maybe even more so. The answer is easy: addiction. Toxic loves are like drugs. They make people live in a kind of never-ending limbo. Harmful relationships may leave us always wanting more of someone that will only ruin our health (or in this case, our heart). It gets even worse when we become unable to let go, thinking that everything will get better one day, that the harm done to each other is incidental, and that the relationship is only going through a rough patch.
But the pain never goes away, and somehow, we feel the need to “hold on,” because we think our love is strong and pure. Overcoming the pain turns into an ideal that, unfortunately, never comes true. We believe that our significant other is worth the pain, the fights, and the damage. We don't accept that these people are slowly and silently breaking our soul. As much as we want to be with them forever, the love itself is tainted by jealousy, mistrust, and possession. While we think no one will love them better than us, we're actually keeping each other from freedom and happiness.
We cling to memories that will never come back, to a bond that will never be the same. And even though we felt at home with them once, they also damaged us psychologically after some time. Toxic loves make us think that we won’t know any better, that it's the real thing. Just the fact that we can call them “ours” makes all the pain and sorrow worthwhile. We feel like superheroes with the ability to cure emotional wounds, we don't realize that we are the ones hurting ourselves.
Thanks to Chiara Bautista, the bittersweet side of letting someone hurt our soul has never looked this tender. This artist revealed something that is incredibly relatable in a very esthetic way.
If you want to check out more of this artist's work, you can follow her on Facebook: Chiara Bautista
If you want to find out more about toxic relationships, you can also read: