Artist’s Statement

Cleveland Heights artist Stephen Calhoun



My art’s aim is to grip the viewer, and then inspire the viewer to seek their own unique discoveries in each piece. The pieces present deep opportunities for visual serendipity by drawing the viewer into experiential, insightful, seeking.

I do not create images to pre-program or encode the viewer’s experience. Each piece is underdetermined up to the point of the viewer’s enactive presence and constructive experience.

The pieces aim to invoke a kind of pareidolia. (Pareidolia–the grasp of order from seeming randomness–is the psychological phenomenon where people see recognizable shapes in clouds, rock formations, or otherwise unrelated objects or data.)

The engaged viewer completes the image’s possible program by virtue of their own subjective and unique experience.

My artistic intention is to evoke the truth of spontaneous discovery. Each piece captures an experimental result. The viewer’s unique encounter and seeking completes the experiment.


I came to this as a matter of my lifelong drive to satisfy my curiosity. This mission demands that I wander, experience, explore, do experiments.


To steep ourselves in a subject-matter we have first to plunge into it.— John Dewey

If you have not experienced a thing, it is not true!— Kabir

The goal of life is rapture. Art is the way we experience it. Art is the transforming experience. — Joseph Campbell

Follow the perfume, not the tracks.— Shams of Tabriz


Music remains the tonic resource that pervades my experiments in image making. My creative process shapes itself as a matter of improvisation, conducting, intuiting the organic ensemble, and, as pianist Paul Bley said of jazz, composing in real time.

“Creating visual pieces is a musical process. My guiding intentions are to learn by doing experiments, discover unique territories by implicating factors of serendipity, novelty, and, enjoy my adventurous creative process.”

contact: | 216.269.5568 (Cleveland, Ohio, USA)

Stephen Calhoun
scale representation – large pieces are 42″ to 84″ on largest side

My artist’s statement is a living description! Stephen Calhoun, August 2016 


Stephen Calhoun’s creative projects have in their background his theorist/researcher’s interest in serendipity, generativity, and radically empirical experience in adult learning and development.

Starting as a self-taught graphic designer in 1985, his first fine art works were painted from 1993-2002. He took up the cause of procedural, generative digital art in 2003. In 2009, he took up digital photography, and soon began fusing photography with generative procedures. His experiments have focused on complexity and symmetry since 2013.

He considers himself to be an untutored, self-taught, resourceful and attuned, artistic experimenter. His current artistic catalogue of editions, as of July 2016, numbers over 250 pieces. He has worked exclusively in the digital domain since 2003.

Across creative and scholarly domains Stephen is all about being enveloped by experience for the sake of exploration, learning how to learn and unlearn, and, being overtaken by epiphanies. Out of this his aim is singular: to provide the evocative opportunity for others to seek and experience visual epiphanies.

Stephen Calhoun, Artist (Cleveland, Ohio 1954- )

more talk _Q&A


works-in-progress, sketches, hopeful rejects, gallery: symmetry-hypothesis.tumblr

instagram: artist Stephen Calhoun

Primary catalog works were exhibited at The Gallery At Gray’s, Cleveland, Ohio, May 2016-June 2017.The gallerists there, Deba Jean Gray and Serena Harrigan, count as the visionary persons whose support got the ball rolling. The fifteen pieces completed between 2013-2015 shown in their gallery are tagged to indicate their primary status in the growing catalog.

Selected artworks have been made available to Asian and Canadian collectors via the private collector’s network and advisory Oh Good Party (Toronto.) Open edition artworks are available through Saatchi.

Mandalas formulated from original photographs. Selected artworks may be purchased directly from the artist.

I blog about all sorts of stuff, including art, creativity, experiential learning, adult development, serendipity, analytical psychology, biosemiotics, enactivism, neurophenomenology, religion, Buddhism, Sufism, poetry & poetics, anthropology, esoterica, psychology, philosophy, counter-cultures, current events, the world, the universe: squareONE:explorations

LinkedIn bio | squareONE: experiential toolmakers | Kamelmauz (music)