After an initial Grass Valley visit in April, prominent visionary artists Alex and Allyson Grey are back for an expanded appearance Wednesday at the Center For The Arts.
“We look forward to seeing our friends in Grass Valley,” said the couple in an email interview with The Union.
When the Greys visited the now-closed Art Discovered gallery in April, scores of fans stretched halfway down Mill Street’s sidewalks, awaiting a chance to meet the couple.
Though friends who sponsor the Greys’ “trans-denominational” sanctuary — the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors (or CoSM for short) — are largely responsible for the artists’ speedy return to Grass Valley, the couple also said that when they visited in April, they spent so much time signing books, posters and other arts that they didn’t get much chance to share their thoughts with fans.
“We were stunned at the number of folks in Grass Valley who came out for the ‘Net of Being’ book signing. It went on for almost five hours,” the Greys said.
“But we really didn’t get to share our presentation about Sacraments and planetary civilization. This time, we’ll be able to dialogue a bit with friends in the audience.”
Wednesday’s event will include a talk, entitled “Entheogeneration: The History of Visionary Culture,” that will trace generations of god-seekers, including visual illustrations, the Greys’ art and other exponents of visionary culture.
Alex Grey’s artwork has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, Revolver and Watkins Review, which listed him among the top 20 most spiritual people along with the Dalai Lama, Eckhardt Tolle and Oprah Winfrey.
Described as sacred, visionary or even post modern, Grey’s paintings often depict energetic anatomical human bodies portrayed through various X-ray layers of the human body’s inner workings, along with spiritual elements.
Some of Alex Grey’s most well-known art is a series of 21 life-sized paintings known as the “Sacred Mirrors.”
Begun in 1979, the series took a decade to complete and presents the context of spiritual, biological and technological evolution of humans.
Many of Grey’s fans know his work because it is on the cover and interior of art of the renowned alternative metal band Tool’s most recent album, “10,000 Days,” a triple-platinum release that garnered a Grammy in 2006 for best recording package. Artists such as Nirvana and the Beastie Boys have also employed Grey’s work, among many others.
A prolific artist, as well, much of Allyson Grey’s work depicts a not- translatable, invented text, reminiscent of symbols of religious art of a forgotten language.
“Secret writing is a nameless alphabet, not translatable in the typical sense but representing the essence of creativity as it is manifest in the material world,” said Allyson Grey in a previous interview with The Union.
“I often ask viewers what they think my work means, and I find that their answers are usually correct.”
The couple have traveled the world together, sharing their spirituality and artistic talents with audiences. Wednesday’s event in Grass Valley will also include a meet-and-greet and could feature the couple painting live together on a collaboration, they said.
“It is a mid-week, warm and friendly, come and ‘get to know us after work in the early evening’ kind of vibe at the Center for the Arts,” the Greys said.
The pair are no strangers to painting before audiences or in groups. On one occasion, they painted live in Sao Paulo, Brazil, before 25,000 participants at a 20-hour party.
“Painting is our ministry. Doing it in front of people is a demonstration of flow, skill and will. The energy of the audience becomes part of the creative energy field,” said the Greys. “It also shows how easy and fun painting is, so it might encourage more people to pick up a brush or pencil.”
In addition to promoting and signing their most recent book, the couple are working toward the construction of an art sanctuary at CoSM in New York’s Hudson Valley called the Entheon, funded in part by a $210,000 online, crowd-sourced Kickstarter campaign, according to the Greys.
“We will explain some of the symbolic elements of the building project and how we will meet the physical challenges of creating this structure to house visionary culture,” the Greys said.
For more information about Wednesday’s event, visit thecenterforthearts.org or call 530-274-8384.
To contact Staff Writer Christopher Rosacker, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 530-477-4236.