Art Exhibitions and Events
A demonstration by Meena Khasnabis and talk by Dr. Paroma Chatterjee
August 18 – September 30
Exhibition of Original Artworks
Riverside Arts Center Gallery
76 N Huron St, Ypsilanti, MI 48197
RAC Gallery Hours:
Thursday – Saturday 3:00 – 8:00 pm
Sunday 1:30 – 4:00pm
Friday, September 1
Riverside Arts Center Gallery
Opening Reception, First Friday Event
September 1-September 30
Cafe Verde at People’s Food Coop
214 N 4th Ave #1, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
September 16, 5-7pm
Artists Reception at Cafe Verde
August 20-September 30
Mandala paintings by Geoff Maturen
Ma Lou’s Chicken, Ypsilanti
The visual arts portion of the Rasa Festival will include demonstrations and exhibits at Riverside Arts Center Gallery in Ypsilanti, Cafe Verde in Ann Arbor and the Ann Arbor Public Library. The exhibitions will focus on the Navarasa or Nine Rasas, sometimes translated as the nine moods. The nine moods included Shringara (love/beauty), Hasya (laughter), Karuna (sorrow), Raudra (anger), Veera ( heroism/courage), Bhayanaka (terror/fear), Bibhatsya (disgust), Adbutha (surprise/wonder), and Shantha (peace or tranquility). The exhibitions,curated by Christina Burch, include a variety of local and international artists working in a variety of media who have all been touched by India in some way.
On view at Cafe Verde for the month of September
Rasa Festival Presents:
The 2017 Rasa Festival Art exhibitions collectively focus on the Navarasa or Nine Rasas, sometimes translated as the nine moods. The nine moods define Indian aesthetics and include:
Veera ( heroism/courage),
Adbhutha (surprise/wonder), and
Shantha (peace or tranquility).
The Rasa exhibitions, curated by Christina Burch, include a variety of regional and international artists working in a variety of media who have all been touched by India in some way. The Rasa exhibition at Cafe Verde is called “Navarasa” and includes work by Garin Horner, Natalie Robbins, Jim Rehlin, Jogendro Kshetrimayum, Alka Sinha, Lydia Hanna, M.J. Matthews, Birgit Katemann, Judith Way and Harshita Rathi.
On view at Riverside Arts Center in Ypsilanti, Michigan
Rasa Festival Presents
Madhavi: Illusion’s Beer
The 2017 Rasa Festival Art exhibitions collectively focus on the Navarasa or Nine Rasas, sometimes translated as the nine moods. The nine moods define Indian aesthetics and include Shringara (love/beauty), Hasya (laughter), Karuna (sorrow), Raudra (anger), Veera ( heroism/courage), Bhayanaka (terror/fear), Bibhatsya (disgust), Adbutha (surprise/wonder), and Shantha (peace or tranquility). The exhibitions, curated by Christina Burch, include a variety of regional and international artists working in a variety of media who have all been touched by India in some way. The Rasa exhibition at Riverside Arts Gallery, Madhavi: Illusion’s Beer presents work by three women, Sangchen Tsomo, Meena Khasnabis and Lydia Hannah. Sangchen Tsomo is a western-born tantric buddhist yogini living in Ann Arbor, while both Meena and Lydia are local artists originally from South Asia. Madhavi is a sweet intoxicating drink, a poetic allusion to the Bliss or Ananda of Yoga, or union with the Divine. All the works in this exhibit are keys to seeing beyond the veil of illusion and entering the living experience of bliss intoxication with the divine, which swiftly leads to spiritual realization and fulfillment through single pointed concentration and devotion. This path to Ultimate Reality is India’s most enduring legacy and greatest gift to the world.
