Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry

Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry

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by Akiane Kramarik, Foreli Kramarik

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Ten-year-old prodigy Akiane Kramarik shares her artwork, poetry, and the fascinating story surrounding her talent.
Growing up in a home with an atheistic mother and a non-participating Catholic father did not stop four-year-old Akiane Kramarik from finding God. This girl's dreams began a conversation in the home that has eventually brought them all to

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Ten-year-old prodigy Akiane Kramarik shares her artwork, poetry, and the fascinating story surrounding her talent.
Growing up in a home with an atheistic mother and a non-participating Catholic father did not stop four-year-old Akiane Kramarik from finding God. This girl's dreams began a conversation in the home that has eventually brought them all to Christianity and the world's attention. Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry is a collection of the best of Akiane's full-color paintings and poetry created from ages 4 to 10, along with details of her family and the amazing stories that surround each unique artwork. Already a media professional, Akiane has been interviewed on programs such as Oprah, World News Tonight, Lou Dobbs Tonight on CNN, and Schuller's Hour of Power. Akiane will be one of twenty visual artists participating in the October "Listen" event raising money for the world's needy children. Today Akiane's art is available online at www.artakiane.com.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Though 12th-century mystic Hildegard of Bingen began receiving visions at the extraordinarily young age of five, she was in her early 40s before she revealed them to the public in her writings, artwork and music. Not so for Idaho-born Akiane, a media star who, at the age of 10, confidently reveals her divinely inspired artwork and poetry to the wider world. The book is divided into three parts, the first section being the story of Akiane's life and her visions (which first began at the age of four) as told by her mother-a kind of hagiography of sorts. It's well meaning, but generally stilted and flat in its prose. Most interesting are parts two and three, the second section devoted to full color depictions of Akiane's paintings (vivid, fantasy-like portraits in color and scene), and the third a selection of her poetry. Even more interesting-yet unfortunately left unexplored in any real depth-is the question of how to understand Akiane in the context of Christian spirituality. Is she a mystic? A precociously gifted child? The product of smart agents and advertising? All of the above? Readers will have to decide those questions for themselves. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
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9.28(w) x 10.16(h) x 0.54(d)

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her life, her art, her poetry
By akiane kramarik foreli kramarik

W Publishing Group

Copyright © 2007 akiane and foreli kramarik All right reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-8499-0044-0

Chapter One

The First Years

Two weeks overdue, but exactly on the destined due date, our daughter was born as a hot, muggy July day dawned over our home. Like millions of other parents, we felt that there had to be some Higher Power behind this wonder, but at the time we knew nothing about Him, nor did we suspect the spiritual transformation that our family would experience due to the influence of this nine-pound baby girl.

After her underwater birth, we held her in the warmth of the birthing pool as she looked up at us with her blue eyes. Through the ripples we could see her long hair floating in the water and her delicate fingers occasionally grasp the pulsing umbilical cord. My husband, Markus, cut the cord, and we named our newborn after the Russian word for "ocean": Akiane.

"She will have bright eyes," he noticed.

"She will be a picky eater!" I said as I observed the way she suckled.

Relieved that the home labor had passed without serious complications, we were elated to kiss and rock our third child. The midwife had come, but only to tell us we needed to pay her. And so it was that Akiane came into the world on her own.

We had recently moved from Chicago to the small town of Mount Morris, Illinois, and the only place we could afford was a shack on the edge of a cornfield. Outside of the house we felt no safety; one neighbor was murdered, another caused fire after fire by burning trash next to our windows, another tried to shoot our dog, and another threatened to assault us if we didn't attend church. The interior of our house was unpleasant as well. The walls and flooring were cracked, moldy, and splattered with paint, and no matter how much we cleaned and scrubbed, the place was unsightly. We didn't have much furniture: one bed, one table, one chair, one rocker, and one empty bookshelf. There was no sink in the kitchen, so we washed the dishes in the bathroom or in the foul-smelling, flooded basement. But somehow none of this bothered us much, for we were busy talking, laughing, and playing. I was able to be with the children all the time, and they received my complete attention.

