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From Imagination to Canvas: Do you Appreciate the Beauty of Abstract Realism in Art?


Kokouri - Tui - Divine Messenger
Kokouri - Tui - Divine Messenger

It's always a buzz when you finish a painting --  some more than others. I'm very excited to finish his painting, and why is that you may ask?

Well, I see this work as being a pivotal painting in my journey as an artist.


It is a visionary and unique blend of my work to date. "The Messenger," epitomizes the seamless integration of abstract realism into my broader portfolio and embodies a deep symbolic resonance through its use of the Krystal Spiral and the iconic New Zealand Tui songbird.


In my early works I incorporated one, or sometimes two landscapes in the one painting. These often appeared as windows or archways one could look through. There are elements of those works in this one, but in a much more sophisticated manner. Also, here for the first time really, I am fusing realism with abstraction.



Three landscapes in one
Three landscapes in one

My journey through various art styles is a result of experimentation and the exploration of emotional and spiritual values. Beginning my career with an element of surrealism, and quite influenced by Dali, I later ventured into the complexities of abstracting the landscape.



Abstracted landscape
Abstracted landscape

This was followed by many large flower works often viewed from an unusual perspective.

There was a period where I become involved in painting silk velvets with metallic with renaissance style designs and this later has spilled over into the artworks.


large format floral oil painting
La Bella

Each phase of my artistic evolution brought me closer to merging the abstract with the real, leading to the development of my signature style of abstract realism. The following painting is a bridge between the two. You will see elements of it in the latest painting.




I think "The Messenger" is a pivotal work in my journey through realism and abstraction. It is the perfect blending of the two and a combination of all that has gone before.


The painting is structured around the Krystal spiral, a conceptual energy grid which I have employed as a foundational element. This spiral is not just a visual motif but a symbolic representation of dynamic movement and cosmic connections, suggesting a deeper, spiritual layer of understanding.


It serves as more than just an artistic tool; it is the backbone of the painting, guiding the viewer's eye and emphasizing the flow of energy within the composition. This spiral connects various elements of the painting, enhancing the overall sense of unity and harmony that I was working to portray.


Central to the narrative and visual impact of "The Messenger" is the depiction of the Tui songbird, known in Māori culture as a messenger to the gods. My choice to feature this bird is laden with cultural significance, linking the spiritual and the earthly. The Tui is depicted with vibrant plumage and dynamic posture, seemingly mid-flight, bridging the worlds with its melody.


I have employed a mix of bold colors and subtle textures to bring "The Messenger" to life. My technique involves layering paint to create depth and movement, which is particularly evident in the portrayal of the Tui and the swirling symbolic patterns on the gold leaf. The realism of the bird contrasts with the abstract background, making it a focal point that draws the viewer into a deeper contemplation of this artwork's themes.


"The Messenger" is a testament to the power of artistic fusion. By blending abstract realism with profound cultural symbols like the Krystal spiral and the Tui songbird, I have not only explored the versatility of the medium but I am also inviting viewers to reflect on the connections between the physical and metaphysical worlds. This painting does not just depict a scene; it communicates a message, echoing the mystical role of the Tui in Māori culture where the Tui is considered as a messenger to the Gods. As viewers, I leave you to ponder the messages we receive and transmit in our own lives, guided by the spirals of energy that connect us all. What message might the Tui have for you today?




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