Art and Creativity
At Damanhur everyone discovers being an artist
Arts for the rebirth of humanity
At Damanhur, the artists who create paintings, stained glass, mosaics and sculptures often work together on the same piece. Because of this, they have developed the ability to become involved in each other's work, just as artists did in the old Renaissance studios. We love the Renaissance and its concept of the global individual: part scientist, part artist, part politician and part philosopher. Also, Each artist at Damanhur develops an area of personal research, which they manifest in works that express their own unique artistic sensitivity.
The Damanhur sculpture studio was started in 1983 when a skilled Tuscan ceramist led many eager apprentices in the creation of the first statues. These statues lacked perfect golden ratio proportions, but the enthusiasm generated by those early experiences gave rise today's sculpture studio where artists create highly refined works in ceramic and "young stone." Citizens and visitors alike admire these creations.
Nearly all Damanhurians are involved in theatre, writing and acting in performances that are dedicated to the values and feelings that comprise the Damanhur experience. There have been shared moments of profound emotion, in which it was difficult to tell who was more involved, the actors or the audience.
Damanhurian music and the 30-member Damanhur choir have evolved and transformed over a period of more than 35 years. There is always room here for different kinds of expression, in both function and style. For example, some songs are more meditative and introspective, while others that are more dynamic and rhythmic. We share choral and solo songs, instrumental music, folk songs and even "interspecies" concerts where human beings and plants play music together (see Music of the Plants).
Everyday art as a continuous creative game
Art is ingrained in the history of Damanhur. In 1978, when Damanhur was not yet inhabited, Damanhur citizens were already decorating the walls and ceiling of the first hall in the Temples of Humankind. The first stained glass, mosaic and painting studios were created at this time.
Since then, the art studios have played an important role in the development of the Temples. Many Damanhurian citizens have experimented with their talents and, little by little, refined a style that now embellishes the various Temple halls. Meanwhile, the community's first theatre group staged its first short performances, inspired by Damanhurian principles and values.
The year 1983 was crucial: the Game of Life and the Viaggio revolutionized the way of life in Damanhur, and many large and small artisan studios began to produce everyday objects-furniture, textiles and clothing, footwear-with the intention of creating an original style that would characterize everyday life.
The Battle of the Arts is the event that best represents the spirit that makes all Damanhurians artists. This event took place several times in the 1980s. All citizens were divided into teams and competed in creative competitions to make works of art. These creations became an important part of the artistic heritage of the community; they are now installed in various areas on the grounds of Damanhur. The Battle of the Arts is a "battle" that does not result in destruction. On the contrary, it builds things that are for everyone to enjoy, and friends and guests can also participate. This kind of competition offers a message of peace, joy and inspiration, with the opportunity to seek out and explore artistic potential in a fun, creative way.