Art Gallery: The Extraordinary Commonplace

January 13, 2010

The Extraordinary Commonplace

by Bo Bartlett

As you may already know, art, creativity, and aesthetics have always been an essential part of an integrally-lived life. In fact, the very existence of a genuinely transformative Integral Art scene is one of the greatest indicators that we are indeed part of a bonafide cultural movement, as we have often looked to our greatest artists to scout out the unfamiliar territory ahead of us—blazing new paths through the wilderness of consciousness, while bringing the sounds and visions of a newly discovered world back for the rest of us.

This month we are proud to feature the art of Bo Bartlett, in a stunning collection of paintings that depict a seamless integration of realism and surrealism, which Michael Schwartz describes as “visible familiarity and everydayness; integrated with strange and mysterious elusiveness: elements of an uncanny and wondrous art…” As you take in the visual splendor of Bo’s art, be sure to check out Michael’s accompanying commentary The Mysterious Abundance of the Everyday.

One of the extraordinary things about these Integral Life Art Galleries is that you can choose your own level of engagement, and can go as deeply into them as you want to go. Ken Wilber often talks about the three modes of knowing symbolized by the “eye of flesh,” the “eye of mind,” and the “eye of spirit”:

  • You can have a simple sensory experience of the shapes, colors, and composition of the actual artwork, just noticing the beauty and feeling how it lands in your body.
  • You can also use the intellectual treatments provided by Michael Schwartz to deepen your overall aesthetic experience, learning some of the most important perspectives you can bring to any work of art.
  • And you can use the magnificent beauty these artists offer as a spiritual practice, a doorway to your own timeless self, immersed in effortless appreciation of everything in this universe—as sometimes it takes something exceptionally beautiful for us to see that everything is beautiful, exactly as it is.

All three of these experiences are available to you, and we invite you to take in as much as you possibly can!

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