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“River Journey” abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

Come and meet me this year at the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios!
KAOS OPEN STUDIOS 10th/11th and 17th/18th June 2017 11 – 5pm at Studio KAOS 2 , 14 Liverpool Road Kingston KT2 7SZ
It’s no time at all! So pop this in your diary and make yourself a nice day out. Walk by the river in Kingston, Stroll in the park, walk along the studio trail, pop into a little cafe! Meet KAOS (we are a lovely bunch of creatives) and take a look at what we love investing ourselves into! And if you are someone who does collect art, be it just a few pieces or many, make a good choice and visit the artists direct…You can talk with us and find out more about the work in a way that you wouldn’t be able to do in a different context.
There are  over 90 artists showing work!  I am showing at KAOS 2, along with 8 other artists:
Sandra Beccarelli, Cressida Borrett, Lizzie Brewer, Caroline Calascione, Ikuko Danby, Bali Edwards, Yuka Maeda, and Anna Tikhomirova! See you there!

http://www.kingstonartistsopenstudios.co.uk/

 

Snails in the Studio

Still recovering from my knee replacement surgery, but getting around a bit more now.  The snails may well be moving more quickly than me!

abstract expressionist collage painting jenny meehan jamartlondon snail in the studio artists studio paintings

the snail in the studio jenny meehan abstract painting

 

 

This  painting-collage includes the munch marks of the snails who share my outdoor studio with me.  A market stall steel frame covered in reinforced heavy duty translucent tarpaulin is excellent for the purposes of working in when the weather is not too cold or damp.  I share this wonderful space with my snail friends.  Who also work slowly but very steadily, munching away at my painted cardboard samples of colours and textures and excreting them into multicoloured snail poo and card combinations.  There is none of their waste matter on the collage-painting but some of the card with the munch marks on it.  I find the effect quite attractive.  Sometimes very good things come from the most unexpected places!

I titled the work “Snail in the Studio” after my fellow workers…As interested as I am, in colour, which must satisfy something in them. They devour and work their way through the painted cardboard samples and they do add something to them!  I decided not to fight with them, but just go along with what was happening, so the painting offers them a place in my work!  There are a lot of images of knights fighting snails in old manuscripts, I have discovered. As those familiar with 13th and 14th century illuminated manuscripts can attest, images of armed knights fighting snails are common, especially in marginalia.

Different people have many different theories about what the image of a knight fighting a snail might be symbolising. The Continuum Encyclopedia of Animal Symbolism in Art says:  “The snail was a symbol of sloth and of those who are content with things of the material world at the expense of striving for the spiritual”.  I don’t quite get that one, because the snails in my studio are far from slothful.  They are manic and move very fast indeed.  They are industrious and ravenous beasts! They are certainly concerned with material things though.  Great consumers!  So if consumption is the point, then they may be symbolic of appetite I think.  And the knight to slay the fleshly appetites might be a possible route to go down.

Another idea might be that snails love to eat bark, paper, cardboard,  and similar materials. As far as the monks go, (bearing in mind their books would often be stored in damp places, maybe cellars or similar) I am sure they were very much aware of the risk of damage to their manuscripts/books from snails, and it makes a lot of sense for them to maybe depict this battle against potential destruction of their life work. Snails would be a suitable “enemy” for a bookish monk, bearing in mind their main occupation was producing manuscripts.  Maybe, including the image of the knight fighting the snail, would be a way of asserting that the word and the message of the text, recorded for continuity to be passed through the ages, would overcome any decay or destructive influences.  And also, this would resonate with their own very practical battle of protecting the work from snails eating it!

The “Snails in the Studio” painting includes my little nod, to the snails.  The studio tent is certainly a place of contemplation…As well as paint, I pray and meditate in this set apart space.  I reflect and review, sometimes read, and drink tea as much as possible. It is my holy place, my mini monastery, the place most available to me when I want to focus in on the inner room of my life.  And this is the best place to paint in, because of it being a dedicated space.

The snail — the archetypal slow creature, paradoxically endowed with implacable destructive power —might represent the agonising impossibility of accomplishing all that we hope to, because of the limits of time, and the knight  could teach us that we must nevertheless battle against the snail despite the inevitability of defeat.  I like this idea very much indeed. The reason being I think that in the context of my knee replacement surgery, and the long recovery and rehabilitation process, I am constantly facing the reality of not being able to accomplish all that I hope to, because I cannot rush time… I cannot make it go faster and I cannot speed up the process of recovery.  I am subject to time and it is only time that will reap gradual improvement. My giant metaphorical time-snail is felt to be very big at the moment!  So it’s a slightly different angle on time… but still orientated around the desire to achieve being confounded by the pace/passage of time!

In heraldry, the snail has a fixed meaning of perseverance and deliberation.  Certainly need plenty of that at the moment!

Thinking of snails in relation to reading, “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan” is now in an abridged form.  You can get to it by following this link, and the link is also on the side bar of this blog under “Pages”.

https://jennymeehan.wordpress.com/abridged-version-of-the-very-patient-knee-replacement-story-by-jenny-meehan/  It is still pretty long, so skimming may be a good idea!

Here’s a happy image of me walking around. With crutches I can now walk for a whole 40 minutes!  That’s more than I could do before the knee replacement!

walking after TKR

walking after TKR

 

 

Health Care

I have an ongoing interest in healthcare.  Earlier on in life I worked for ten years as a dental nurse.  It wasn’t planned.  Just a matter of leaving my DATEC Diploma in Art and Design course at Richmond Upon Thames College before the end, disillusioned and despondent.  Needing to leave home quickly.  Needing somewhere to live.  Needing money to be able to live.  So away with the art and into some nursing.  There was a Dental Surgery in Hampton Wick and as it was nearby and familiar (because it was were I had my own dental check ups!) I went along.  Didn’t expect to get the job.  Didn’t like it very much at first, but in the end, got rather enthusiastic.  Trained.

Looking back it was a very suitable job for me.   A good move.  What is more, it enabled me to go to University later as a mature student in my late twenties, as it was just the right kind of job to have while studying at the same time.  No work to take home.  And plenty of work available.  And enjoyable.  I did enjoy dental nursing very much indeed. And the whole role of nursing is such a valuable one.  It makes such a difference to a persons experiences when they feel vulnerable, afraid and anxious.  It is nice to help people in such situations.  To calm and reassure them.

I was very pleased to be part of “The Art of Caring”  http://www.artofcaring.org.uk/ in 2016 and went along to several events celebrating  International Nurses Day which reminded me what an important profession it is.

For 2017 “The Art of Caring”

The Theme
Although your art/photo should respond to the theme of Caring/Care we will be giving special attention to those artworks which respond to the theme of Sustainability. This is because the worldwide theme for International Nurses Day in 2017 is Nursing: A voice to lead – Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Sustainability
The ability to be maintained at a certain rate or level.
Avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance
Or your interpretation of the theme…….
The Exhibitions
The Art of Caring is split into two clear exhibitions.
The first is at St George’s Hospital (3rd-12th May 2017) where printed postcards of your artwork are displayed on the walls of the hospital to help celebrate International Nurses Day. This is an inclusive exhibition.
The second is at St Pancras Hospital (July-October 2017) and uses a mixture of original artworks and printed postcards. Works will be selected by Arts Project curators Peter Herbert and Elaine Harper-Gay.
With my knee replacement experiences of needing care and treatment, the value of those working in healthcare was brought afresh to me.  As part of my experience I began to be aware of other forces at work, and realised that my experience of the health service was affected by many different ebbs and flows.  I discovered the Kings Fund, and the discovery was very helpful. https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/publications/six-ways
Quote from the link:
“In The King’s Fund report Thinking about rationing, Rudolf Klein and Jo Maybin describe a useful framework for understanding the different ways in which access to high-quality care can be limited by commissioners and providers, building on earlier work by Roy Parker. Their typology outlines six ways in which patients can be affected by financial pressures and provides a useful means of examining what is happening in local health systems.
  1. Deflection
  2. Delay
  3. Denial
  4. Selection
  5. Deterrence
  6. Dilution

The first five categories relate to restrictions on access to care, the final category (dilution) relates to reductions in the quality of care.”  credit: written on 31 March 2016 Ruth Robertson

NHS financial crisis, elective surgery joint replacement rationing, TKR graphic art, graphic image knee joint,abstract knee replacement design,abstract artwork knee joint, © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

NHS financial pressures knee replacement jenny meehan © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

So you see above my contribution to the theme “Sustainability”.

On the theme of knee replacement surgery,  the recovery and  rehabilitation from my surgery which was on the 8th March is certainly a marathon.  But I’m doing my exercises!  Getting there slowly.  My experience of being cared for in hospital was amazing! It couldn’t have been better! So impressed!   I wrote a lot about it in “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan” which is on a separate page of this blog.  Look to the right hand side under pages and you can follow the link to it there if knee replacement surgery and patients experience of it is of interest to you! As well as the full version, which had colour coded text to help selective reading, “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan” is now in an abridged form.  You can get to it by following this link, and the link is also on the side bar of this blog under “Pages”.

https://jennymeehan.wordpress.com/abridged-version-of-the-very-patient-knee-replacement-story-by-jenny-meehan/  It is still pretty long, so skimming may be a good idea!

 

Here is the introduction to the full version, as a sample of the reading experience.  I do go on!!!!!

Full Version of “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan”

Warning!  This is VERY long.  For the abridged version of  “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan ” follow this link: https://jennymeehan.wordpress.com/abridged-version-of-the-very-patient-knee-replacement-story-by-jenny-meehan/

No Problem/Moving On abstract art print by Jenny Meehan jamartlondon.com bright bold motivational art for physiotherapy experience personal mobility challenges, jenny meehan,

No Problem/Moving On sign of the times series jenny meehan

Do you like this print?  Buy it, easily and safely, through Redbubble.com:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/20507601-no-problem-moving-on-geometric-colour-abstract-print-by-jenny-meehan-jamartlondon-com?asc=u

Introduction to “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story” by Jenny Meehan

Before I start, or should I say finish, bearing in mind that this post at the beginning, is the post at the end of the story, even though it is not the end of the story, because it is also the beginning…

You are clear on that, yes?  !!!

Never mind! It depends which way round you choose to read this!

You will need patience to read this story.  But I am needing so much patience myself, and it’s a good thing to cultivate.  So it might be useful for you to bear with me.    “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story” will be added to, probably in a couple of months time, as I am still writing it periodically.  So, here is the full version of “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story” as it stands on 4th April 2017.   If you want a much shorter read on a patients experience of knee replacement surgery and recovery, then I have posted some extracts from my story as part of a post I made for April 2017. And there is the abridged version!

Warning! This present version is VERY long! (Around the length of a PhD!) It has some text in a different colour, so that if you are not interested in exercises or mental meandering, you can be aided in your reading by knowing which areas to skip over with ease. Information I’ve found in the expanse of the internet will often be in sea green. Text related to physiotherapy and exercises will be in orange, and mental meanderings will be in blue. You can then jump right over those in your reading if you wish.  Even if you do that, it’s still a good two hour read! But I couldn’t bear to cut the text out, and didn’t think it right to, even if not of interest to the majority,  because if you are considering a knee replacement, I can tell you now, you will need to make yourself interested in exercises and mental meandering, because it is likely you will be doing a fair amount of both! And you will need patience.

