In this painting from the Tibetan Artist Ang Sang, I first found myself asking where is the center, and then, where is the beginning, the first brush stroke, the last.
Where does this painting begin and end, I asked myself, during the 6 months I fell asleep meditating on it, with 4 dogs piled on my futon, on the stone floor of my mud house in the wadi, around the time the Riyadh desert cooled off for a few months, and waking was bitter and difficult.
After 6 months of asking myself the question, I would finally conclude that this painting has neither beginning nor ending, has neither first brush stroke, nor last, no center, no periphery. That in fact, this painting has lived forever. This painting began when everything else we now experience in our lives, also began, perhaps 13.7 billion years ago, perhaps longer.
I learned that this painting has always been, and will always be, in one form or another. That this painting extends beyond the cotton of its surface, through the wood of its frame, through the minerals and materials of its colors, through computer screens, through boundaries I no longer see.
This painting has been ongoing through generations of living creatures, to generations of more living, to an easel in Lhasa, to a wall in the wadi, to another wall in the jungle, from room to room to room to room, through the castles of our minds, the palaces of our hearts, through us, time, space, the living.
It was in this painting I was carried from a product view of life, to a process one, where I too, am simply a canvas, extending through time, on surfaces incomplete, in things becoming and things begoing. That I too, like this painting, evolve through the hearts and minds of those who experience me, and I hope, feel as grateful as I did the day I stumbled into that gallery in Lhasa, and she turned her head, and smiled.