Bikaner, 2002, 14 x 10 inches (courtesy of Franck André Jamme)
Lauren O'Neill-Butler interviews poet Franck André Jamme about the history of abstract Tantric painting from Rajasthan, India.
Tantric paintings, O'Neill-Butler writes, "resonate uncannily with lineages of twentieth-century art—from the Bauhaus and Russian Constructivism to Minimalism—as well as with much painting today." Jamme comments that these affinities "could mean that our notion of progress - past, present, and future - is not correct. And it could also mean that abstract art is not necessarily a Western, nineteenth-century art-historical development. It dates back to Native American, Tibetan, and Australian Aboriginal sand painting, for sure."
The second edition of Tantra Song by Franck André Jamme will soon be available from Siglio Press.
Altoon Sultan blogs about the contemporary visual resonance of Tantric paintings collected in the the exhibtion and book Tantra Song: Tantric Painting from Rajasthan on view at the Santa Monica Museum of Art through December 10, 2011 .
Sultan remarks that "although they are copies of Hindu Tantric images dating back to the 17th century, they fit right in to modernist high art in its minimalist form."
Mattera writes: These paintings, and others like them, embody codified images that express specific ideas in tantrism; meditating on them stimulates the eye and mind toward a particular mystical experience. On a more material level, these reductive abstractions by anonymous artists are powerful as art."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.