The following is a guest post by visionary artist Veronika Rose.
Amanda Sage is a world-famous visionary artist currently based out of Gunnison, Colorado. Known for her luminous, colorful, and thought-provoking artwork, Amanda uses painting as a tool for spiritual and planetary growth and transformation.
A leader in the visionary art movement, we are honored to have Amanda share some of her insights about her connection to psychedelics, channeling visions and art.
She describes her artist mission as such:
“Through my work I aim to shatter the ‘illusion of separation’, to challenge the viewer to question, and evolve out of ignorance, conditioning, and ingrained genetic habits. In life, I strive to take responsibility for the effect of my existence, and through my actions and images, inspire others to think/dream beyond their immediate capacity. Ultimately I seek to create portals that open to the infinite possibilities of being and expressing, so that we may remember and re-discover who we are, where we originate from, and where we are headed.
“My aspiration is to paint messages, visions, and narratives that communicate with an ‘older and wiser us’, awakening ancient memory; as well as the ‘present us’, that we may grow up and accept the responsibilities towards ourselves, each other, and the rest of existence on this planet… now.”
Veronika: Welcome Amanda, thank you for speaking with us. Can you share your first memory as an artist and when you knew it was your life path?
Amanda: I thought of that ignition point you know, where I was creating something and felt the surge of something more, like a vastness of something. It’s like a world opened, a doorway, and I feel like that must’ve been around the seventh grade when I was in a Waldorf school. We had this block of the renaissance and we were studying the different artists and we each chose a different artist to study and I chose Botticelli. Botticelli became a foundational love for me, there was something about the line and how delicate and his work was. Then, of course, I loved Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. Those three artists, I just fell in love with.
Shortly after that, I started painting on T-shirts at 14, and that was a further ignition. I hadn’t really played with paint much but I realized after there was a couple of them (T-shirts), I looked at them afterward and was like, “Wow, I did that,” and that was shocking to me. They were gifts for Christmas because I didn’t have any money. That started my journey of actually realizing that I like the idea of making things of value and being able to sell them. That led me into the last two years of high school. I had a business with my friend where we made large boutique tapestries, T-shirts, and various things. This one shop would buy as much as we could make in Boulder Colorado and that spark came to create more.
From 1997-2009 Amanda Studied in Vienna Austria, with painting masters Michael Fuchs and his father, Ernst Fuchs. It was here that she began fine-tuning a specific painting technique called, the Misch-Technik. Also called Mixtek, this style of painting was revived by Ernst Fuchs in the 1950s with roots in the early renaissance and is currently being taught in visionary art workshops around the world. This mixed technique often uses egg tempura while layering various thin colors of oil to create a sense of luminosity and depth within the painting.
Besides traveling the world and painting live at events and teaching art classes, Amanda is known for her creating “The Vision Train.” The Vision Train is described as “an interactive art movement linking visions of artists to create a self-manifesting destination, of the most inspiring future.” During March of 2020 and the worldwide Covid lockdowns, Amanda opened a virtual Zoom space where artists from all over the world could create together during any time of day, 24/7. And it’s still going non-stop, run by a group of volunteers, and continues to be a free resource to artists from all backgrounds and skill levels to level up, share ideas, and manifest their visions.
“Vision Train turned something dark into the highest light of this whole experience. We were all locked down across the world but were forging full force into ourselves and what we want to bring to this planet. It is the perfect digital representation of how connected we actually are across the globe. Couldn’t have found a better incubator for sharing, teaching, and healing.” Visionary Artist, Elias Hartford and Vision Train rider
Veronika: We can see how driven you are as an artist. What is your driving force?
Amanda Sage: Well, thank you. When I started painting eggs, I knew I would probably be painting seeds and eggs for the rest of my life because of their potential, and I was going to help show others that this potential exists. Every step of the way I can look back and see how it’s coming together but there are moments that I go through these dips, there’s a couple of them a year, that I can’t see anything and I fall into those depths. I have learned through the process that out of those deep moments of despair and incubation and death, something blossoms afterward and it’s beyond my current ability to comprehend. I have to have faith in those dark moments and this is where psychedelics have been an incredible tool.
