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“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside awakens.”
Most people have a difficult time describing a powerful psychedelic experience. They are often ineffable, numinous, and almost impossible for the rational mind to put into words. Visions of multi-verses, dreamscapes, and spiritual realms often defy any rational or linear reality that we are familiar with.
Ayahuasca art, DMT art, or visionary art is inspired by the magical images and journeys from a psychedelic ayahuasca experience. Many visionary artists are inspired by not only ayahuasca but other popular psychedelic substances such as the well-known magic mushroom (commonly referred to as shrooms), LSD, 5-MeO-DMT (Bufo), and San Pedro.
Since the 1960s artists have been reflecting these entheogenic states and peak experiences in their work, originating from the father of contemporary ayahuasca visionary art, Pablo Amaringo who inspired the generation that continues to influence modern visionary artists around the world today.
Looking at a piece of visionary art can take you back to a psychedelic experience, as you may recognize familiar motifs, images, landscapes, shapes, and colours. The language of art can validate and trigger something bigger than ourselves as we recognize our own experience in it, rekindling emotions, sensations, insights and images that might have emerged.
Are you new to psychedelics?
People from around the world are recognizing the healing and transformative power of ayahuasca and travelling to places such as Costa Rica and Peru to experience an ayahuasca retreat often with a Shipibo shaman. Santo Daime churches who use ayahuasca as part of their religious ritual in the USA are becoming more and more popular as the call for this plant, made from mixing the leaves of the psychotria viridis plant and the banisteriopsis caapi vine. Check out our ayahuasca retreat guide for more information.
Whether you've had a psychedelic experience or not, these marvellous artists and their creations are worth having a look at.
Check out this list of some of the best and upcoming artists in the industry, containing artists of all ages from around the world including many indigenous artists from Peru, where the ritual use of ayahuasca originates from.
Justin is a new and upcoming artist in the scene who uses out-of-the-box digital techniques, with an incredible understanding of colour and composition to create ayahuasca art. His mesmerizing animated artwork is especially remarkable, one could call it an artistic meditation. He is the lead product designer at MatchGroup and the co-founder of LegendKeeper. You can purchase his work such as an art print on Foundation, a creative economy platform which uses Ethereum blockchain as the currency.
George is an up and coming young digital artist and globetrotter from America’s Pacific Northwest. As an otherworldly explorer, his artistic expression draws inspiration from a diverse range of cultural influences and personal interests including yoga, martial arts, lucid dreaming, comparative mythology, and permaculture. His mystical masterpieces are embedded with symbolism, embracing earthy and planetary themes through a digital dreamscape. The results manifest vivid interpretations of his ayahuasca vision of “harmonious, ecologically thriving and Awakened states of being.”
Fabián is a diversely talented artist from Mexico City who creates digital paintings and drawings, tapestries, psychedelic album art, and complex 3D-Printed sculptures, merging together traditional and digital media. His work is inspired by his love of the intricate, micro patterns of nature and the architecture of insects and plants. He masters the exploration of symmetry and sacred geometry, weaving together complex patterns into magnificent mandalas and vibrant fantasies, experimenting with the flow of time, the landscapes of the inner realms, and the universal oneness.
Canadian born artist Luke brown creates entheogenic dreamscapes in both digital and painting mediums as well as sculptures that usually represent the human form in a completely transcendental and supernatural light. He studied at the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD) and has also taught at the Visionary Art Academy in Vienna. He is recognized in the psychedelic community for being one of the first artists to create complex and vividly colourful art which combines traditional and digital techniques. Using extremely tiny brushes, he achieves impossibly intricate designs inspired by the sacred medicinal plants and lucid dreaming, embracing sacred symmetry and collective consciousness. You can find him live-painting at festivals and events.
Acclaimed visionary artist and seasoned Burning Man community member, Android Jones has been defying convention for decades, describing his avant-garde style as “electro-mineralism.” A leader in the space, Jones’ artwork has been featured on album covers of several electronic, rock, and psybient music artists such as Papa Roach and Beats. His creations have graced both the Sydney Opera House and the Empire State Building. He has worked in the field of visual concept art, creating media for film, fashion, and gaming, before starting his own company, Massive Black. His recent projects involve the creation of 3D immersive psychedelic experiences.
