Tag Archives: spiritual art

Traditional Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

The Newsletter of the Korean Art Society 2009 about the Traditional Shaman art of Korea. The newsletter is an outstanding resource of information containing detailed narratives on the depicted paintings. Robert Turley the President of the Society, writes in his introduction;

“My reasons for loving Korean art are its unaffected sincerity, earthy soulfulness, absence of artifice, energetic sense of humor, and effortless reverence for and affinity with nature. These are qualities that are well expressed in the folk art of Korea. Art that is by and for the people and that is not art for art’s sake. It’s the same qualities that draw me to early acoustic blues, tribal art, and any other unfiltered and unfettered expression of humankind’s common yearnings, fears, disappointments, and triumphs. Within the broad realm of Korean folk art, shaman art expresses the deepest desires of the Korean people.The shaman’s art and implements, such as paintings, masks, and costumes are a fundamental part of shaman rituals to protect the home, heal the sick, divine the future, communicate with the deceased, bless and protect the crop, wedding, family, and newborn baby, and provide the people with a sense of well-being and purpose.

While the court ordained official theology and commissioned art supportive of it, the commoners, from a life really lived, created and through the centuries have held onto a most syncretic belief system that borrows from Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, ancient animism, and elsewhere, and that engenders a strong connection to nature and its energy. Korean shamanism encourages a healthy defiance against official dogma, and an open-mindedness and sincerity that guides the creators and commissioners of these powerful works of art. That is why these wonderful creations by and for the people speak so directly to persons of all persuasions even today”.

The Gahoe Museum in Seoul houses a beautiful collection of traditional shaman art.

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

Shaman Art from Korea

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Encantu Rumi by Pablo Amaringo – Fine Art Prints and Art Cards

Encantu Rumi

This stone is forged in space and brought down to earth when summoned by the sumiruna (the highest grade of shaman) for initiating his disciples in voyaging to other galaxies. The sumirunas below are learning how to receive spiritual fire and how to withstand extreme conditions which they will experience on their lone voyages.

The eagle represents the sublime beauty of the stone, the jaguar its magnetic power and the bull its soul. Above you see the puya runas (cloud people) and the guacamayo runa: people with the head of a guacamayo and the body of a man.

Illustrating the evolution of his intricate and colorful art, this book contains 48 full-color reproductions of Amaringo’s latest works with detailed explorations of the rich Amazonian mythology underlying each painting. Through their longstanding relationship with Amaringo, coauthors Charing and Cloudsley are able to share the personal stories behind his visions and experiences with Amazonian people and folklore, capturing Amaringo’s powerful ecological and spiritual message through his art and words.

With contributions by Graham Hancock, Jeremy Narby, Robert Venosa, Dennis McKenna, Stephan Beyer, and Jan Kounen, this book brings the ayahuasca experience to life as we travel on Amaringo’s visionary brush and palette.

Visit the website of the book;


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‘The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo’ Presentation at Project Butterfly: Los Angeles August 2011

The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo The body of the presentation of the book ‘The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo’ presented by co-author Howard G Charing at Project Butterfly in Los Angeles, August 2011

Visit the website of the book ‘The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo‘ ; images of the art featured in the book, photo galleries showing the life and time of Pablo Amaringo, articles and interviews.

To purchase fine art archival prints and Art Cards of the paintings in the book, visit our web-store.

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José Morey – Art Exhibition ‘Amazonia 2004’ Catalogue

The catalogue of the Amazonia 2004 Exhibition in Iquitos, Peru. Featuring the work of local artist José Morey

Artist Bio – Translated from Spanish

José MOREY JOS RIOS Loreto, Iquitos natural – Peregresado School of Fine Arts in Iquitos Pea Victor.  Morey has done many exhibitions locally, nationally and internationally and eight solo Through his short but fructfera work in the field of plastic arts. Graduated the year 1992 has been developing art workshops in the school of our city as a teacher. His work was initially based on use of language to express the view Linear selvtico mostly with themes of flora and fauna, reaching proposal to establish a modern and pioneering geometric interpretation of trends within contemporary artists neo locale. The pictorial technique includes the traditional materials read on canvas applied with brush, geometrized forms and shapes, that after his first solo steps away a bit of regional issues amaznicos, to cover a comunicacinms wide, to universalize his art travs conventional geometric shapes squares, cubes, circles, spheres, triangles, polyhedra, etc .- have also the same as a conventional language itself ylneas points as independent.