One day, while climbing the steep and crumbling concrete stairs outside our home, I tripped, and since there was no railing, fell. Three-week-old swaddled Akiane fell out of my arms and landed right on her face, straight onto the hard asphalt. The fall was terrible! I was sobbing along with my little baby, whose face began to swell and bleed profusely.

Akiane cried all day long. That evening we received a strange call from Europe telling us about a certain woman named Victoria, from the mountains of Armenia, who was telling many people about the incredible future of a girl named Akiane. A little later she called us herself and, with a thick Russian accent, tried to verbalize the spectacular events that were ahead for our daughter. Since she was a Christian and we were not believers, we did not take her passionate talk seriously, letting it go in one ear and out the other, completely rejecting it. Nevertheless, from that strange phone call we took the hope that our daughter would not be affected by the trauma of the fall that morning. Maybe that was all we needed to hear. The next day Akiane stopped crying, and her face began healing rapidly. After the incident we never again swaddled her but kept her close in a sling or a baby carrier.

With her frequent giggles and sunny personality, our newborn brought joy to all of us. She was very affectionate, sensitive, observant, and shy.

Our family led a fairly simple life; Markus commuted a long distance to work as a chef while I stayed home with Akiane and her two older brothers, Jeanlu, two, and Delfini, four. With little money and no friends nearby, we had to create our own fun. Every day I would dress our children warmly and take them across the cornfields to watch the sun set over the nuclear power plant that was visible on the horizon. We spent hours counting the birds in the sky and guessing which direction the steam from the plant would drift. At home we made a swing for Akiane, where she spent many hours rocking and napping. The boys grew monarch butterflies from cocoons they found in the meadows, wrote their own books, and turned tree branches into swords. They made wreaths from flowers or pine needles, play-dough from flour, tents from blankets, and forts from cardboard boxes or snow.

The children and I made carrot pancakes and almond cookies to share with the neighbors, but although we knocked on doors to invite our neighbors over for tea or dinner, we realized that no one was interested in getting to know us. Almost every day we walked a few miles to the playground in hope of meeting playmates for the children-or anyone with whom we could share a conversation. But everyone seemed content with their own social circles.

Our daughter learned to crawl and walk very early, and after taking her first steps, she was very deliberate in every move, rarely falling down. The only delay in her development was talking, as she preferred to listen and would say only a few words. She always chose to observe new places and families from a safe distance before engaging in any direct interaction, and since the playground suited her personality, it soon became her favorite place to meet new faces, challenges, and adventures. Akiane liked to stay there half the day-even on chilly days-so we always packed books, blankets, and plenty of food.

My husband Markus's long work hours eventually wore him down. With severe asthma, his health began to deteriorate. When he took on a second job to help make ends meet, the combination of stress and asthma caused him to lose weight rapidly. Without money to see a doctor, he began to fear the worst. I would often hear him say, "I might not last long. Please, think now about how you-by yourself-could support our three children. There's no one to help us, and I am too weak ... I don't know how much longer I can go on."

Although I cherished my time with the children, because of the heavy burden of poverty and sickness in our family, I became involved in a sales business that, surprisingly, began to flourish very fast. At home, in the same room where our three little children played, I reluctantly learned about the outside world.

As a toddler, Akiane paid close attention to textures and fabrics. She loved to bring home rocks, shells, leaves, and flowers. When we went shopping or out to meet people, she insisted on touching each person's clothing and feeling the different textures of skin. Since she was a very tactile child, we brought her a live bunny from a farm, and then a black Newfoundland puppy, which she loved feeding, training, and grooming. Her fascination with living creatures was apparent even then.

Akiane was unusually sensitive to the moods of those around her. She was quick to sense someone's essence, even through the thickest masks of laughter and smiles. "That woman is bad," she might observe-even if it was the exact opposite of what Markus and I had perceived. And if we left her with someone she didn't like for even a few minutes, she wouldn't stop crying until she was back safe in our laps. Surprisingly, her first impressions of people proved accurate time and time again.

By the time Akiane was two years old, my sales and advertising business had become so lucrative that we earned enough bonus money to purchase a house. I reached the top position in our nutritional product company, and after receiving an award and a sizable check, we packed our little white truck and drove from state to state looking for a new home.

