Manú Menéndez is an incredible artist operating out of Mexico and creating marvelous, psychedelic imagery. Propelled by his intense connection to the universal impetus (or the Divine Source), Manú has been producing wonderful pieces that seem to be ripped directly from the primordial dreamscape. Viewing himself as a child of life, he uses experience and passion to craft these impeccable works.
Understanding that love is the ultimate unifier of human consciousness, Manú is sure to approach every idea with as much reverie and dedication as the one proceeding it in his own personal quest to raise the spiritual frequency of the planet.
Prox: Could you describe your relationship with Art? What was it like for you as a child?
Manú: In my childhood, I learned that art is life and life is everywhere by opening the eyes of my spirit and observing with attention and awareness. Being here and now. Everything is perception and for me, perception is seeing the "reality" with innocence and astonishment. I let my inner child reveal and show me that the universe is full of infinite possibilities of existence at all times. Everything in the universe is created by the power of belief, the power of thoughts and imagination.
When I was a kid, I realized that reality is a big white canvas on which life, color, texture, and composition are created by the power of our minds. As far back as I can remember, I understood that dreams exist so that we may make them come true.
Despite all of that, I feel that I will always be a child. Every moment is inspired and connected to the Divine Source and creation of all the wonders that happen in the world. I am a believer that feels that there are no boundaries that can limit us in our creation of the reality we want to live and see in the world.
In my understanding, being a child in this way is being a co-creator of the source by using the magic of our imagination. I would love to share a powerful quote from Albert Einstein that says:
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
Prox: Who were some of your greatest artistic influences growing up?
Manú: My Grandmother was a big influence in my maturation as an artist and as a person. She was an alchemist in the kitchen. She could transmit the purest love through food. For her, words were not necessary for that. My “Abuela” learned to create a language from the heart and spirit through cooking. She was a great visionary artist and a wonderful healer.
Something that helped me to develop my creative process as a human being, was learning to find the extraordinary within the ordinary, so that the impossible becomes possible and the usual becomes magical. Every moment of this existence is an opportunity to create universes and realities full of inspiration and love through art – in all definitions of what art can be.
On top of being an artist and painter, I am a human being that goes beyond titles and labels. Emptiness inspires and teaches me to believe that simple things contain an infinite field of wisdom that is accessible to us in every moment. Opening the eyes of the spirit allows us to see the connection with the Divine Source everywhere.
Prox: Which aspects of the rich Mexican culture do you think can be seen throughout your work?
Manú: Mexico is a country that inspires me greatly because it is a place full of colors and traditions oozing with creative richness. The “tejido”, a traditional manufactured fabric is very important for the original inhabitants of Mexico. Each of these fabrics contains a complex symbology and ancient cosmogony. For these native groups, life is an offering to the Earth and the cosmos, a heart bond with nature and it’s elements.
It is beautiful to see the great spirit and sacred conversation through these colorful threads that are likewise embodied in a painting. I believe that all living beings are cosmical strands of the tissue that is life. Everything is interconnected and aligned to a great cosmic cause: love.
The wisdom of my ancestors in Mexico taught me that the ego must be mastered to live a life of love and that just a drop of love can dissolve mountains of ego. Every step we take following the way of our hearts is giving birth to flowers and songs.
Prox: Were there any other cultures that greatly impacted the way you view art?
Manú: I like to open myself to the universe, I like to flow with the voice of the spirit that manifests itself at all times. Every culture in the world that talks about the roots and the connection between human beings, nature, and spirit is of great interest in my creative process as an artist and human being. At the same time I think that we are citizens of the cosmos and go beyond the labels, nationalities, and belonging to a geographical area. We are universal beings that are constantly learning and transforming.
Prox: Were you involved with or interested in spirituality before you became an artist? Was either a byproduct of the other?
Manú: I don't think there has been a time in my life when I did not feel tied to the spiritual. I believe that we are spiritual beings having human experiences, therefore the spirit, the Source, is manifested in each of our thoughts and actions in the world. All of inspiration originates in the great spirit.
For me there is no moment when I do not feel inspired, what makes me recognize that there are unlimited creative possibilities inside of me. We are infinite beings!