In 1998 he won an Honorable Mention in the First National Biennial of Lima – Peren regional qualifying stage, which leads him to exhibit in the city of Lima that same year, with outstanding national and international artists invited to do so event. In 2001, when he attended the Complementacin s academic UNAP arises in a match between the artist and information on the antiquity of the people of America in an anthropology class in which the texts respondents talk about research in the area amaznica of Brazil, where pictorial artistic remains discovered in caves and rock paintings, stone arrowheads ago, ten to twelve thousand years of antiquity.

This knowledge motivates and stimulates the search for a way or how to interpret these facts to travs of painting, time of the encounter with the natural material used as llanchama material, which is the top surface armata Poulsenia tree, variety amazonian belonging to the family of the Morea, and abounds in Peruvian departments of Amazonas, Huanuco, Loreto, Madre de Dios, San Martn Ucayali. The fruits of this variety are similar to figs. This is native cloth sail and used by people from different ethnic groups since time immemorial, dressing, sleeping on them or covered, making ornaments and decorative painting body as headbands, bracelets and anklets. This fabric is located between the wood and bark of the tree, like a shirt sleeve, which then detach with gentle strokes are cut off the stem and dried for domestic use. JosMorey painted with oil paintings on the web natural advantage of the wide variety of textures that show, whose lines simple, compound or interrupted offer a thousand and one ways that have been printed on the fabric, the bark of these trees, as if they were carved by time stamps on these natural elements, but living inmviles. The shapes of the texture that Morey llanchama get to color, give way to the pictorial work, this texture is used in addition to his designs. These designs include in its incredible variety, may be a reflection of a pre-established unique and original composition. Iquitos – Peru 2007

Original Spanish

Artista Pintor loretano, natural de Iquitos – Perú, egresado de la Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes de Iquitos ?Víctor Morey Peña?, ha realizado muchas exposiciones colectivas a nivel local, nacional e internacional y ocho exposiciones individuales a través de su corta pero fructífera labor en el campo de las artes plásticas. Egresado el año de 1992, ha venido desarrollando talleres de arte en la Escuela de nuestra ciudad como profesor.

Su trabajo inicialmente se basó en el uso del lenguaje lineal para expresar el panorama selvático en su mayoría con temas de flora y fauna, llegando a establecer una propuesta geométrica interpretativa moderna y pionera dentro de las tendencias de artistas contemporáneos del entorno local.

La técnica pictórica recoge los materiales tradicionales del óleo aplicado con pinceles sobre lienzo, geometrizando formas y figuras, que luego de su primera individual, se aparta un poco de los temas regionales amazónicos, para abarcar una comunicación más amplia, buscando universalizar su arte a través de formas geométricas convencionales ?cuadrados, cubos, circunferencias, esferas, triángulos, poliedros, etc.- los mismos que también poseen un lenguaje convencional propio al igual que puntos y líneas independientes.

En 1998 obtiene una mención honrosa de la Primera Bienal Nacional de Lima – Perú, en su etapa clasificatoria regional, que lo lleva a exponer en la ciudad de Lima ese mismo año, junto a destacados pintores nacionales e internacionales invitados para tal evento.

El 2001, cuando cursaba estudios de Complementación Académica en la UNAP se suscita una coincidencia del artista con informaciones sobre la antigüedad de los pobladores de América en una clase de antropología, en la cual, los textos consultados hablan de investigaciones en la zona amazónica del Brasil, donde se descubren vestigios artísticos pictóricos en cuevas ?pintura rupestre- y puntas de flechas de piedra de hace diez a doce mil años de antigüedad.

Este conocer motiva y estimula la búsqueda de una manera o forma de interpretar estos hechos a través de la pintura, momento en que se produce el encuentro con la ?llanchama? materia natural utilizada como tela, que es extraída del árbol poulsenia armata, variedad amazónica que pertenece a la familia de las moráceas, y abunda en departamentos peruanos de Amazonas, Huanuco, Loreto, Madre de Dios, San Martín y Ucayali. Los frutos de esta variedad se parecen a ?higos?.

Esta ?tela nativa? es extraída y utilizada por los pobladores de las diferentes etnias desde tiempos inmemoriales, para vestirse, dormir sobre ellas o cubrirse, pintarlas decorativamente o hacer adornos corporales como vinchas, brazaletes o tobilleras.

Esta tela se sitúa entre la madera y la corteza del árbol, como la manga de una camisa, que luego de desprenderla con golpes suaves, son cortadas para retirarlas del tronco y secadas para su uso doméstico.

