Artist Kathy Klein creates these stunning danmalas from various elements of the earth including flowers, plants, sea shells, and vegetables. We sat down with the artist to learn more about her inspirations and journey for her beautiful work. Read the full interview here.
To view more work, visit danmala.com
When/why did you begin making danmalas?
The danmalas originally came about when I sincerely asked Spirit for a way to give loving service to all beings and create abundance in all parts of my life (physical, emotional, mental, spiritual).
I have been making mandalas “forever”, as far back as I can remember…I have always “doodled” in this way since I was a child and in the past 13 years, I have especially preferred radial symmetry over all other formats… When I create any design on our property or in our home, a mosaic or a painting, I do it in a mandala shape. I have been creating “earthworks” forever as well, playing in the dirt, mud and clay with sticks and leaves, making sculptures on the beach out of the day’s findings, building water dams in the gutter of our suburban street, making fairy houses in my childhood backyard….of course every child starts out this way, with nature as their palette and I don’t remember ever stopping.
The first danmala manifested more than 5 years ago, I wanted to capture the colors and diversity of all of the peppers, eggplant, and tomatoes we grew that summer at our farm…. so, I collected the last of the harvest, sorted everything by color, and then woke up very early before the sun rises over our little canyon, to make the first danmala out of all the purple eggplants. I had envisioned it in meditation for about a week before I made it—I knew “it was coming”, it seemed completely natural to arrange all of the beautiful vegetables we had grown in a sacred circle. It felt like I was writing a big “thank you note” to the Divine and to Mother Earth…and after I made these first danmalas, I couldn’t stop!!! Every day I roamed our property looking for flowers and leaves to play with and make more offerings to Spirit.
Where do you grab inspiration?
from within myself through meditation, and from the flowers themselves. As I start a danmala, the center ring of petals usually “tells me” what then next ring needs to be, and on and on…they are specialists at beauty, symmetry and perfection, so I just take their cues.
Why do you choose flowers for your medium?
Flowers are the most beautiful brushstrokes. Flowers are the source or root of almost all life on earth. Most all of our sustenance can be traced to flowers. They are creation at its peak of life. There is no mistake that throughout history they have come to represent love, fertility, divinity and peace.
What do you wish to convey with these pieces?
Gratitude, centeredness, balance and abundance.
What is your favorite piece?
I honestly don’t have a favorite but these four are in my all time tops: (I just realized I made all of these at home in Cornville, Az).