To work with psilocybin and microdosing, and to work with cannabis, sometimes it’s needed to shift the perspective so I remember that these dark moments are nothing to be afraid of, and they can be my allies. I think psychedelics help us step out of our minds and into the bigger perspective and there’s so much love there. There are dark places that you can reach during a psychedelic journey, but those places are not because of the plants I believe, it’s coming from us. We need help in integrating and knowing how to work with these plants and with these substances because so many people are suffering right now. So many people have realized that pharmaceuticals are NOT the answer. There are troves of people that during Covid right now are going through mass awakenings, and shifts in their perspectives. They were thinking, yeah, that was crazy. I’m not gonna do that again, I’m not gonna go back to that lifestyle. And they began asking “What’s really important to me?” This is where I think psychedelics are coming in right on time.
Veronika: Visually your artwork is colorful and truly psychedelic, how have psychedelics affected your art?
Amanda: When I was young I saw these psychedelic realms and began painting in that direction, but I didn’t try psychedelics until I was 27 and sought out my first LSD experience. I was very interested in what it could show me and my whole first experience was absolutely incredible. It felt like I knew these realms already, but I got to see them for the first time in a real and conscious way. So it was something that I knew, and it was just blowing through me, within me. I was given some opportunities to be around some masters that had the master of flow and tapping into that ‘know-a-sphere’ of the space beyond this realm. We go into the space of communion with greater wisdom and intelligence.
Veronika: Being a visionary artist myself, we are often asked if it just means art that was created under the influence of psychedelics. How do you define visionary art?
Amanda: That’s a big question which we can talk about for the next hour. I heard about Visionary Art through Alex and Allyson Grey, They’re the ones that coined that term in a sense. Visionary art is a really broad term and to BE a visionary is a very broad term. I think it goes between all mediums. One of the ways that Alex Grey describes it; that visionary art stems back to the cave paintings. I felt very connected with the definition of visionary art and culture, which I felt was this exploration of the unseeable realms. The artists are our scribes that are bringing back and translating these visions for others to see and to help them remember there is another world that is very alive when we go to sleep every night, or that we see under the influence of entheogens. The reality of that is incredibly important to be translated, so many of the sacred works are also in that sense, depicting an episode of something beyond.
I also think that the group, the ‘fantastic realists’, (that Ernst Fuchs started in the 1950s) is a foundation as one of the pieces in the lineage that threads into visionary art as we know it now, especially from the painting techniques and interest in using paint as a way to channel.
I see visionary art helping bridge the disconnectedness that we experience in the world now and to be a healing asset for people to explore that within themselves. To explore their own visions, as well as be inspired by others to see the complexity in the beauty without having to experience the medicine directly. We don’t need medicine to access those places.
Veronika: Can you share what are some other ways you can access ‘those’ places? How do you receive your visions?
Amanda: There’s so many avenues to tap into it, and I have to find a way to trick the monkey mind to just do it instead of think about it. I find that live painting, performance painting, was a huge catalyst in becoming present and that with the support of others witnessing this happening at the same time, just blew my mind, what could happen so quickly with a few brushstrokes and the music guiding you. It starts with one decision, It’s like as soon as you make that first stroke, what’s the first color that’s on your brush? Where do you touch that brush to the canvas? You know, they’re all clues and codes and as you’re doing this you’re picking up from your environment, those feelings, thoughts, symbols, stories and there’s something relevant flowing through your being that’s also coming through the collective. In that space, you can just start to sculpt and ask the question, how can I be of service? That’s been one of my biggest core prayers.
Veronika: As an advocate for plant medicine, I have to know, what is your preferred medicine of choice?”
Amanda: I think psilocybin has been a major ally and also ayahuasca has been one of my biggest teachers, even though I didn’t actually experience it until about two years ago. I waited for a very long time, I would say over 10 years of being associated with ayahuasca before I actually sat with her. It just was never the right time, or it just wasn’t the right moment. But as soon as it was time, it was time and incredible! I’m really so grateful for the experience.
Veronika: Thank you for your sharing with us Amanda!
Amanda will be showing her work at the Mesa Arts Center in Mesa, AZ for her exhibition entitled, “Vision Seeds” from Sept 10, 2021-Jan 16,2022.
Find her on the web here- https://www.amandasage.com
And Instagram here- https://www.instagram.com/amandasageart/
And find out how to sign up for the Vision Train Here
Veronika Rose is a Visionary Artist, Marine Corps Veteran, Psychedelic Integration coach, painting instructor and Holistic Veteran Retreat coordinator from Orlando, Florida.