Ritual action with nature brings us back to our source, the powers in our psyche, which are common to all human kind. At times catastrophes pop up and people connect, remember, and tie ribbons to trees, touch water with awe, weep by candles, hold a stone for a memory and link fingers wishing hoping praying for relief from suffering. These reflexes are a reflection to a constant spirit, to a past time when understanding nature was part of daily living.
Perhaps this need is born from a deep longing to understand and not be afraid. These actions are also deeply connected to works by contemporary artists pushing their creativity to the edge investigating mortality and impermanence.
Since 1995, I have photographed hundreds of public actions while traveling with The Wish Machine. The journey is not just about travel across countries, and oceans but also looking at the interconnections between art and wishing actions.
On Nature, a twenty-four feet long by 16 inches of photograph of global actions on nature includes pujas by the Ganges, children’s play in Canada, 9/11 memorials in New York, fire festivals in Japan, and wishing trees from everywhere and more. This work plays on the idea of travel and motion by its massive horizontal design structure. These photographs are included in the monograph The Wish Machine Travels, 1995-2009.
This book consists of over 60 colour photographs charting Chrysanne Stathacos’s extraordinary artistic practice that, over the course of the past 14 years, has conflated spiritual and aesthetic concerns in interactive performances and installations from New Delhi to Toronto. Images of her Rose Mandalas, Wishing Trees, and Wish Machines are interspersed with photographs documenting other memorials and ritual sites where people have engaged in prayerful meditation. With written contributions from Peter Nagy, Christopher Isherwood, AA Bronson, Jennifer Fisher, Jim Drobnick, Marcus Boon, Heike Strelow, and Amy Lipton. (from Printed Matter )