A SMALL TOWN GIRL, Aviko grew up amidst the National Forests and Great Lakes of Northern Michigan, enjoying a close kinship with Gaia from an early age, and cultivating "True Beatle Fandom" as a teenager. Public school and the Lutheran Church provoked her to leadership roles including Girl Scouts, Honor Society, Forensics, Girls State, Cheerleading, Student Body President, Long-Jump Champion and Award-Winning Clarinetist. As a high school senior, she led a fundraising drive that resulted in building three Peace Corps Schools in South America.

Moving to a "big pond" for university, she took a break from leadership functions after a year in the massive student government at Michigan State, in favor of expanding her individual horizons -- immersing herself in alternate philosophies, lifestyles and ways of looking at and moving through the world. After graduating in Psychology, Anthropology and History, she served in VISTA in Richmond, Virginia.

It soon became evident that a law license was required to solve the problems of her constituents, so after a restful two years of travel, macrame, quilting, weaving, photography, decoupage, and working as a legal secretary and substitute teacher, Aviko trudged off to law school to take on the drill of reading 200 pages per night and standing to recite them the next day. She found her passion in Appellate Advocacy, competing regionally and nationally, and after winning over Harvard, went on to place 3rd in the nation.

In the midst of pro bono legal work including writing protective legislation for hazardous waste regulation, aiding the National Organization for Women, and creating a nonprofit organization to support public Waldorf education, Aviko has found time to study ballet, to perform ancient dance, learn graphic design and to develop an oevre of fine art ranging from gestural abstracts to detailed portraits, which have been exhibited in the United States, Canada, Europe and the former USSR.

"When I'm on," says Aviko, "the Painter that comes through me is as old as the mountains, and silent as deep space. She's the clarity that permeates the chaos, the calm in eye of the storm, the tempest in the midst of tranquility -- that which is constant in you, me, and we."

Aviko favors a sumi-e-like gestural approach to her subject matter. She characterizes her own work as meditation on archetype, which is executed in the space between "the breath of out and the breath of in" such that the artist attempts to invoke only objective expression, eliminating the clutter of the personality and its emotional baggage. (Quote from "The Women's Song" 1980 Margaret McDonnell.)

Says Aviko, "The secret of true gesture is the life that passes through it. When life is sustained by the gesture, the artwork has a magical quality that can touch the being of the beholder. That's the reason to pursue it."

Aviko's work has been influenced by the late and Venerable Chogyum Trungpa Rinpoche and artist E.J. Gold.


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