If you do prefer a shorter version then follow the link to the abridged version: https://jennymeehan.wordpress.com/abridged-version-of-the-very-patient-knee-replacement-story-by-jenny-meehan/

I have called this “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story” as it features a chapter of my life which, while it is still ongoing, (my knee replacement surgery was recently carried out on the 8th March 2017), was one of those experiences where time takes on a new dimension, and patience, as a virtue, does come into its own. The story as it stands at present, covers the time period from January 2017  to a couple of weeks after my knee replacement surgery,  but  it alludes back in time, (rather a lot!) as I recall the past, and try and make some kind of sense from it.

I think I have realised that what often happens in life, is we are very patient, but not out of choice, rather out of desperation, and a hope that something will change.   In some situations, patience is not a virtue.  Sometimes we wait, hoping, wondering, worrying, and being passive, but could be taking some action ourselves. We can wait too long for a change to happen and in the process of doing so, cause ourselves and others, a lot of distress.  We sometimes have some control over what happens, even if only a small amount, and we need to take it.  It might be the smallest of actions. A change of mind, or of direction.   A few questions asked.  An attempt at trying some new venture, or seeking any small thing which might help, clarify, or educate.  We might need to question something, and challenge it, rather than accept it.  We might need to raise our expectations both of ourselves and of how others treat us.  We may need to find faith in the process, where we currently harbour only doubt.  Just sitting there and waiting, while sometimes the right thing to do, isn’t always the right thing.

Waiting is not the same as patience.  Sometimes you can be patient, but choose not to wait.

I have been patient, but I did not want to wait, because I felt the timing for having knee replacement surgery on my very arthritic  (I prefer the term “screwed up”) right knee was ripe.  Now the knee replacement surgery  is done, and the story and journey continue, and indeed, I know in my heart of hearts, it was right to have this surgery now.  I’m a “young” knee replacement recipient, at just 52,  so in the decision for a knee replacement at this point is also embedded the prospect of revision surgery in the future.  It will take a long time to reap the benefits fully, but I am already reaping them now, just a few weeks post-operatively, and all the distress of the last two years can fade into the background.  This hasn’t happened quite yet, as you will see from my narrative, but it is happening, and it is happening in the light of me having a life which I can now walk through, with some chance of regularly being able to walk for an hour, and probably even more.  If this expectation seems a little low, and it probably is, it is because my expectations with respect to my quality of life shrunk before my eyes, and this alarming experience was made all the more alarming by the thoughts which were sown in my mind that it was reasonable simply to accept what was happening and live with it.  I did not accept these ideas in the end, though I toyed with them for a while,  and felt a certain amount of pressure to accept them.

I hope my writing about my experience, and sharing some of the thought processes I went through, will help someone else in some way.  Every person’s situation is different and everyone’s knees are different.  The knee is the largest load bearing joint of the body, and this, for me, is as well as being a simple fact, is also profoundly resonant psychologically.  Because my story is one not just of the problems with this load bearing joint, but the psychological load bearing which my knee has brought me into. The struggle involved in  making a decision to have elective knee replacement surgery, and the need for determination and faith at a time  when I was  already pretty discouraged and distressed.  (Anxious and depressed, at times, in the end!)  And it is a story of patience.  When feeling the pressure.

Patience is power.
Patience is not an absence of action;
rather it is “timing”
it waits on the right time to act,
for the right principles
and in the right way.”
― Fulton J. Sheen

Patience is  born from our inability to control much in our lives, and while we by our very natures, like to be in control, the reality is that while we exert control in some areas, we find ourselves in this vast pool of life, subject to all kinds of forces, influences, situations, people,  and experiences which we do not have any control over at all. Or very little.   Sometimes we did have control of an area of our life, at least in part, but did not see it, either because we were unwilling or unable to. Sometimes we were simply subjects, and didn’t have the power or ability to change things. We are broken, and lack insight at times to recognise what is going on. We misunderstand others and we misunderstand ourselves.  I think often the hardest person to understand in our life is ourselves, and we are also often the hardest person to get along with!

In this quest for understanding and getting along with ourselves, we  encounter our broken parts…our injured internal limbs, which stop us from moving as freely as we would like to move.  This “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story” which orbits around my personal experience with osteoarthritis of my right knee and the decision for getting my knee surgically treated, is a personal narrative, first and foremost, which might be of interest to other obese 52 year olds who are considering elective surgery.  Or others, of other ages, who are not obese, but who are considering knee replacement surgery! It might be interesting for anyone working with patients having knee replacement surgery, or “TKR”s, as they are often termed.  (Total Knee Replacements). It’s not the usual type of patient account/diary/story of TKR, as I let myself dwell in waters deep; a little theological here and there, a bit philosophical, a little bit practical, with some research and some emotional angst as well.  It’s long. You’ve been warned!  It has many extra miles in it, and like my life at the moment, cannot be rushed through!  Recovery is a slow process. But gives me a lot of time to write!

My experience of increased pain and disability due to osteoarthritis in my right knee was something which came upon me rather more suddenly than I could ever have imagined, and it changed my life dramatically from the beginning of 2015 onward.  With my knee replacement surgery in March 2017, the journey is not over, but it is significantly altered, as is my life, which is  already much better.  I am not sure how unusual such a rapid deterioration of a knee joint is, and I do not have the means to judge my own experience in a comparative way, with others,  but I imagine that my previous injury to the knee in 2010, no doubt contributed to the state of the knee being quite as dire as it was.   Well, whatever the whys and wherefores, this is my knee replacement story as it stands (rather nice and straight!) at the moment. I have kept my narrative centred on myself, and not included all the wonderful, lovely people who have helped me through this time.  I prefer to keep confidentiality unless specific permission has been given by people I write about, but one of the fantastically valuable aspects of my experience has been the way I have realised how much God can bless, work, and use people, working in hearts, minds, words and understanding, to knit together, in a healing way, the wounds we all carry and experience in our lives. It’s been a wonderful last few months.

I trust you’ll get something worthwhile from it, if you are patient enough to read it, that is!  Though I have packed it into some form of organisation, also strays this way and that, meandering, in the style of my usual blog “Jenny Meehan, Contemporary Artist’s Journal – The Artist’s Meandering Discourse”.    Written from my perspectives as a Christian, aspects of my faith are shared as they are an integral part of my life, and my understanding of my experience is that it has very much been a matter of me learning to trust God, to wait patiently, and to expect good things.  But trusting God, waiting patiently, and expecting good things, are not passive, and do not preclude taking actions or making decisions.  Indeed, the power and ability and strength to take action, comes from “Waiting on God”. The timing, the principles, the way.  As I quoted earlier, but will again, because it is of the essence of what I have learnt through this experience:

“Patience is power.
Patience is not an absence of action;
rather it is “timing”
it waits on the right time to act,
for the right principles
and in the right way.”
― Fulton J. Sheen

As a believer in a marvellously mysterious Creator, yet one also intimately involved in our lives, (if we wish this to be so), I can see how I muddle through things, often rather blindly, and in my stumbling around, often make things quite hard for myself.  However, through all this, God manages to work, and writing this story also means I can look back and be reminded afresh of this time.  Whatever happens with my knee replacement in the future…that great unknown… nothing can take away the rich and rewarding aspects of this experience.  Though it certainly has not been easy, this experience  is one through which I have made progress, and also gained more faith through.

Sometimes when writing, people dedicate their writing to others, and I dedicate this piece of writing to the wonderful people who have been part of this experience; the friends, family, and NHS staff, my surgeon, and all those who made it possible for me to get where I am at the moment.  Anyone who has helped me in any way.  You know who you are!  And I also dedicate it to my knee, which though it found the pressure too much to bear without some reformation, still continues to bear my weight, even while traumatised and healing.

It’s early days.  But I’ve come forward miles already.

Here goes…Be patient!

Most recent entry is first. “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan”  can be read either way, from the present backwards, or in chronological order.

Well that’s the introduction!  If you are brave enough to read it, you may find you enter your own experience of being a knight fighting a snail, because it does go on!!!!   I am hoping it might be of use to those who do have a knee replacement operation.  It’s very helpful to read of other peoples experiences. 

Meditation Garden

Very pleased to see what is happening in the garden at the moment!

 

abstract graphic art, geometric design, contemplative christianity artist christian uk, british female contemporary art, colourful graphic garden design, art print to buy simple piece, jamartlondon.com © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

sign of the times series jenny meehan

And I have spent quite a bit of time pottering around in the garden, which is very enjoyable!  Plus doing what I am able to do for the:

Forthcoming Kingston Artists’ Open Studios for 2017

jenny meehan lyrical abstraction british 21st century emerging artist contemporary, london based female artists fine painting british women artists jenny meehan, christian art contemplative spirituality art, contemplative meditational aids for reflection through art and painting, jenny meehan jamartlondon collectable original paintings affordable,

“No Fear” painting by jenny meehan abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

 

“No Fear” is one of the paintings I plan to bring along and show as part of this years Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.

Interesting among  other things for the combination of some of my more graphic strands of working, for example, the “Signs of the Times” series (of which “Meditation Garden” is one) but this time happening in paint, with, quite literally, a more lyrical edge to it.  Plus the joys of action painting!

To simplify one’s painting from time to time is a helpful habit.  It tends to get over involved if you are not careful.  That is OK to a point but it can be a slippery  slope to lost perspective.

 

Emily Carr Quote:

Emily Carr. Carr said “Art is art, nature is nature, you cannot improve upon it… Pictures should be inspired by nature, but made in the soul of the artist; it is the soul of the individual that counts.”

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

Above “Dear Life” photograph by Jenny Meehan © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

 

Well, because of all the time I am spending with my knee surgery rehabilitation, I am going to finish promptly, for a change!  Do come along and see me at the Open Studios if you can.  Feel free to email me and let me know if you are coming and introduce yourself when you visit!  Remember:

KAOS OPEN STUDIOS 10th/11th and 17th/18th June 2017 11 – 5pm at Studio KAOS 2 , 14 Liverpool Road Kingston KT2 7SZ
It’s no time at all! So pop this in your diary and make yourself a nice day out. Walk by the river in Kingston, Stroll in the park, walk along the studio trail, pop into a little cafe! …Visit several studios and meet lots of artists! You can talk with us and find out more about the work in a way you wouldn’t be able to do in a different context.
There are 90 artists showing work in total. I am showing at KAOS 2, along with 8 other artists:
Sandra Beccarelli, Cressida Borrett, Lizzie Brewer, Caroline Calascione, Ikuko Danby, Bali Edwards, Yuka Maeda, and Anna Tikhomirova! See you there!

http://www.kingstonartistsopenstudios.co.uk/

 

About Jenny Meehan 

 Jenny Meehan (Jennifer Meehan) is a painter-poet, artist-author
inspired by contemplative practices including prayer and mindfulness,
Christ-centred spirituality, various psychoanalytic themes
and trauma recovery processes.
See examples of her painting at jamartlondon.com
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Jenny Meehan:  Romantic, Expressionist, Abstract, and Lyrical Paintings

Abstract Acrylic Painting/Markmaking with Colour. Instinctive intuitive process led painting, psychotherapy and art,psychotherapy and painting, British Contemporary female artist painter Jenny Meehan

deluge painting jenny meehan copyright DACS all rights reserved

“Deluge” Painting by Jenny Meehan referencing water,flood,deluge,catastrophe,disaster,trauma,house,home,wind,air.    I don’t paint to commission at all, but I do sell my old paintings when no longer needed for exhibitions, study, contemplation, etc.  This one I am happy to say “bye bye” to.   It has certainly stood the test of time, but needs another set of eyes to appreciate it I think.   It’s been exhibited a couple of times in the UK.

