This piece is an 18 x 28 inch collage on paper, created in October and November 2016. My uncle commissioned me to make a work of art for his newly remodeled bathroom so I used the occasion to experiment with an idea that I’ve had for awhile.
The Sri Yantra symbol has fascinated me since I first read that someone discovered a massive version carved into an Oregon lakebed in 1990. I’ve used the symbol in numerous pieces, I’ve attempted to draw it several times, I ordered several hundred stickers of the symbol from a print shop so I could put them up around town (don’t tell anyone…)
With this collage I wanted to make another Sri Yantra, but build it out of pictures. The symbol is a representation of the unity between manifest reality and unmanifest potential so I built the mandala out of meaningful images that were necessarily cut from their original context and placed next to unrelated pictures.
Most of the source images were taken from National Geographic, Life, and Discovery magazines, a Patagonia catalog, and a 1990 photographic encylopedia of the world.
The piece’s title comes from the song “Smells Like Content” by The Books. Here is the music video: