Wednesday, 4 December 2013

"There"




"There" is the title of my latest work, and the last for 2013.


It is acrylic on canvas 36" x 24".


It is a psycho-spiritual desert landscape with a temple which is made up of the hieroglyphs for the shrines of Upper and Lower Egypt. The landscape was very much influenced by some writing of Judith Page that she wrote me in correspondence, where she described "a black sun with a red corona".


The Temple is that of the Netjeru, and Set and Sekhmet are featured invoking entry. They are joined by Maat and Heru.


Each Netjer has a sun disk halo - as opposed to the way the sun disk is usually presented - surmounted by a  uraeus. This is a theme I have continued from earlier works.


There are two obelisks featured - referencing the sun city of Ancient Kemet - and the hieroglyphs for lightning in the sky.




The line work and smaller details of the painting created a challenge, as did the sky (which I am very happy with).





Saturday, 16 November 2013

Ancient Egyptian artifacts at NGV


The National Gallery of Victoria has recently re-installed its antiquities collections and the new permanent Ancient Egyptian section is delightful.

A visit to the NGV website reveals that not all of the antiquities in their possession are on display; I have featured the ones that are and also include photos from their site that display the works in all their glory.

Below is a photo journal of what I saw when visiting a few weeks ago.


Coffin of Iretenhoreru dating from Dynasty 25 - 26

 Iretenhoreru's coffin lid
Inside of  Iretenhoreru's coffin with images of Sokar and Auset visible. The coffin is suspected to have come from Thebes. No information on the exhibition plaques was rendered as to the role that the owner played in life
Amulets - outstanding are the Bes, djed and Sobek ones
Larger amulets and statuettes featuring Auset suckling Heru, the Apis bull and Ausar

Different angle on first amulet picture revealing even more 

Canopic jars dating from Dynasty 21 - 25 found in Qurna, Thebes and featruing the lids of Qebsennenuf and Duamutef

Beautiful canopic chest dating from the Ptolemaic period; it features the falcon sacred to Sokar on top but in my research may also represent Sopdu. 
Detail of canopic chest front

Photo of canopic chest from NGV website


The head covering of Padihorpasheraset dating from the Ptolemaic dynasties; it is quite beautiful but saddening to think how it must have been torn off the mummy for its value on the antiquities market


Spectacular statue of Ptah-Sokar-Ausar dating from Ptolemaic times; it is dedicated by a priest named Hor, son of Djedhor

Stela of Amenemope with remains of paint
From the NGV website




Dendera mortuary stela featuring demotic text
From the NGV website
Stela of Djedher found in Saqqara

From NGV website






Thursday, 17 October 2013

Djoser Ab

Djoser Ab
My latest painting is Djoser Ab.


The conception for the piece occurred in meditation, and the choice of color - and in fact a major inspiration for the piece - came from my admiration for the work of an online artist friend, the artist being Zap. (See the blog post where I featured Zap in here).

I am particularly fond of how how Zap utilizes fluorescence in his work, and I wanted to experiment with fluoro colors in this piece. Not every color is fluorescent, but the ones that are offset and interact with the non fluorescent palette rather well I feel. I did not want to produce a totally fluoro piece - that is already done spectacularly by Zap himself - but am happy with my first attempt at doing so in this work.

The eight limbed image surprised me when I conceived it, as I am not as taken with Ancient Hindu art in the same way as I am with Middle Eastern art, but the conception works perfectly for each Ab to be individually presented.

The main image is the subject in a state of becoming with the essences of Heru and Set; or put another way, balancing Bawy within and thus reaching an exalted state. (There is a particularly lovely image of Bawy and a beautiful protection heka on Sardurir's blog here).

Djoser Ab detail - heads


Djoser Ab detail Atum, Shai

The central figure reveals that the process involves a mastery and understanding of principles of the heart that he presents with each arm. The hearts include as their expression:

Djoser Ab detail - Geb, Heka

Set in glorified state
Atum
Sopdet
Shai
Mastery of physicality and physical power
Geb
Mastery of creative expression and understanding through the lenses of the Kemetic
Magick
The alloy electrum

Djoser Ab detail - Sopdet, Physicality

I know I always say that the photos don't do the actual paintings I make justice, but in this case it can not be overstated. The fluorescent colours make this piece so vibrant!

Djoser Ab detail - Kemetic lense, Electrum

"Djoser Ab" is my 16th Kemetic work to date and is a companion piece to a future work - as yet untitled - which I consider the original version of the piece you see today.

