Monday, February 14, 2011


Mandala is a sanskrit word meaning circle, and has been used by hinduism and buddhism as an artform and as a way of meditation practice for thousands of years. I have been working these paintings with this in mind, but also allowing the drawings to unfold themselves without too much of a framework. I have stuck to some basic rules, a circle for starters, and have attempted to be aware of what I am doing but not necessarily controlling it.  
Since last winter I have been looking at the drawn diagrams and microscopic images of cells in the body and other organic forms. I have been fascinated by the shapes and patterns therein and have used these as a map really for the way I am drawing now.

 detail: Winter Mandala
Winter Mandala

Detail: Winter Mandala

These maps are traversing each other now and new and exciting landscapes have simply grown. I am certainly not the first artist to do this kind of cellular observation. Miro is one, and many newer work that I have come across these last years. Science and art have come together more and more in harmony then one might imagine.
I am so enjoying it as a practice though in itself, looking so deeply than coming up to surface and allowing my hand to move in whatever way it will. It feels fitting and profound to be making Mandalas. The circular form for starters which seems to be at the core and this intense looking in. As my hand moves across the page it feels as if I am painting a kind of cosmos without a whole lot of effort, the way you dance when you just feel like it. 
I have spent much time both in art college and out of it, staring closely at things in analytical drawing and observational drawing. This seems a mighty move for me and somehow I access a part of myself that is exceptionally happy to spend hours making these shapes and watching what comes. 

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