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Aries – The Birth of a Diamond

30 November 2012, pencils, crayons and photo work

This image illustrates the enormous pressure of today’s society, which can cause a transformation process. I visualised it with a volcano, symbol of throwing out matter from the inside through a fiery process of high pressure. At its top there is a diamond, as nature’s most brilliant result of a transformation process through pressure.

For the glowing magma chamber, I took pictures at the underground corridors and shopping passages at the central station of Berne and fused them together. Several volcanos and diamonds, together with a rose flower of an echinopsis cactus for the fiery flashes at the top gave the dramatic structure with lava flows and the “magma chamber” of the hectic everyday life.


Taurus: The Magic Flute of Krishna

21 December 2012, pencils, crayons and photo work

For this picture I took the photo of a Krishna statue here in my room, chose for the yellow background an image of an extract of the Isenheim Altarpiece, by Matthias Grünewald, and another for the dome of stars at the top, from the stage set for The Magic Flute of Mozart by Karl Friedrich Schinkel; then I integrated the image of a peacock(bottom left), Krishna’s bird. I put the statue to dark blue; so the image emerged in violet - the right magical colour for Krishna with a “magic flute”.


Gemini: Pulsation – The Song of the Swan

10 February 2013, pencils, crayons and photo work

Pulsation is a fundamental principle in creation, which I wanted to express with this picture. Before my mind’s eye I saw a huge white swan with outspread wings. Hamsa is the Sanskrit word for swan, and it is the symbol of the centripetal and centrifugal movement. At the centre of its heart you see an open flower which is white inside, the pulsating centre. The ballerina sitting on the beach symbolises the moment of contraction, the one flying high symbolises the climax of expansion. I merged photos of several waves to visualise the pulsating movement of ebb and flow (behind the swan). I used very light colours at the border of reproducibility to give expression to the delicacy of pulsation.


Cancer: The Descent of the Solar Angel into the Body

28 February 2013, pencils, crayons and photo work

Cancer is the sign of the return of the soul into a physical body and thus it is related to the process of reincarnation. The Moon is also the symbol of the generative life which gives birth to forms.

In the upper part of the image you see the Moon and behind it the glow of the Sun. Two angelic figures, solar angels, observe the descent of a soul into the embryo in the womb of the mother. You see the embryo head downwards behind the descending soul. Another name for the soul, the I AM, is the Solar Angel. It is the eternal part in man which in the cycle of evolution goes through series of incarnations. The body is also called the Lunar Angel; it serves as a vehicle for the incarnation of the Solar Angel. For the left angel I chose an extract from a painting of Franz Dvorak, and for the one on the right side an extract from a painting of Edward Robert Hughes; a drawing of William Hunter for the embryo in the uterus. For the illustration of the descending solar angel, I took an image of Ilmatar, the virgin spirit of the air, by Robert Wilhelm Ekman.


Leo: The Entrance

17 March 2013, pencils and photo work

In symbolism Leo is connected with the transformation process in the inner cave of the heart. With the help of respiration you enter into the “cave of the lion”, the Heart Centre, where you can encounter the higher self, when the lower self is well adjusted. The cave also symbolises the inner ashram, of which an outer ashram is the externalisation. The image illustrates this entering into the ashram.

The painting shows a circle of 12 stars, symbolising the 12 signs of the zodiac. A woman is climbing a stair, entering through the circle of the “gate of stars”. The point in the centre is represented by a door leading to the Sanctum Sanctorum, and so the entry is a path from the circumference to the centre. At the threshold before the centre there is a white figure representing the Master in the Heart, the Divine Self. Above the centre you see the figure of an angel, the guardian of the ashram and the link to the cosmic spheres. The ashram is represented as a crystal cave. The crystals on the sides symbolise the purified, transparent matter, which can receive the Light. At the bottom on the left, outside the starry circle, there is a group of people waiting for their turn to enter.


