I started pursuing the arts at the University of Wisconsin Stout, studying under primarily expressionist painters claiming the only relevance to be found in art, is through pure expressionistic painting. During this time I became fascinated with the mathematical conceptualization known as chaos theory, otherwise known as the butterfly effect. The butterfly effect states that through interconnected relations, a butterflies wings flapping may cause hurricanes on the other side of the globe, essentially stating that the littlest things can cause the biggest difference. This theory was contradictory towards what my professors were teaching me, as it stated everything is relevant in it’s own right. Having also taken an interest in meditation, I decided to put chaos theory to the test and flew around the globe to study Zen painting and Buddhism in the monasteries of Japan.
Through my studies, I found art as a service of liberation allowing the mind-body-spirit for movement beyond the conventional laws of the self-consciousness that bridges the dualism of art and artist, subjective and objective, being and non-being, all forms and emptiness. Taking this whirlwind of experiential knowledge back with me to the states, I arrived where I started, to know the place for the first time. In a sense I could not be certain to as whether I was a man whom dreamed he were a butterfly, or now a butterfly dreaming oneself a man. My first state of action was to enroll in yoga teacher training as a means to share my newfound discoveries. This path unlocked new potentialities in my body and led me to practicing acrobatics and teaching children’s yoga. Consequently, I decided to combine my yogic practice with my artistic pursuits and enrolled in the Minneapolis College of Art and Design with a concentration in Print, Paper, and Book making, so that I would be equipped with the skills to write and illustrate children’s yoga books.
My artistic practice consistently revealed one underlying concept that interpenetrated all things, and thus I’ve strived to capture this point through my work. Dogen Zenji's genjokoan, translated as actualizing the fundamental point, offers an elegant and concise approach to depicting this truth. Most adequately within the doctrine is the metaphor "Enlightenment is like the moon reflected on water. The moon does not get wet, nor is the water broken. Although its light is wide and great, the whole moon is reflected even in a puddle an inch wide. The whole moon and the entire sky are reflected in dewdrops on the grass, or even in one drop of water” I approach this conceptualization of underlying interconnected emptiness through many means and mediums such as zen painting, performance arts, and origami installations. I thus created my brand condensedcloud in a sense to drop the self and remove the ego from blockading the creative will of the cosmos.
I initially became interested in art for the sake of its meditative discipline, or perhaps it was the other way around. Artistic discipline offers experiential realization to truths in a similar fashion that spiritual practice offers. Often seeing on the other side of the spectrum to these perceptive practices is the scientific method and mode of thinking. Though these canons have their differences, I find they all depict the same truths and thus strive to find the interdisciplinary connections through my work. My practice utilizes origami algorithms to create fractal tessellations that function as mathematical modules to describe scientific theorems such as chaos theory, sacred geometry, and the Heisenberg’s principle. I then contextualize these scientific modes of conception within a spiritual framework to give new means of approaching spiritual concepts such as interdependent oneness, emptiness and various Zen principles. My work’s intention is to offer immediate insight into these deep interpenetrating concepts and offer a practical reminder that one may sense what they always knew, for the very first time.