Hiske Tas

is a healing artist
whose use of vibrant colour,
powerful symbology
and the beauty of nature
inspired me to start painting in a completely new way.

The images in this gallery are all thumbnails. To view a larger version of any piece simply click on the thumbnail. This also gives you ordering information for the selection of paintings that are available for sale

I asked Hiske to tell me how she developed her shamanistic style of painting

My whole life I have wanted to be an artist. I went to art schools in Holland, England and Paris, and had exhibitions all over Europe and America. By the time I came to Australia I had children to take care of, so it was very hard trying to fit my art in as well but I usually managed to at night. At the same time I got very interested in healing and shamanism so I decided I wanted to steer my painting in that direction.

I went to the desert to meet the Aboriginal people and ended up staying with them for a year. It was great, it really changed my life. I did a lot of painting and healing with the Aboriginal ladies. They would come and dance and sing in front of my paintings. They would take me out and paint me up and we would go dancing. We had a marvellous time together.

I got so much inspiration from the desert, from all the colours; the reds and yellows and ochres. I made some really good friends there too.

I gave them Reiki and they loved it. For them it is very easy to receive, they don't analyse it like we do, they just take it as it is. When I would do healing on them they would really seem to profit from it so much easier than Westerners. For me it was a blow-out to be amongst so much love, to feel so much love from those people, it was very beautiful and I lapped it up.

I started to make some Aboriginal type paintings until I realised I had to create my own dreaming, I had to find my own shamanism, my own medicine. So from then on I started creating shaman paintings and went to Hawaii to learn from a master shaman, a kahuna called Serge Kahili King.

What did you learn from Serge Kahili King?

I learnt that there are two types of shamanism and they are both as important as each other. One is the path of the warrior and the other is the path of the adventurer. The path of the adventurer uses love and creativity to overcome all the difficulties, all the enemies, while the path of the warrior is more like learning through personal power. I thought, I'll take the path of the peaceful warrior, the adventurer and it was very interesting to find that through painting and creativity I could work at shamanism. I found that shamanism is creativity, it is visualisation. You grow and mould yourself and your life through the visualisation.

Would you say then, that any artist is a shaman?

Not really, because my idea about art is to show the beautiful side of things, I try not to dwell on anything negative. As you know there is a lot of angst in this world. People dwell on their problems and paint them, which for me doesn't work. I want to heal myself. I want to heal the world. I want to heal other people and so I concentrate on the beautiful side, the healing side and not on the downer side. That's the difference.

When I teach, I teach my pupils creativity. I teach them some kahuna principles, for example, the world is what you think it is. If you think the world is a downer, or if you think you are ugly, or that you are going to have an accident, then, chances are, it will happen. If you think the world is beautiful and fun to be in, then that's what happens. When I do the kahuna painting I encourage my pupils to see something in their lives that they really want and then through their visualisation they paint it. And I often hear back from people that they made a painting and then the next week it came to fruition and everything worked out perfectly. So I really believe that through creativity you can change your world, I've seen it happen.

I'm just having fun with it. I know that when I paint I can change my life and I am literally painting myself into a greater existence.

It seems like this style of painting is one that anybody can do?

Yes, I believe that everybody is creative. I believe that everybody can be a shaman. Everybody can be a painter. It is just a question of drawing it out, of not being afraid, and then painting from your heart.

A lot of my pupils come to me saying that they can't paint. One woman was crying about it but by the end of the second time she was so happy, she had made a really great painting. It is very exciting for me to see this process happening. And it seems that the key to finding that creativity within is through the heart. I tell my pupils that the world is what you think it is, so paint something that you want out of this world, that you want out of this life. And then, from the heart, if you say 'I want to be beautiful', 'I want to have money', 'I want to have a beautiful house', 'I want to be realised', then you'll find you start painting in a totally different way.

See also:
For more information on Hiske and her kahuna painting workshops in Australia e-mail us here at yoni.

After interviewing Hiske I was inspired to try this new style of drawing and then was amazed to see something so beautiful come from my inexperienced hands.

Interview and final art piece by Carmen

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