One of my more recent Tantric paintings, this lovely and peaceful mandala has emerged in a manner quite different from any of my previous work. New techniques include glazes, dimensional paint and an open style not usually found in traditional Tibetan Buddhist art. More a thangka than a geometric mandala, it is nonetheless square with four stylized "gates" around the inner temple where the deities reside.
Mandala painting, for me, is to enter a process whereby human talent and skill are surrendered to the inherent wisdom of the mandala and what is to be revealed on canvas. The task of the artist is to bring forth a perfect universe (or microcosm) which can be entered in meditation and serve as a doorway to one's own inner wisdom. It's not about real people or the world we know so well.
The artistic inspiration for "Buddha's Dream" comes from a Japanese sliding screen at the head of my bed and a small bronze statue of Vajrasattva and his consort Vajratopa that sits on my night table. They represent the Buddha as cosmic consciousness prior to division and manifestation in the physical world and are also a powerful image for purifying mind and body.
Nadean O'Brien, Huntington Beach, CA Member Since December 2006 Artist Statement I WAS BORN CREATIVE, but as a child showed little interest in drawing or painting. My parents who had met at an art gallery sustained hope I would follow in the footsteps of my talented aunt noted for her lovely landscapes. I, however, had other worlds to explore before discovering the beautiful and sensuous meditative art of Asia and Tibet as well as the work of Carl Jung who introduced the "personal mandala" to the western world. Here was art with power, passion and purpose, the art of self-realization and enlightenment, an art form that caught my imagination and gave my life focus almost two decades ago!
As I picked up my brush and began to paint, I became caught up in my own transformation to artist/healer and teacher, expressing this metamorphosis on canvas in Tibetan Tantric Buddhist symbolism depicting the sacred union of our inner masculine and feminine. The mystical "yab yum" (literally father mother) is often mistaken to represent human sexuality, but instead portrays graphically the inner wholeness or balance we must first achieve to realize our highest human potential. This ancient message is still relevant today.
More recently, fate and fortune have provided for expression of my particular talents and skills via digital painting rather than acrylic paint and canvas. With great joy and excitement, I watch a new generation of my unique mandalas evolving in a medium that is ideally suited by its added depth and dimension to spiritual art. I will continue to share my love and passion as before.
My artwork has been displayed at Mills College, Esalen, Agape International Spiritual Center in Los Angeles, and Chopra Centers throughout the United States as well as in private collections and corporate settings the world over.