We finally found a home in the state of Missouri, a ten-thousand-square-foot replica of a Frank Lloyd Wright house situated by a lake on a golf course, at an unbelievable bargain price. The children especially delighted in the new place. They often jumped off a trampoline into the twenty-foot diving end of our indoor pool, chased a cleaning robot, and warmed up in a sauna or a huge hot tub. They spent endless hours riding their bikes down the long hallways, fishing in the backyard, and playing hide-and-seek on the flat roof.

Our new financial situation also allowed us to buy fresh organic food, and our children were able to eat fruit as often as they liked. We frequently enjoyed lobster, freshly baked bread, avocado smoothies, and coconuts. We could also afford advanced medical care, but even this did not improve Markus's health, as the humidity in Missouri only exacerbated his asthmatic condition.

After a year, the thrill of the large house had died down, and we realized that we'd made a huge mistake. We just didn't need all of that space. In fact, we didn't even call it our home anymore; we jokingly called it "the Frank Lloyd Wrong house," "the sanatorium," "the Pentagon," or just "the hotel." And so we resolved to hire a Realtor and put it up for sale. With shoes neatly lined up by the door, with towels perfumed in the bathrooms, with the slate black tile floor polished to perfection, we had one showing after another-but no one was interested.

Dreams and Drawings Begin

Before we could fully comprehend what was happening, I found myself in the sinkhole of the business world. Although Markus helped me with office duties every day and I was able to work mostly from home, I felt that over time my bond with my children had been weakened. I was pulled between the business and the family. Money didn't seem to bring us more happiness; instead, my work was clouding the joy of motherhood that I had once experienced.

Because Akiane and her brothers had only a few acquaintances and had never formed deep relationships with anyone outside the family, they played mostly with one another. Our family never talked about religion, never prayed together, and never went to any church. I had been raised as an atheist in Lithuania, and Markus had been raised in an environment not conducive to spiritual growth. The children did not watch television, had never been out of our sight, and were homeschooled; therefore, we were certain that no one else could have influenced Akiane's sudden and detailed descriptions of an invisible realm. We can't remember the exact month, but one morning when Akiane was four, she began sharing her visions of heaven with us.

"Today I met God," Akiane whispered to me one morning.

"What is God?" I was surprised to hear this. To me, God's name always sounded absurd and primitive.

"God is light-warm and good. It knows everything and talks with me. It is my parent."

"Tell me more about your dream."

"It was not a dream. It was real!"

I looked at her slightly puffed eyes, and in complete disbelief I kept on asking her questions. "So who is your God?"

"I cannot tell you." Akiane lowered her head.

"Me? You cannot tell your own mom?"

"The Light told me not to." She was firm.

"Akiane, darling, you can share anything with me. You know I won't tell anyone."

"Yes, you will. You cannot know."

"Why did you think it was God?"

"Just like I know you are my mommy, and you know I am Akiane."

"Who even taught you such a word God?"

"You won't understand."

I was astonished to think she felt she could not tell her own mother. Even more puzzling was the fact that she had learned the word God on her own. Upset and uncomfortable, I suggested that maybe it was a nightmare and that if she would just talk to me, I could help.

I begged her that whole day to tell me anything at all about her dream, but she never gave in. About six weeks passed before I succeeded, finally reaching a point where she would describe to me details about life with God and the future of the earth. We no longer suspected she was imagining such events, because she had never fantasized like other children her age. She never initiated pretend games, talked with imaginary friends, or visualized living in other places as so many young girls do. With her matter-of-fact approach to life, she always took play and work very seriously, preferring everything to be real. She simply had no interest in fairy tales, fantasies, or anything artificial.

Now she began to share these new experiences, which were unlike anything we were accustomed to hearing. The smallest details, the prophetic speech, and the sense that she spent more time away in the spiritual world than with our family were all hard to ignore. Sometimes she sounded like an older woman-not because of her voice, but because of her total sincerity, her strangely compelling comments, and her broad vocabulary. It scared us and inspired us at the same time.