 

jenny meehan well spring rethinkyourmind NHS mental health resource art book selected jenny meehan

Well Spring painting by Jenny Meehan used on the cover of The Recovery of Hope by Naomi Starkey

 

The above painting “Well Spring” by Jenny Meehan.  This painting is referencing; spring, well, water,water spring,rocks,quarry,underground streams,recovery,spiritual and emotional renewal,sunlight,rays,beams,mist,water spray,evaporation.    Very strong painting, which cannot fully be appreciated on screen as there are glass beads used on the surface which bring a lot of added dimension.  This painting was used by designer Alison Beeck very skillfully and to great effect on the book cover of “Recovery of Hope” by Naomi Starkey.  You can take a look at the book cover here:

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-recovery-of-hope/naomi-starkey/9780857464170

Synopsis: We live in the hope of experiencing first-hand the all-sufficient grace, love and forgiveness which are God’s alone, a hope that we may know with our heads long before we feel it in our hearts. Such hope may mean encountering God as consoling presence in the darkness, as well as one who challenges us to respond to his call. That call may prove to be costly but, in responding, we are transformed by discovering and rediscovering that we are known exactly as we are, yet still loved beyond understanding, as God’s precious children. In a series of Bible reflections – and some poems – this hope is explored in different ways, from the yearning of the psalmist to walking the gentle journey of the Good Shepherd’s leading.
Publisher: BRF (The Bible Reading Fellowship)
ISBN: 9780857464170

I have read the book (of course!) and it is very good.  Like a well, it is something I keep dipping into now and again.  Just right.  So glad the painting has served so well for a book cover.  Even better that the book is about something I care about!!!

I am willing to let this painting go also, so contact me if you are interested in it.  I have space problems here, and new paintings are being painted all the time.  So while I would retain this one for personal reasons on the one hand, I don’t think it possible to hold onto for much longer.

 

Acrylic, various fillers, acrylic mediums and pigments, and glass beads , sacred art painting religious, spiritual visionary painting, christ centred poetic visual art, The Comforter/St Julian - Jenny Meehan

The Comforter/St Julian – Jenny Meehan
Acrylic, various fillers, acrylic mediums and pigments, and glass beads

Above we have a painting titled “The Comforter/St Julian”  This painting is referencing the  Holy Spirit, comforter, counsellor, human intervention, divine intervention, figures, help, psychotherapy and painting, past and present, container, emotional container, catastrophe, smoke,fire ,anger, emotional landscape, freezing, burning, meeting.  This painting marks the beginning of a more contemplative path for me in my life and also an embracing of psychotherapy as part of that process of self-development, bound intimately with spirituality, in particular Christ-centred spirituality, which is where my own heart lies most happily.

This painting is also one I am happy to let go of.  It has an interesting surface and is a good example of one of my paintings with a more subtle and restrained use of colour, yet with a strong and dynamic mark making element.

 

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Final version of Surviving Houses/47 Nelson Square

“Surviving Houses/47 Nelson Square” is a painting firmly rooted in my early experiences of participating in a psychoanalytic/psycho dynamic process in order to re establish my own foundations which were certainly bomb hit.

This painting is referencing 47 Nelson square, Lambeth, Southwark, London, trauma recovery,Guild of Psychotherapists, Psychotherapy,survival,house,rooms,hope,sun,windows,light sources, insight,mental and emotional ordering,fear,anxiety,safe place, security,warmth home,construction,reconstruction,mind as a building.

This painting is not available.  It’s interesting for me to compare this with recent work which also uses very bold brush work. (See below!!)

Good Read on Copyright Infringement 

 

https://www.dacs.org.uk/latest-news/copyright-uncovered-infringements?category=For%20Artists|For%20Licensing%20Customers|Latest%20News&title=N

Small quote here:

An infringement can occur when someone directly copies one of your works in its entirety or if they use substantial elements of your work without your permission.

What is determined by ‘substantial’ is not necessarily about proportion or size. A small but distinct element of your work can be copied and this could still amount to an infringement.

In previous UK court cases – for example, where an artist has been accused of infringing another artist’s work, or where a company has used parts of an artist’s work on a product they are selling – the assessment for copyright infringement has been made by looking at the similarities, rather than differences.

For copyright infringement to be determined there must be a connection between the infringing work and the original work – the infringement has to be derived from the original. There are ways of establishing the connection by looking at surrounding circumstances, such as availability. For example, the original work could be easily accessed online or in public exhibitions. Additionally, any contact with the infringing party such as discussions to use the work, or even engagement on social media, will help establish that they were aware of your work before making the infringing version.

The test for infringement is done on a case by case basis. If you claim your work has been infringed, you will have to prove this. Once it has been established, it will be for the person potentially infringing the work to prove they have a defence, for example that their work was their independent creation. Copyright infringement is known as a ‘strict liability’ offence, which means that it is irrelevant whether or not the infringer knew or wanted to infringe copyright.
– See more at: https://www.dacs.org.uk/latest-news/copyright-uncovered-infringements?category=For%20Artists|For%20Licensing%20Customers|Latest%20News&title=N#sthash.QixIArcE.dpuf

It’s a very important matter, and artists who are professional in approach should certainly ensure they understand how it works.  I am a member of DACS and find it a very helpful and important organisation.

Busy Paintings

I have been feeling that my recent very full and rather busy paintings, lovely as they are, need a little respite and so have been working the tail end of this year on some which are far less crowded and more simple.  With my usual attention to surface, and working with the pigments which I am particularly fond of, I have sought to obtain a balance between dynamic energy and restfulness.

 

jenny meehan lyrical abstraction british 21st century emerging artist contemporary, london based female artists fine painting british women artists jenny meehan, christian art contemplative spirituality art, contemplative meditational aids for reflection through art and painting, jenny meehan jamartlondon collectable original paintings affordable,

“No Fear” painting by jenny meehan abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

 

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“The Realm of Between/Pushing it a bit” abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

It has been interesting to experiment with the relationship between quite delicate and intricate variations in perceived and actual texture along  broad and very matt, almost sheaths, of paint, laid down on unprimed hardboard.

 

jenny meehan lyrical abstraction british 21st century emerging artist contemporary, london based female artists fine painting british women artists jenny meehan, christian art contemplative spirituality art, contemplative meditational aids for reflection through art and painting, jenny meehan jamartlondon collectable original paintings affordable,

“Crossing Over/Simple Piece” abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

Some time of  “less is more” to challenge that part of me which last year was placing daub upon daub of colour.  I am not unhappy with those paintings… not at all, but need to balance out that experience of painting with something different.

Helpful quotes, and my comments,  from “The Art of Buying Art” by Alan Bamberger. The section entitled “How to Look”.
“How to Look
“Looking at art means more than giving casual glances as you pass it by. You’ve got to spend time studying individual pieces.

Indeed… There is too much casual glancing going on nowadays.  We are bombarded with some much imagery.  I also believe just focusing on one small part of an art work is beneficial.  This is partly why I plan to start another blog soon focusing on passages of my paintings.  To immerse oneself needs time.
“Stand up close and focus on small areas of the art. Stand back and look at the whole thing. Stick your nose right up to the canvas or wood or paper or bronze and study the minutest details. Back away slowly and watch how the art changes. Move so far away that the art fades into its surroundings.”

What comes to mind now is the frustration of paying to see an exhibition and then not being able to view the work properly due to too many other people, distractions and also, because one is paying for a single visit, the pressure of seeing everything in one go.  How much better it is then to see exhibitions which do not charge, for then you can go back as many times as you want!

Looking at every element and aspect of a work, and giving it time is essential.

This is helpful:

“If you happen to see something you really like, note what it is, where you saw it, how it looks, and why it attracts you – nothing more. You’ll have plenty of opportunity to return and learn more about it later. By experiencing a little bit of everything that’s out there and taking some time to study it in detail, you begin to acquire strength of conviction and begin to define what really thrills you.”

Strength of conviction is kind of related to confidence.  Confidence that your own experience matters and that that experience is the most important thing about the art work you are viewing.  I had an interesting conversation recently with someone unfamiliar with appreciating non-objective paintings.  I simply said “Don’t worry about what it is meant to be.  What it is to me is of interest, but it is not that that matters.  You have your own experience of this painting and that is what matters.  She was worried that I would be offended if my painting was not what it was for me.  I explained that if it mattered to me I would paint more representational paintings which gave the viewer more direction and prescribed more what the subject matter was.  It would then be rather offensive if they thought my, horse, for example, was actually a man.

But with a completely abstract painting, though I will have my own personal interpretation,  for the viewing, this does not matter to the extent that it should dictate their experience of the painting.  They may find it of interest, and they may ask me what the painting is to me.  But it is what the painting is to them which matters.  They have a huge part to play in the experience of viewing the paintings.  Once they have the assurance that there isn’t some hidden, strange, meaning or concept that they have to “get” in order to access the work, they suddenly find that the freedom to experience it in their own way is quite a liberating and enjoyable matter.  Well, some people do.  Others find they want and need to be told “What it is”.  This is fine, of course.  However, they may have to accept that it is not definable in the way that they would like it to be!!!

I have now settled on the practice of including references (as I have done in this post) for those who are interested in the relationship between my abstract paintings and their significance/meaning for me.  But I would never feel upset if someone did not see what I see.  We all have valid perceptions and what we see is influenced by ourselves, our experience, and our emotions.

Alan continues:
Out of all the millions of art pieces that have ever been and have yet to be created, you will choose to own maybe one, maybe five, maybe one hundred. And you’ll choose them because they mean something special to you and you alone. Now is the time to acquire a feel for where that special meaning lies, and to identify what qualities in art attract you the most.”

Perfectly put.   “Something special to you and you alone”.

I like this advice very much. For those wanting to get into collecting art, it is probably the most important piece of advice to heed. The book  has a lot of advice, and quite a lot of it focuses on art which no doubt considerably more expensive than my own, however, there are many key points and while not a recent book, being published in 2007, I still found it an interesting read.
I have not considered myself how much of a mine field it must be for some people who want to collect art but are not familiar with the various systems (ie galleries, dealers). I think the chapter on buying directly from the artist of most use and of relevance to my own experience. Indeed, the way people buy art has changed a lot. For the majority, I think, it is much easier, more accessible and pretty straightforward. The book includes chapters on buying directly from artists, and also buying art over the internet. I cannot be done with all the speculative buying, “art world” and dealer dealing matters personally. But there are chapters which offer very interesting insights into a realm which lies well outside my own remit. And I cannot help feeling rather thankful that my own work is not being handled by dealers!!!

The so called “Art World”

With no aspirations towards business, profit, fame or financial success, I have mercifully relieved myself of the whole so called “art world”; that world of art, which I have no desire to enter. I am not sure where the boundaries of this mysterious “art world” lie, but I suspect they lie in the imaginations of those who consider themselves part of it.  And if the determining factor of being in or out of it,  is money and status driven, and to do with who you know, then it may be best that I do consider myself an “outsider artist”…if that is what that term means.  (I am sure I have rambled on about outsider art before in this journal.) But I don’t like the whole insider/outsider definition.  We are all inhabiting the same world, in truth.  The aim for the artist could be to see ourselves as continual welcomers…with the aim of continually inviting people in to an experience of our artistic practice which aims to educate and enlighten, enrich and nourish the imagination and hearts of all. Fame and fortune will just be for the very few. And this may be good for them in many ways.  But it is not a good hope.  I focus on people, relationships, and creativity.