Virgo: The Sons and Daughters of the Virgin

12 April 2013, pencils and photo work

The book “Spiritual Astrology” is a storehouse of profound concepts of wisdom, which let images come to my mind’s eye. Thus when reading the chapter on Virgo impressions came to me of purity and virginity, of the world saviours as the Sons of the Virgin, of the rainbow of creation, the veil of the Mother of the World.

I wanted to give a new perspective to the often misunderstood concept of the Virgin and to replace the child with a group of great messengers of God and World Saviours.

I used a painting of Fra Angelico for the central figure of the Virgin. I added a helix galaxy structure and a rainbow in the background above her head, forming the Eye of God. The head and the halo of the Virgin at the centre symbolise that the World Mother is the first emanation from the background of creation. She is sitting on a red and golden veil, the sheath covering the pure existence and giving rise to the multitude of expressions in space. Full of loving attention the Mother is looking at the group of messengers of the pure Light, which are inserted into the form of the infant Jesus, who is holding in his left hand the ball of the globe. Wrapped into her blue robe you see smiling people who feel blessed and protected through her presence. Her Light is radiating into all directions.


Libra: The Ascent of the Soul from the Abyss

20 May 2013, pencils and photo work

In the symbolic journey through the zodiac, Libra represents the illusions into which the soul loses itself when it gets disconnected with the thread of Light.

I visualised it as a ravine and superimposed on it the structure of a labyrinth, depicting the windings of our intellect, our brain. There is a bridge of Light leading over the gap, and in the background there is the light of a huge unfolding flower of consciousness. A pilgrim, symbol of the eternal part of the soul, is standing at the left side and looking down into the abyss. At the left rock face, you see the volumes of a library, representing the great masses of knowledge where you can get lost in concepts. An old man is sitting in front of the wall of books, absorbed in studying. A sage with a rod is observing him. He represents Saturn, the Lord of Time and the inner ruler of Libra. He is the guardian of the threshold who keeps you in a situation until the lesson is learnt. At the bottom you see a snail, symbol of the slowly moving spiral of time. At the centre, a young lady in white, representing the aspiring soul, is looking up to the guiding angel at the right. She is listening to him and is ready to ascend from the narrow abyss towards the Light.

The figures in this picture are taken from photos or transformed from paintings of Edward Burne-Jones (1833-1889) and Louis Janmot (1814-1892).


Scorpio - The Tree of Life and the Androgynous Man

16 July 2013, pencils and photo work

The wisdom teachings refer to the manifested creation as an inverted tree. In the 15th chapter of the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna says: “The whole Creation is an inverted tree. The roots are up above, the branches are down below”. The branches (manifestations) of Nature are downward, towards the gross matter, and the roots (causes) are above, in the subtler planes. The wisdom teachings describe the downward movement into objectivity as female (Nari), and the ascending movement as male (Nara). Both movements together form the cosmic person, Narayana.

As a starting point of the painting I took a picture of snow-capped Tibetan mountains reflecting in a lake, and I digitally warped the mountains into a downward u-form. At the top I placed a tree as the original “idea” of the tree. It is projected downwards into the lake, the inverted tree of creation. I took a photo of the Vitruvian Man of Leonardo da Vinci, took away the extra arms and legs and integrated him into the tree. His head is penetrated by the roots from the upper tree – receiving the ideas from cosmic dimensions. Then, I extracted the Venus from a photo of Botticelli’s famous painting “The Birth of Venus” and fused her, downwards, into the Vitruvian Man, thus creating the male-female Androgyn. I worked on the painting with pencils. I transformed a photo of the roots of a tree and put them, pointing downwards, in several faint layers around the upper tree: The roots are in the blue space at the top, the manifestation of the tree extends below.


Sagittarius – Pre-Dawn Meditation

3 August 2013, pencils and photo work

The two hours before dawn are considered to be most propitious for deep contemplation, where the awareness can easily link to the subtle planes. At this time nature prepares the new day and we can receive plenty of vital energy. In the annual cycle, Sagittarius is said to be the "two hours before dawn” and very beneficial for the spiritual aspirants.

