A Slice of Silence
by Nathan Wirth

Avante garde—synonymous with “vanguard”—represents people at the cutting edge of any emergent cultural thought or expression. These individuals tend to function several steps ahead of the rest of the world, scouting the newly emerging territories of tomorrow and forging pathways toward the artistic, cultural, and intellectual possibilities that dwell there.

Integral Life is pleased to present a monthly showcase of truly avant garde artists—the most current embodiment of the Kosmic impulse to constantly go beyond what went before, adding brilliance and revelation to the dying forms of the previous moment.

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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!

Looking at the Overlooked: Integrally Experiencing a Rubinov-Jacobson Drawing

with Michael Schwartz and Phillip Rubinov-Jacobson

Last month we introduced Light of the Muse, an Integral Life Art Gallery featuring the work of Philip Rubinov Jacobson. Amongst the twenty-four works on display, the one many people might well overlook is this small and exquisite drawing. With Philip’s consent and support, we are going to focus on this drawing, exercising our skills at approaching a work of art in an authentically integral manner. By doing so, first we activate the various perspectives on art (including becoming aware where we are stuck in the fluidity of our perspective taking); thusly setting the stage for integrating those perspectives into higher-order aesthetic perceiving. Working with a drawing is especially germane, as drawings, in their delicacy and intimacy, demand nuanced attentiveness and discernment….

Light of the Muse

November 11, 2009

Light of the Muse
Philip Rubinov Jacobson

“What I learn and feel, and what I artistically express all reflect an underlying spiritual quest. My work is concerned with the mysteries of life and the perennial questions that arise from such a pursuit. Art is a spiritual practice that casts aside the fallacies of dogma and tenet, expresses Goodness, Beauty and Truth and is never satisfied with anything substitute or counterfeit. I would describe myself as an “creatuitive artist’, that is, I combine creativity and intuition in my search for spiritual revelation….”

1000 Views of God

October 14, 2009

1000 Views of God
Bryce Widom

Our debut gallery features the work of Bryce Widom, an accomplished painter, designer, and illustrator as well as a beloved part of the Boulder/Denver integral community. His gallery is titled 1000 Views of God, and we are sure you will find it as breathtaking as we did….