I have been thinking about what a “professional” artist is.  I consider myself one. As a professional artist, the idea that in order to be professional, ones activities should be financially profitable, is a huge mistake in my opinion. Professionalism is an attitude and an approach that does not need too be qualified with monetary gain. It’s more about how you go about what you do, and how you think of it.   Things such as exhibiting your work, cataloguing it, having faith in what you are doing, and having collectors and followers who engage with your work are important. Taking it seriously and investing in it in a professional manner. Engaging in training and development.  Being part of groups of artists and networking.  Looking for new projects and opportunities.  Being open minded and receptive to whatever creative currents are weaving their way about the age in which you live in.  Being professional is an attitude and approach more than anything else.  A way of thinking about what you do and understanding the value of it. An attitude of rigour to ones work.  And discipline.

The fact that some activities in life are not termed a “job”, and are rather a vocation, (and caring for others, raising children, plus many voluntary activities come under this banner) does not mean that they are either hobbies, optional for the person doing them, or of lesser importance.  A vocation may not count officially in respect of it not being counted in the “labour market”,  but this does not mean that that it is not work, and should not therefore be valued. Thankfully there are plenty of people who do recognise that vocation in life is sometimes expressed in part through paid employment, be it self-employment or as an employee, but that this is only the case for some, and there are millions of other people who fulfil their calling in life through other avenues.  Vocation can be:

1.
a particular occupation, business, or profession; calling.
2.
a strong impulse or inclination to follow a particular activity or career.
3.
a divine call to God’s service or to the Christian life.
4.
a function or station in life to which one is called by God.

Indeed, we are not singular in purpose or vocation.  We have many strands running through us.  At different times they will be developed and come into being and we will be active to a greater and lesser degree.  Sometimes circumstances help, and other times they hinder.  What I was involved in ten years ago is different to what I am involved in now.  But all the strands of my life contribute to who I am, to my art working, and to how I see what I do.

As far as I can see, the majority of artists I have come across are not financially “successful” in the sense that they do not generate an income, from the sale of their work, which is anything near capable of meeting their most basic human needs. They rely on other, often related activities, to help sustain them in life, normally in employment of some kind or being part of a partnership or community which helps them financially. This is one of the reasons I get cross about ridiculous submission fees for artists wanting to exhibit their work.  To treat artists showing their work as some kind of business venture for the artist, which therefore they should be prepared to pay for, it just not the case. (I read this recently, I cannot remember where, and was furious.) The chances of selling your work at an exhibition are pretty low.  There are thousands of wonderful artists, for which I am glad, but even the good ones don’t necessarily sell much work.  It does happen, but only occasionally, for the majority.  And it costs money to take part, even without submission fees. Time, travel, framing… all that kind of thing.  This is not a moan, by the way. That is just the way it is. If I wanted money and that was my aim, then I would do something else with my life.

I have realised that I personally am not able to mix painting with any aspirations of business or profit making.  I have thought about it in the past, but other time commitments have pretty much nipped that in the bud before the bud even appeared!  And I have questioned myself, and sifted out what I really want, from what I do.  A little bit of occasional recompense here and there is always welcome, and helps towards material costs in some small way. (It certainly is occasional! But good when it happens.)  I consider a professional approach from myself in all that I do, as essential to the value I hold in what I do, yet this is simply as far as it goes.  I think what I do is more of a creative mission.  It’s something about me simply being in the world what I feel I am meant to be.  Something which is like breathing and serves the same purpose.  Which comes out with no external aim in mind but the mere act/material of being.  I can accept that, and I like it.  I don’t need anything else to validate it.

But still, it is lovely when someone decides to collect your art.  I am delighted when the chord is struck, and I wave bye bye to one of my paintings.  So much of what artists do (fine artists, I mean) is speculative.  It is a hit and miss matter.  Once in a blue moon you sell something.   That’s always nice.  But certainly not dependable!  Artists should technically  be paid if their work is shown in an exhibition. They provide the material substance of an art exhibition.   I have little hope of this happening, as it is  not the way the system works at all, but when you provide part of the material for an exhibition, you are offering your work for a use, of sorts.  People come to see the art work.  What would the exhibition be without it?

Thankfully, we at least have some options for exhibiting art work with no submission fees, or very low ones.  Unless exhibitions are very big/renowned, charges are not made to people viewing the work, and people don’t consider paying to see an art exhibition as something that they would need to do, unless the artists were famous.  I am all for people seeing art exhibitions for free.  But not so keen on the idea of artists paying for them to do so!  Artists bear many costs when exhibiting work.  We don’t need any more costs!  Artists desire to show and share our work, which is a vital part of what we do.  It’s not about showing what we can do. (Well, I speak personally, but I am not alone in this respect) It’s about opening eyes to new possibilities.  Creative energy.  Visual education.  Opening up the mind and spirit.  Emotionally connecting.  There are some opportunities which don’t have submission fees. Always grateful for those.

Sadly, artists are sometimes used by organisations and individuals as a way of generating money. It is not surprising, and not always the case, but it is good to be aware of it.  It is something to do with some strange idea that having work in an exhibition makes an artist more successful, (in the public perception) I think. It is always nice to have your work  selected for exhibition, of course.  Yet it is simply fortunate if your work gets shown. Nice.  Pleasing.  After all, we want it to be viewed!!!!  But the cost of doing so must be counted, as all costs need to be.  Juried exhibitions generally come down to what the taste of the jury is.  And not a lot more than that, in the end.  Why would it be anything more? It may sometimes be a case of who know’s who, and existing links.  That just happens.  Some themed exhibitions can be more of a quest… and can be interesting in this respect. There is satisfaction in exploring a theme or concept and coming up with something very apt and fitting.  There is a challenge which makes selection more rewarding if your work hits the core of some issue or theme.  Exhibitions for charities are rewarding, in that it is a great way to give to charity and show work.  Artists can bear some costs, but the addition of a submission fee is quite frankly annoying.  Minimal, it must be, if it is made at all.  Certainly under a tenner!  “Admin Fee”… but no more.  And one fee, however many works.

It is a fundamental error, I think, to equate success as a fine artist, with money. With fame, or fortune.   If you are able to invest your time into art working, then you are fortunate even in that. There are many people in the world who have to spend all of their time simply fetching water.  I am highly aware of the blessings and benefits of my own situation in life. I am fortunate to be able to do what I do, and I thrive in it. I overheard an interesting conversation on the train recently.  And it was in this conversation the nail was hit on the head.  “Money is not the same as Value”.  Thank you, to the person who said that.

I value my work.

But as is the case with homemaking, and/or domestic and caring work carried out by people (who happen to be related to those they care for), or who work in many fields voluntarily, fine artists too find themselves in the realms of those who do work, but who are not part of the labour market.  But my main point is, if you are an artist, don’t believe that your only option is to sign up for the “starving artist” or the “financially successful artist”.  The success of what you do can be judged by other criteria.  It is my opinion that success is to do with connection, growth and development.  Success for me is when a painting is done and I look at it, and see it is finished.  When I learn and progress.  When research, training, and education are part of what I do. When my work develops and resonates with a sense of integrity and truthfulness to experience and life.  When someone relates to it, uses it, connects with it, responds to it.  When it’s relevance is something felt by them.  Which brings us neatly back to the earlier quote:

“Something special to you and you alone”.

“Out of all the millions of art pieces that have ever been and have yet to be created, you will choose to own maybe one, maybe five, maybe one hundred. And you’ll choose them because they mean something special to you and you alone. Now is the time to acquire a feel for where that special meaning lies, and to identify what qualities in art attract you the most.”

And I think the artist creator themselves also needs to have this either as their sole focus,or certainly main focus, and preoccupation.  There must be nothing else in the way.  This does not make paintings done for other people any less worthy, but somewhere in the centre of the process there must be a connection which is not comprised.  It doesn’t make anything more art or less art, but, if you want to be a successful fine artist who gets a real sense of reward from what you do, then do what you do in your way, and stick to that. All the time seek to learn and develop.  If you sell and your work is useful to others that is a great bonus.  If it matters to you (and/ or you need it),  that  you have some kind of business/monetary success and you want to develop what you do in that way, then of course,  there is nothing wrong with that at all.  It is an exciting and challenging aim, and many artists want to be self employed as artists.  Often doing something for someone else’s criteria and requirements can open up new and exciting avenues.  It is one path. But just one.

Commercially viable art working is the aim of some artists, and there are plenty of online courses and programmes to follow for those who want to try it out. But being commercially viable is not the same thing as successful.

I like this:

“Society needs artists, just as it needs scientists, technicians, workers, professional people, witnesses of the faith, teacher, fathers and mothers, who ensure the growth of the person and the development of the community by means of that supreme art form which is “the art of education.” Within the vast cultural panorama of each nation, artists have their unique place… The particular vocation of individual artists decides the arena in which they serve and points to the tasks they must assume, the hard work they must endure and the responsibility they must accept… There is therefore an ethic, even a spirituality of artistic service, which contributes in its way to the life and renewal of a people.”

(From the Letter of His Holiness Pope John Paul II “To Artists.”)

“There is therefore an ethic, even a spirituality of artistic service, which contributes in its way to the life and renewal of a people.”

 

Found this, and will make it some reading:

http://theotherjournal.com/2012/01/16/are-artists-the-high-priests-of-culture-part-i/

 

Ahh, Blow!  Sandra Blow! 

I am unable to walk very far at present… and this means that I cannot pop along and see the exhibition of eleven late works of the British abstract painting Sandra Blow, which is being presented by The Fine Art Society.  I have to keep my walking to the most essential, and while I would like to see this exhibition, it would involve a lot of walking.

The British abstract painter Sandra Blow (1925-2006) was influenced by Italian post-war art and by the American Abstract Expressionists.  I was very delighted to find that the collector who purchased my “London Downpour” also had a work by Sandra Blow, and it was, I have to confess, pleasing to think my work would be hung in a collection which included a piece by Sandra Blow.  There were other names of works mentioned, but only Sandra Blow stood out for me, because I have encountered her painting “Space and Matter” at the Tate, and admired it. Sandra Blow was very occupied with the material of her paintings, and “Space and Matter” involves the use of liquid cement, chaff and charcoal.  She worked in a process led and  intuitive way which I always find interesting.   The term sometimes used is “Art Informel” which was a term coined by the French critic Michel Tapié.  Sandra Blow spent time at “Eagles Nest” which was Patrick Heron’s home and then she rented a cottage at Tregerthen.   She enjoyed the encouragement and patronage of Heron, Roger Hilton, and Peter Lanyon.   (Peter Lanyon’s paintings have had a significant influence on my own approach.)

St. Ives and the sea were great sources of inspiration to Sandra Blow in the end phase of her career.

 

Sandra Blow said “Now I have more enjoyment, and knowledge of what happens when I do what I do. The pressures have gone, the striving to find something. I do work I know is good, and I know how to do it.”

The exhibition at The Fine Art Society is at 148, New Bond Street, London, W1S 2JT.  It runs until 30th January 2017

 

http://www.sandrablow.com/page2.htm

On the Knee …

I now have a pre-op assessment appointment…  Going round the house putting up unfinished paintings everywhere so I can work on them.  “Work on them” in this case will mean looking at them.  I have a tablet and I am going to experiment with using it to help me explore options.  I normally need to stand and walk a lot, applying paint, and then taking it off.  I am hoping that by taking an image and making visual notes I might make some progress on some of the paintings which are nearly done.  However, this won’t be sufficient, as I need to see the actual pigment on the painting, the texture, the exact brush stroke.  But it may help with some decisions.  I will wait and see.

