Our Work - Joma Sipe

Joma Sipe – Portugal

Describing the work

In general, I do not have any specific training in the arts. The Portuguese art classes I took were basically about visual experiences and drawing, without training in arts with some specific school. I am a civil engineer in my “working hours” during a part of my day, working with Autocad (computer assisted drawing program), drawing and projecting new houses and roads projects. I think my skills as a civil engineer helped me with the geometrical and accurate form of drawing, trying to be as “perfect” as possible with the lines. I am essentially self-educated in the drawing process and art. Since my early years, I was always interested in art, drawing and painting as a hobby.

My interest in art is related to subjects like Symbolism, and the Symbolist Movement of the late XIX century. I am also very interested in the Pré-Raphaelite Movement, English and French Symbolist painters like Burne-Jones, Simeon Solomon, William Blake, Walter Crane, Watts, Gustave Moreau, the Belgian painter Jean Delville, Fernand Khnopff, Arnold Bocklin, among many others. In the XX century, especially the artists Johfra Bosschart and Diana Vandenberg.

My interest is about the subjects they used in their paintings, especially the Mythology and Visionary landscapes that are part of their work. I feel my paintings express something of that Visionary style. They are more related to the energy felt in visualizing the paintings and not in the style itself, as my geometric paintings are not in a style related to these artists, not even the materials used.

I started by drawing and painting forms that can be seen in the period 2000-2005. I was inspired by esoteric and mythological subjects, and drawing the forms as good as possible being a self-trained artist.

Since late 2004 my inspiration changed, because of the inner changes in my life. This made me change the way that I understood the manner I was using to express myself and my inner “visions”.  I started to paint in oils and acrylics on canvas but now inserting some geometrical theme, like on the 2004/2005 paintings:


These began as a way to express part of my inner changing period. The colors were becoming darker and the thin lines with silver were introduced among the oils and acrylic colored paintings.

In 2006 I started with my first completely geometrical work, “The Key of Life”:And have continued in this style since.

I receive also inspiration through my own poetry and write poetry for the paintings. I also am deeply  inspired  by esoterical and mystical themes.  These are present in Theosophy (especially Blavatsky writings), Kabalah, Hindu culture, Sacred Mandalas, Zodiac, Constellations, “A Course In Miracles”, and many many others. I have been in several esoteric schools and attended many conferences about Theosophy. I read a lot on these  subjects.

It works this way: I use different materials to work and usually use cotton based canvas, high quality black paper and card.  I generally paint a white canvas with black acrylic based paint in order to achieve the correct basis. Usually the paper and the card are originally black, so I can use it as is. I work different ways, sometimes I draw intuitively using silver or gold based ink pens, very thin, like 0,5mm, directly on the black canvas or paper.

Other times I use the computer to help me draw symmetrical forms.  I then print them, and transfer them using white chemical transfer paper. Then I trace again above the lines using the silver or gold pens.

To draw I use compass, rulers, triangles and the silver or gold pens mentioned earlier:

When I finish the drawings or paintings with the pens I then place the crystals, using special glue, in the intersection points of the lines and geometrical forms. I do this intuitively and use as many as I can and “feel” should be placed in a specific intersection. The crystals generally are white/transparent or aurora boreal crystals (all colors), in different shapes and sizes. The simple white crystals reflect only the white/transparent light, the aurora boreal crystals reflects every color of light that exists. I call them “aurora boreal” because of the Trade Mark that commercializes them, that is Swarovski.

The light changes reflect changes in the refraction and reflex of light in the art work. They usually become “illuminated” by light and changes in many different ways as the different angles that light shines in them. It is a wonderful spectacle to see, when there are a lot of different lights shining on them from different angles. Then the major work is done. I worked only with this process until 2010.

Original works on exhibition:


The “reflection/refraction” of light by the crystals:

In 2010 I tried something different and started working on other idea.
Since the “original” paintings are all black, becoming “colored” only when the light shines on them, so why not try to “bring” the light to the paintings?

I then had the idea of adding colored computer effects to photographs of the paintings.

These effects are not on the “original” art works, they can only be achieved on the photographs of the “original” works. So actually they do not exist, but can be garnered by printing them on a poster, book or magazine.

These works are the ones my Quest Book, Soul of Light: Works of Illumination, is about.

All the images are photographs of the “original” works on the black canvas or paper, silver or gold pens and crystals, using colored computer light effects that give them the idea of light that shines in different ethereal ways and colors:

I have no specific category to “insert” my work.  It can be called “visionary”, “symbolic”, “geometrical”, “mystical”, etc. It is all that, but I feel it is beyond that. For me it captures the essence of the human soul, the “anima” of the individual, and reflects somehow the inner structure of the universe inside each human being.

Some works that I do represent, my way of thinking and interpreting the real structure of the energy that supports the universe, that’s how I represent It. I call It Energy, Light or Love.

I make with all the geometrical patterns and drawings a kind of inner code that can only be understood by the ones that are connected with it and remember it.

For Joma Sipe’s remarkable book on Twelve Upanishads click here


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