mixed media on paper29" X 37"2011

Cartouche - a detail from the map
The Veil'd Realm

from the Metaphysical Maps series, a portion of the territory of the Lingua Tactus Nebula (mysterious language of touch)

mixed media on paper29" X 37"2011

Prints available in exclusive edition of 20.

Of all the frontiers within the human metaphysical universe, the most mysterious frontier is the one we ourselves inhabit - the tactile universe. Like a jungle in the backyard, the language of touch, so mysterious and fragrant, is reduced in our culture to the merely practical - and robbed of most of its expressive richness. Some of us pass entire lives in the presence of the wonder of skin and nerve and pulse, yet we engage only the remarkably limited vocabulary of the handshake, the fistfight, the kiss, the friendly cuff, and call it a good life.

Wind Rose

Wind rose - a detail from the map

Numbingly familiar are the well-trod trails in this wilderness that take us through violent, the ritual, the sexual. Each of these realms involves steep, crumbly stretches that can plunge the unwary into danger. But how many of us even so much as gaze across the vast, verdant meadows of the Aesthetic? Few of us venture into the aesthetic realm of the tactile universe; there are no charts or journey's logs to go by. I proscribe what I know, mark the angles, compass the differences, scribe thereto a scale and orientation, all with a prickly-sharp pencil, but find I'm still just as lost.

We've listened with rapt and captivated horror to tales of those who have skirted the perimeters of this terrain, but even they scurry from their thin-aired heights back to the comfortable shores where they know their business. They can lay all their deeds before us, but what could they see from there? Was there a precipice? a black void? a pool boiling with monsters? And where might I find myself, if I could force my heavy feet out of these pounded ruts of our tactile traffic and escape over this hedgerow, or beyond that gentle rise?

View the other Metaphysical Maps

This map is an enlargement of the territory of the map Lingua Tactus Nebula

Timeless art for troubled times

Creative Commons Copywrite • 2011 • Tim Holmes Studio