Archive for July, 2010

‘SACRED GEOMETRY’, New Paintings by Tish Saunders, July 31 – August 28

Thursday, July 8th, 2010
Spirals of Change-Strong Foundations by Tish Saunders

Spirals of Change-Strong Foundations by Tish Saunders

Sacred Geometry by Tish Saunders

Through time it has become increasingly important to paint what ‘matters’ to me — to focus on love, light and colour. This year I was really on the ‘painting train’ and from June to July I often painted 7 or 8 hours a day. It was glorious! The rain pattered on the roof, the woodstove glowed, the music was good and there were no intrusions.

Painting a mandala is a beautiful experience. I start by making intuitive decisions regarding the imagery and colour that I will use. The repetition of the shapes and symbols causes new patterns to emerge. Combinations of strokes of colours on other colours cause energy to begin to move and this is read by the eye and the mind with exciting results. I am really interested in what happens on the surface of the canvas in these paintings — there is no room for indecision or re-working. The strokes of colour are decisive; the surface receives paint, and is then overlaid with more paint. I have one chance to put it on and make it work. The process is clean and pure and the results sing to me, as they have been laid down with a one-pointed mind and clear intent.

I began working on one small canvas where I started with one stroke of colour in the centre then added another stroke of a newly mixed colour to it, then did it again and again. A multicoloured spiral formed — every colour in it was freshly mixed, stroke after stroke. The entire painting was vibrant, the spiral was moving, and the spaces between the colours were creating their own patterns. I did another painting with a similar approach. It was so enjoyable to paint this way. Then I moved to very abstract symbolic landscapes. I did an underpainting, and then laid large strokes of contrasting colour on top. It came alive! It was time to make a mandala using this technique of colour strokes or tiles on underpainting. I did this, and then continued using the technique for other paintings.

Recently, I was preparing my show mail out at the gallery. I finally showed my work to someone other than my family — it was the mandala called ‘Spirals of Change/Strong Foundations Mandala’ that is on the postcard mail out. She remarked immediately that she knew a bit about sacred geometry. In the study of art history I had run into that term regarding the design of places of worship or sacred monuments related to religious belief. ‘Divine proportions’ and the ‘golden ratio’ were used and recognized by many of the ancient cultures. Later, I googled sacred geometry and discovered how widespread the study is. Prevalent forms that appear in nature like the sphere, fractals, sine waves, the four-dimensional cube and the spiral are all part of this geometry that is considered sacred because it arises directly from natural principles. It is believed that these archetypes and icons of geometry are ‘perfect and timeless and arise from God Mind and are the master plan of the universe’.

I discovered the term ‘tessellations’ which refers to a ‘tiling of the plane which fills it with no overlaps or gaps’. Think of honeycomb. In Latin, ‘tessella’ is a small cubical piece of clay, stone or glass used to make mosaics. Wow! I realized that my small strokes of colour on underpainting could be called tessellations.

I believe that the energy you give a painting when you create it, stays with the painting always. All of the painter’s decisions and energies at the moment of creation radiate out to the viewer and can be read and received, and can affect or transform. I hope that my beautiful experience of painting this winter will warm the hearts of those who view them.