Chelsea Brown

Here is some beau­ti­ful work by Chelsea Brown. An artist based in San Fran­cis­co, her draw­ings and paint­ings are based around the super­nat­ur­al, Native Amer­i­can and animals. 

I asked Chelsea to tell me about her work, which she hap­pi­ly obliged:

Most of my work deals with super­nat­ur­al themes inspired by myths, leg­ends, spir­its, cos­mol­o­gy and rit­u­als. I am espe­cial­ly amazed by Native Amer­i­can spir­i­tu­al cul­ture and a lot of the research that informs my work begins there. There are so many inter­est­ing intri­ca­cies to their cul­ture. For one thing, there is no sep­a­ra­tion between humans, ani­mals and the earth. In some Native Amer­i­can lan­guages, there is no word to dif­fer­en­ti­ate ‘humans’ and ‘ani­mals’ because they are in essence the very same thing. I find it fas­ci­nat­ing that in many cos­mol­o­gy myths, it is an ani­mal or a non-human phe­nom­e­na that is respon­si­ble for cre­at­ing the uni­verse for all beings, instead of in many oth­er ‘reli­gions’ the cre­ator is a man or some image of man cre­at­ing the uni­verse specif­i­cal­ly for man. 

Although each tribe has its own unique cul­ture, there are some inter­est­ing ways in which tribes across North Amer­i­ca are sim­i­lar in their spir­i­tu­al cul­ture. Most tribes have some vari­a­tion of a Vision Quest, which is a process where­in an indi­vid­ual seeks out their con­nec­tion to the spir­i­tu­al world. This process would yield a ‘spir­it ani­mal,’ or some kind of phe­nom­e­na that became very per­son­al, and would give that per­son strength and pur­pose through their lives. 

Chelsea’s work is clear­ly informed, and shows with­out her expla­na­tion. The com­plex, mul­ti­fac­eted imagery has a beau­ti­ful sor­row to it. 

All images via her web­site.