I also have a lot of books I plan to read and look at.

Seems like life will be a mixture of pain management, exercises, some resting and recovery.  Challenging.

“Angles and Edges”  Experiment below, inspired by the whole knee journey!

"Angles and Edges" Knee Replacement inspired art work image by Jenny Meehan. © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

“Angles and Edges” Knee Replacement inspired art work image by Jenny Meehan. © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

 

I read there are seven key cuts in a knee replacement operation:

 

Seven cuts to the perfect total knee.
Brooks P1.
Author information
Abstract
There are a total of 7 bone cuts in a typical total knee replacement (TKR): distal femur, anterior femur, posterior femur, anterior chamfer, posterior chamfer, tibia, and patella. Each of these cuts has its own special science, and each cut can affect the other cuts and potentially the outcome of the TKR. The distal femoral cut starts the overall alignment of the leg. Five degrees of valgus is cosmetically appealing, avoids excessive valgus, and prevents thighs from rubbing together. The anterior femoral cut sets femoral component rotation, which has effects on patellar tracking and gap balancing. In most knees, correct rotation is approximately 3 degrees of external rotation compared to the posterior condylar axis. An important exception is in valgus knees, where this could lead to accidental internal rotation. The posterior condyle cuts, with the tibial cut, determine the flexion gap. Injury to the medial collateral and posterior cruciate ligaments should be avoided. Anterior and posterior chamfer cuts must avoid these ligaments as well. The tibial cut is challenging. A 3 degrees posterior slope is most typical, and rotation is crucial. Internal rotation is a common error, affecting patellar tracking. Changing rotation on a sloped cut also adds varus or valgus. The patella cut should not be too deep. Component placement should tend medial and superior. If a lateral release is necessary, it should be done from inside-out, with preservation of the blood supply.

This is of interest to me, in appreciation of the art of surgery!  My image has rather random cuts pretty much everywhere; “Angles and Edges” seemed apt though, for this image.   I liked the suggestion of shine in the image.  Light bounces off objects,  and light of course is a natural preoccupation!  So it is an image which alludes to the importance of precision, mathematics and the surgeon’s skill, but rather plays around with the actual object with that joyous and wonderful “Art licenselo” or Artistic License. An image which relates to face, but denotes the distortion of fact.  My fictional image for my real situation!   However, I hope my own knee is very factual indeed!!!!!!!!

I continued to work on the image and then came up with the “Cutting Edge” design, which has a more abstract reference to the figure of a knee replacement but I think retains enough of the structure.  You can see that here;

 

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/24202274-cutting-edge-abstract-knee-replacement-design-by-jenny-meehan?asc=u&c=231599-geometric-abstract-prints

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About Jenny Meehan

I am a painter/visual artist/contemplative/poet/writer and mother, based in Surrey/South West London, UK.
Interested in spirituality (particularly Christ centred spirituality), creativity, emotional and psychological well-being.

I exhibit mainly in the UK, and am a member of Kingston Artists’ Open Studios. I have  trained  with SPIDIR as a spiritual guide/mentor. I am a qualified teacher and hold occasional small groups in developing painting and drawing skills, and general visual creative expression.

Contact me via the contact form on my website http://www.jamartlondon.com if you would like more information with respect to art tuition, and/or if you wish to receive my my bi-annual newsletter.

My artistic training has been through the Short Course programme at West Dean College, Surrey and through local adult art education classes. Professional in approach, I exhibit widely over the UK.

Please note that all images of my artwork are subject to copyright law: All rights reserved: Jenny Meehan DACS (Designer and Artist Copyright Society). In the first instance, contact me, and I will refer, as/if appropriate.
http://www.jamartlondon.com

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Germination Image

© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved, jenny meehan, jennifer meehan, jamartlondon.com,germination seed image,new life,creativity image, black and white graphic image germination,jenny meehan woman female contemporary british artist 21st century,

germination print jenny meehan jamartlondon© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved;

I have just done some framing.  Knee is painful. Knee cap is grating.  But framing brings quick and impressive feelings to the forefront of the mind.  So nice to see the printed image sitting so comfortably in it’s position.

Escape from Death Image

© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved, jenny meehan,jennifer meehan graphic art print,jamartlondon,escape from death deliverance from evil image, christian art and spirituality,christian artist uk based,british contemporary christian art, jamartlondon.com,life and death art image, birth and death art image,

escape from death by jenny meehan graphic print to buy jamartlondon.com© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved

The actual print has less of a colour contrast than how the image shows here on screen.  I altered it a bit for the print so it is more subtle.

Knee Replacement Season

Well, I start a new journey soon into the land of knee replacement.  So I may be working on some digital images for a while rather than working on larger paintings.   I do have some small scale projects I can work on.  The months of December, January, February and March tend to be a little more sedentary anyway.  So it should work out quite well.

Going into hospital has suddenly reminded me of my “real name”… for I am a Jennifer Meehan not actually a Jenny Meehan.  I have used Jenny Meehan since around the age of 18 when I left home.  When people call me Jennifer I seem to loose a few years and am reminded of how I was when living at home in my parents house.  Well, that is one way to loose a few years I guess!  It is odd when you are suddenly referred to with a name you do not use anymore.  Though it has made me decide to use the “proper” form of my name a little more, in addition to the Jenny Meehan which I work with and use all of the time.  The world is full of Jennifers who are Jennys!

I sign my work with my initials which are J, A, and M.  Jenny/Jennifer Meehan is née Jennifer Ann Gray.  So Jennifer Ann Meehan becomes JAM.  Hence the name jamartlondon for my website.  If I used my maiden name, it would be JAGARTLONDON.  That’s not bad, but JAMARTLONDON is better!

Well, that was a pleasant little meandering discourse!

 

Past painting…

Sack of a Great House/Arise, Sleeper

Painting experiment with acrylic,pigments,textures - Jenny Meehan

“Arise, Sleeper, Wake/Sack Of A Great House” Jenny Meehan 2010

© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved, DACS

This painting is an early example of my experimentation with texture in my work.  It may well be the first time I used fillers of different sorts.  That was back in 2010.

Ephesians 5 v14  “This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”

 

Jenny Meehan, Oil painting experiment, 2010

UnderPainting for an Oncoming Vision/The River Within  by Jenny Meehan  2010

© Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved, DACS

Under Painting for an Oncoming Vision/The River Within is an example of some of my earlier work.  In this painting I was experimenting with glazes.  Oil on board.  In the flesh the painting does radiate light in a very pleasing way.  You cannot quite get that from looking at it on a screen.

 

 

Interesting information on Gloss and Emulsion Paint

Well, you know I appreciate that this won’t get everyone excited, but for me as a painter when I find nice clear information on paint, I am very happy indeed!  Someone mentioned gloss paint to me in conversation and it is not something I have tried, so this maybe something for the new year.

Gloss or emulsion

When we buy a can of paint we expect to be able to apply it with a brush or roller and for it to dry leaving behind a solid film. To achieve this paints are made up of a mixture of different components. Although paints designed for different purposes will have different formulations, they all have some key features in common.
Paints contain a pigment to give colour, including white; a film former that binds the pigment particles together and binds them to the surface to be painted; a liquid that makes it easier to apply the paint and additives to make the basic paint better to store and to use.

The two main types of paint are gloss and emulsion. (My addition, well, not quite, but for domestic household use, yes!)

Gloss Paint
Gloss paint is widely used because it produces an attractive shiny surface that is so durable that it can be used outside. The binder or film former in gloss paint is called an alkyd resin. This is a long chain polymer made by reacting a vegetable oil such as soya bean or linseed oil with an alcohol and an organic acid. The resin is dissolved in an aliphatic petroleum solvent, so that it can be spread easily. When the solvent evaporates, the oxygen of the air interacts with the resin which results in the formation of cross links between the polymer molecules and produces a strong, dry film.
A typical gloss paint formulation
Component Percentage by mass
Alkyd resin binder 54
Pigment 25
Solvent 17
Additives 4
(Additives might be driers and anti-skin agents)
Emulsion Paint
Some paints are emulsions . They are made up of tiny droplets of liquid polymer binder spread out in, rather than dissolved in water. This emulsion can be spread easily.
The polymer is made by the addition polymerisation of alkene monomers such as ethenyl ethanoate, methyl 2-methylpropenoate and 2-ethylhexyl acrylate. These monomers can be mixed in different proportions before polymerisation to form a co-polymer which has exactly the right properties for the purpose it is to be used for.

After an emulsion paint is applied, the water evaporates and the polymer particles pack closely and fuse together to form a continuous film. The use of water rather than an organic liquid means that emulsion paints produce fewer VOC (volatile organic compounds) when they are used.
A typical emulsion paint formulation
Component Percentage by mass
Co-polymer binder 15 to 23
Pigment (white) 20
Pigment (colour) 0 to 5
Extenders 15 to 25
Water 25 to 50
Additives 2 to 5
(Additives might be antifreeze, dispersing aids, wetting agents, thickeners, biocides, low temperature drying aids, antifoam agent, coalescing solvent, ammonia)”

The above is quoted from: http://resources.schoolscience.co.uk/ICI/14-16/paints/paintch1pg1.html

 

I am so happy reading this! Crazy, Yes.  For sure!  Love Paint!

Quotes I like…

This below from http://abstractcritical.com/article/the-language-of-painting/

http://abstractcritical.com/article/the-language-of-painting/

by John Holland

Though it will deeply pain Mr. Gouk, I agree that art is not a language, except in the most metaphorical way. It’s not true to say that, “If art has a meaning, then it must be a language”; language is a particular conception, and all real languages share certain necessary features,such as modular units that must be arranged according to quite strict syntactical rules if they are to make sense. What are the equivalents in painting of tenses, verbs, word definitions? Any metaphorical application of the word ‘language’ to art (or music) is too vague to be useful. Maths, maybe, is the only thing that might meaningfully be called a non-verbal language.

As Gouk suggests, a work like Finnigan’s Wake pushes the rules about as far as they will go before sense breaks down- which is why, by and large, literature has had to ‘retreat’ since then to more conservative forms. There’s no equivalent in Modernist painting.
Art has meaning, but it lies largely outside language- this is why it fails when it tries to operate in essentially verbally structured contexts like political discourse.”

 

Art has meaning, but it lies largely outside language- this is why it fails when it tries to operate in essentially verbally structured contexts like political discourse.

 

Victor Brauner

I have been looking at some work by Victor Brauner recently, who I had not heard of before.  Here is some information on him.

