It’s impossible to visit Damanhur and not realize how art is a fundamental value in the life of Damanhurians! It’s everywhere, in the larger communities and the smaller ones as well. There are paintings on the exterior walls of houses. There are mosaics and statues, and often the gaze is attracted by fliers for upcoming theatre performances and concerts organized in the Temples of Humankind and at the Open Temple.

On the lands, nature and art blend together in a continual seeking for harmony that serves as the visual background for daily life permeated with beauty and meaning.
Giving meaning to things and creating significance is a basic principle of Damanhurian spirituality, understood as the capacity to grasp and read the meaning in everything, tracing and retracing the threads that connect humans to the universe and to the other beings who inhabit it.

Likewise, the creation of meanings is the basis of the art expressed in every culture and peoples. Through art we transcend what the object represents and enter into the field of symbols, metaphors, the sense that art attributes to the things themselves, reinventing them.

An art object is valuable if it strikes you, moves you, if it produces an emotion, a way of thinking that did not previously exist. If it reaches the spirit and creates a union where artists and observers recognize themselves as part of the same humanity.

In Damanhur we define ourselves as a popolo, that is, a group of people from different ethnicities and cultures who share strong ideals and daily life together. A popolo not by birth but by choice. Not by chance, choice is another of the foundational principles of Damanhurian philosophy.

The stages of the birth and formation of a popolo are marked by artistic works that have been created to tell the history of the group, their daily experiences, and the entirety of shared life that can be seen and touched, that can become a tangible heredity for future generations.

Since the origins of Damanhur, Falco Tarassaco said, “Symbols are passed on in the best way if they are engraved in stone rather than written on printed paper. Over time, words transform, they change their value, while the symbolism overlaid on a figure is able to maintain itself in a much denser way.”

So art becomes the crucible of a collective culture, the telling of the myth of that popolo… art as the creation of a cultural identity and not only as the expression of an individual artist.

In Damanhur, art is intended as an art of the people, an attempt to transcend our individuality and immerse ourselves in chosen and shared values. To give life to this collective identity and its original expression, each one of us identifies with a common thought to create a connective tissue together from which the general canons of Damanhurian art are derived, canons that are defined according to individual sensitivity and inspiration.

The strength of working in a group makes it possible for a wider vision, and each one of us enriches the work according to our own point of view and ability.

If you have not yet visited the Temples of Humankind  come and discover first hand how we translated these concepts into practice!