Zen-Sumi

Original Artworks and Print Series

Sumi Ink
Vermilion Seal
Pencils
Acrylics (Paint and Pens)
Vector Drawings


 
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This series is based on Sumi-e, a type of East Asian brush painting that uses black ink (sumi) in different concentrations (washes/shades) on rice paper.

For many years my art was focused on photorealistic portraits, painted with acrylics. I was sitting weeks in front of the same painting, using tiny little brushes. It was so tempting to ad and ad, and to optimize the piece until it’s ‘perfect’ – whenever that may be.

As an artist, grown up with western traditions and techniques, one is used to retouch, overpaint or erase on the way to the desired, final piece of art.

This is not possible when you work with sumi ink on rice paper. Every ‘mistake’ shows. This technique forces an artist to concentrate, to think first and also to reduce. When I met the Asian ‘ink and wash’ technique it was a big challenge and a huge liberation!

The act of ink painting is like a meditative process and the result is always a reflection of the Japanese, aesthetic principle of wabi-sabi, the love of natural imperfection.

In this series I’m exploring the contemplative, puristic aspect of this technique, and the beauty of simplicity. What is really necessary to communicate? What does it take to create beauty? How many Elements are required to create an interesting composition? Questions that are equally related to minimal art movements and Zen Buddhism.

When I started to work with this concept I concentrated on original, monochrome artworks. Today this ongoing series includes mixed media pieces and digital prints as well.

 
 

Selected Zen-Sumi Originals


From left to right:

Dripping
Are We All Equal?
Multiples
Mesh


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Selected Zen-Sumi Prints


From left to right:

I Am Dual
We Are One
So What?
Almost There


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