Cheselyn Amato

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About the Artist

Cheselyn Amato is an interdisciplinary visual artist, Kabbalist, interreligious thinker and activist, global citizen, and nomadic temple builder. She works across the disciplines – 2D, 3D and 4D – with an emphasis on enacting circumstances for the experience of sublimity, awe, and delight via the orchestration of visual props and cues, colored light phenomena, video projection, vocalization/sounding, and choreographies of gesture and movement. Cheselyn’s work reflects and chronicles her lifelong spiritual, aesthetic, and humanitarian journey. Her work has been exhibited and acquired internationally including the Contemporary Jewish Museum, SF; the Spertus Institute, Chicago; the Jerusalem Biennale, Israel; and the Jewish Museum, NYC.

Chutzpah Alchemy: Radiant Expanses, Quantum Realms & Healing Fields

Statement About Work

“Our goal should be to live life in radical amazement... get up in the morning and look at the world in a way that takes nothing for granted. Everything is phenomenal; everything is incredible; never treat life casually. To be spiritual is to be amazed.”

― From Man Is Not Alone by Abraham Joshua Heschel

Radical amazement, a term coined by Abraham Heschel in 1951, remains one of the most inspirational, energizing and efficacious calls to anyone and everyone to become awakened. Via curiosity and courage, we are invited to engage fully in life and to support every other being to do the same. With radical amazement as a highest value, so too is honoring freedom, liberty, equality and equity for all beings via the enactment, maintenance and sustenance of social justice and transformation in an ever-evolving world. 

Furthermore, Heschel said in response to his experience marching alongside Martin Luther King Jr. in 1965, “When I marched in Selma, I felt my legs were praying.” In this sentiment, Heschel integrates spiritual values and social action, which represents the thread in Jewish consciousness, sensibility and accountable responsibility to care about the wellbeing of all beings. Jewish values guide a global social politics of respect, appreciation, care and action.

I make work in honor of sublimity, awe, wonder and delight and for the evocation and invocation of individual to global healing, transformation, joy, and celebration. Ala rapturous color and light phenomena in concert with Kabbalah, quantum field theory, synchronicity, synesthesia, and chutzpah, I hope to encourage liberatory awakened mind, heart and body. I work with a radiant film that is activated by light; colored light is both reflected off of as well projects through the materials creating both firm-edged and effervescent effects.The scale of these works as sculpture as well as digital print are variable in scale and can be tailored for context. I make work to instigate and incubate; to present ineffability; as antidote to dystopia; as a vision of harmony; as incantation for intersectionality, healing, harmony and peace; for the dissolution of negative pathways of reactivity and knee-jerk destructive behavior; and to nurture in-gathering for betterment, wholeness and wild amazement.