Victor Brauner’s multi-media practice is now most closely associated with Surrealism. During his training at the School of Fine Arts in Bucharest, Brauner had in fact developed an expressionist style, which he later abandoned during his involvement with various Dadaist and Surrealist art publications. It was Yves Tanguy who formally introduced Brauner to the Surrealists and instigated his involvement with the movement. His practice, which included painting, drawing, and printmaking, drew from disparate symbolic systems like Tarot Cards, Egyptian hieroglyphics, and ancient Mexican texts. Brauner asserted that all of his paintings were autobiographical in some way. He led a turbulent life of constant displacement; anticipating the danger of World War II, Brauner reduced the dimensions of his canvases such that each could fit in his luggage for emergency travel—he called these his “suitcase paintings.”  (quoted from Artsy.net) 

And from my reading:

Dialogues; Conversations with European Artists at Mid-Century by Edouard Roditi
An interesting extract:
Victor Brauner interviewed by Edouard Roditi. A small extract from a longer interview.
ER: Do you believe that non formal abstract art can offer an artist a new kind of freedom?
BRAUNER: In theory perhaps, at least as long as it relies on chance to suggest meanings for its formlessness. In practice, however, it generally concerns itself with such problems only superficially and soon degenerates into a style of decoration that lacks any more articulated systems of beliefs, thought and emotion. In any case, such terms as figurative and non-figurative or formal and non formal suggest very superficial categories. An artist such as Paul Klee understood quite properly that he had to try his hand at any style that occurred to his mind, and this is how he managed to leave some works that are figurative and others that are nonfigurative – but all of them equally typical of his very personal genius.
ER So you would not advise an artist to seek too personal a style to which he would remain rigidly faithful in all his work?
BRAUNER : Certainly not. The modern art market requires that an artist specialise and, in the long run, repeat himself too. But what he then produces may no longer illustrate what remains indispensable to him as artistic expression – I mean a sense of adventure, of discovery and perhaps even of danger, of the risk of really making the wrong choice and of losing or destroying himself as an artist. Whenever I face a fresh canvas,I feel like a new man and become an utter stranger in my own eyes. When one faces this mystery of becoming and of self discovery and self-expression as an artist, one can no longer rely very much on what one has already achieved. But this is also why I can never have a very clear long-range plans. I do not want to become a specialist in any strictly limited style or range of subject matter, though I may actually find myself more often preoccupied by some problems or symbols than by others. Nor would I really be able to be such a specialist, even if I wanted. But this problem, fortunately, has never arisen in my life, and this may well be why I continue to feel the need to work and to create, as if I had never yet created anything in the past which I can still recognize as wholly my own”
At the time of this brief interview, Brauner was seriously ill and easily tired. A few weeks later Victor Brauner died and this was his last interview.

 

Interesting with respect to the matter of repetition, and what a wonderful quote:

Whenever I face a fresh canvas,I feel like a new man and become an utter stranger in my own eyes. When one faces this mystery of becoming and of self discovery and self-expression as an artist, one can no longer rely very much on what one has already achieved.

My own experience for the need for constant jumping into the dark, into the unknown, into the not previously explored avenues of the unfolding process of my painting, and how important it feels NOT to simply do something because it has worked well, or is popular, or has some other reason to be done, finds some agreement here.  This may not make commercial sense, however,  I ask myself what matters the most and what I personally think more important.  Freedom is a key not worth throwing away unless it is absolutely necessary to do so.   At the moment I am free to be led by whatever happens next, without needing to know what that whatever will be.  I do find that there are distinctive strands in my work, they resurface again and again; it just happens.  The art is to look back and consider them from a distance of time having passed, to ask if they have any direction to point one to, and to not force any coherence in one’s work, but simply let it happen.

 

Suburban Meditations/Painter’s Development Images…

Once more, a look into what caught me when my camera served as my main tool.  I am thinking of buying a new camera, but so confused by the choice!!!  My extensive archives of imagery lie waiting for resurrection.  But it is nice to look back at what I was looking at (and finding interesting) when I took more photographs more than I painted.  And then I ask myself what the images are saying to me now.   Quite a lot.  Of lovely silent words.

 

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

 

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

 

jamartlondon. christian artist uk, women artist uk, suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

 

christian artist uk, women artist british, suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

 

women artist british, christian artist uk, suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

suburban meditations painters development series jenny meehan

 

Types of metal fixings and neglected structures drew me towards them.  Wood and metal were the main materials I took photographs of.  I experimented with colour images but in the end presented a lot of my photographs in black and white as the kind of control over colour was too limited with photography, or at least, in my case, with using pretty limited types of photographic equipment and not printing the images myself.   I take very few photographs at the present time.  I feel I have so many that I have not utilised and engaged with sufficiently.  So much material that could bring forth so much.  So I have put an end to taking more images at the moment. ( Very occasionally I succumb!)  Sometimes I see something I cannot resist, but it is not helpful to try and do too much. We have too many images.  This feeling probably accounts for my getting lost (willingly) into abstraction!

 

There Will Always be a Point at Which We Will Meet

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

 

 

Past Painting and Poem :  Bandage Box

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

Bandage Box

Gently pressed
fabric
laid over a stretched surface,
soaked in milky balm.
I am tenderly
making, building
a new impression with my mind
whose inner wound cannot be bound
but which seeks
to make
new structure.

Jenny Meehan 2013 (written to accompany the above painting of 2013) 

 

There will be some wounding experience with my knee replacement, but wounding with the aim of healing and repair is quite a different matter to wounding with destruction as it’s intent.

 

 

And Now…

I have been dwelling on similar material recently… Reflecting on the healing process of painting, because it clearly is a healing process for me.  The bringing together, in articulating something, something which I don’t know when I start, but which evolves.  The something which is becoming.  Bringing into being a painting is like realising an emotion…, or maybe not just emotion, something of the heart; a heart connection and an experience felt.  Maybe coming from a memory or experience.  That memory need not be explicit and clear but I can still paint from it.  Paint from its centre, from the time when it started.  It may be from the past but the time doesn’t matter,  The main thing is that it is and that I don’t need to ignore it or push it away. So the whole thing about painting for me is that it is about being allowed to be.  Being and coming into being.  Feeling and experiencing the paint and the material and the process of painting.  And for nothing else to matter.  There is a space in that which is healing. There is a bringing together and a resolution of something within.  There is the fact that it appears and that it now matters.  It always mattered but it could not be seen.  And there is nothing about that painting which is not me.  And there is everything just laid there to see.  Which is rewarding.  And the work has been hard, not easy. Sometimes easy, in a kind of surprise, but often very hard.  But the bringing together of the painting is very rewarding.  I feel engaged in life in a way that is essential to my happiness.  I think I have written about the psychology of flourishing before on this journal.  And that whole thing of “being in the flow” or in your element.   I think some of the recent paintings I have been working on this year may touch on both the experience of flow, of happiness and of healing.  The relief of coming together.

And here is one of  my VERY recent paintings.

This one, “Mending”…It may well acquire an additional title as I continue the phase of contemplation through simple looking for a while.   Sometimes over time a painting speaks of something not so obvious at the time of painting, or even just after it.

But this is “Mending” for now.

lyrical abstraction contemporary artist british, female artist jenny meehan london based, lyrical abstraction process led painting,collectable abstract paintings for collectors, jenny meehan jamartlondon uk, art historical relevant significant art british,exploratory innovative paintings, british women artists current today,affordable original paintings to buy uk, collectable paintings original british contemporary a

abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan

 

“Mending” uses a mixture of Keim Optil paint, acrylic paint, and household emulsion.  I have also used painted card which is something I have been keen to use for a while.  The substrate is hardboard which has a lovely colour which I have left showing in places.  There are also some areas of paper tape.  The size is just 20x16inches.  This is a good size for such experiments as not too big, and I rather like the aspect ratio.

 

A nice little quote, rather random, but still lovely;

“Conversion, at its root, is not the action performed but the source of that action, the experience of being loved.”
Carroll & Dyckman,  quoted from Inviting the Mystic Supporting the Prophet. 

That is it for now.  Happy Christmas!

 

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios

Here are some images from this year’s Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.

kingston artists open studios

kingston artists open studios – image of “Rush Hour” (below) and “No Cares” (above)

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan  “laid to rest” and “clog dance/sacred dance” oil paintings by Jenny Meehan

Okingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan showing various acrylic on linen paintings by Jenny Meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan  “bright and breezy” and “resurrection one” paintings plus the table with information and prints.

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan – “bright and breezy” painting.  this was exhibited at the Dulwich Picture Gallery a couple of years ago but still lives with me at the moment!

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan – “Resurrection One”

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan

kingston artists open studios jenny meehan view showing my work and some of Cressida Borrett’s ceramics.

 

Writing this after the first weekend and before the second.. So still time to come along and visit 13 venues in the Kingston Upon Thames area…

18/19th June. 11 – 5pm at Studio KAOS 3, 14 Liverpool Road Kingston KT2 7SZ to come and say hello to me,  and:

Caroline Calascione, find out more about her work here: http://www.carolinecalascione.co.uk/

Lizzie Brewer, find out more here: http://www.lizziebrewer.com/

Cressida Borrett, see some of her ceramics here: http://www.cressidaborrett.co.uk/

Plus more ceramics from Bali Edwards here: http://www.pots4u.com/

And also Anna Tikhomirova   http://www.artist-anna.com/

Martina van de Gey will also be here from Germany:  www.martinavandegey.de

and Seana Mallen:  www.smallen.moonfruit.com

There are 74 artists taking part showing their work in 13 venues, so plenty to see!  Take a look in the catalogue to plan your route!

It’s wonderful to have other creatives to talk with, bounce ideas about with, and generally spend time with.  We need each other to encourage and support each other.  One of the wonderful things about being part of KAOS I have found is that we a mutually supportive group, rather than competitive with each other, and this means a lot.  While taking part in the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios event does take a lot of effort, it is good to talk to each other and those who visit.

One lady profusely thanked us last weekend for all our time and effort and I was very much blessed by that, as she recognised that we are offering something which we don’t often get thanked for.  While we hope to sell some of our work (of course)  the time and effort of putting on an event like the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios doesn’t normally generate profit for the vast majority of us (even if you sell something, it doesn’t translate into profit!).  So we hope very much that people not only come themselves,  but spread the word, as the more people who know about Kingston Artists’ Open Studios and who come along to the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios weekends each year, the more our work is appreciated.  The process of showing artwork, introducing people to our work, and talking about what we do is a valuable contribution to society which is sometimes not appreciated.   Aside from the practical necessity of selling the work, which does exist,  (both from the point of recovering storage space in our already too “jam packed with artwork” homes and the need to reinvest in the development of our work/materials, etc) it is immensely motivating to see people discover art work which resonates for them in a powerful way.

Artists Need Collectors!  

I have put that in bold, because it is a reality.  We need people who discover that our art works resonate with them to a degree that they purchase them, and also, that they then invest themselves into keeping in track with what we are doing, and make a kind of mini internal commitment to “openness to buy” our work, not as a means of purchasing a commodity, but by way of a creative relationship which supports and encourages the artist, and also benefits the collector.  A ideal collector will buy something not just because they love the art work itself but because they are interested in the artist and recognise that the artist is involved in a creative process which they need support and encouragement in.  It is not simply a matter of buying objects for oneself.  When you buy a piece of art, you help the artist in the creation of their work and support them in their vocation.

While there are some artists whose art working is a business, (among other things) (they have my admiration, and I applaud them on all fronts!) , there are many whose art working will never be, nor does it aspire to be a business (I am one of those!)  What I do is a vocation only.  However, this does not remove the need for money to fund it.  Buying a certain piece of art may not be an investment of the financial type (however… you never know, when I am dead!!!  Ho Ho Ho!!! Give me 100 years…or 300) and there is a challenge in purchasing a piece of art for yourself,  I think. And the challenge is this:  If it speaks to you, do you consider that encounter worth investing in?  I feel personally that buying a piece of art and/or being a collector of art might very healthily be viewed as a type of self investment.  There is a mysterious type of poetic strengthening of life which happens in the face of a deep resonance between a work of art and the human being encountering it.  Sometimes,  just sometimes, this is worth investing in, if the work is such that it has a sustaining effect on you as a person, and that you sense this will be a long lasting affair.

