Denis Forkas Kostromitin

Featured image above: The Slant Serpent, The Tortuous Serpent, 2012-2013, Egg tempera, acrylics, gilding and ink on prepared wood block 

Denis Forkas Kostromitin is a Russian artist, currently living in Moscow, who has studied in China under traditional teachers. His paintings are dark, textural and hold a wealth of symbolism.

On speaking of Gilbert Durand, sociologist and anthropologist he says:

“Durand suggested breaking with the European Logos-centric tradition and going beyond the object-subject system. According to his hypothesis, our world (‘our’ being the subject and ‘world’ the external objects) is the fruit of imagination. Imagination is born from the fact of death, as a reflection of mortality – we exist ergo we are mortal ergo we imagine ergo we exist. The ever-unfolding vista of Mythos takes shapes of images, symbols, rituals, customs, social relations, poetry, games and legends. Imagination fills the space (or rather time) between itself and the realm of non-existence with things we see, hear, feel, create, destroy, hope for, dream about, etc.
If imagination is a reflection of mortality, its scale and intensity would probably be set by the proximity of death. This ‘(life)time’ would be a continuously changing value balance between Mythos and Logos and responding to the slightest changes in Mythos.”
Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England. p134

I like this idea of the interplay between Mythos and Logos and the way Logos has to change according to shifts in Mythos.

etna-copy-1000px
Etna, acrylics on paper

DFC talks about his sigil construction technique and how it differs from that developed by Austin Osman Spare. His experience in use of eastern calligraphic techniques (especially farsi) have influenced his sigil creation and given it a very fluid form.

He also talks of art as an initiatory experience that allows artist and viewer to be in a place where everybody speaks the same symbolic language:

“I believe that art helps us transcend cultural barriers and brings us to the ‘plateau of initiation’, where everyone and everything speaks the same language. In my sigil work I attempt to establish immediate connection between Logos and Mythos. These auxiliary artistic elements serve as shortcuts to the ‘plateau’.”
Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England. p139

M L K (Moloch) Tempera, blood, charcoal and graphite on paper 50 x 50cm 2011M L K (Moloch) Tempera, blood, charcoal and graphite on paper 50 x 50cm 2011

On the artist as ‘channel’ or ‘conduit’ for ideas and messages (this is something I will be exploring further in a future blog post):

“This striking recurrence phenomenon made me take a closer look as my own art and I soon discovered that I, too, had been passing on a message that wasn’t entirely own.”
Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England. p137

“At the heart of Poïesis (hi-lighting my own) is metaphor, a vessel that can project idea ideas from one conceptual domain onto another; it allows us to manipulate imagination. I believe metaphorical projection and transcendence is the main function of religious rituals, and I choose to base my practice on the assumption that ritual is, in fact, a metaphor.
The purpose of my practice is to restructure Logos through a ritualised performance addressing Mythos and emerge with pristine artefacts of imagination.”
(bolding my own)
Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England. p137

On talking of the use of sigil to convey messages to the unconscious in esoteric artwork (see Austin Osman Spare for further info on this topic) DFK has this to say:

“The power of sigils lies in their mystery, as the cryptic ornamentation stirs waters of the unconscious. This is why it is so much easier for the viewer to experience the spell than the artist. Unconscious puzzle-solving is the key element that opens the great cache of the Mythos.”
Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England. p142

ABPA A , 2014, ink on paperΑΒΡΑΣΑΞ, 2014, Ink on paper

Ansell. R (Ed.), 2013, Abraxas Issue 3, Spring 2013, Fulgur Esoterica, London, England.
http://www.denisforkas.com
fulgur.co.uk/artists/denis-forkas-kostromitin/

 

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