José Morey pinta con óleos sobre esta tela natural aprovechando la gran variedad de texturas que presenta, cuyas líneas simples, compuestas o interrumpidas brindan mil y una formas que han sido impresas sobre ella ?la tela- por la corteza de estos árboles, como si fueran sellos labrados por el tiempo sobre estos elementos naturales, inmóviles pero vivientes.

Las formas de la textura de llanchama que Morey consigue dar color, abren paso a la obra pictórica, esta textura además es utilizada por sus diseños.

Estos diseños que recoje en su increíble variedad, podrían ser el reflejo pre establecido de un sistema compositivo único y original.

Iquitos – Perú; 2007

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Sacred Visions – Art of the Huichol Indians of Mexico


Sacred Visions – Contemporary Art of the Huichol Indians of Mexico – Catalogue of the Exhibition at the October Gallery London June 1999



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ArtNews Review of ‘Shamanic Illuminations’ Exhibition in NYC

The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo  by Howard G Charing and Peter CloudsleyYou can purchase fine art archival reproductions of the paintings featured in the book ‘The Ayahuasca Visions of Pablo Amaringo’ from the official website of the book


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The Visual Music of the Shipibo tribe of the Amazon

The Magical Art of the Shipibo People of the Upper Amazon

By Howard G Charing

Underlying the intricate geometric patterns of great complexity displayed in the art of the Shipibo people is a concept of an all pervading magical reality which can challenge the Western linguistic heritage and rational mind.

Shipbo Embroidery and Painted Shipibo Textile

These patterns are more than an expression of the one-ness of creation, the inter-changeability of light and sound, the union or fusion of perceived opposites, it is an ongoing dialogue or communion with the spiritual world and powers of the Rainforest. The visionary art of the Shipibo brings this paradigm into a physical form. The Ethnologist Angelika Gebhart-Sayer, calls this “visual music”.

The Shipibo are one of the largest ethnic groups in the Peruvian Amazon. These ethnic groups each have their own languages, traditions and culture. The Shipibo which currently number about 20,000 are spread out in communities through the Pucallpa / Ucayali river region. They are highly regarded in the Amazon as being masters of Ayahuasca, and many aspiring shamans and Ayahuasqueros from the region study with the Shipibo to learn their language, chants, and plant medicine knowledge.

All the textile painting, embroidery, and artisan craft is carried out by the women. From a young age the Shipibo females are initiated by their mothers and grandmothers into this practice. Teresa a Shipiba who works with us on our Amazon Retreats tells that “when I was a young girl, my mother squeezed drops of the Piripiri (a species of Cyperus sp.) berries into my eyes so that I would have the vision for the designs; this is only done once and lasts a lifetime”.

The intricate Shipibo designs have their origin in the non-manifest and ineffable world in the spirit of the Rainforest and all who live there. The designs are a representation of the Cosmic Serpent, the Anaconda, the great Mother, creator of the universe called Ronin Kene. For the Shipibo the skin of Ronin Kene has a radiating, electrifying vibration of light, colour, sound, movement and is the embodiment of all possible patterns and designs past, present, and future. The designs that the Shipibo paint are channels or conduits for this multi-sensorial vibrational fusion of form, light and sound. Although in our cultural paradigm we perceive that the geometric patterns are bound within the border of the textile or ceramic vessel, to the Shipibo the patterns extend far beyond these borders and permeate the entire world.

One of the challenges for the Western mind is to acknowledge the relationship between the Shipibo designs and music. For the Shipibo can “listen” to a song or chant by looking at the designs, and inversely paint a pattern by listening to a song or music.

As an astonishing demonstration of this I witnessed two Shipiba paint a large ceremonial ceramic pot known as a Mahuetá. The pot was nearly five feet high and had a diameter of about three feet, each of the Shipiba couldn’t see what the other was painting, yet both were whistling the same song, and when they had finished both sides of the complex geometric pattern were identical and matched each side perfectly.

The Shipibo designs are traditionally carried out on natural un-dyed cotton (which they often grow themselves) or on cotton dyed in mahogany bark (usually three or four times) which gives the distinctive brown colour. They paint either using a pointed piece of chonta (bamboo) or an iron nail with the juice of the crushed Huito (Genipa americana) berry fruits which turns into a blue- brown-black dye once exposed to air.

Each of the designs are unique, even the very small pieces, and they cannot be commercially or mass produced. In Lima I met with a woman who had set up a government funded community project which amongst other matters established a collective for the Shipibo to sell their artisan work and paintings. She tells that a major USA corporation (Pier 1 Imports), enamoured by these designs ordered via the project twenty thousand textiles with the same design, this order could never be fulfilled, the Shipibo could simply not comprehend the concept of replicating identical designs.

