Crystal woods — Crystal mountain

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All journal-items with the title ‘Crystal woods’ form a whole and are part of a new project. During 2017 I expanded my research for nature and life-energy to seven woods in a range of 10 km around my living place. The Crystal-woods-journals. The Crystal woods story consists of photographs, maps and paintings. In Crystal woods — Introduction one can find global information about this project.

My house and studio called ‘Crystal mountain’ is identified here with red violet and connected with all seven Crystal Wood locationss

Painting is like polishing

November 21 2018: Now three Crystal woods locations have been described during the last year the place from where I always start off and return to comes into the picture again: my home and studio ‘Crystal mountain’. Hereby a painting on which I have represented a short walk that I regularly make through and along the Leiffender marsh. I also painted some polishing stones that I found during this tour.

The heart of the garden is an Irish yew, trimmed into the shape of a green fountain and surrounded by stones directed on the ground … As innocent child, romantic artist and arduous gardener Jos van Wunnik tries, in his garden as well as in his paintings, to rediscover the primordial garden: the lost paradise.

Jihad Abusleiman in ‘Transformation in color’
Silent tour; casein-tempera on mdf, 40×50 cm, Juli 2019

Painting with small dashes apparently works for me as a kind of polishing to make the surface shiny and radiating until it becomes a precious inner image, charged with attention and rhythm. Stones always played a notable role in my oeuvre. The white quarts on the painting below I found at the foot of a 200 year old pear tree on a slope in the Algau (Germany). It reminded me of the still untouched awareness of an unborn child.

Circular course; caseintempera on mdf, 60×80 cm, August 2001

White-place of growth in my backgarden

Lately I’m more focussed on the place where it all comes together for me and where I can be in balance, that is the studio where I paint and my garden in which I sit down for a short while regularly, listening, smelling, watching silently. In former times I had too little inner calmness, and so many places still had to be searched…

Besides the place where I sit the rowan unfolds it fresh leafs on the White-place of growth; processed photo

When we arrived on this location in 1987 the garden consisted of a lawn and two rows of conifers. Once there also stood an old cherry tree. Meanwhile about fifteen smaller and bigger trees give shape to a small natural place of concentration.

Yew tree in a circel, with ginkgo and rowan on a White-place of growth in my back garden

November 21 2018: It so happens that in my back garden right behind my studio the same White-place of growth is located as the one at the confluence in the Leiffenderven, a few hundred meters from my home. On the White-place in the middle of it grows an Irish yew, a gift from my father. As a fountain it grows strait upwards in the middle of a circular grint path, guided by a ginkgo (a gift from my brother) on the Red-place, and a rowan (a gift from nature) on a Deva-Place. In the summer of 2018 I made another circle next to the first one beneath the ginkgo and rowan. It became my favourite place to sit.

Web of light; light on the yew in my back garden; casein-tempera on plywood, 80×80 cm, November 2011

‘Green flow’ as archetypical image

A White-place of growth is composed out of a White-place and a Green-flow-place. This ‘green flow’ appears to be a central theme in my artwork, and it probably is the most powerful inner image for me. Is it this image of a never ending, spring-like flow and cycle of growth, that is the hidden cause behind my searching? And what is it that made it into an urgent theme in my oeuvre? For me it is the timeless exchange between nature and the field of unity, the so called zero-point-field.

Groei; Sorbs on Green-flow-place; pencil on paper, 70×100 cm, May 2013

A recurring dream of a Green-flow-place

Another indication for the urgency of the quest I started in 1994 in the Schinveld Forest, is the following occurrence. During the year 2005 I had a recurring dream (22 times!) about a location in the Schinveld Forest. In the dream I saw a wooded slope, but I could not find out where it was. On January 9th I crossed the bridge of beams across the Ruscher stream when I suddenly recognised the image of my dreams. It is located at the top of the slope eastward of the Ruscher stream. At the left runs a wall of earth, and where this wall makes a corner a mound is situated next to a circular cavity. These are traces of a distant past. I remember that, while passing by, I often had the thought that if I had to choose a dwelling place in the forest this should be the one.

At the top of the slope a great number of sorbs grow. Lidy and I find out that it concerns a ‘Green-flow-place’. We invent a name for it while there isn’t yet an existing name.

Standing stone within laying, circular stone on Kailasha Hill, Kathmandu, September 1991

During a journey in 1991 to Kathmandu and Bhutan my attention was drawn even more by these old megalithic standing stones than by the many beautiful temples, for instance on Kailasha Hill in Kathmandu and at the entrance of Kenchoghsum lakhang in Bhumthang, Bhutan. The green-flow once probably was symbolised by a vertical stone that is enclosed by a laying circular stone. This image resembles the Hindu symbol of the lingam, the union of male and female principle (Shiva and Shakti). One can also recognise this symbol in the vertical trunk of the Saxon-German Irminsul.
I guess the circle with standing stone-symbol originates from a much older nature religion such as the Aboriginal culture and Stone Age-culture with its many standing stones rendering permanent the connection between Light and Earth, the same connection that I painted many times.

In the stone circle nearby the crossing of the Ruscher Stream I made a mandala with pieces of wood and ritual flowers made of rice flower and yak butter from Bhutan

Ru, whispering and listening

May 15 2019: Close to where a path crosses the Ruscher stream an earth wall and ditch make another angle. Here I made a ring of stones in 1996 (one of the many rings of stones or branches I made in my surrounding) and planted a holly tree. I called it ‘Ru’, after ‘rune’ meaning ‘listening’. But later on I didn’t spend so much attention to this place. Today the stones are still laying here. I take them from the ring and put them down around the trunk of the highest oak. Then I stay there for a while sitting against the oak next to the holly tree and listen. Now I have the rest that I didn’t have in 1996. One place was not enough for me at that time…

In 1996 I made a ring of stones and planted a holly tree at the angular point of an earth wall near the Ruscher stream
On May 15 I laid the stones around the trunk of the oak

May 26 2019: In the last two nights I have a recurring dream in which I see a tree with a high, wavy trunk: the deva-oak of the place called ‘Ru’. Today I plant another holly tree next to the wavy oak, just as I did in 1996. Here I started my search and here it ends for the time being, by planting a holly tree on the place with which I connected in 1996.