About Masa Rasa

Masa Rasa Studios was created to showcase and share the painting, sculptural, and multimedia work of artist James Nichols.   With the help of Ganapati Levine, a collection of bronze statues has been created to enrich this offering and share their mutual experience of the spiritual landscape of India and the experience of Divine Consciousness.

In his work, Nichols uses Maize as a visual symbol for that Consciousness.  Maize, a hybrid plant of mysterious origin, appeared thousands of years ago and is considered conscious and sacred by many native cultures.  Maize is the one grain in all of nature that cannot propagate itself - Maize must be cultivated and planted by hand.  This makes Maize a symbol that can stand with roots in two worlds: that of the natural, biological world, and that of the world of human ‘doing’  -  the world of culture, the world of art and myth, of Consciousness.

Masa Rasa Studios is also a hybrid, combining two streams of inspiration and artwork, one celebrating individual vision and craft, and another stream representing That which is the source of all creativity . . . the celebration of what is beyond and transcendent of the individual - the celebration of Life.  They merge to create a river that nourishes the Cornfield within.  We call it an Artstory.

‘Masa’ is the Spanish word for 'dough,' commonly made in the Americas from Maize, or corn.  It is the grinding staple of life, a nourishing food at the root of the American diet for untold generations.  ‘Rasa’ is the Sanskrit word for the 'nectar' of life, the essence of artistic and aesthetic experience, the sweetness in the corn.  Masa Rasa is both food and nectar for the spirit, ground to life through a harmonious blend of effort and grace, salted with uncertainty, and sweetened with love.  Please enjoy.  Blessings to all.

Apotheosis of the Corn Goddess   oil on linen   84"H x 60"W