“One of the deepest intentions held in the creation of the Londolozi Healing House was that everything would be crafted to hold a story and be in complete harmony with the way nature was already guiding each guest to deep rejuvenation, restoration and transformation. It was from this place that the mural design was born… with no other than the very extraordinary artist; Roxy Burrough.” – Bronwyn Varty-Laburn
“One minute you’re in the hustle and bustle, and then you step away from it and into this calm oasis. Everything stills. You’re gazing up at a 5-meter tall aloe that is quietly mesmerizing you with its own magical milkyway. The harder you look, the more you see. Let nature be your guru. There’s a flap-necked chameleon gripping onto the mighty aloe. There are sunbirds and luna moths and dragon flies. I need some lucky beans in there too…”
That was the brief from Bron…
When she asked me to create a mural for the new Londolozi Healing House, bringing the outside inside, my heart absolutely sang. As you know, a magician never reveals his secrets, but I can tell you being creative is vitally connected to letting go, turning off the brain and being guided by the heart. Art can offer a great channel of release, but only if you let it. I remember I once did an exercise in visual arts at school when we were learning to draw portraits. We were encouraged to turn our reference images upside down, and draw our subjects the “wrong way around”. This taught us to draw what we saw, rather than how our brains thought it should look. Although it was uncomfortable, letting go of control usually is.
“In art, the hand can never execute anything higher than the heart can imagine.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
And so I began Mission (almost) Impossible – putting Bron’s vision into a two-dimensional artwork that embodied the secrets and infinite gifts nature shares with us; the way a sunbird shows you how to find sweetness in your life, the dragonfly quietly asking for adaptability, the butterfly mastering transformation… there is so much to see, if you’re willing to look.
After a bit of back-and-forth; the right combination of elements that made sense and elements that made magic dawned on us. A kaleidoscopic natural world of logical and whimsical, in the form of an adhesive sheet, was pasted to the Healing House wall.
Much like art, Nature is one of the greatest outlets in a non-stop, always-on, always-connected world where it has become stupidly easy to constantly respond to the notifications bombarding and cluttering your life. But stepping into the Healing House and standing in front of this two-dimensional utopia with an open heart and wonder-filled eyes, I hope you are reminded to stop and let go.
You realize you simply cannot control the setting sun and suddenly, you’re living in that golden light wishing you could soak it up for as long as She’ll let you.
So turn off your mind, lighten your heart.
And let go.