Profit is not simply about money… Indeed, I find it is seldom about money at all.

Where collectors  (I term “collector” as anyone who has purchased one of my art works either to add to an ongoing collection, or who has purchased more than one of my art works) become patrons, is at the point where their relationship with your work of art becomes not something simply to do with them and an object they have paid for, but becomes a recognition that they are part of a creative process themselves.  In collecting a certain artists work they recognise that they have a supportive role.  Not one with  strings attached.  But one which recognises that in choosing to pay money for an artists work they are contributing in some way to the production of future work.  The buying of an art work is not just a matter of themselves,  but might be, if they choose to make it so, the beginning of an interesting and ongoing journey, in following an artist in the creative path they travel down, and periodically assisting in that path by buying that artists work not just once, but over a period of time.

This type of collector-patron, one who will invest in an artist and their work, and pick out specific artists which they develop an ongoing creative relationship with, is something I am mulling over right now, as I bounce around my thinking in this Journal.  I think this is because I have been thinking about the word commodity.

Simple Definition of commodity
: something that is bought and sold
: something or someone that is useful or valued….Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary

It is the sick feeling I get each year before the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios event which has led me to start thinking this through.  My experience or rather fear, of my work being viewed as a commodity only... an object brought and sold, probably brings on the dire feeling.    An artists work is so much more.  The usefulness and value of a piece of art is not very measurable at all.  And the buying and selling bit has to happen, such is the world we live in.    But what is the exchange really meaning in all this?  Money is the medium of exchange, but what is the meaning of the exchange, what is it’s nature and what might be it’s potential?   The use and value of someone choosing to buy artwork which you as an artist have created  isn’t simply a material matter.  That someone decides to invest and that this is symbolised partly through the exchange of money is always a great thing.  Useful too, on a practical level. Essential. But the transaction can mean so much more to the artist.  We are separate from our work, and don’t need to hang on to it, control it, or refuse to let go, however, what it will be,  we always hope, will be so much more than something brought and sold.  We want it to have a life of its own. An existence which will live new lives in the people who relate to it.  We want that to be a good relationship.  We poured ourselves into it, and then let go completely.  Even if it ends up in a charity shop, we wish it well, and hope that no one sits on it.  Well, I speak for myself with my very big “We”.  But it writes better to say “We” and I know I am not alone.

And I guess it varies a lot with the type of work it is, and how much creative energy/significance/effort one has invested in it.  I am thinking of my paintings here, rather than anything else.  My paintings are the spear head of my creative energy and the tool with which I hammer on into reality, searching, but always in the dark! Wonderful abandonment, which strangely, I am found in!  (And probably pretty much any other paradox which could be applied, could be applied!  So words do fail..)

I do ramble on!

To finish on this one, I hope that those who I will call, for the reasons of my ramblings above, art “collector-patrons”; those who buy a few select pieces that mean the world to them, and who follow artists and take a genuine interest in them, recognise how important they are to the ongoing creation of art.  For example, those who have brought my work and continue to do so, encourage and inspire me, by their investment.  Which is not actually simply a matter of paying money for something, but rather the faith that what they have brought matters. That it matters to them, yes, this is clear and true, yet also, in that process, a recognition that it matters to me to the extent that I pour myself out for it.  They see my investment and choose to invest.  That’s a good thing.

I have just found this, which is kind of what I am getting at I think:

Terry Eagleton offers insight into the idea that art may transcend systemic titles of value such as money, by “…suspending itself between life and death. The work of art seems full of vital energy, but is no more than an inanimate object. The mystery of art is how black marks on a page, or pigments on a canvas, or the scraping of a bow on a catgut, can be so richly evocative of life”(Eagleton, 2010, p. 71).”

I have quoted this from: http://www.artandeducation.net/paper/art-as-an-autonomous-commodity-within-the-global-market/

(Art as an Autonomous Commodity within the Global Market
Dan Zimmerman)

Other interesting thoughts:

“It’s cold logic then to think of art as a commodity, but what you are really seeing is a whole generation of peers and people older and wealthier than you deciding whether art history is going to remember you or not,’ said Crow” ( Kelly Crow, The Wall Street Journal’s art market journalist)

quoted from: http://ginafairley.com/artshub/is-art-a-commodity/

Also interesting:

http://archive.boston.com/business/blogs/global-business-hub/2012/04/art_as_commodit.html

from which comes:  “Todd Levin, Director of Levin Art Group, told me, “Art fairs are not places where aesthetic or intellectual fields of value are created. Art fairs are competitive fields where the destruction of aesthetic and intellectual values takes place for the benefit of consumptive value.”

and:

Some artists prefer to see themselves as pilgrims rather than as stock commodities. Regarding the art market, Amy Ragus states: “If possible, make your money elsewhere, so your art isn’t compromised to forces that often seek to exploit and codify your message.”

(My thought,  not inevitable, and not terrible,  (one artist can have more than one single “art” and it doesn’t have to be kept in a protective environment)  however, worth being aware of what is happening and if it is exactly what you want.)

Kingston Artists Open Studios is still on this year:  

https://issuu.com/kingstonartistsopenstudios/docs/cataloguekaos2016 

Follow the link to view the 2016 Kingston Artists Open Studios catalogue

There are  many different KAOS (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios) artists showing this year.

Below an image of the Cass Art Kingston Artists Open Studios Taster Exhibition.

Lovely private view, very much enjoyed. Even with my stick.

Exhibition open to all so do come and see it.  Free. Cass Art, 103 Clarence Street, KT1 1 QY in “The Art Space” above the shop.  Just go in the shop and ask to be directed in the right direction!

 

cass art taster exhibition wall 2016 with gentle leaves Kingston Artists' Open Studios

cass art taster exhibition wall 2016 with gentle leaves Kingston Artists’ Open Studios

 

The quotes  below come from Living Within .  (Copyright Living Within).

http://www.livingwithin.com/20052016-kingston-artists.html

KINGSTON ARTISTS PREPARE FOR OPEN STUDIOS WEEKENDS IN JUNE
Friday 20 May 2016 – Kingston

“This year there will be over 70 painters, printmakers, photographers, sculptors, ceramicists, textile artists, glass artists, and many others, taking part. Open Studios is a growing national movement, with towns all over the UK taking part at different points in the year, and is an opportunity for the artists to share what they do with each other – and of course the general public. Often working alone in their studios for most of the year, it’s great to spend two relaxing weekends sharing ideas and meeting people. It is also an opportunity to show a wider range of work than they can in fairs and galleries, where space is limited.”

 

“2016 is the biggest event yet, with 13 different venues opening their doors, including a ‘taster exhibition’ throughout the week of June 11th, held in the upstairs art space at Cass Art, in Kingston town centre. Providing you live in the area, you will receive a flyer through your door, or alternatively you can pick up a catalogue at Kingston museum, the library, Cass Art, Pullingers or one of the many cafes around town. A trail map is included, or can be downloaded from http://www.kingstonartistsopenstudios.co.uk/show”

Not forgetting the Anagrams Kingston Museum Exhibition.. Wheatfield Way, KT1 2PS runs till 2nd July.

So much to see!

 

Yoga and the Devoted Christian

Sadly, for the last two weeks I have been unable to do my local Our Parks Yoga class, due to my right knee becoming very unstable, and difficulty walking/pain just meaning I need to give it a bit of a rest.  Still doing a bit of Yoga at home and planning a return soon, but waiting till I have seen a specialist as rather worried about what is happening with it  right now.

Despite my current limitations, I am LOVING Yoga, and find it quite a revelation!

Wishing I had discovered it earlier in life, however, there is a time for things, so it being now is just fine!

Reflecting back on how my faith and views have changed… I am now in the second half of life.

There would have been a time, twenty years ago, when I would have viewed the practice of Yoga with suspicion and a certain amount of what can only be called paranoia and fear.

Maybe a feeling of somehow betraying my religion.

However, what has changed?

I think my experience with psychotherapy has changed rather a lot for me.  Because the tendency of all people is to try and avoid that which makes us feel uncomfortable.  Natural.  Understandable.

But our fears are rooted deep within.  We attach them to things.  Fear is good when there is a good reason for it.

A “good reason” for fear with vary a lot, depending on one’s life experience.

Every person has their own sense of integrity, and for some Christians, to practice something like Yoga is something they cannot allow themselves to do.  Others won’t even think about philosophical or religious ideas or possible conflicts and will just worry about if they are “doing it properly”.

I feel that the practice of Yoga is pretty much like anything else, what it means, represents, and promotes varies hugely depending on who is teaching it, how they are teaching it, and what the intentions and objectives are behind it.  As is the case in the vast area of what might be termed Christianity, or in a more expressed in ritual/religious sense “the Christian Church” What is actually going on, being taught and expressed, and how this is being done, varies immensely.    There are all kinds of things going on!

“Nowhere’s Safe” comes to mind…. words I remember from a Graham Greene book I read. Cannot remember which one!

Might seem negative, but for me, not so.

There is a place of refuge in our Creator God.  Yes.  But it is easy to allocate “safe” and “unsafe” places in our life.  We are not always right.

If someone feels they are betraying themselves, their particular religious affiliation, or their innermost being, in some way by practising Yoga, then they should not do it.  It is as simple as that.  If it doesn’t feel “safe” somehow, then it doesn’t feel right.

However, if it seems in accordance with what God and the Holy Spirit are doing in their life, and indeed,  then it may be for them a gift, and a  wonderful thing, liberating, helpful, and definitely in the service of Christ and others.  In my humble opinion.

For me, it is a gift, and I am grateful to receive it.  I see my Yoga teacher’s work as an act of service, which I am grateful to receive.

I don’t feel any obligation to believe what I do not believe, or change what I believe, because of a variances and differences in philosophy  in the context of a Yoga Class, any more than I would in any other setting.  However, it is the case that I feel no imposition or pressure to do so, and this is probably something which varies a lot depending on the individual teacher of Yoga.  There are more religious and ritualistic ways of Yoga, I am sure.  It is doubtful that I would feel comfortable with that, just as someone who wasn’t a committed Christian believer and used to taking Communion at Church wouldn’t feel very right at all about taking Communion!

I am a big fan of Mindfulness as a practice, and I think that probably my appreciation of Yoga is the working together  of the mind and body in what I view as a prayerful discipline, and the whole matter of body awareness and opening myself up to God, (God awareness) which I really love a lot.  I do experience very good  sense of communion with God when doing Yoga, and invite the Holy Spirit into the whole of my being in a very intentional and focused way.

I can see that some folk would  worry about what they were opening themselves up to, if they felt that it was not actually in their own control and that their personal boundaries might somehow be infiltrated by “something else” spiritually without their awareness or consent.  Or if they felt pressured or imposed upon in some way.  But I think a good Yoga teacher is one, like any other kind of teacher, who doesn’t seek to impose anything, but instead, trusts, TRUSTS, in the Spirit of God.

