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Monday, March 30, 2009

Beyond Ordinary Time--The Magus

Thanks Irini, you the Eternal soul from Greece. There was John Fowles the British novelist whose works I admire no less. My paintings and my art always draw on the literature that touched my soul with magic and humanity. The first novel by Fowles ‘The Magus’ is an excellent piece about reality and illusion. What is reality is basically illusion because it changes so fast and so quick that you are left stranded about the meaning of ‘reality’. What is created with imagination is called illusion and is more real because it is not touched by external forces. The Magus again is based in a beautiful island of Greece. The description of the landscape and the flora and fauna is so poetic in this novel that the spirit of the land touches you deep. The indeterminate end of the novel has a mystical aura. It is about the space occupied by the human imagination that creates great poetry, literature, paintings and sculptures. It poses questions about time. Time as you perceive in the moment or the past which you invent all the time. Fowels teases our rational logical mind and posits a world full of metaphysical, mystical nuances. What is real? The world of appearances or the one that emerges as a beautiful poem when you watch a scintillating sun set in the lovely Greek island I had a similar experiences many times including one in Istanbul when I saw the sun go down in Murmara Sea behind Blue Mosque. These are the stuff of spiritual experiences. My paintings and my literary writings have drawn robustly from such experiences. My ‘Journey of an Artist’ states, “It was the Shangri La of soul—never ageing or changing. This is what I inherited from my mother—‘what exists inside remains constant, forever fresh, and young.’ Outside, mechanical time brings about physical changes and decay but the spiritual, inner time is forever the same.”
These writings I have been adding regularly in my Literary Blog—

I reckon that the beauty of your lovely Greece is many times over when you see it with the eyes of a creative soul.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

JOURNEY OF AN ARTIST--Roses and Rainbows-2

It was a beautiful land—rolling hills, sensuous, fragrant valleys, exquisite sunsets, white winters, warm summers, scintillating springs and brown ochre romantic autumns. It was a land where love grew in the form of fragrant linden flowers; flowing brooks, singing canaries, jingling bells, nature composed music—as cows grazed in the lush meadows and virginal winds kissed endearingly every blade of grass, every flower in bloom and every leaf of tree.
It was in this fecund land that I was born to my mother. In the nature's nursery here, my childhood was nursed. It was here that I played with squirrels and birds, collected wild flowers, raced with the winds, watched fishes gambol in streams, and learnt my lessons about colours from changing seasons. In winters by the stove, my mother would tell me tales of gypsy kings and her clan and far off lands from where they were forced to flee, many centuries back. That land, she told me was in Asia and called Hindustan. It was a magical land and all gypsy tribes belonged to it. In her haunting, lilting voice, she would sing songs of yore while cooking or putting me to sleep. The songs were about brave kings and wars they fought, about lovers whose love could find no fulfilment, or about the land of ancestors, which overflowed with honey and riches. There was nostalgia, soft pain, and suffering. The tales celebrated the pain for the lost land. The reality of the land existed only in imagination. Imagination fed further imagination over centuries of exile and the land existed more as a feeling, as a thought, as an ideal in the hearts and minds of the people than as a reality out there. The changes in the external world did not affect, the land was safe from all dangers, as it existed inside the people. It was the Shangri La of soul—never ageing or changing. This is what I inherited from my mother—‘what exists inside remains constant, forever fresh, and young.’ Outside, mechanical time brings about physical changes and decay but the spiritual, inner time is forever the same. This is the eternal white lotus of soul. Much later, I would discover the roots of these thoughts in India.
From my mother I learnt to view things in a different magical way. She told that it is not the expanse but the core, the essence of things that we should understand and appreciate. The expanse creates illusions and is the cause of much of unhappiness in the world. The external world must collapse back in our inner kernel of being as a totality, as an infinite iota. We must first learn to open inside—outside will open automatically. My mother and Mother Nature were my teacher, guide, and friend. I would interact with stars as one does with a friend; fairies from my mother’s tales would descend from heavenly heights to play with me, the trees and flowers understood
when I would talk to them and in turn I would relish what they told me.

Journey of an artist--1 Roses and Rainbows


I was born in southern part of Austria in the province of Styria. My parents named me Petra. My mother was a gypsy from Poland and father Austrian. Father was a sailor who met my mother while holidaying in Tatras in south-eastern Poland. He saw her in a village pub where farmers gathered after the day’s work in fields. Carefree laughter floated in the pristine mountain land; over glasses of beer tales from grandfathers’ time would be recounted, heroics from Polish wars remembered and the rustic beauty of this sun-kissed and wind swept hardy landscape would reflect in the faces of these simple folks. It was here that my father fell in love. He saw her in the pub enjoying her beer with some friends. He went over to her and asked her name. But she laughed; she laughed with her radiant eyes and her dark hair floated in the fresh mountain air. She was dressed in vibrant, colourful clothes, as is the custom with gypsies all over Europe. She carried in her the freedom of bohemian winds and cascading music of mountain rivers flowing from Tatras. Rather my mother was the sensuous, heady wind that blew across valleys, forests, houses and barns, villages and vales. She was freedom itself. It was this overflowing being of my mother that my father found so enchanting and different from what a settled life breeds in a person with permanent weight of attachment to people and places. It is the freedom from the fear of tomorrow when a person moves all the time, every moment every day is free and fresh as the first dewdrops in the morning. Life is a renewal every moment. He married my mother in the village church and celebrated marriage feast with the villagers. My father returned from his vacation with his bride. He settled her in the beautiful valley in Styria where he had a house, which he inherited from his grandfather’s brother. The house was built with logs and wood from the forest around the house. My father also owned the forest; being part of his inheritance. The house was an old one and had beautiful, carved front door with strange images and symbols. Inside the living room on walls were hanging wooden icons, landscape paintings, and old sea maps from the Habsburg period. My grandfather was also a sailor and Austria had a seaport then in Trieste. Lace curtains covered the windows, which women knitted with their own hands as was common in these parts. There were four chairs and a large sofa covered with bearskins and a heavy carved walnut table. Bookshelf stood in one corner stacked with old, yellowed, and yellowing books. There were two large comfortable bedrooms on first floor, furnished with spacious comfortable wooden beds. The bedrooms had a fantastic view of the forest and the valley. Rising sun would bathe the valley in soft crimson yellow, the birds would soar, singing; thus the chaste morning would herald a dew-fresh new day. The kitchen was large and comfortable. A big wood-fired stove, erected in the middle helped circulate warm air in the harsh winter. A mahogany dining table stood closer to the wall surrounded by eight chairs. It was here that my mother baked her first fresh bread after her marriage and cooked for her husband and for us later when I arrived.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

"Behind the facade of high logic you hide a high aesthetics and poetics of a cascading soul. You always climb the mountain to see the most beautiful melange of orange, crimson and yellow of a sun-set. I just relished river flow of your thought-feelings"
I found the orange warmth of the sensuous sun in her eyes sweet. She was akin to a model of Modigliani and had whispering softness in her demeanour.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sun I sing to your Glory
Size 66"X60"
Acrylic on canvas

Monday, March 9, 2009

Life has whispered its sweet secrets to me, of happiness amidst darkness, of soft fragrant winds among blizzards, of serenity among typhoons, of the rainbows among grey days, of blooming roses among acidic volcanoes, of love in the seasons of hatred, of eternal in the ephemeral, of resurgent soul in the diminishing body.


Give me the music ; the Song will flow from me!

Spring Eternal
acrylic on canvas

White Lotus of Peace

acrylic on canvas



Joy within

acrylic on canvas




Charcoal on paper



song of Joy
charcoal on paper