“To infinity and beyond, in both directions,
The micro and macro cosmos.” Henri van Bentum
In the previous post, we promised to elaborate some more on the contents and philosophy of Organiverse. Organiverse is a series of 100 paintings which I created in 1972, all done dot by dot, in pointillism. Each painting is a sphere or mandala, 8 ½ cm in diameter.
Not long ago the original images were digitally scanned and they are part of the upcoming “From Earth to the Universe” (FETTU) exhibit here in Victoria. FETTU is one of the projects marking the International Year of Astronomy 2009 http://astronomy2009.org. Why pointillism? For one thing, because there is nothing solid in the Universe. Everything is separated. The planets, stars, even the Sun appear as a “dot” in space.
I coined the word “Organiverse” back in the 1970’s from two words “Organi/c” and “Un/iverse”. In the beginning there was darkness. Darkness became light. And light is colour. Organiverse embraces the evolution of colour, born from the three primaries of Red, Yellow and Blue.
From the un-formed comes form. There are no words or explanations necessary, really. What is needed is time and patience to let it all sink in, by contemplation or meditation.
Each viewer will experience the work differently according to their individual life experience and total sum of awareness. You could say Organiverse embraces the macrocosm within a microscopic frame of reference.
With this work we explore organic processes on the cosmic and microscopic levels, with here and there, a pause - - - linked to the noumena (as opposed to phenomena). But always maintaining its spirit of metamorphosis and evolution.
Now, thirty-seven years after its creation, and thanks to contemporary digital scanning technology, Organiverse is being shared with a wider audience in 21st century fashion on large flat-screens provided courtesy of SONY Style.
It’s not what I originally intended, back in 1972, but as Natasha observed:
“Organiverse will grow on the viewer,
Like friendship and music.
Observe it without distraction,
Quietly in solitude.
You will discover this contemplative Opus
Brings a welcome antidote to our stress-laden times.”
Natasha van Bentum
Here are a couple of others quotes about Organiverse:
“Organiverse is a glimpse into the multilayered beauty of all that is Life. As a physician and healer, I feel that these mandalas offer an immense opportunity for healing, and for a heart-based understanding of who we are physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Peering into each mandala, one witnesses the microcosms and macrocosms of Life, and penetrates to the very depths of that which is Truth. A dance of color, form, and contemplation, Organiverse is a meditation on selflessness.”
Dr.Mark Sherman MDCM, CCFP
“The dots are amazingly clear. Aside from their stunning pristine beauty, there is also a subtle intelligence in the progression. It seems the artist retained each image which he developed day by day --- an amazing visual memory and disciplined craftsmanship." Sonam Gyatso.
"I am extremely pleased with the beauty and depth of the Organiverse Folio. It is a garland of flowers in my daily experience. It is a wormhole entrance into both the depths of of the starry night and the inner life process of the biosphere we inhabit. A tour de force that will reverberate down the annals of human cultural history. A unique and magical work of true and lasting significance. Thank You!" Brian W. Johnson, MSW.
The FETTU exhibit will also include artwork by over one hundred Greater Victoria schoolchildren, as well as a limited number of images by First Nations’ artists. Signing off for now, Henri