Prox: How did you get involved with Shamanism? How has the practice expanded your artistic and existential viewpoints?
Manú: One of the most significant moments that expanded my artistic and existential viewpoints was through a daydream that I had when I was a child. In this vision a spiritual guide appeared to me in a red desert beside the sunset. He was an old shaman, a “grandpa”, who helped me to remember the vision to materialize dreams and blessings. This spirit of the desert showed me how to make the invisible visible and the way to manifest the spiritual into the material world through art, vibration, and color.
I discovered that dreams and reality are not separate. Both are woven with the same creational threads. Since I was a little child I could travel through different planes of consciousness and dimensions through the reverie. Daydreaming means to live in dreams as we do in reality and being aware of the dream. I think that all planes of consciousness are concentrated in the eternal now. I just have to open my perception and the intention and believe that I live in the infinity. Because when I start to believe from intuition and heart I am able to create infinite realities by just imagining them.
Prox: Do you think the information you’ve picked up during your spiritual travels have helped you to better understand yourself and your role in this crazy game we call life?
Manú: The continuous spiritual quest through art has led me to believe in a way that all matter is created by particles, molecules, and vibrations. We all are pure energy of the Source on balance of stillness and movement in one dance.
Art is the medium which lead us to the biggest purpose of all in life that is called love. I like making love to the ego through art and for that I think I am an artist from the spirit and believe that art is the greatest tool of healing, unification, and connection in the universe. It allows us to realize that everything exists and what we perceive is created by our thoughts, feelings, and deepest desires. I see the outside being an illusion, there is no real outside, everything that happens around us is the result of what we reap in our heart, mind, and spirit. Outside therefore is a projection of inside.
The light that guides our interior and that always walks with us, the brilliant mind, is the same mind of the universal Source, God, the Cosmos, the Dhamma, or whatever else you'd like to call it. This did not create us in it's image and likeness, but through it's thought; and as well as God creates life through it's thoughts that inspires and amazes us moment by moment, we are also creators.
Everything that happens through the eyes of a being that has awakened to life is sacred, and as “A Course in Miracles” says: "To create is to love and creating may not be difficult if we consider that we are born to be creators.”
Prox: Do you have any rituals or routines before you begin a piece?
Manú: The ritual I always do before starting any works, is to thank life for giving me the opportunity to sow blessings and colors into the world through art. Staying in a state of gratitude with life is letting the magic that opens all possibilities of abundance and love in my path become reality in every step I take.
Prox: Who are some of your favorite contemporary artists?
Manú: This is a very interesting question to me because I can name countless artists. I find them all the time in everyday life. I admire all these artists - human beings who believe in their dreams and do everything in their power to achieve them. Moment to moment, I see a great awakening of consciousness in the world, more and more we are becoming beings who believe that everything is possible and that most of our limits are illusional. Thanks to the artists of life creating realities of kindness, love, abundance, and freedom.
Prox: Favorite hobbies?
Manú: I like finding art in it's infinite manifestations. I love cooking, making textiles, taking, beautiful walks in natural places (and in the city), practicing meditation, listening and playing music, watching movies, joggling, and enjoying some delicious tea with pancakes in the good company of my loved ones. I also love reading, and biking. I could go on endlessly, but one of the things I love to do most is to find the extraordinary and magical in life in the ordinary and trivial.
Prox: Tips for aspiring artists?
Manú: Do what you love, become what you love.
When you do things from your heart, the universe conspires to make them come true. Remember that the natural law of dreams is that everyone of them can be real and that they are waiting for you to make them real. Trust in your intuition, follow your heart and fly free through art and colors. The limits do not exist.
Prox: Details on upcoming projects?
Manú: I'll be collaborating with several summer music festivals in Europe as well as participating in some individual and group exhibitions. They will be announced on my homepage and my profile Manu Menendez Art on Facebook .
Prox: Final Thoughts?
Manú: Thank you very much for the interview, it is an honor and privilege to share my insights with you! I want to dedicate this interview to my wife Sina for being a great teacher of love and light guiding my way through the art of living.
Finally I want to share a quote from a great spiritual guide named Wayne Dyer:
"Whatever the question, love is the answer"