Originally from Colorado and currently based in Los Angeles, Amanda honed her talent in Vienna when she was a painting assistant to Ernst Fuchs, the founder of fantastic realism. Since then her artwork has been exhibited all over the world making appearances at international dance festivals, for example. She stands out in contrast to artists who incorporate a digital element to their work, as she focuses on traditional painting. Her traditional techniques are breath-taking when you look at the level of detail in her multidimensional artwork, often reflecting the inherent connectedness of everything.
Amanda uses ayahuasca art as a path to spiritual growth and is deeply rooted in her community. In 2014, she collaborated with designer Shabnam Q to make a collection of wearable art. She helped to found the Vienna Academy of Visionary At and organizes painting retreats in eco-villages around the world.
Another Canadian on our list, is painter, street artist, video producer, muralist, and writer Chris Dyer. Dyer grew up immersed within the skateboard culture in Lima, Peru, and has created an instantly recognizable, signature style with a graffiti street art feel. Bright, vibrant colours and shifting kaleidoscopic designs take you into an experiential psychedelic and trippy world. He spreads his work through his website named Positive Creations where he sells original works, prints, clothing, and more. His famous painting "The Purge" represents a detailed and awakening ayahuasca ceremony which has you uncovering more and more insights with each view.
We couldn't make this list without including one of the world’s greatest visionary artists, Pablo C. Amaringo, who was born in 1943 in the Peruvian Amazon. Having journeyed for the first time with ayahuasca at the age of 10, Pablo continued to train as a healer, with the help of plant medicine, both healing himself and others. In 1977 he left his career as a Shaman and began painting and teaching at an art school in Pucallpa, Peru. His artwork captures the intricate and colourful depictions of his shamanic visions, often representing snakes, jaguars, aliens, celestial plains, and transcendent beings. His work has been displayed throughout the world, with major exhibitions in places such as the ACA Galleries in New York. Pablo passed away in 2009 after a long battle with illness.
(Aka Dream Nectar)
Olivia grew up in the forests of the American Southwest, communicating her connection with nature through her work which primarily is digital, although she also experiments with traditional painting. As a self-identified “digital nomad,” you can find her work all over the world at different festivals, art shows, galleries, and events. Her work takes a sci-fi, intergalactic spin on the divine feminine, incorporating bright colours and complex sacred geometry to create a kaleidoscope of emotions and spirit.
Another world renowned visionary artist, Alex Grey is most known for his series of 21 life-size paintings titled Sacred Mirrors, and his series Progress of the Soul, but has created a wide range of paintings, sculptures and performances. Themes of death, rites of passage, and transcendence are woven throughout his work, inspired by his anatomical training. The Sacred Mirrors take the psychonaut through a trippy journey towards divine nature and a developing psyche as depicted in detail through a multidimensional representation of the body, mind, and spirit. His paintings have been featured as album art for notable artists such as TOOL, Nirvana and the Beastie Boys, as well as on other media like Time and Newsweek magazines and the Discovery Channel. His work has been displayed in solo and year long exhibitions all over the world in very notable museums and galleries.
New York city born, Venosa began his journey into the world of fine art in the late 60’s after delving into psychedelics and being inspired by artists Ernst Fuchs and Mati Klarwein, both of whom he apprenticed with. His mesmerizing Realism art has been exhibited all over the world and on album and magazine covers such as OMNI magazine and Santana. In addition to painting, sculpting, and film design and conceptual design for films, he also creates digital art. He captures a unique world of light from his visions, using a technique called the old “Misch Technique” which is a complex system of underpainting in white tempera and colouring with transparent oil glazes. The result is a striking effect of light emerging from the piece, reflected back to the viewer.
A young and rising star in the field of psychedelic art, Lobsang comes from Pucallpa in the Peruvian Amazon. He fell in love with art at the age of 12 and in the following years became interested in medicinal plants, combining the two to create work inspired by Neo-Amazonian indigenous culture. He brings influences from his multicultural travels, personal encounters, and the spontaneous flow of his present moment experiences to his artwork. His talent for capturing the human form is expressed through beautiful and cohesive stories that reveal more and more at every glance, taking time to comprehend and leaving the viewer with delightful surprises that want to keep coming back to.
