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Only few artists manage to reproduce visionary experiences that go far beyond the scope of words. The US American painter Alex Grey does so in a deeply impressing, unparalleled way. In June he will visit Germany and Austria for the very first time together with his wife to give insights into his work in a series of exciting lectures and workshops.

Alex Grey exhibitionThe series of events starts on June 22nd in Vienna where the Greys will perform a Livepainting Session. The two of them take their cue from the informal atmosphere of the evening in general and the audience in particular: Watching, listening and dancing create an active dialogue that piece by piece becomes manifested on a big canvas. This creative exchange will be continued during a workshop the following day. On June 24th the couple will stop in Munich. Before another Livepainting Session there will be a lecture, including clips from the recent movie ‘CoSM‘ about the career, the overcome crisis and the vision of the artist. During the weekend from June 25th to 26th Alex & Allyson Grey will hold an extraordinary Visionary Art Workshop in the facilities of the new Dance Spirit Studio in Munich’s Medienfabrik Ganghofer Straße. By using visualization exercises and meditation practice the individual perception is trained and the individual gets to know new approaches to his / her own creativity to improve the personal artistic activities.
Wie nur sehr wenigen Künstlern gelingt es dem US-amerikanischen Maler Alex Grey, in seinen Werken visionäre Erfahrungen wiederzugeben, die sich jenseits der Ausdrucksmöglichkeiten von Worten abspielen. Im Juni ist er zusammen mit seiner Frau erstmals in Deutschland und Österreich zu Gast und eröffnet uns in einer Reihe spannender Seminare und Workshops Einblicke in sein Schaffen.
Die Veranstaltungsreihe beginnt am 22.06. in Wien, wo das Ehepaar Grey eine Livepainting Session abhält. Dabei lassen sich die beiden Künstler in ungezwungener Atmosphäre vom Publikum inspirieren, so dass ein kreativer Dialog durch Sehen, Hören und Tanzen entsteht, der sich nach und nach auf einer großen Leinwand manifestiert. Der kreative Austausch wird sich am folgenden Tag in Form eines Tagesworkshops vertiefen. Am 24.06. macht das Künstlerpaar Station in München. Vor einer weiteren Livepainting Session findet ein Vortrag mit Ausschnitten aus dem jüngst erschienenen Film „CoSM’ über den Werdegang, überstandene Krisen und die Vision des Künstlers statt.

Und am Wochenende vom 25. auf den 26. Juni halten Alex & Allyson Grey in den Räumlichkeiten des neuen Dance Spirit Studios in der Medienfabrik Ganghoferstr. einen außergewöhnlichen Visionary Art Workshop ab. Mit Hilfe von Visualisierungsübungen und Meditationspraxen wird hier nicht nur die individuelle Wahrnehmung geschult sondern den Teilnehmern auch neue Zugänge zur eigenen Kreativität vermittelt, um so das persönliche künstlerische Schaffen zu bereichern.


Your paintings include an incredible number of different layers and interwoven structures. How do you proceed: Do you create one layer after the other or do you have a ‘master plan’ in mind so that you always know what’s in the fore- and what’s in the background?
Most of my paintings start with a vision.  Some paintings come to me either during meditation or altered states, while others have simply appeared to me while waiting for a subway or walking along. ‘Lightworker’ came to me all at once, while many paintings simply unfold around a central image.  With the anatomical see-through figures, I first draw and paint the bones.  When that is nailed down, I add the layers of anatomy and subtle energy, building an icon of our multi-dimensional being.  The creation of a painting, in much the same way, means mentally dissecting the vision layer by layer and then painting one layer at a time, developing a depth of clairvoyant granularity.

What is psychedelic and what is visionary art for you? Can you please give us your personal, put-in-a-nutshell definition?
Psychedelic art is art imagined and/or produced while in a psychedelic state or art that is meant to represent or evoke a psychedelic state in the viewer. Psychedelic comes from psyche, meaning the mind or soul, and delos meaning ‘visible;’ the soul made visible.  It is a word coined by Humphrey Osmond, a Canadian LSD researcher in a letter to Aldous Huxley.  Osmond and Huxley were looking for a name for mind altering substances and rejected the words ‘psychotomometic’ and ‘hallucinogen,’  both seeming like derogatory terms.  They believed, like many others, that what they saw in their minds after ingesting these substances, were not hallucinations but rather perceptions of what is normally unseen, a fuller richer view of reality.   Huxley sent Osmond a rhyme containing his own suggested invented word: ‘To make this trivial world sublime, take half a gram of phanerothyme’ (thymos meaning ‘spiritedness’ in Greek). Osmond countered with ‘To fathom Hell or soar angelic, just take a pinch of psychedelic.’ We prefer to use the word ‘entheogen,’ meaning ‘the God within, when referring to the sacraments. Visionary Art, a much broader term than psychedelic art, would encompass shamanic cave painting and Paleolithic art followed by any art created in all of the world wisdom traditions to the present.  That includes artists sacramentally ingesting mind altering substances and incorporating into their art, the visions they receive.  Visions that come from sacramental ingestion of substances is, and always has been, a world wide phenomenon.
Many of your paintings represent impressive metaphors for entheogenic experiences. Do you think the things a human can experience under the influence of triptamines are ‘real’ realities (assuming that everyday life is a ‘real’ reality) or are they rather metaphors for a universe which our brain is just too feeble to understand or something like that?
There are people who are convinced that triptamines might be ‘the next step in human evolution’ and that their usage will bring human civilization to another level. Do you think this is a realistic assumption?
Any sacrament can potentially reveal God consciousness, which bridges all consciousness.  Self-realized, one co-mingles with nature in a profound, sacred and life altering way.  Transformation is what is needed on the planet.  The most holy function of entheogens would be their use as transformative agents of the mystical experience.  
Thanks to entheogens, artists can now paint the transcendental realms from observation.

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