Surpassing the Visible: Spirituality & Abstration

July 15, 2013 - July 21, 2013
AbiquiuNM 87510


Workshop ID: G13CDS731
Dates: July 15, 2013 – July 21, 2013 Price: $350.00

Located two miles from the main campus, Casa del Sol is a retreat house at Ghost Ranch dedicated to deeper spiritual contemplation. In 2013 many workshops which are conducive to small group work and contemplative space are being held at Casa del Sol. These workshops are designated with the sun symbol beside the title throughout workshop description pages.

In the twentieth century, painters came to rely on abstraction as the ideal approach to convey concepts of spirituality and transcendence. This course will investigate how various formal strategies-from pantheistic natural abstraction to grid/field composition to icon to mandala-can be used to convey individual and universal symbolism of spirituality, and in the process, come closer to our own spiritual centers as well. Hands-on assignments will include plein air painting as well as works created in the studio. Informative presentations and texts on twentieth-century painters will form the foundations for studio time, discussions and critiques.

Classes will be introduced by a lecture and discussion on a particular group of artists. Some artists who may be discussed include Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Piet Mondrian, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Agnes Martin. Artist’s writings, emphasizing the nexus of art practice and spiritual awareness, will be distributed for additional reading.

Painting missions will be designed to bring forth participants’ artistic skills and inner spirit in light of the processes and history of painting. Projects will allow a flexible framework, engaging both experimentation and the full range of individualized painting solutions. Approaches will vary for each participant. While some painting experience is helpful, the class is open to all levels. An open heart is more of a requirement than an impressive portfolio.

Most of the class will be spent painting; in addition, students can expect an abundance of tailored attention from the instructor. Group critiques will enable the students to refine their critical and verbal abilities.


dorothea osbornDorothea Osborn is an acclaimed visual artist based in New York. Her work is based on spirituality and the Southwest. Her work consists primarily of drawing and painting with an intense interest in oils and mixed media. She has shown work nationally as well as locally. Her education is in painting and she received an MFA in painting from The State University of New York at New Paltz. She has also worked with various artists. She has taught for 20 years in public schools, arts councils and has taught both undergraduate and graduate students at the State University of NY at New Paltz.
timcahillFor part of the week, we will be joined by writer and curator Timothy Cahill, former Christian Science Monitorcultural correspondent and Columbia University fellow. Tim will be involved in in-depth critiques with this class. He is a writer for the Center for Documentary Arts.

Need more info? Call us at (505) 685 – 4333 ext 4152

Two ways to register:

  1. Download printable registration form and mail to: Ghost Ranch Registrar, HC77 Box 11, Abiquiu, NM 87510. OR scan and email your completed form to: [email protected]
  2. Register by telephone at 877-804-4678, extension 4152 or 4155 — available Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. MST
Categories: Courses  |  Spirituality  |  The Arts