Ashram art, India

What has this to do with my art practice?

Since returning from my 2004 travels through India I took up sculpture that produced artforms influenced by certain philosophical schools from the sub continent.

The context of art denotes the pursuit of humanistic concerns  through outdoor art. It is because of this constrained perspective the overview takes only a small section that I have personally encountered in greater and lesser degrees of participation since 1984

Artistic mobilization for outdoor art communities

The sculpture and outdoor art in general are influenced by the following inter cultural factors.

  • reformist Hindu movements
  • have a strong international following, as within Osho commune
  • Affiliated with United Nations as do the Brahma Kumaris
  • advocate forms of ego transcendence through meditation, as a methodology of Ramana
  • art in a liberal sense of free expression to integrate personal identity over time. as Aurobindo

Modes of artistic activity

Neo transcendentalism through art

A feature most prominent in the groups I encountered from 1984 up to 2018 is a commitment to transcend the standard ways of thinking and perceiving a person. I explore this notion in the article A sculptural odyssey. This is where the idea of a soul as the animate feature of the human animal takes on ascriptive resemblances to a stone sculpture. The act of sculpting the icon gives the inanimate stone a animate soul like property through name and form. What is new about this in a modern capitalist phase of industrial production is the art as a mode of production that also acts as a humanistic pursuit for transcendence from the animate into the icon’s vision.