A radiant phenomenon lights up the dark environment of this extraordinary painting by An Furuta. It is a stunning sight to behold. Vibrations of light penetrate the darkness out of which a bundle of tiny feathers commences a dynamic dance. Ingenious elements of chiaroscuro create a great sensation of anticipation.
When looking into the metaphysical significance of the work, the bird could be likened to the mythical phoenix, a bird that lives to be at least 500 years old. At the end of its life the phoenix builds a nest, after which the bird and the nest both ignite into flames. Out of the ashes an egg arises and a new phoenix emerges, reborn to live again. In the context of this painting it is interesting to note that many Zen Buddhist deities bear the sign of a bird on their forehead on the spot of the third eye, which is seen as the gateway to Nirvana*.
*Nirvana: Is the Sanskrit word that refers to a profoundly peaceful state of mind reached during meditation when all earthly attachments have been overcome.