Djoser Ab detail - Set in a glorified state
The title - which means "Sacred Heart" - has a deep meaning for me, as the awful schools I attended when growing up had the same name, and the concept of the sacred heart has always meant something negative for me as a result. In seeking and discovering my own sacred heart, a healing has occurred where that is no longer the case.

Djoser Ab detail - lotus


Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Perspective and realization

In the last week, two people I know online have provided simultaneously and without prompting some major insights on viewing the religion of Ancient Kemet in a totally different way than we do today.

It is not the first time I have come across this: Schwaller de Lubicsz says in his books that understanding Egyptian thought requires a completely different way of thinking - another mindset altogether if you will - in order to truly understand it.

The words that were sent me struck me so profoundly that I asked to publish them here, and consent was given:

All true religion unites the human with the Divine, thus the Kemetic religion was religion, and that culture was driven by the mechanisms through which human beings were brought instantly into the Divine presence.  Also, the Kemetic religion sought to bring the Divine into the human sphere.  Every ritual, every act performed in the Per-Netjer, and the Per-Netjer itself, was a meeting place between humankind and the Gods.
Real religion offers such a meeting place, where the human heart, enthused by devotion and worship, becomes a vessel through which Netjer incarnates and the human is experienced as Divine. 
Do not let your prejudice against modern organized religions pollute your heart and sever your communion with Netjer.  To know the Gods one must enter into the awesome moment of duwa, worship, adoration, where the heart and mind recognize the greatness and goodness of the Netjer.  Without duwa one can never know the Netjeru nor come into their presences.  
The Kemetic religion sought and seeks to bring Netjer and humanity into the same space through which the act of creation may continue, and asfet pushed back.  This is an interdependent relationship.  Our task as servants of Netjer is to maintain creation by maintaining a living link with the Netjeru from which creation comes forth. 
Conquer your prejudices and your ego, and you will know the true meaning of Heka, the source and entirety of Kemetic religion.
Written by Ptahmassu
Ptahmassu's website is here
Previous post about Ptahmassu as an artist here
Another post with wise words from Ptahmassu: The Divine and the human

The point I am trying to make is that the ancient Egyptians were attuned to everything around them – they had no religion, they had a belief system and a way of life that was far superior to ours. We are only just beginning to tap into the wonders of this civilisation and mustn't stop at images and a profusion of gods….
Written by Judith Page
Judith's website is here

Detail from upcoming painting "Djoser Ab"; this part of the piece I call "Neb Set"

Related posts:
Spiritual but not religious
Zeal
Yesterday, Today and the Future: Kemetic Re-Manifestation
Exploring Netjer Today
A wonderful articulation / musings on my non-religious approach to Kemeticism
Faith, Myrrh, more FIMO: Set and Heru-Wer


Sunday, 11 August 2013

Sokar

My Sokar painting was completed last night.



The portrait is the 7th in a series of Nejeru portraits. A process that commenced early 2011 (read about it here) marking the beginning of my artistic career (again) comes to a conclusion with the completion of this work.



I have mentioned Sokar before; I feel that this piece does Him justice and consider it to be one of the best technical pieces I have made to date. I have included shots here from different perspectives that highlight the luminosity of the silver flame and halo that the portrait engenders.



Dua Sokar!

Friday, 9 August 2013

Celebrations

My altar this morning as I prepared it for Wep Ronpet

I have decked my apartment out with tea light candles. Painted the pots and smashed them. My Shrine Room is effused with the scent of frankincense, myrrh, sandalwood and juniper.

Happy Wep Ronpet everyone!

It was Set’s birthday yesterday and after the morning at work I spent the rest of the day languishing in how to celebrate His day. It was particularly cold here yesterday, and the sky was amassed with clouds that seemed ready to crack open any moment. He Whom Before The Sky Shakes indeed. 

Set's birthday celebrations

In meditation, a new painting has come along with clarity about another future work and how to execute it. It is a Set related painting, an echo of another I am currently executing and lots to do with the style I am developing and Soul Anatomy.

I spent the day finishing a painting of Sokar and working on detailed sketches for another piece with a working title of Heart Mandala.

The time feels particularly auspicious as I am aware of a cycle ending that seems to have started in 2010. There has been some great good (I went to Egypt at the beginning of said cycle) and some things to move on from.

Looking to the future and a bright Kemetic New Year!