For the painting I took a photo of a pre-dawn sky taken from an airplane I fused two photos of wooden and ceramic statues of Buddha. I placed the figure into the centre of the structure of a double pyramid surrounded by a circle. It is the symbol of transformation, a diamond enabling protection of the meditator, of a group, a nation or even the globe. It is also called a temple, from where positive energies spread out and help to reorganise the subtle matter. The diamond stands for the four cardinal points of the day and of the year, the Midheaven (MC; Medium Coeli) and the Nadir (IC, Imum Coeli).
In the centre I placed the lotus of the heart centre surrounded by golden light. The lotus is formed by different layers of radiant light. I took a photo of prismatic reflections on the walls of my home office and constructed the central column from the base centre to the head and beyond. Around and above the head you see an aura of vital energies in different shades of violet penetrating the space.


Capricorn – Varaha and Varuna

4 September 2013, pencils and photo work

For several weeks, I meditated on the symbolism of Capricorn but no complete picture came up. There was just an idea but I thought that the complex symbolism cannot be depicted in an appealing way. However, the impulse for the painting continued. And during the work on the picture it slowly manifested. Its symbolism is not easy to be understood by a Westerner. In short: The earth is lifted up from matter to spirit.

At the bottom you see the head of Varaha, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu as the White Boar. The Puranic lore describes how he lifts up the earth from out of the depth into manifestation, and from matter to spirit. Varaha is particularly worshipped in Capricorn.
This month is the dawn of the solar year and also the dawn of the great time cycle of our creation called a Manvantara. The earth is depicted as floating on the surface of the waters of space; it is supported by Varaha and surrounded by a huge etheric lotus flower, the symbol of unfoldment. Behind, there is a great sunrise, and from beyond the sun a dragon rising. On its back you see Varuna, depicted as a five years old boy with four arms. As they move through space the trident in Varunas hands, representing Neptune, is creating lines of force, which are the guiding lines for the Aquarian age. The white dragon, the vehicle of Varuna, is called Makara in the Vedic scriptures, meaning Capricorn.


Aquarius – Agastya and Sirius

30 September 2013, pencils and photo work

The Wisdom Teachings speak of Agastya or Master Jupiter as the oldest member of the Spiritual Hierarchy. Since time immemorial, he has been a great sage on the earth and his deeds have been described in the Puranas. In South India, he is also called Agathiyar and worshipped as a Siddha having his abode in the Nilagiris or Blue Mountains. He is closely linked to the energies of Sirius and on the zodiacal level he presides over the sign Aquarius.

The creation of this picture was a paradox for me: I pondered upon it for few weeks. There was the initial impulse for the image of Agastya but I thought it must be something else – and no thoughts came. I felt frustrated but finally followed the original impulse to do the picture with a photo of a statue of Agastya. For the background, I took a photo of the mountain in the Nilagiris which is said to be the location of the ashram of Agastya. Then I integrated a photo of Sirius. Using the computer and pencils, I worked on the colours and details of the expression. When the picture was ready I was thrilled about its radiance.


Pisces – Ascension, the Light of the Higher Bridge

28 October 2013, pencils and photo work

The signs of the zodiac have their correspondences in the body. Pisces is not only associated with the feet but also with the area above the head, with the pineal gland and the pituitary body. When the higher consciousness awakens, a light starts to manifest between these two glands and gives rise to an ascension via this higher bridge of light beyond the limitations of the body. Pisces represents the ascent of man into God; it is therefore also called the sign of completion, of the meeting of the “alpha and omega” of creation.

For this picture I used a picture of Jesus and of the transfiguration of the Christ, from a painting of Fra Angelico (1442). I transformed this painting and fused the face of the Christ with a picture of Maitreya. I arranged two photos of sunrises on the front of the image of Jesus, thus generating the view of the radiant etheric centres. I increased the intensity of the eyes which are observing the observer and created a fusion of the subjective and the objective spheres.

For the upper background, I warped a photo of waves rolling onto a beach, producing the impression of the vastness of the etheric ocean of space associated with Neptune, the ruler of Pisces. And the colour of the sign is that of the pure sky in bright daylight. I further worked on the head centre in the middle of which you see the blessing figure of Christ.