Artist’s Statement by Sarah A. Morrigan

March 27, 2009 at 8:33 pm Leave a comment

“By Art Neo, we mean those aspects of Art Deco that are most generally associated with the name–the theatrical, upward-aspiring forms…that makes exhilarating use of geometrical line and curve, yet never divorced from the human spirit; that places solar imagery at the heart of much of its design, and contains a continual upward and outward thrust…[it] is [also] a democratic art in the best sense of that term; it belongs, we may say, to the lowest common denominator of humanity; but it does not seek to reduce humanity to its lowest and least noble elements. Its general aspiration is always upwards, always toward what is high and pure and good in the human spirit, and even where individual productions may take a cynical or an immoral turn, that is largely negated by the broad thrust of the movement of which they are a part. And what is most notable about the Art Neo movement whether in song or film or decoration…is always its unassailable innocence.” — Miss Alice Lucy Trent, in The Feminine Universe (London: Golden Order Press, 1997; republished, London: Feminine Publishing Company, 2008.).

“The ministry of the icon painter is that of the theologian: first, to know and love God; second, to praise God; third, to reflect on one’s own experience of God from within a community of praise and present that reflection for the community’s deeper understanding of its Faith, leading to greater praise of the Trinity that grounds all communion.” — The Rev. Dr. Andrew D. Ciferni, O.Praem., in foreword for A Brush with God, an Icon Workbook (Harrisburg, Pa.: Morehouse Publishing, 2005).

“In ancient times, art was an offering and a prayer to God and the universe and a manifestation of the divinity found deep within [one’s] heart. Many artists achieved a higher realm of understanding through religious devotion and improvement of their hearts and minds… A painter at that time understood the balance between morality, honesty, and having a genuine heart. Those traits were reflected in the honour and purity of every brush stroke… They found that the closer they were to their innate and compassionate nature, the more beauty their paintings would radiate, and the more the viewers could sense its serenity. Those artists believed that when [humankind] lived by benevolence and patience, the more magnificent their achievements were. Perhaps we could learn from this point of view.” From the Epoch Times, Dec. 15, 2007.

“Congratulations! Readers of the sadly currently out-of-print Children of the Void will remember the chapter entitled “The New Movement” in which the creation of a neo-traditional art-style is extensively discussed. Such a style would be a fusion of Sattwic symbolic art and late-Rajasic Art-Neo (in the broadest sense of that term). It is wonderful to see new creations being made in the spirit of the New Movement.” — Princess Mushroom commenting on the Blue Camellia Club.

 

A revival of art, spirit and tradition…

In the ancient and up to the medieval times, religious art was one of several means through which the church taught spiritual principles and precepts. More than merely a visual aid for a presentation, it was an aid to devotion and worship, helping people focus their minds on the higher realm. The spiritual fine art is a language of symbols–each artwork makes use of highly intricate symbolism, each of such symbols pointing to different aspects of a saint’s life and values they teach. To this date, Eastern Orthodox Christians, Hindus, Buddhists–and to a lesser extent, Roman Catholics and Anglicans–incorporate uses of icons in their places of worship and in their liturgies.

In my work I attempt to reconnect art, spirit and tradition together to bring about a new stream and movement of art that combine the ancient spirituality with the modern artistic sensibility. Most of my works are inspired by some of the Art Deco and Art Nouveau streams of the 1920s and 1930s. In my works I reinterpret the symbolism inherent in iconography to the early- to mid-20th century aesthetics, allowing viewers to rethink and rediscover the spiritual and metaphysical values behind the icons in the context of what may be the immediately accessible past–the era that was not yet entirely overcome by the ugliness, yet was not too distant. Ultimately my works of art are an extension of my worship and faith.  The process itself is a form of contemplative exercise, but it is also hoped that the products help others to revive their spirituality and discover the Tradition in a new way.

 

Sarah A. Morrigan
Iridia Creative Productions
www.icpArts.tk

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