The Shipibo believe that our state of health (which includes physical and psychological) is dependent on the balanced union between mind, spirit and body. If an imbalance in this occurs such as through emotions of envy, hate, anger, this will generate a negative effect on the health of that person. The shaman will re-establish the balance by chanting the icaros which are the geometric patterns of harmony made manifest in sound into the body of the person. The shaman in effect transforms the visual code into an acoustic code.

A key element in this magical dialogue with the energy which permeates creation and is embedded in the Shipibo designs is the work with ayahuasca by the Shipibo shamans or muraya. In the deep ayahuasca trance, the ayahuasca reveals to the shaman the luminous geometric patterns of energy. These filaments drift towards the mouth of the shaman where it metamorphoses into a chant or icaro. The icaro is a conduit for the patterns of creation which then permeate the body of the shaman’s patient bringing harmony in the form of the geometric patterns which re-balances the patient’s body. The vocal range of the Shipibo shaman’s when they chant the icaros is astonishing, they can range from the highest falsetto one moment to a sound which resembles a thumping pile driver, and then to a gentle soothing melodic lullaby. Speaking personally of my experience with this, is a feeling that every cell in my body is floating and embraced in a nurturing all-encompassing vibration, even the air around me is vibrating in acoustic resonance with the icaro of the maestro. The shaman knows when the healing is complete as the design is clearly distinct in the patient’s body. It make take a few sessions to complete this, and when completed the geometric healing designs are embedded in the patient’s body, this is called an Arkana. This internal patterning is deemed to be permanent and to protect a person’s spirit.

Angelika Gebhart-Sayer, Professor of Ethnology, University of Marburg writes that “Essentially, Shipibo-Conibo therapy is a matter of visionary design application in connection with aura restoration, the shaman heals his patient through the application of a visionary design, every person feels spiritually permeated and saturated with designs. The shaman heals his patient through the application of the song-design, which saturates the patients’ body and is believed to untangle distorted physical and psycho-spiritual energies, restoring harmony to the somatic, psychic and spiritual systems of the patient. The designs are permanent and remain with a person’s spirit even after death.”.

Whilst it is not easy for Westerner’s to enter and engage with the world view of the Shipibo which has been developed far away from our linguistic structures and psychological models, there is an underlying sophisticated and complex symbolic language embedded in these geometric patterns. The main figures in the Shipibo designs are the square, the rhombus, the octagon, and the cross. The symmetry of the patterns emanating from the centre (which is our world) is a representation of the outer and inner worlds, a map of the cosmos. The cross represents the Southern Cross constellation which dominates the night sky and divides the cosmos into four quadrants, the intersection of the arms of the cross is the centre of the universe, and becomes the cosmic cross. The cosmic cross represents the eternal spirit of a person and the union of the masculine and feminine principles the very cycle of life and death which reminds us of the great act of procreation of not only the universe, but also of humanity, and our individual selves.

The smaller flowing patterns within the geometric forms are the radiating power of the Cosmic Serpent which turns this way and that, betwixt and between constantly creating the universe as it moves. The circles are often a direct representation of the Cosmic Anaconda, and within the circle itself is the central point of creation.

In the Western tradition, from the Pythagoreans, and Plato through the Renaissance music was used to heal the body and to elevate the soul. It was also believed that earthly music was no more than a faint echo of the universal ‘harmony of the spheres’. This view of the harmony of the universe was held both by artists and scientists until the mechanistic universe of Newton.

Joseph Campbell the foremost scholar of mythology suggests that there is a universe of harmonic vibrations which the human collective unconscious has always been in communion with. Our beings beat to the ancient rhythms of the cosmos. The traditional ways of the Shipibo and other indigenous peoples still reflect the primal rhythm, and their perception of the universal forces made physical is truly a communion with the infinite.

To View the original article (first published in Sacred Hoop Magazine)with detailed colour photographs, visit our website:Shipibo Article

Howard G. Charing, is an accomplished international workshop leader on shamanism. He has worked some of the most respected and extraordinary shamans & healers in the Andes, the Amazon Rainforest, and the Philippines. With Peter Cloudsley he organises specialist retreats to the Amazon Rainforest at the dedicated centre located in the Mishana nature reserve. He is the author of the best selling book, Plant Spirit Shamanism (Destiny Books USA). His website:www.shamanism.co.uk

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