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fiftyone/fortynine

A blog about Art. Design. Nature. Culture. Philosophy. Two Stroke. Photo. Vinyl. Music. Spirit. Poem. Garden.          Written & Maintained by Jesse Van Horne 

June 9, 2017

 One Heart Many Parts just after its reinstallation at Metro State University in Denver, Colorado. The new location is much higher up, and lives permanently in the Student Success Building.
 

Successfully completed the deinstallation and reinstallation of my first official public art commission from 2012. The building was being renovated and the original location was slated for a different purpose, so the piece had to move.
 

It now lives on the 2nd floor, but hangs over the ground level in the building's atrium. Using a scissor lift to re-install each of the 8 separate pieces was a bit nausea-inducing at times, but it went well overall and...it's back!

May 22, 2017

Love is always "in the air". We just spend most of our time with our heads in our own self created "clouds", worried about our life and all of the different situations and possible outcomes. Guilt often plagues the human mind to the point of paralysis. And its close counterpart shame is truly "the ghetto of the mind". 
 

All it takes for us to get out of this disabling and non-fruitful state is to look around. There is evidence all around us, all the time that we are loved. There is evidence all around us all the time that love flourishes. Don't get hung up on the hate side of the equation, its all about the love.
 

Captured these two love bugs this weekend as I was taking care of 15 new fruit trees in a community garden orchard that I helped create. Ho...

May 17, 2017

Photo: The visible light spectrum captured in photograph from sunlight through a prism cast on my wall.
 

Absolutely awe inspiring. Absolutely taken for granted most times that I see it. I've seen it so many times in fact, that it rarely inspires awe in me anymore to view the colors of the visible light spectrum any time that a prism or water vapor casts a rainbow in my vicinity. 
 

But just what these "colors" mean is actually quite incredible when we take the time to ponder it. What they "mean" is that we are surrounded by complete and utter mystery, and we understand so little of it. 
 

Look at the way they are distinct, yet have no definite borders between them, instead slowly fading into the next color and then into the next and so ad infinitum...

April 19, 2017

Pictured Above: A variation on the original Skullflower Design Studios logo, by Jesse Van Horne, 2017

The Skullflower Logo, an insignia, an icon that embodies both death and life, those polar opposites, as perceived by the average Westerner, all really part of the same thing. This logo came to me somewhere between 2008-2009, as I was a graduate student immersed in philosophy and design, I had been shedding my mythological roots for years up to that point. It came to me at the tail end of a journey through faith and myth, and an authentic search for what was real, for what held meaning. 
 

This symbol is representative of both the darkness and the light, of death and life, and the way they swirl into one another, all essential, all a...

March 30, 2017

 Lookout Mountain Road enveloped in clouds on a rainy morning in March, 2017. Photo by Jesse Van Horne of Skullflower Design Studios.
 

If you think you can see any farther ahead than this photo depicts, you are delusional. Many get anxious if they cannot determine what lies ahead in their life, but this is not a bad thing, not an occasion for sorrow or for depression, no.

This is an occasion to celebrate the mystery that life truly is, what lies around the bend is always unknown, always veiled from our eyes until the moment it comes at us. 
 

Celebrate this, and celebrate the grand mystery that you are intimately intertwined within. 

March 14, 2017

 It is going by fast. Even if it feels slow to you, right now, in your circumstances, believe me, it is going by fast. Don't blink. Another 10 years gone, on to the next 10...but these years are not eternal. We've each got a certain number of them, but the mystery lies in the fact that we don't know how many we'll get.
 

This life is fleeting, ever slipping through our hands, like sand through our fingers, the harder you try to grip it the quicker it seems to dissipate, dissolve, vanish. 
 

And I imagine at the end of it all, you look back and you wonder if you really maxed it out. You probably look at the "safe" bets you made and wish that you gambled a bit more. I don't think anyone ever looks back and regrets a risk taken, for a dream, for an id...

March 9, 2017

 Pictured Here: A copy of Your Own Eyes, by Jesse Van Horne.
 

I had the pleasure of speaking to another class at the Colorado School of Mines yesterday, the class was on Comparative Religions, and my piece was to share some of the major differences between Eastern and Western thought and philosophy.
 

Many of the students have had very little exposure to Eastern thought and religion, so it was an interesting experience to share what I have learned through my extensive autodidactism.
 

It is my belief that there are concepts and ideas that emanate from the East which could serve to greatly alter our legacy of violence and subjugation in the West, but we must willingly open ourselves to the wisdom that is just waiting to be absorbed. 
 

The book pictu...

March 7, 2017

 Pictured Here: A new series of small batch paintings in the works at Skullflower Design Studios.

Sometimes in life it can feel like there is nothing on the horizon and we are just going through the motions. Sometimes that is true! But it is only a perspective based on a certain vantage point, always highly subject to change, as all things are. 

Nothing, as long as we are alive, will remain for long before change comes rushing in. The trick is to be able to sit with the monotony when we are in the middle of it, and to not let it drive you crazy. This is a tough thing to do for many, we have been trained to want immediate gratification and to have to wade through the murky waters of boredom and stagnation sounds horrible to most of us. 

It can be. Bu...

February 6, 2017

Pictured Here: Abstracting the Grid, by Jesse Van Horne of Skullflower Design, 2017, custom art installation in Denver, Colorado. 
 

When I do physical work, meaning something that I am shaping or forming rather than something I am coloring, I am really drawn to translucency. I am fascinated by material that holds its shape yet can allow light to pass through it. Such is the case with the material I used in my most recent custom art installation, Abstracting the Grid
 

I also strive for "natural" methods of design, construction and assembly when I make pieces. I try not to use things like glue unless absolutely unavoidable, but I like to join things with old fashioned, crafty as well as sleek and modern methods of joinery. 
 

For me ever...

February 2, 2017

 Pictured Here: "Forest of Light" - a recently completed new mural by Jesse Van Horne of Skullflower Design Studios at The Molecule Effect, on 12th & Santa Fe in Denver. Feb 2, 2017
 

The sacred beauty of trees, and the feeling one can experience standing all alone, amidst a forest of just the right assemblage at just the right time. 
 

One of the few mystical experiences of my life happened in a forest, where I was surrounded

by trees and a bare ground, the light came in just right, at just the right time as I wandered into the space. I remember pausing to just soak it in, at that moment it was clear to me that we are all one, and everything is connected. 
 

A deep reverence was born, for wild places, for places that silently speak to those who are liste...

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