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Creation of Mandalas

 

My mandalas are the hallmark of the work. This Geometric expression was the inspiration that started me on this path in 1968 when I had a Head shop in NYC. They are my true Masterpieces.

In 1970 I first appeared on the scene at the Rukka Rukka Ranch in Marin county, home of Grateful Dead's, Bob Weir with tie dye in hand. Upon seeing my work, I was commissioned to create covers for the speakers on stage.

Soon I was making custom tie dyes for the band members, friends and family. I was commissioned for T-Shirts as well and soon everyone was wearing an 'original Courtenay'. Tie dye was in it's hay day then, these colorful shirts was the favored wear of hippies then and is still now. The design and color of this style of clothing brings a light and magic to the wearer.

These designs were so unique and unusual to all that saw them I became sought after by so many in those days I could not keep up with all the orders. Then my career took off and eventually I was know as the 'Original Tie Dye Artist' of the pop culture of those times. To my knowledge my designs have never been duplicated even 40 years later

My particular folding and tying method has been what has made this technique so special, the circular mandalas are my piece de resistance. They have become true collector's items over the years, which I am very happy to say. Creating these pieces takes hours of precision folding and tying. It is a tedious labor of love. Over 25 years ago they were selling for over $1000. I still offer them at the same prices as I did back then.

These can be used for making backgrounds, set designs, Duvet covers, wall coverings, ceiling hangings or curtains for large picture windows with these tie dyed masterpieces.articular folding and tying method has been what has made this technique so special, the circular mandalas are my piece de resistance. They have become true collector's items over the years, which I am very happy to say. Creating these pieces takes hours of precision folding and tying. It is a tedious labor of love masterpieces.

The Circle represents an ancient art form, which is part of the art of so many traditions, including Buddhism, Hinduism and Native American art. The Mandala is a graphic interpretation of the cosmos, a symbolic representation of the entire Universe.

The meaning comes from Sanskrit word for "circle." It has a concentric structure, offering balancing visual elements, symbolizing unity and harmony.

Even though it may be dominated by squares or triangles, they have a concentric structure. This beautiful design offers balancing visual elements, symbolizing unity and harmony. The meanings of each individual piece is usually different and unique to each special design.

This art form is a specially created geometric symbol. It represents both the outside world in which we live as well as the world within us. For this reason, the symmetrical design is intended to draw the eye toward its center core where we can reflect deeply on being a whole and complete person and an essential element of the universe. Enjoy this Mandala Meditation.

 

My first Mandala


I came to the idea of creating art out of fabric in 1968. At that time I had a “Head Shop“ in Greenwich village, New York City, on McDougal St. in the heart of the west village.

One of the items that had good sales was random Tie-dyed satin scarves that I bought from a street artist. I loved the way the colors swirled together. I started musing on How I would make designs with dyes on cloth.

When I moved to Syracuse N.Y. in 1969 I bought dyes from a commercial dye business on Chambers St. N.Y.C. I started immediately using the method that I had been visualizing and from the very first pieces I realized I had created something original and extraordinary. My work was an instant success and was soon commissioned to create a design for the meditation room of a local Boutique.

I learned that a Mandala is a graphic interpretation of the cosmos, (according to the artists own perceptions of the universe). Accordingly I folded my ideas of cosmic consciousness into a large cotton sheet and then dyed the piece section by section visualizing my colors for the progression and effect I had in mind. After several hours of intensive work I then set the dyes by keeping the tied and dyed cloth at boiling temperature for a few hours. Finally came the moment of truth, the great unveiling.

I proceeded to untie and rinse in cold water starting at the centre. Each part was full of brilliant color and fantastic images. When the cloth was thoroughly rinsed I took one corner and pinned it to a ceiling beam then walked the other top corner out and opened the whole piece and pinned that up. There was a chorus of gasps from the friends present, I still hadn’t seen the whole piece- wanting to walk away to get some distance before turning to view the Mandala from across the room in order to enjoy the full impact. I turned to look, It was absolutely stunning, like nothing I had ever seen before. I knew then that I had been granted a rare and unique gift from the universe.

 

Young Courtenay in a sepia photo with one of his first creations in 1970