Donna Nelson

Visionary Art: Watercolor & India Ink Mandalas

My watercolor and India ink designs are painted using symbols, patterns and configurations of mysterious theories and esoteric ideas sometimes based on obscure, arcane principles. Some patterns simply tell the narrative and legends that make up our lives, others reflect traditions and stories that are part of our history.

Many years ago when I first began showing my work in fairs and shows people come up to me and told me a number of times that I was painting mandalas. I never heard the word before but eventually I came to realize that was exactly what I was doing.

Mandala is a Sanskrit word for circle and can be a representation of the cosmos. Mandalas are usually in the form of a concentric pattern and can include geometric shapes. A mandala can be a spiritual and ritual symbol representing the journey of discovery of the soul.

Over the years the patterns have become more complex, intricate, and evolved, from divine ideas that flow to the center and then beyond to the source. Inspiration comes to me in many ways, some symbols and patterns known to me, others unknown, as though a cryptic message needed to be passed on and put on paper, creating a ripple effect.

Lofty thoughts and concepts for sure, but fascinating to question, examine, and reflect on mysterious and profound ideas.

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