Another young Peruvian artist on the list, inspired by Andean and Amazonian cultures from the Amazon Jungle, Juan Carlos studied and taught art at the Pucallpa School of Arts. His first individual art exhibit “Amazonia” was in Paris in 2009 and since then has been taking part in various exhibitions around the world at major events and festivals such as Boom Festival and Burning Man. His technicolour dreamscapes are immersed with nature, animals, and indigenous symbols that tell a complex and synchronistic story of an ayahuasca experience. In 2012 he began his path into shamanism, dedicating his life to serving the sacred medicine. He continues to lead shamanic art workshops and live painting events around the world.
A former fashion major and entrepreneur with Indian cultural roots, Archan is a self-taught artist based out of Berlin, Germany who specializes in mixed media, illustration, and digital art. His work takes the viewer on a journey through the mystery of the universe and brings to life the butterfly effect of every action, emotion, and interconnectedness we experience. He has collaborated with many companies such as Nike, RedBull, Cannon, Sony Netflix, and Samsung, to name a few. His inspirational pieces have garnered recognition from celebrities such as Kanye West and Chris Brown.
Vanni Mangoni is an Italian artist and filmmaker who spent his life living in both Italy and the USA. He began his artistic path in the film industry as a storyboard artist and made his way to directing his own short-films. Vanni’s curiosity led him to backpack around the world and absorb the cultures and traditions of the First Nations people of North, Central and South America, and Australia, which are reflected in his artwork. Recently, he made a return behind the camera to co-direct his first documentary film following the shamanic arts of the Shipibos, the Peruvian Indigenous tribe. You can find his work showcased in his first international visionary art exhibit in Girona, Spain.
Cameron Gray is an Australian visionary graphic artist whose work is showcased in live music and arts festivals internationally and has been selected for preservation by the National Library of Australia as one of the country's artists of the 21st century. His interests and skills are broad, ranging from sculpture, jewellery making, painting, and video and sound design. At the young age of 21, he published his first book of artwork and since then has published four more books. He has collaborated with major companies around the world including Warner Music Australia, Warner Bros. Records USA, Sony Music Entertainment, and many more.
Spanish born artist and muralist Irene Lopez’s work is truly one-of-a-kind, displaying surrealistic landscapes filled with exotic animals and a kaleidoscope of vivid, neon colours and dimensions. Her distinct approach to colours, abstract shapes and geometric forms give an intense and futuristic effect, which can be attributed to the 3D spaces and digital technologies she works with. The timeless and symbolic representations in her creations reflect the places between the conscious and the unconscious, intensified by the geometric and mathematical distortions of perspective. One look at her beyond life-size work has the viewer feeling as if they have opened a door to an unknown and mystical dimension.
Peruvian born Luis Tamani grew up on the riverside of the Ucayali river in Pucallpa, within the Peruvian Amazon spending his childhood in nature and inspired by his father’s work as a boat builder. After studying art for five years, he dedicated his work to creating abstract art to communicate the interconnectedness of humans and earth, with nature as his number one teacher. His pieces are a beautiful display of intricate details and unique textures of wildlife and indigenous people, merging the human and animal spirit into one, reflecting his love and gratitude for mother earth and ayahuasca healing ceremonies.
Christopher Todd, better known as CT Nelson, is a self-taught artist from the USA with his own unique style of painting and visionary art. His breath-taking oil-canvas pieces explore the movement and motion of light and colour in abstract form, taking the viewer on a journey through chaos and energy. His visions are reminiscent of a vortex motion hallucination, and science fiction, balancing bright vibrant colours with strange non-object flows. He calls his work “Non-Object Realism” which he describes as the “feeling of something real yet far away from reality.”
Combining digital technology and water colours, Thomas’ style is uniquely his own, producing awe-inspiring, trippy digital animations that could take you into a trance like state. His creations are a symbolic representation of nature’s collision with technology, inspired by his extensive travel to some of the world’s most ancient rainforests. You can find images of nature evolved into abstract forms, reflecting technology’s impact on Earth and society's advancement’s effect on natural systems. His recent series is a collection of animated video installations capturing voices of nature in combination with an eerie sounds and light environment. In addition to digital art and animation, Thomas produces concept art, film, VR, audio reactive art, and music videos.
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