Though I had promised I would not tell anyone, I did not keep my promise to her. Since I burned to share her stories with others, somehow, little by little, I started relating them to a lot of people. I was giving away Akiane's secrets. But it was premature; what Akiane knew and saw was not meant to be known or disclosed, for neither I nor others were able to handle the messages at that time. I learned when Akiane shared these dreams and visions, which to her were actual life experiences, to stop telling others. I simply began recording them in a journal.

About the same time as the visions began, Akiane suddenly began showing an intense interest in drawing. She began sketching hundreds of figures and portraits on whatever surfaces she found at hand, including walls, windows, furniture, books, and even her own legs and arms. The different poses were drawn mostly from her imagination. Sometimes she scribbled and sketched with her eyes closed, and sometimes with her pencil between her toes or her teeth. There were also times when I would find our white walls smeared with charcoal from our fireplace or with fruits and vegetables from the garden. And sometimes after a reprimand she would scribble on the bottom of the tables so we would not see her mischief.

One day we noticed white spots on her front teeth. We asked what had happened, but Akiane just turned away.

"Akiane ate a tube of toothpaste," Delfini accused. "Her angel's teeth are so white, they sparkle. She thought that if she ate toothpaste, her teeth would also get whiter."

The next morning, after unscrewing almost the entire bookshelf to make an easel, Akiane woke me up at 4:00 a.m. by waving a drawing of a woman over my face. "Look! This is her-this is my angel," Akiane explained. "Her skin is so smooth, not one spot. She doesn't smile in my picture, because paper is not white enough to show how white her teeth are, and I wanted to show how she talks to me with her eyes. You see, where God takes me, He teaches me how to draw."

Our four-year-old daughter was most inspired by faces, and she would sit for hours drawing, erasing, and shading their features. For the next two years, the walls of our home were filled with sketches of her family, her acquaintances, and faces that she dreamed about. At this point she didn't work with colors; she asked only for lead pencils and charcoal.

Akiane seemed unusually patient and serious for one so young, totally dedicated to her work. Not a perfectionist in any other area of her life, this intensity of focus came as a surprise to us. She'd leave her room untidy or her hair uncombed, but her portraits always had to be absolutely perfect.

Her images were often very perceptive. Once, when Akiane sketched the portrait of a woman who seemed to be very happy, she depicted her subject with a very sad expression. Upon seeing the picture, the woman tearfully admitted that her happiness was a front, for she had just lost her only son. Another day she showed me a sketch of myself looking to the side. "You look away from me and my brothers! I want to be with you more ... You spend all your time in your office and have no time to play chess with me. We need each other. We need kisses."


