Heaven and Earth



Heaven and Earth


The Art of Jean MacFarland Altshuler



Paintings I and II




Four Directions 

(L to R:  East Memory, South Memory, West Memory and North Memory)


The work of Jean Altshuler reflects the journey of a gifted artist in search of integrating spirit and art.  Her quest to reunite these separate worlds began in the early 1970s, while in her early twenties.  Endowed with prodigious talent recognized since childhood, she already had a flourishing career by then as a freelance artist in New York City.  While exploring the depths of the art world in those years, she became “equally a seeker of truth and a spiritual path with heart.” 

In the late 1970s, Jean felt a call to engage in collaborative efforts to bridge the gap between the worlds of art and spirit.  She became a catalytic agent in the birth of “Transformative Art,” a movement that flowered briefly in the 1980s in response to the awakening of human consciousness.  After organizing a major collaborative event to mark the Harmonic Convergence in 1987, she returned to her own art — pursuing painting and studying sculpture in the southwestern United States, where she now lives.  Several of her sculptures appear below. 


                   Anguish (clay maquette            Enkidu & the Courtesan (bronze)

Human Sacrifice  (bronze)


Since the mid-90s, the motive force behind Jean’s creativity has been her concern for the fragile environment of our planet and the future of humanity.  She writes:

As an artist, there is nothing more for me to do but to create images and forms that can remind us of our place in the universe, our journey as conscious beings in relationship to all of life, and our interrelatedness to everyone and everything. 


Her masterwork of recent times is a bronze sculpture entitled Axis Mundi (shown below).  It reflects the human spirit in the universal dance of life spiraling upward and unifying heaven and earth.  The culmination of six years of collaborative work in “the love of spirit and mastery of form,” this sculpture is intended to mark a natural sacred site in the Southwest — the first step in a grand vision to establish eight such sites in the United States as energetic points of awakening.



    Left:  Axis Mundi is a bronze statue     representing the axis connecting
    heaven and earth. Description below.


    Above:  The bowl that sits atop the
    statue is designed for the Valles
    Caldera in New Mexico, the first of
    eight sacred sites in nature.




The deeper meaning of this work is expressed by Jean: "Axis Mundi is Latin for 'center of the world' (also cosmic axis, world pillar and center of the world).  More specifically, it connotes the connecting axis between the two opposite sides, or facets, of a world.  It signifies the connection of opposites, the intertwined nature of opposing forces and elements…  It is a symbol representing the point of connection between sky and earth.  It offers a means of travel and correspondence between the two realms.  It is also the place where the four compass directions unite, allowing Universal wisdom from heaven to be poured onto the world.  This place is at the center of the world:  the world’s point of beginning."


To learn more about this visionary project, please visit the website of
    The Axis Mundi Project and view these videos:



See also:

The Power of Beauty

Bridge to the Inner World

Beauty - Doorway into Light
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