I am convinced that my aesthetic must be a melding of design concepts and worldview; image and spirit; the natural and supernatural. If the poles in any of these couplets develop at a different rate or in a different direction, there will be no success. To this point in my life, my worldview has been constructed in bits and pieces, my spirit has been sporadically united with my art, and my technical endeavors have operated independently from any other influence. What I’m looking for is an understanding of the whole person creative process. Don’t worry, I am not supporting the idea of “automatic writing” or some sort of spiritism, but I am looking for a Biblically valid cooperation between the two poles within me.
The triad of my art philosophy remains the same: design (interaction of composition and design elements), expression (emotional message), and technique (skillful use of tools). It’s just that now I’m beginning to see a parallel triangle at an upper level: spiritual energy (vibration of color and form), revelation (divine message), and the supernatural (wise use of gifts). The diagram extends below to represents the human trichotomy of spirit, soul, and body. The upper level is connected to Divine influence, the middle triangle is associated with academia, and the lower level is ontological. Without divine connection, the triangle collapses; design is confused with expression (ie, composition is the message) and soul is mistaken for spirit. The entire unit is becoming a more clearly defined part of my Biblical worldview, encompassed by the truth.
In this personal study and development, Kandinsky’s book Concerning the Spiritual in Art, has been very helpful. I disagree with his near Gnostic view of reaching that “upper level”, but his insight into the spiritual aspect of color and form has been influential. I’ll review that book at a later date, but for now I just want to make an additional point of distinction. That spiritual aspect of design is not merely symbolism (the layman’s simple interpretation) but has to do with how the physiological affect of color and form (from the actual photons and molecules) become a window into the spiritual realm. (...to be continued)
This icon image, "Madonna and Child in the Desert", has nothing to do with the above discussion (at least I wasn't thinking about those new philosophical ideas of mine while making the icon). I just wanted to show the finished product which I had started on the road during the Winter. With one more piece, I'll have enough to make a presentation on my Etsy storefront site.