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Chisho Maas

by Informed Collector on 5/18/2017 9:38:44 AM

Informed Collector Recommends:


Chisho Maas


Oil 12 x 16

Zen Master by Chisho Maas was selected as a Finalist in the March 2017 BoldBrush Painting Competition.




Born and raised in California, Chisho now resides in Longmont, Colorado. She has pursued many interests in her life, but she has always been an artist.  From her earliest years, she displayed a talent for drawing, and progressed through childhood with charcoal and colored pencils.


Music was her other great interest, and had to play its role before art could have its way.  She received her Bachelor of Music in Sacred Music and Voice, and eventually taught music and choral music in schools and churches.  Many years were spent overseas, in Japan, Southeast Asia, Europe, raising a family.  Musical theater, Maria in Westside Story, was a highlight of this period.


Her life as a professional artist began with painting and calligraphy in the Zen tradition.  This art is characterized by an aliveness and clarity of spontaneous brush work using sumi ink on rice paper.   Its spontaneous nature results in a stylized calligraphy that is very gestural, often bordering on the abstract.  Going beyond the dictates of the conscious mind, a complete freedom of movement allows the power and rhythm of Nature to filter through and infuse the work with 'life.'  Chisho departed from calligraphy in the majority of her paintings, going totally to the abstract in the intuitive spirit and energy of Zen.  She was mentored by a Zen master from Japan, himself a master calligrapher.  This art work emerged at the culmination of her many years as a resident student in a Zen monastery, and remains at the core of her later work. (See sumi paintings at                   


In 2009, she began the study of representational painting using acrylics and oils. Her subjects are varied: landscapes, portraits, figures.  She began exhibiting her paintings in the fall of 2010; and at her first juried show, her painting, 'Umbrellas,' was awarded Best of Show.  In 2011, her paintings were juried into a number of shows and received several awards.  She has been commisssioned to do a number of portraits.


She believes that a spirit of the painting is created by the artist.  "When all the elements are in harmony, that newly created spirit radiates to all who view it.  This spirit is most easily facilitated when the mind ceases to dictate, and the painting process takes on a life of its own.  Most artists know this state.  I call it 'no mind.'"   Viewers often comment on a distinct 'feeling' emanating from her paintings.



Oil Painters of America

Longmont Artists Guild



  • Best of Show:  'Umbrellas, Japan,'  Frederick Fine Art Show 2010, CO
  • First Place in Acrylics:  'Backstage,'  St. Stephens Art Show 2011, Longmont CO
  • First Place in Oils:  'Orchid,'  BAA/LAG Member Show 2011, Longmont CO
  • Peoples Choice:  'Orchid,'  BAA/LAG Member Show 2011, Longmont CO
  • Peoples Choice:  'I'm Ten,'  National 'Lines into Shapes'  2011, Estes Park CO
  • Best of Show:  'Pella Crossing - 1,'  Frederick Fine Art Show 2011, CO
  • First Place in Oils:  'I'm Ten,'  Frederick Fine Art Show 2011, CO
  • Third Place in Oils:  'I'm Ten,'  St. Stephens Art Show 2012, Longmont CO
  • Special Opportunity Stipends Program awarded through NY Foundation for the Arts and the NY State Council on the Arts
  • 'Zen Master' was selected as one of the jury's favorite 15% in the October 2013 BoldBrush Painting Competition.
  • 'Portrait of a Dancer' was selected as one of the jury's favorite 15% in the July 2014 BoldBrush Painting Competition.
  • 'Portrait of a Dancer' and 'Dancer's Life' were both selected in the favorite 15% in August 2014 BoldBrush Comp.
  • 'Portrait of a Dancer' was selected as one the the jury's favorite 15% in October 2014 BoldBrush Painting Competition.
  • 'Zen Master' was awarded Honorable Mention in the OPA Online Showcase competition for Fall 2014; Dan Beck, juror.


Represented by

Abend Gallery, Denver CO

Mary Williams Fine Art Gallery, Boulder  CO

Rabbit Brush Gallery, Hygiene, CO



Learn More About Chisho Maas


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Topics: InformedCollector

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