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Mining the Spirit (4)


Taylor came to northwest Iowa to become one of the first nontraditonal scholarship students at Buena Vista University. In his fashion, he has bestowed grace upon his adopted hometown.

By using the dirt of gypsum strip mines to create his paintings, he has transformed Fort Dodge’s bland mineral of sheet rock into something of beauty, of the spirit.

Taylor believes all journeys are endowed with an abstract spirituality. “Life is a constant discovery. The closer you get to anything, the more you learn that your previous perceptions were incomplete. And the more abstract it appears.

"Look at a tree under a microscope. What we think we see is actually blinding us to the truth. All you really can ever do is discover yourself. That’s why I think abstraction will remain relevant throughout time, like the old cave paintings do.”

The artist’s gallery representative believes Taylor will remain relevant, too.

“In an era when some artists try on philosophies of life like Halloween costumes, Madai is the real deal,” says TJ Moberg. “He doesn’t even know how to be disingenuous.”

Dig It

Explore further at and follow the artist on Twitter (@MadaiTaylorArt). Des Moines’ Moberg Gallery will host a February 2013 exhibition of Taylor’s work.

Next: Madai Taylor's work
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