Archive for July, 2013

Sacred Land 16x20 oil on canvas **SOLD**

One of the great opportunities that Dix Baines has, as an artist, is to capture a special image on canvas for a collector.  “Sacred Land” was just such a painting and was painted after spending days in Navajo country with the collector.  As an artist spends hours crafting and creating a painting, they are alone with their thoughts and reflecting on the meaning behind the paint.


“In this remote scene in Navajo country there was a magnificent spirit within this place, like that of a sacred land … The painter, George Inness, stated ‘everything and every quality from the natural world first possesses a spiritual identity, a correspondence at the level of the soul’... Similarly, as I have studied this scene, an emphasis has been placed on the following features within this composition.

The hole of sky through the rock is as a “sipapu”, the portal through which all spirits come and go.  The evergreens relate to the importance of teachings and principles associated to the “tree of life” and the promises of everlasting life.   A subordinate solitary tree, a reminder of the ‘Son’ and His Atoning Sacrifice, stands behind a smoke lodge. Within the lodge preparations were made for an initiation that a young man would undertake to chart his life’s course.   A ‘vision quest’, in which, a revealed ‘new name’ would become a new identity.  Most significant to this experience is the relationship that would be made with a ‘companion spirit’ that would travel along through this experience as well as throughout life.  The atmosphere and landscape is bathed in light, as ‘light’ is the temporal and spiritual source of life; In this sublime landscape, there is the stark reminder of the lack of water and our dependence upon the ‘living waters’.  Sublime refers to a basic human instinct, that of self-preservation.  The excitement of the ideas of turmoil or danger is productive of the strongest emotion which the mind is capable of feeling.  In the wilderness, it is the opposition of the “sublime” and the “beautiful” that heightens the experience, as well as our awareness.  Perhaps it is less that we are inspired by it, but rather, we are lead to inspiration when we are in it.  ‘Prophets of old retired into the solitudes of nature to wait the inspiration of heaven.  It was on Mount Horeb that Elijah witnessed the mighty wind, the earthquake, and the fire; and heard the ‘still small voice’ – that voice is YET heard among the mountains!  St John preached in the desert; the wilderness is YET a fitting place to speak to God’. (Thomas Cole)