Dua Set!
Dua Netjer!


The pots await their time next to a set of tea lights I had set up throughout my apartment


The pots (I love how my reflection is evident in this)


The pots aftermath: it is the first time that I have executed this ritual and it felt GREAT!


Tuesday, 23 July 2013

The Black Painting

The Black Painting
It was a strange night, that night early November 2010. My last night in Rome. The train ride back from Silento with my symposium colleagues; Rob arguing with the taxi driver to get a receipt; the odd little hotel where I bunked in last minute – there was a strike in Pompeii and a likelihood that trains would not run the next morning prompting me to leave our symposium hotel earlier so that I would not miss my flight to Cairo the next day.


But why were these images floating around in my meditation, these last days as I was finishing “The Black Painting”?

Because that night was the end of a great cycle in my life where I would slumber no longer. Indeed, the next day, when I went to Egypt for the first time in this physical embodiment, something new began. An awakening.

The Black Painting - Sphinx detail

The original sketch for “The Black Painting” was done on an aeroplane on the way back from Bangkok last year. Indeed in Thailand I had undergone an initiation of sorts largely evoked by reading from “Daily lives of the Egyptian Gods” by Dimitry Meeks. (I wrote about this here).

Original sketch for The Black Painting
It was in the middle of the night, and I distinctly remember a very bright star being visible outside the aircraft each time I looked outside. I had not intended to make the sketch a painting – the impetus to execute it on canvas came in a meditation earlier this year. The sketch was realized on 21st July, 2012 - the painting version was completed a year and two days later!

“The Black Painting” is 48” x 60” and another Set inspired painting. It features a hieroglyphic translation of the poem that is visible in the original sketch. Again, I commissioned Tamara Siuda to come up with these for me. (She has also done so for "Anger" and "Winged Set").


Let the Seven Stars
Pump the fluid of Being
Into your new grown wings
That you may soar,
Divine creature 
That you were born
To become

The photo does not do the piece justice – I have used interference and iridescent colours which make this painting commanding to stand in front of. Initially, the painting was going to be almost monochromatic save for the jewelry worn by Set (this was always going to be electrum and precious stones coloured), and this evolved as the piece developed.

The Khaibit makes another appearance in this painting (also featured in “Anger”).


The piece was completed during the (Aquarius) full moon of July and when Cancer was transitioning into Leo. It heralds a new phase for me, as events in my life unfold further to promote greater spiritual understandings.

Friday, 19 July 2013

A Tale Of Three Artists Part 3: Ptahmassu Nofra-U'aa

"The Father Ra" detail by Ptahmassu Nofra U'aa

I found Ptahmassu’s “Icons Of Kemet” website during one of my regular web crawls looking for Kemetic imagery and art. I was so overcome by his beautiful work “The Father Ra” that I knew that I had to contact him. Just to say “hello”. Just to introduce myself. To let him know that I saw his art. I only knew that I needed to connect.

What has transpired since then has been a wonderful interaction over the web that is anchored in Kemeticism but has grown to encompass a flourishing friendship.

Ptahmassu is High Priest of the Temple Of Ptah in Nevada and lives a life dedicated to Netjer. This is very evident when considering his work. As I have come to know him over the last few months I have learned that his understanding of Kemeticism is vast: not only has he read and researched and studied all manner of Egyptological tomes he has also studied comparative religions and is well placed for rich discussion in both spheres.

"Manu" uncompleted work by Ptahmassu Nofra U'aa; this is not only a divine work but a damn horny one too!

A recent interaction resulted in Ptahmassu writing this:

My feeling is that Kemet and Kemeticism are almost as much a frame of mind as they are a physical place. On the level of Spirit, Kemet is the Eternal embodiment of the Netjer, manifest in the sacred images, scents, gestures and words of the Ancients. Our task is to imbue these ancient treasures of the Netjer with a new life, to continue to pass these down to those who are starving for at-one-ment with the Netjeru.

Every day, we have the opportunity to engage in a thread of sacred creation that in its linear, outward manifestation is at least 4,000 years old, and I believe MUCH OLDER. The ancient texts, prayers and rites are not just flies stuck in amber on temple and tomb walls, but are the actual fabric of a technology of the Spirit through which humankind has direct access to Netjer. THAT is the true and Kemetic meaning of "religion". When we recite these prayers today, and partake of the offerings and ritual gestures of the Ancients, we and they are linked, and we enter immediately into the Presences of the Netjeru.

