I was asked to come out for live art demonstrations during various live electronic events around the Twin Cities, which I took as an opportune time to continue investigating chaos.
Ancient Zen artists used to attempt to place dots on paper in artistic disorder, this seemingly easy task was actually very difficult to do without forming some sort of arrangement. In Zen we sometimes emphasize disorder or imbalance to reflect that even though we may try to control life’s situations we actually cannot. Life, movement, is the destruction of balance against a background of perfect existence and thus there is the realization that suffering itself is how we actually live. Similarly, trying to control other aspects in life, such as a flock of sheep, people, and your self can be equally challenging. The most efficient way to control these aspects is to create the platform for what you are attempting and actually give the control up to allow the universe to take action. If you wish to raise a sheep give it a large pasture if you wish to control a person, encourage them to be mischievous, if you wish to achieve tranquility in your meditation, do not attempt to control your thoughts but rather let them go, watch them, don’t ignore them but allow the thoughts to pass and you will find them under your control. This is right effort. This is true freedom. This is to put the universe in your control.
During these events I would ask participants to contribute butterflies to my work by either painting or printing via alternative plastic matrix. I asked participants to aim their butterflies towards creating a larger butterfly and thus emphasizing the interdependent nature of chaos.