Sangchen Tsomo’s paintings in this series are portraits, like much of her work, depicting the God-Intoxicated Saints of India. Some in the series are gurus or saints who have attained complete God Realization or Enlightenment, while others, known as Masts, are so intoxicated with their longing and love for the divine Beloved that their behavior manifests in ways which seem odd or crazy to ordinary people. Having endured the hardships of the path of spiritual training set forth by her master, Tsomo’s works resonate with her own realization and accomplishment of the spiritual aim of enlightenment. These works are very much informed by Tsomo’s lived personal experience of the guru-disciple relationship, and are also the display of her own sublimely enlightened qualities. Self-taught, her bold use of paint and marksmanship is direct, uninhibited, uncontrived, spontaneous and unconcerned with convention. Oil on canvas uniquely renders these sacred subjects into the great figurative tradition of the western painting. Tsomo’s paintings reveal other influences such as great figurative painters like Picasso, Marlene Dumas, Alice Neel, Francis Bacon, Richard Diebenkorn, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Joan Mitchell to name a few.
Meena Khasnabis is presenting Alpanas, improvisational mandala designs traditionally painted on the floor or on the ground in front of houses or shrines in India, Bangladesh and Nepal. Motifs from nature like the conch shell, butterfly, lotus or other floral designs are interlaced with geometric designs around a central point. These intricate and ephemeral designs, made daily with simple rice paste, are intended to draw down blessing and invoke higher energies of the divine to dwell within one’s abode. The whole process is repeated daily by women and men throughout India. In recent years the tradition has evolved to include new media such as paint, colored powders and rice or even stickers. Alpanas are used to consecrate many auspicious occasions, from weddings to religious ceremonies.
Lydia Hannah specializes in traditional Indian forms of Rangoli or Alpana, Walri and Mendhi, painting, masks and theater set design. She is presenting Rangoli which are made on the floor with brightly colored powders and are also used for auspicious occasions. Her walri stone, “Ekagrata” which means “single pointed”, uses traditional Walri motifs of small figures with joined hands to invoke harmony, balance, connection and integration. Additionally at our Artist’s Reception, she will be doing Mendhi, or Henna painting. The skin is stained with intricate patterns using a paste made from the leaves of the Henna plant creating a tattoo effect that lasts for several weeks. According to Vedic custom, Mendhi painting of the palms and feet developed ritually in connection with the awakening of inner light. Also at the reception, Meena will be demonstrating ritual floor painting in the adjoining space in Fly Arts where there will be an activity for families.
Sangchen Tsomo is a Western-born Tantric Buddhist yogini who lives in lifetime retreat at Tsogyelgar Dharma Center in West Ann Arbor. Having accomplished the path in its fullness, She manifests her songs of realization as dynamic expressions of paint on canvas, alchemical maneuvers of assemblage from found objects and the deep cthonic rhythms of congas and percussion. Tsomo is the backbone and a founding member of the band Just A Tourist. She began painting in 2012 and has been very prolific. Three solo drum albums were released as “Chen” this spring with an accompanying exhibition at Cafe Verde in Ann Arbor. Her work also has been exhibited at White Lotus Farms, One Pause Poetry and Tsogyelgar Dharma Center and is held in many private collections.
Lydia Hannah is an artist by profession specializing in contemporary Indian Art, Mughal and Rajasthani Miniature Painting, Warli Painting, Ceramic Paintings and Portraits. Born in 1990 in Karnataka, India, Lydia has been pursuing her art since second grade and has won many prizes. She graduated from Hampi University, Karnataka with a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts (BVA) and was appointed Assistant Lecturer in Sanskriti College of Visual and Performing Arts, the only school in entire South Karnataka with Visual, Theatre, Animation and Dance under one roof. She has worked in theater, interior design, events and art education, always incorporating art therapy into her work with students. Lydia strongly believes that, each individual should explore their own signature style. She loves working with kids and has led summer camps and workshops based on color therapy, where kids learned about stress, fear, creativity and imagination through music, color and being in the water. Lydia appreciates the carefree, courageous and creative spirit of children and her own inner child.
Mandala: Recent Paintings by Geoff Maturen