Excerpted from akiane by akiane kramarik foreli kramarik Copyright © 2007 by akiane and foreli kramarik. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 49 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is hard to ignore and impossible to dismiss this sincere, passionate, profoundly wise and completely endearing 11 year-old prodigy's compelling account of personal conversations with The Almighty ... as recounted by her mother and herself. Akiane is both a book to own and to give for anyone who has ever questioned God's existence or simply hungered to know more about Him and His incomprehensible love. Illustrated with her own phenomenal sketches, paintings and prophetic poetry, Akiane's astonishing artistic imagery and poetic gifting can only be explained as a miracle. Her work is, in a word, breathtaking! You will be amazed as you read the story of how one four year-old girl's irrefutable testimony and words of wisdom from 'her Father in heaven' coupled with an unexplainable artistic ability far beyond her years made believers out of her own atheist family. It is a story that is destined to change the lives of everyone fortunate enough to read it as well.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Akiane Kramarik is an absolutely amazing artist. That is actually a gross understatement. Her talent in painting and poetry is totally inborn. Individuals like this come along very infrequently. I am as much in awe of her work as I'm sure the contemporaries of Leonardo da Vinci and Michaelangelo were of theirs. Her story is interesting and her work - well, go see for yourself.
rachel5 More than 1 year ago
This child is not only a prodigy, thanks to the good Lord, but she is beautiful inside and out. I enjoyed her story and the art work is phenomenal! Absolutely soothing to read. She tells her story in a beautiful way that will make an unbeliever start to wonder. And, for the believers such as myself, serve to solidify their faith further. Thank you for this great book. God Blss you Akiane.
mybookfriends More than 1 year ago
This is a real WOW read. Cudos to open-minded Mom. I can only read a little at a time, but do re-read. Awesome. Definitely recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To think someone went to heaven and back!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
so amazing! i would love to meet this young lady in person!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was so amazed by Akiane. She has inspired me so much. Awesome paintings. Totally cool. I feel now that I have to draw and doodle everywhere!!!
LanguageTCH 4 months ago
Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry by Akiane and Foreli Kramarik is an amazing, inspiring book. I first heard of this artist/poet in the book Heaven Is For Real. The boy in that book identified her portrait of Jesus as the one he had seen in Heaven. Her story in Part I is so interesting and uplifting. She truly has a creative gift. Her family had so many struggles and difficulties in the early part of her life. This story reveals how she started her art career at a very young age and how this talent has blessed her family. Part II includes much of her beautiful artwork with explanations of the picture and the background. She reveals the symbolism and allegory in her work. The progression of her famous Jesus portrait is shown. Part III includes her poetry which exhibits such depth and imagery, far past her years. Much of it is prophetic. I thoroughly enjoyed this book which can be perused and studied often. The book is worth just one part, but the reader can know her story, her art, and her poetry all in one book. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a miraculous story and amazing art. I received this book through TBCN in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
This book was a lovely look at a very talented young girl and her family. Told from the viewpoint of her mother, we are taken into this family’s home and given a glimpse of what their lives was like and how Akiane’s talent was allowed to progress and be nurtured. This family is a lot like any family, with good times and bad times, sickness and financial problems. I really think it was great that Akiane’s mom held back her mommy impulses of getting angry, especially when her daughter was making such a mess in creating her art. I am glad she saw such talent in her daughter even though I was cringing myself as I read those parts. Akiane has a very artistic nature and her mother really showed that in her writing of how her young daughter would act and think. This is not only this family’s journey but it is a lovely book containing many of Akiane’s paintings and her poetry that goes along with it. I look forward to seeing how her talent will grow as she becomes a young woman. I was given this book for an honest review from The Book Club Network, Inc. (TBCN) and the opinions are my own.
MrsTina42MR More than 1 year ago
Akiane: Her Life, her art, her poetry***** by Foreli and Akiane Kramarik This is a fascinating book about a very young girl, age 4 at the time, who met God and started on an amazing journey. Akiane's mother, Foreli, tells her story and shows how God impacted the whole family. Their life wasn't easy and they moved often, but Akiane continued (and still does) her drawings and paintings of what God reveals to her. She also writes poems that have been included in the book along with photos of her amazing artwork. I love her story—how God called her for a unique mission and how she gives Him all the glory. ~~I received a copy of this book from TBCN for my honest review~~
HappyReader50 More than 1 year ago
This book is absolutely fascinating. Not only because Akaine is a child prodigy, but also because her parents recognized it when Akaine was just a small child and nurtured it throughout her childhood. It absolutely amazes me how God can work through each one of us. In this book we learn how God is working through Akaine—her life, her art and her poetry. Ms. Kramarik is a very, very talented young lady who is using her gifts to glorify our God. This is a book that you could read in one sitting if you wanted to. It gives the story of Akaine’s younger years and also shows many of her drawings and paintings. The last part of the book gives the reader many of Akaine’s poems to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The paintings are beautiful but her mother Foreli is an art teacher who taught my children for one year. One article says Akiane claims to be self-taught but her mother is a very good artist herself. Also, my children's art lessons took place in their home, which was in the richest part of town and their house was a huge, nice, modern home...hard to understand how they were "poor". Akiane, in one article, claims to have grown up in a "dirty shack". Reader beware.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Inspirational artist! I find her art work absolutely delightful.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a touching story about Akiana and her family that you should really read! If you haven't picked up a copy, you should! The pictures are beautiful and the stories behind them are interesting. This little girl has a talent I wish I had. She truly was given this gift.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The painitings are amazing, the story about her life and the family's is very interesting
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have seen the video of this little girl, I believe God would have gifted this young girl just for the testamony of one ... Her mother, To show himself to her through the miraculess giftings, And to make the young girl a Wittness to her mother, And to make a believer of her, That she would be Saved !!!
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