Visionary Art is the topic of the upcoming Art Church at CoSM.
Bring a sketchbook & colors, or a journal and share your thoughts about the best loved and most profound visionary art through the ages.
The artist’s mission is to make the soul perceptible. Our scientific, materialist culture trains us to develop the eyes of outer perception. Visionary art encourages the development of our inner sight. To find the visionary realm, we use the intuitive inner eye: The eye of contemplation; the eye of the soul. All the inspiring ideas we have as artists originate here.
The visionary realm embraces the entire spectrum of imaginal spaces; from heaven to hell, from the infinitude of forms to formless voids. The psychologist James Hillman calls it the imaginal realm. Poet William Blake called it the divine imagination. The aborigines call it the dreamtime; and Sufis call it alam al-mithal. To Plato, this was the realm of the ideal archetypes. The Tibetans call it the sambhogakaya; the dimension of inner richness. Theosophists refer to the astral, mental, and nirvanic planes of consciousness. Carl Jung knew this realm as the collective symbolic unconscious. Whatever we choose to call it, the visionary realm is the space we visit during dreams and altered or heightened states of consciousness.
Every sacred art tradition begins with the visionary. “Divine canons of proportion,” mystic syllables, and sacred writing were all realized when the early wisdom masters and artists received the original archetypes through visionary contact with the divine ground. After a sacred archetype has been given form as a work of art, it can act as a focal point of devotional energy. The artwork becomes a way for viewers to access or worship the associated transcendental domain. In sacred art, from calligraphy to icons, the work itself is a medium: a point of contact between the spiritual and material realms.
Our inner world, the life of our imagination with its intense feelings, fears, and loves, guides our intentions and actions in the world. Our inner world is the only true source of meaning and purpose we have. Art is the song of this inner life. Art’s key role in the human drama is that of a “great convincer.” The artist posits one myth, religion, or ideology over another, yet also always expresses the raw passion and evolutionary force of the inner world itself.
The artist attempts to make inner truths visible, audible, or sensible in some way, by manifesting them in the external, material world (through drawing, painting, song, etc.). To produce their finest works, artists lose themselves in the flow of creation from their inner worlds. The visionary artist creatively expresses her or his personal glimpses of the Divine Imagination.
Every work of art embodies the vision of its creator and simultaneously reveals a facet of the collective mind. Art history shows each successive wave of vision flowing through the world’s artists. Artists offer the world the pain and beauty of their souls as a gift to open the eyes of the collective and heal it. Our exposure to technological innovations and diverse forms of sacred art gives artists at the dawn of the twenty-first century a unique opportunity to create more integrative and universal spiritual art than ever before.
Each of us carry a spark of the Almighty Force of the Universe that seeks expression through our lives and works. We gather as community to activate our creativity as spiritual practice. The Universal Creative Force is the Divine Artist and Cosmos is the evolving masterwork of Creation. When we make art together, a new way of seeing may emerge. As Sacred Mirrors, we reflect and reinforce the redemptive transformative power of art in each of our lives.
At CoSM, Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, Art Church is a Sunday afternoon event led by Alex & Allyson in the Grey House, where we draw our visions to music and discuss the topic of the month. Bring basic drawing materials, your favorite transportable art supplies — a sketchbook, pens & pencils. You can also bring a journal for noting thoughts or writing poetry. Paper, pencils and pens are also available at the door. Alex & Allyson open the session with welcoming thoughts and reflections on the topic that might stimulate a vision. Inspiring spoken word poetry opens the silent drawing meditation accompanied by inspiring music. The meditation is followed by sharing the experience of creative silence together and the art or writing that resulted from the session. A break is next, to meet community members, visit The Mushroom Cafe and CoSM Shop. After the break, the topical presentation and discussion begins in the Library.
Alex Grey, world-renowned artist, poet, and author, is best loved for his paintings which portray multiple dimensions of reality, interweaving biological anatomy with psychic and spiritual energies. His books, Sacred Mirrors, The Mission of Art, Transfigurations, and Art Psalms, trace the development of his work and mystical experiences that shaped his spiritual artistic life. Alex's most recent monograph, Net of Being, addresses how his art is evolving the cultural body through icons of interconnectedness. www.alexgrey.com
Allyson Grey, artist, writer and social sculptor, has co-written and edited a dozen books and all seven volumes of CoSM Journal of Visionary Culture. Since 1975, Allyson has been artistic partner and studio mate of artist, Alex Grey. With a Master of Fine Arts from Tufts University, Allyson has been an educator and muse to artists for over 30 years. Alex and Allyson are the parents of actress, Zena Grey. allysongrey.com Together, the Grey co-founded the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, CoSM, an interfaith church since 2008, celebrating creativity as a spiritual path.
1pm – Program Begins
• Art Meditation with music
• BRING DRAWING MATERIALS including colored pencils, pens or watercolor and a sketch book or pad.
• Journaling and poetic expression also encouraged.
• Meditation Ends with Closing Reflections
• Break — [store & cafe will be open]
• Presentation on Visionary Art
• Drawing Meditation with music
• Closing Ceremony
Rooms are available for rent in the Grey House, CoSM’s fully renovated Visionary Victorian guest house.
For assistance in booking your stay, please call 845-297-2323 ext. 104 or email us at [email protected]