the mystic artist

“MYSTIC: a person who believes in the possibility of attaining insight into mysteries transcending ordinary human knowledge, as by direct communication with the divine or immediate intuition…”

So, let’s talk about what a “mystic” artist might be…

Some people may hear the word and immediately do an about face. It may seem counter to the scientific process which we have all come to trust in the last 150 years. Others may completely embrace the mystery of understanding something that seems beyond intellect and throw all intellectual or scientific reason to the four winds! I’d say I fall somewhere in between-- but with a strong bias towards embracing “mysterious insights”.

I think I come to my next project in more than one way. Sometimes it is just something beautiful that I see every day as I run around living life, and I stop to snap a picture or “take note”. Other times it IS more mysterious, based on an experience that has profoundly affected me that I have been processing. In this case, I have a sense of “insight into mysteries” that transcend “ordinary human knowledge”. When the insight hits me, more times than not, I am also hit with a visual concept of the insight, such as in these two paintings below.

Once I see it in my mind’s eye, it makes me chuckle a little, because it feels so obvious to me that this is the way to paint this concept. I even have a sense of amazement if others describe it as meaning something else to them, which is perfectly fine, but still amazing to me. The visual concept always speaks more deeply to me than the words that we might use to describe it to others. I am left with a sense that God has allowed me insight into something very personal for me, and if others see it this way or not, it doesn't really matter too much. It is enough to be given a way to express the way I understand it.

Here are a couple websites of other artists that seem to explore visually ideas that go deeper than intellectural reason. Maybe they don't see themselves as mystic artists, but when I view their art, I am touched by something, whether I understand what it is or not, that goes deeper than words and reason.

Vladimir Kush

Ed Myers

So, how do you come to your creative process? Do you see it, love it and paint or otherwise create it visually because it is beautiful to you or is there a mystery involved that transcends ordinary human knowledge somehow? In other words, what and why are you inspired to create what you create? All of the reasons that we are creative are valid to me! I would really like to know what yours are.

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