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Art That Goes in Circles

Circles in Clay by Daniel Ashe on Zatista.com

As another year draws to an end, and certain familiar seasonal events and scenes seem to be coming (and going!) around again, I’ve been thinking about cycles and circles.

Black Hole by Bill Buchman on Zatista.com

The great thing about the cycle of the seasons, and the calendar year itself, is that every end is followed immediately by a beginning. In “Ode To The West Wind,” Percy Bysshe Shelley famously wrote “if winter comes, can spring be far behind?” Here I am on the verge of winter in New England, with all the activities and contemplations that come along with the time of year when one year ends and another begins. But soon, all the natives will be talking about is how we can’t wait for spring!

Color Wheel by Michael Filonow on Zatista.com

Writers and artists have always been attracted to the theme and structure of cycles and circles. Some will portray cycles of life, revisiting the same subject through the progression of time; others will create compositions that seem to “come full circle” with elements that recur or repeat.

Not-So-Daily Painting 2012-006 by Marilyn Fenn on Zatista.com

Others will take things more literally, and feature actual circles in their work, with no need to explain further. The image of a circle is so familiar and resonant for us, that it will immediately call to mind all its associations beyond being just an appealing visual element.

Elipse by Simon Fairless on Zatista.com

Circles make most of us think of something timeless, endless, eternal. They are used in all cultural and historical contexts to represent continuity, unity and strength.  Zatista artists are no exception. In this post I’ve included just a few interpretations of this timeless symbol.  The next time you are viewing art in a gallery or online, see how many circles you can find and the many effects they can create.  The possibilities are endless!

Brian Sylvester is a guest blogger on WallSpin, and an artist on Zatista.


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