A Reverie From The Mind’s Eye
Open mindedness is the condition necessary for realizing enlightenment. Wonder requires reverie, and open-mindedness, which is the suspension of all beliefs. Wonder requires that we put down all of our preconceptions, and forces us to examine even our most basic assumptions about the nature of the universe. Often times our society fails to recognize the importance of Wonder, and foolishly considers it merely a childish artifact of youth.
Oct 1 - Nov 1, 2007
Las Vegas, Nevada
This piece has become the logo of the the collection. It is another sign fragment that I zeroed in on at the Neon Museum. This element really was a pleasure to work with. The bulbs and light sockets are amazing design elements. I have been told that one of the signs that created this pattern is the Castaways Casino Sign.
In the mid 70s, when I worked as a technical illustrator at EG&G, a government contractor for the Atomic Test Site, I would cash my paychecks at the Castaways. If you cashed your paycheck there, they would give you a couple of free beers and several free tugs at a slot machine. After quenching my thirst and trying my luck, I would head for the beautiful wooden Jain temple that stood near the swimming pool. One of the main attractions at the hotel was this wooden temple, known as the St. Louis Jain Temple, built of teak for the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, otherwise known as the “Louisiana Purchase Exhibition.”
This wooden Jain temple was a one-eighth scale version of a temple in Central India. The reproduction was made expressly for the Exposition. It is thought to have been carved by 65 artists at the Ahmedabad Woodcarving Company of India. One of the key figures involved in its fabrication was Lockwood de Forest, a New York City orientalist and interior architect.
When I visited the temple, I was usually alone. The casino patrons preferred the smoke clogged, beer swilling and chance taking that seemed to preoccupy tourists. So, I would spend a quiet time inside this magnificently carved Jain temple, chanting the Heart Sutra out loud, and meditating. Only in Las Vegas; you can’t make this stuff up. Once again, this is a classic example of Samsara and Nirvana, the sacred and profane. They fight like lovers, going round after round, all around the clock, right here in Las Vegas.
Sep 30, 2017
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During Asian Art in London, American artist James Stanford has exhibited his stunning body of work, Shimmering Zen in London as part of AAL 2017’s official programming. The hugely successful show has now closed, but work can be seen upon request.
Asian Art in London is a globally recognised event that promotes London as a centre of expertise for the finest contemporary and antique Asian art. For the past 20 years, AAL has attracted top Asian art dealers, prime auction houses, and leading museums and institutions to its series of selling exhibitions, auctions, symposia and lectures.
Stanford will exhibit Shimmering Zen in the United States and Europe in 2018.
The launch of James Stanford’s book, Shimmering Zen, was held at The London Library in London in November 2017 as part of Asian Art in London 2017.
Shimmering Zen includes essays by the artist, the curator Elizabeth Herridge and a foreword by Jeff Rose, Vice President, The Higher Learning Commission, Evanston, Illinois. The launch of the book is supported by an exhibition of Stanford’s visually stunning and intricately constructed modern mandala series, entitled Indra’s Jewels.
The books is 264 pages, hardback, limited edition, published by Ianthe Press-London, and distributed through Smallworks Press.
To purchase the book, please visit www.smallworkspress.com.
Nov 2 - Nov 11, 2017