Jasmine Raskas - Unus Mundus Art
Unus Mundus: The philosophy of an underlying unified reality from which everything emerges, and to which everything returns.
I recently strolled down Cherokee Street for their annual Print Bazaar and stumbled upon an artist who is an amazing testament to all the things of which human beings are capable. Her name is Jasmine Raskas. She is a St. Louis native who says art is what she lives for, and upon hearing her story, I think you will find it truly inspirational.
This fascinating artist combines visual art, science, and philosophy into all of her work. Jasmine has a profound thirst for knowledge, letting me know she hoards flashcards and never leaves the library without a dozen books. "I view art as a tool to understand the world around us," she explains. "The sciences and humanities each look at the world through their own lenses, but don’t offer a way to synthesize a broader view of how they relate to one another. This is why I believe art can be thought of as the master of science... and I use art to explore relationships between multiple fields of study."
I think this is beautiful: Creativity can be the master of the whole universe if we allow it. Jasmine elaborates, saying, "By using art to study and explain science, I can simplify complex principles in a way which is beautiful enough for everyone to see... from macro-emergent properties of the universe to the relationships between linguistics, thought, and action." Using both hemispheres to convey abstract, analytical knowledge is something the world is lacking. As I myself am a very visually-oriented individual, I find this notion stimulating and radical.
Jasmine definitely has a unique perspective on the world. Her creative energy stemmed from spending much of the last few years fighting Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a genetic connective tissue disorder. "In 2013, I started losing feeling in my right hand and it wasn’t until I could no longer hold a paintbrush that I realized how vital painting is to my life. At this time I was forced to take two years off from painting," Jasmine shared. Personally, as an artist whose eye sight is rapidly deteriorating into blindness, I felt a deep connection with this.
The need to create is what motivates her to keep up with her physical therapy, so she knew she had to keep making art. She found new ways to process all of her complex thoughts through mediums such as collage and clay, and has taught herself to work with her left hand. Since regaining the ability to paint, she is learning to adjust for the changes in her right hand, saying, "I have spent the past year learning new brushstroke techniques that incorporate shakiness and accidents into a style. I’ve also been exploring the concept of turning randomness into order and learning to balance free flow and method to concoct the perfect recipe for enjoyable art."
What can appear to us as mountainous obstacles can be shifted by moving small rocks at a time. What many may perceive as "mistakes" can quickly become something beautiful. We can overcome anything at all if we have the will and drive to do it, but to get there, it is important to find a change in our own perspective.
Jasmine is currently working on something called, "The Big Project," which is made up of two series asking, "What are we made of?" and "What do we make up?" The former contains work related to the physical components of the body, from mitochondria to bones, and questions the definition of a human by merging technology and robotics with the human figure. The latter contains work exploring the networks, agencies, and dogmas which currently run and direct our planet, as well as several pieces which theoretically contextualize the size of our Earth in comparison to the known universe. Get a sneak peek at some of these striking images here:
"On a light note," she says, "I will continue to rediscover the true purpose of painting as I explore deeper into the abstract realm." This Free Art Friend wants to show the world how to enjoy color and appreciate the depths of painting and art. It's important to remember that you are creative, you are powerful, and you have the capacity to create something truly magical.
Share your heART.
If you're interested in getting in touch with Jasmine and learning more about her journey, click below on any one of these links!:
- Portfolio: http://www.unusmundusart.com/
- Prints and Apparel: https://society6.com/unusmundusart
- Instagram: @unus_mundus_art
- A Year of Experiments blog: https://unusmundusart.wordpress.com/
pass it on, pay it forward.