What are primary forms?
Shortly after completing three paintings titled “Primary Forms” (Red, Yellow, Blue), I learned to paint a yantra—a visual tantric tool for meditation that is composed of precise geometrical forms.
One draws a particular yantra in order to meditate on a particular aspect of the universal.
Yantras are the visual aspect of tantra. Tantra, as I understand it, is the “study of the universal from the point of view of the individual: the study of the macrocosm through the microcosm.”
Yantras are patterned and abstract constructions that are made in a very specific manner, with each element having symbolic as well as structural meaning. One makes the yantra in a clockwise direction working in towards the center, which is marked with a gold dot as the final mark of the painting.
I find many correlations between my own work and sacred visual works that are made as meditation tools. Geometry and geometrical patterns form the primary structure of the work. Repetition is often a working method. Repetition and patterning are fascinating ways of making, as they create a bridge between the maker and the receiver. Working repetitively, with intention, puts one in a meditative state, an other state, just as contemplation of these patterns does. We meet in the pattern.
Geometric and mathematical structures form and build the natural and architectural world. These are structures of great consistency and flexibility—what else could explain the Parthenon as eloquently as a coral reef?
The paintings, like yantras, are built from simple geometries, simple patterns; and then through repetition the paintings open up to the multiple possibilities of form…..
And where there is form, there is space.
Pattern is construction and it is narrative.
Geometry is primitive and never naïve.
There is economy in pattern, even in the most elaborate profusion of pattern.
contact & information
more information about the artist
McKenzie Fine Art, New York, New York
email Laura Watt