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01 March 2019


Meet the Maker artist Sonya Rothwell Alchemist-in-Chief of Gallery BeautifulNomadic artist designer Sonya Rothwell, Our founder and alchemist-in-chief Sonya Rothwell, quieted herself enough to hear her heart, dream big and conjure this beautiful gift to the world ...


What do you paint ?

Empyrean consciousness expressing itself (or huge iridescent abstracts of the cosmos) : I use my oil paintings to create mandalaesque designs which I apply to various surfaces : Like space, my creations expands in all directions, off canvas onto clothes, ties, scarves, cushions, fabric, wallpaper, lampshades and objet, blurring the boundaries of art and design ☆



Where does your inspiration come from ?

I create from the heart, that is, I journey within to the source of my inspiration : For me art's a spiritual alchemy – the divine dance of bringing inspiration into being : I like to call it 'cosmosis' – subtly absorbed minglings with universal forces ☆


Explain what you mean by within ?

I paint from another place – where I go, I couldn't tell you : I 'drop down' there by letting go and stepping away from myself, but in that place, I am more myself than anywhere else : To borrow from Poet Laureate Pablo Neruda; while I am creating I am far away, and when I come back I have already gone ☆


So meditation's part of your creative process ?

Sort of, when one practices stillness and presence life becomes a walking meditation; everything flows : Our inspiration, intuition, inner voice, guidance, whatever you like to call it, gets louder the quieter we become – by quiet I mean calm and still inside ☆


So you're not easily distracted ?

To be an artist requires immense self discipline and focus : There’s no room for distraction when one is 'in the flow’ : Ideas are drawn to inspired action like fire flies fluttering against lit glass, all wanting to come in at once : Most lose patience and drift away, leaving only the very persistent ones to become ☆


Do you use mood boards to inspire you ?

Life inspires me : My passion is to see for myself, to know – to leave no stone unturned : I have a deep love for Mother Earth and her people, so I travel to explore, observe, absorb far flung places off the beaten track, rich in texture, colour&culture and new ideas : So life is my mood board – like Matisse, everywhere I go, I draw with my eyes : Everything I have ever lived pours out of me into my art ☆


Then you'd consider passion as integral to your process ?

Of course, Art, when created from the heart, is never mediocre : One must throw oneself wholeheartedly into creation : Dive in head first, naked : Float and frolick in its foam : Swirl in its glittering streams of sunlight and swim around its silken depths : Then behold what emerges ☆

Where do you create your art ?

Home is where the heart is, so there’s no better place to create from : My daughter Peony and I found a house large enough for all our big ideas, within a secret garden, walled and full of magic : A beautiful grade II listed National Trust manor house, surrounded by a magical garden that's open to the public : Our home's also Temple Beautiful + Gallery Beautiful HQ : We work across the entire house : Our formal drawing rooms are showrooms displaying our pieces in an elegant home setting and most of the bedrooms have become studio spaces – Peony has her own art studio too ☆


What do you see and hear from your windows ?

The most enchanting garden in England The Courts National Trust Garden : It’s my joy, my solace, my inspiration : I try to start each day with a stroll in our garden noticing the detail of Gaia's gifts : This moment of quietude and stillness brings peace to my whole day : Inspired ideas come from this peace ☆



Is it hard to switch off when you work from home ?

(Laughs) there’s no switching off, I’m an artist – life is art, art is life : Makers don’t just make things, we live and breathe them > READ MORE 

Could you ever go back to working in an office 9-5 now?

I’ve never worked 9-5, even as an art director I worked late at night and at weekends. I still do this, but now I work for myself, I have the freedom to work remotely (which suits my nomadic spirit) and always be there for Peony, my raison d'être ☆


Where does the name come from ?

Temple Beautiful was an ancient Egyptian centre of Spirit; the arts, meditation, wellbeing + higher consciousness : Said to be housed within a pyramid adorned with constellations in opalescent hues where people elevated their consciousness by raising their creative energy through the senses : The temple didn't follow a religion – it simply provided a place for individuals to raise their own energy, nurture their own connection and in turn help their fellow man, hence our mantra : When within, no one without > BE LOVE 

What's Temple Beautiful ?

Temple Beautiful is a centre of Spirit; the arts, meditation, wellbeing + higher consciousness : We call our members Tribe Beautiful – a global community of magic makers; conscious creators restoring our beautiful world : It's a place to share ideas, spread love, play, inspire, expand + uplift : Consciously connect with yourself, life & others to activate positive change – there’s power in numbers : It’s also our umbrella charity helping small sustainable NGOs make a big difference to deprived third world children, formed from my desire to #BeTheChange I wish to see in the world 
When you join #TribeBeautiful and buy our Gallery Beautiful pieces you're empowering many of the beautiful children I've met on my travels > BE LOVE 



How did Gallery Beautiful come about ?

I'll tell you a love story : One typical British morning Art went for her usual dewy stroll : Lost in bird-song and fragrant thoughts of other worlds, she wandered : When all at once she saw a crowd, a golden host of Spirit, Integrity, Innovation, Style, Craftsmanship, Eccentricity, Whimsy and High-jinx : Well, it was fun at first sight, they just adored each other : Day soon leap-frogged away from them – by sunset were firm friends and had decided to live together, but not get married because Anarchy, Art's alter-ego didn't want to : They found a house large enough for all their big ideas within a secret garden, walled and full of magic : In no time they bore a child, but only one because they believed in Quality not quantity, and named her Gallery Beautiful 



What change would you like to see in the world  ?

deeply wish for balance : For a beautiful world without borders and labels where all beings are respected : Where nature, animal and man coexist peacefully as humans work together, sustainably, for the greater good of all 
I’d like to see consumerism and spirit join hands, treading as gently as possible on this beautiful earth that doesn’t belong to us : Our bespoke pieces are ethical and sustainable, made locally to order encouraging our consumers to #BuyLess and love more : With awe and respect we take responsibility for our part, hoping to leave Mother Gaia as we found her with all her beauty intact 

Where can one see your art pieces ?

☆ gallerybeautiful.com  
+44 (0) 1225 635 443


Meet the Maker artist Sonya Rothwell Alchemist-in-Chief of Gallery Beautiful



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