S T E P H A N I E R A Y N E R
Stephanie Rayner is a professional artist and international lecturer whose work deals with the great theme of our age: The transformation of our spirituality by the revelations of science and technology - a theme that addresses the deep need of our time and elicits powerful responses from viewers.
Ms. Rayner has presented her works to many significant scientific, theological, and philosophical thinkers of our time, including:
The Vatican Symposium on Religion and Science (Malta), the American think tank I.R.A.S. - the Institute for Religion in an Age of Science (New Hampshire), the First International Symposium of Religion and Science (University of Toronto), the 1998 graduating class of engineers at Embry Riddle U (Arizona), 'Man and Millennium', an international conference on cosmology and deep space morphology (Johannesburg), where she was a keynote speaker on the roster with Dr. George Ellis, co-author of The Big Bang Theory, and Nelson Mandela.
In 2002, she was invited to present her work to international scholars studying Art and the Evolution of Human Consciousness at Stanford University's Center for Advanced Studies.
China’s Luxun University of Art invited her to lecture on depth of meaning in her art works at four universities in 2009.
In 2016 Stephanie Rayner became the only visual artist to have been awarded the Ashley Fellowship by Trent University.
"In our era humankind is being forced, by scientific revelations, into the birth of a profound new consciousness. All births are painful and contain elements of danger and risk, but births are the necessary threshold for evolving potential."
In our era humankind is being forced, by scientific revelations, into the birth of a profound new consciousness. All births are painful and contain elements of danger and risk, but births are the necessary threshold for evolving potential.
Throughout, and as a necessary part of our evolution, Homo Sapiens have used arts, sciences and religions to pursue a knowing, an intimacy and sometimes a dialog with the vastly powerful, awe engendering inner mysteries of the cosmos, the natural world and… ourselves.
Some of these artworks deal with perceived pitfalls re: “The Trickster’s” gift of technology, while others, I believe, show the possibility of a bridge between science and religion. A bridge not based on any one culture’s interpretation of God, but rather the sacred as revealed through universal phenomena that bind us to the cosmos.
It is a wonderfully rich time to be an artist/watcher. Old patterns are dissolving and reforming in unimaginable combinations through rapid changes in science/technology, art and religion. This new holy trinity is involved in a mysterious weaving, interchanging dance where art waltzes with technology, science both challenges and morphs religion and humanity fumbles with god-like powers while groping for the clarity of vision and the spiritual strength to withstand them.
In these art works I look for the under-story of this continuous journey of longings... using myth, fairytales, religion and science in search of an enhanced under-standing of these powerful labyrinthine connections that touch us beneath the thinking level. Although we seem to be missing our era’s Virgil or Homer, I hope these art works give a sense of the truly mythic dimensions of the age in which we live.
- Stephanie Rayner