When we carve or paint or sculpt the Sacred forms and the Meduw (or hieroglyphs), we are "turning on" the gears of a most ancient technology of the Spirit, and permitting access directly to the Gods. We are partaking of "Sacred Time", and engaging in immortality. This, then, is our focus through our Kemetic art and practice. To be Kemetic means we LIVE KEMET here and now....It means we LIVE WITH THE NETJERU in each and every moment of each and every day.

Some of the works that Ptahmassu has allowed me to depict here are unfinished – because of the painstaking methods that he employs to create such wonderful icons and the precision that the gold leafing and precious stones require, it takes some time to execute.

"Auset - Great Of enchantments" unfinished work, detail; it would take too long to describe how this inspires me  . . . .   
Just as in ancient times in Kemet, Ptahmassu’s work can not be separated from the Divine Beings that it represents. Ptahmassu’s daily schedule includes traditional temple ritual – this I believe is reflected in the work that he produces.

Being able to connect with other artists depicting Netjer has been an incredible boost to my own process. In the case of Ptahmassu, our correspondences have been particularly inspiring: a work is developing as a result of my interactions with him that I presently can only contemplate – so much richness . . . how to execute?

Please visit his website so that you can own something created at the hands of this astonishing talent.


And so concludes my tale of three artists producing Kemetic works for our times. Writing these posts has been amongst my happiest blogging moments, and I hope that my readers have sensed this in the posts themselves.

"The Father Ra" by Ptahmassu Nofra U'aa; are there words to express the magnificence of this? It is almost too much to bear looking at!!!!

Thursday, 11 July 2013

A Tale Of Three Artists Part 2: Zap Tripper


Set: Lord Of The Infernal Engines by Zap Tripper; without a doubt my fave piece of Zap's, and one that I think especially captures Lord Set's manifestation today
In my continuing exposition of Kemetic artists, I present the second of my feature artists: Zap Tripper, whom I have come to know through some Facebook groups.

Zap identifies himself as an emissary of evilution. His pursuits include all forms of creative manifestations and involve art, theatre, and doing the lead vocals for Triplexir. He has an unusual and enthusiastic zeal for Egyptology and is especially interested in Dynasty 12!

Sokar by Zap Tripper; I find this piece particularity inspiring and  provocative

I questioned Zap’s spelling of Evilution and here is his reply:

“Evilution seems an appropriate play on vocabulary....the truth in it is revealed in its own obvious mis-spelling. Evilution works because many who wave the banner of 'science over Superstition' still seem to cling somehow to old values which would deny Nature's inequities...She is dark and cruel in Her workings. Consequently, there exist lots of very educated folk out there who assume the attitude... that somehow Superstition has not been the catalyst for very much of what they falsely proclaim as 'evidence' of humanity's evolution”.

Ausar by Zap Tripper

The extraordinary fluro effect Zap gets with his work is outstanding, and I was curious to learn how he managed to produce such work - here is his reply:

“The day-glo effect is produced by blending as many shades and mediums as possible together while working under total ultra-violet light. All other light is blocked out and the appropriate music evocative of the work is also utilized....almost as if each work becomes a sort of ritual of its own. This has done great damage to my eyes...and it is hardly possible for me to even look at one of my own works anymore. Those folk out there who wish to take this approach should consider the consequences. But, that is how I manage to get the full effect”.


Set by Zap Tripper

I had no idea that this how Zap produces such marvellous pieces and can only wonder at the devotion he has in so doing! I asked him about his connection to deity when making his art:

“Whenever I render one of the many deific images in a particular working....it is an act of touching that particular 'archetype' in the most direct and intimate way. It is at once an act of worship and invocation...it is partaking in the role of 'Creator' as the god or goddess Themself does...through mine own experience and knowledge of it. For while these Forms all participate in the conscious self-creation of the Universe, I do the same....because I am but an outward manifestation of Their 'language'. Just as the deities are symbolic expressions of the cosmic phenomenon...storms, wars, seasons....even abstract concepts such as time...so I, too, have MY seasons, and my own wars and my own thunderstorms. And in the end , I will perish and rot....My bones will turn to dust.....but, the symbols I've created will speak to minds just waking up decades or perhaps centuries after I my flesh has become no more.

Thoth by Zap Tripper

I love the modern and totally unique take Zap’s work brings to portraying Netjer, whilst still very much respecting Their Forms. Zaps site is here.


Untitled by Zap Tripper