I guess the problem for many devoted Christians with Yoga might be in a belief that there is more than one God and that actually the “God” or “Spirit” of Yoga is a different one to the one that they believe in.  My own belief is that there is only one God, but lots of different ways and approaches, or paths, which people negotiate their way along in their quest for spiritual truth and freedom.  I don’t believe God is an impersonal force,  and I hold passionately to the uniqueness of Christianity in relation to other religions.  Christ is God, and is Saviour.  The ultimate truth. The light of the world.  The point at which all points converge.  I don’t need to argue any kind of case about what I believe being better, or more right, or “the only way”.  Because quite clearly, it is not the only way to experiencing God’s truth, Spirit, and working in the world. God works in people who are not calling themselves Christians.  He worked in me, throughout my life, long before I committed myself to Christ, in many significant ways.

 The fact that I believe the SOURCE of all truth and revelation is indeed bedded in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ, is something I pray I hope to simply live out and testify to, in whatever ways I am given to. The way, it is a way of Love.  So I aim to love, as I am loved by my Creator.    I can express what about Christ, being a Christian, and knowing God through Christ, means, and how it matters, and have open eyes to the wonderful working of the Holy Spirit. In my own experience, I see the Holy Spirit manifest in my practice of Yoga.  It is as simple as that.

It’s not that I don’t believe that there are harmful spiritual influences in the world… because actually, I do believe they exist.   I don’t think a recognition of such is Medieval or delusional.  But I draw my attention to what is good, and orientate myself to  the workings on the Holy Spirit.  And God is using my practice of Yoga in a wonderful and exciting way. Which I am very grateful for.

Suspicions about yoga are shared by many Muslims, Christians and Jews around the world and relate to yoga’s history as an ancient spiritual practice with connections to Hinduism and Buddhism.  It is a spiritual exercise, to be sure, but what it means to someone is what it means to them.   All the things in our lives mean something different to what they mean to someone else, I think.   It is more OUR intention and purpose, which makes things what they are.

And as I mentioned earlier, the variety and differences, the various schools and approaches, the diversity of what Yoga “is” is rather hard to pop into one big lump.    Just because Yoga is ancient, and a bit mysterious, doesn’t make it evil.   You don’t have to agree with philosophies, theories and ideas about how and why it “works” or is beneficial to experience it as beneficial.  God does work in mysterious ways, as that familiar saying goes!  And, if Yoga is a “way” to God, then it doesn’t follow that this somehow supplants Christ, or that it is and “either” “or” situation.  Or that it is in itself some kind of salvation by works. (I am sure it might be practised in this way by some, but that doesn’t mean that it needs to be).  Deep down, we all struggle with the sense that we need to earn favour, approval and acceptance.  This is lived out in our lives in many different kinds of way.  Grace, pure grace, is always a challenge.

Even if yoga is, fundamentally, a religious activity, our yoga practice is OUR YOGA PRACTICE.  It does not belong to anyone else.  Therefore, if we are religious, then it will be, as we are.

No prizes for guessing what “Sun Salutation” is for me!!!!

Basically Yoga is a very broad term and this does cause difficulty.  There are lots of different forms of Yoga and some are more overtly religious than others.  For example, Hare Krishna monks, are adherents of bhaktiyoga, the yoga of devotion. But what most people in the West think of as yoga is properly known as hathayoga – a path towards enlightenment that focuses on building physical and mental strength.  The word “enlightenment” might cause some alarm to some Christians I guess. but what  “enlightenment” means  depends on tradition.  For some Hindus it may be a liberation from the cycle of reincarnation, but it doesn’t have to be.  For many yoga practitioners it is a point where you achieve stillness in your mind, or understand the true nature of the world and your place in it.  In this respect, it appears more to me to be a matter of  Mindfulness. With wonderful physical benefits!

I guess there will always be debate about whether Yoga is  compatible with Christianity, Islam and other religions.  The yogic asanas  might retain elements of their earlier spiritual meanings, however, as I move MY body and use MY mind, in prayer to MY GOD, then I think what is theoretically  “retained” becomes meaningless in my practice, because I do not hold onto it, nor have I even held it.  What Yoga embodies will surely stem from the soul of the person doing it, and no more or less?  It is an art, and like my painting, I use elements of what has gone before, but what I do is not what has gone before, it is what is now.

It is all about intention.

When I take communion, in my local Anglican Church, I take the wine, though I am teetotal.  I do this and it is deeply symbolic and special to me.  It defines the importance of the sacred for me.  I have rejected alcohol in my life, but I receive it in this context, and it deepens the symbolism for me actually, because it is about sufficiency in Christ for me.   Yet I could ,if I wished to, chose to receive wine in other ways, drinking at a party or something.  (Though it would not be a good idea for me!)   It is the intention which is different.  My fallen intention with alcohol was that it was, fundamentally there, as an instrument of destruction for me.  That is what it meant.  But in the rite of Communion, the intention is transformational.  Its meaning is blessedly transformed for me.  It is life, and life through the blood of Christ.

I mention this because taking that communion is not like drinking alcohol, even though it is drinking alcohol.  That is the best way I can think of describing it, and I also believe that kneeling, for example in an asana, is kneeling in whatever way the intention is focused.

Religion is not installed in a person through repetition of outward rituals or practices.  That is quite simply, rather empty. In my opinion.

Faith comes from the inside out, and from an inward working of God’s Grace.  As a sacrament is an outward sign of an inward grace, Yoga practice can be that too.  If you want it to be.

I won’t be chanting Hindu sutras, but I am happy to use “namaste” because I do acknowledge the meeting of God in each other.  I don’t understand God as just an impersonal force, but I do recognise very much, especially as an artist, the creative spirit at work in the world, as it says “In Him we live and move and have our being”.  There is something of the breath of God, which is very wonderfully engaged with by focus on the breath!

I view Yoga as a philosophy and approach, and one which can be very usefully engaged by Christians, without causing sudden destruction to their faith or adversely affecting them in any other way,  as indeed much can be gained from the many rich areas of life and experience, which happen to be new or different to us, in some way.

Quote from Rebecca Ffrench:

“People say that yoga is Hindu, but “Hinduism” is a problematic term, coined by outsiders for everything they saw going on in India.

Yoga stems from the Vedas – the Indian holy texts that were composed from around 1900BC. Besides yoga, three major religions came from those texts – Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.

Around 200-400AD, a sage called Patanjali composed the Yoga Sutras. His “eight limbs” of yoga still inform practice today and discuss posture, breathing, meditation and correct living.

For many centuries yoga was all about meditation and austerity practices, such as standing on one leg for weeks or hanging upside-down from a tree. There were only 14 yoga asanas or postures.

The big explosion in hatha yoga didn’t come until the early 1900s in Mysore, India – now there are over 100 postures.”

Well, that’s enough of that for now.

Apart from… Yoga has helped me deal in all respects with my ongoing experience of osteoarthritis, and been a fantastic tool and resource in so many ways.  It seems  a shame to dismiss something  or even prohibit something which is so beneficial to so  many just because of irrational fears…

It is, I think, what comes OUT of us, which is normally the problem.  So much inner trash!

Discernment with respect to our own inner brokenness and our faulty strategies of dealing with it, is probably more useful than avoiding this or that, in case of “pollution”.  However, each should only do what they feel comfortable with, this is the main thing.

Art at the Bridge#7

This exhibition is still up.  Wonderful to see my work in such a prominent place.  Tower Bridge! I never would have thought!    So pleased to be part of it.  “Drawn Together”  my piece of work can be brought as a print on Redbubble.com .  Here is the link;

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/20377969-drawn-together-building-bridges-the-female-perspective-design-by-jenny-meehan

Artist Notes for Drawn Together:

“Building Bridges, the Female Perspective”.
This artwork expresses some of my female emotional experience: the emotion of two parts of my sense of self being pulled together. A feeling of balance and unity, which holds, even when the two sides are different in some respects. The suspended purple and yellow contrasting colours create stasis and tension. Yet, there is also a mirroring of the same essential structure in my composition, drawn together in a pivotal centre, which may suggest movement. This piece also resonates in relation to the Tower Bridge; an engineering achievement involving among other things, precision, balance, and design. Creative energy, both within and without, in both engineering and art.

 

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building bridges the female perspective art exhibition tower bridge engine rooms jenny meehan

My friend Denise and me had a great day out!  Loved the glass walkway and the Engine Rooms were amazing!

 

drawn together by jenny meehan, art at tower bridge, abstract art female artist, feminist artist, contemporary women artists, contemporary female artists, jamartlondon,building bridges the female perspective art exhibition tower bridge engine rooms jenny meehan

building bridges the female perspective art exhibition tower bridge engine rooms jenny meehan  Jenny’s work “Drawn Together”

 

Here is one of the reviews:

http://whatsgoodtodo.co.uk/art-at-the-bridge-7-review/

Art at the Bridge #7
Tower Bridge, London
http://www.towerbridge.org.uk

8 March to 31 July 2016

Reviewed by Amanda Hayes

“I was privileged to be invited to the press night of Art at the Bridge #7 – Building Bridges: The Female Perspective last night, held in the fantastic setting of the Victorian engine rooms at the iconic Tower Bridge site it was the perfect backdrop to display art works. The engine rooms are very much an industrial setting with uncluttered bare brick walls and this lets the art speak for itself showing off the different genres with clarity.

Tower Bridge work with a range of community partners such as Variety & Southwark Young Pilgrims and has partnered with the Southwark Arts forum since 2011 to provide an annual exhibition at the Engine Rooms. This year’s exhibition is entitled Building Bridges: the Female Perspective and showcases the very different art forms from a network of local artists, 15 of which have gone through a judging process to exhibit at this prestigious venue. The works are a selection of paintings, photographs, mixed media, drawings and lino cut prints each showing their unique view, either literally or metaphorically of what building bridges in a modern world means to them.

Whilst the moody photograph Momentary Flight by Ana Katrina Giles-Myers, and the lino cut Albatross from Charlotte Tymms portray bridges in a more literal sense Donna Leighton’s etching entitled The New Baby explores building bridges in a completely different way by portraying the bond between mother and baby. A particular favourite of mine was Bound to Remember by Victoria Coster, a collage on canvas layering paper that would typically be discarded such as receipts for food and travel from 2006-2011 bridging together the space between those times.

Running from International Women’s Day on 8 March until 31 July 2016, Building Bridges: The Female Perspective is a must see exhibition set in an atmospheric setting. Art being a truly personal taste I highly recommend you go along and find your own personal favourite.” 

Bits and Bobs

This is a nice little run down of exhibitions by British female artists happening in 2016:

http://www.culture24.org.uk/art/art548364-International-Womens-Day-2016-19-must-see-exhibitions-by-women-artists-this-year

More interesting reading from Gresham College:

http://www.gresham.ac.uk/lectures-and-events/contemporary-christian-art

 

That’s it for now….

TO FOLLOW THIS ARTIST’S BLOG SIMPLY GO TO THE RIGHT HAND COLUMN, LOCATE THE  “FOLLOW” BOX AND POP IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS.  YOU WILL THEN RECEIVE MONTHLY UPDATES. 

Jenny Meehan is a painter, poet, and Christian contemplative  based in East Surrey/South West London.   Her interest in Christ-centred spirituality and creativity are the main focus of this artist’s journal, which rambles and meanders on, maybe acting as a personal (yet open to view)  note book as much as anything else.  If you read and enjoy it, this would be an added bonus! 

Her website is www.jamartlondon.com.  (www.jamartlondon.com replaces the older now deceased website http://www.jennymeehan.co.uk)

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also occasionally offers art tuition for individuals or in shared sessions.  Please contact Jenny at j.meehan@tesco.net or through the contact form at www.jamartlondon.com for further details as availability depends on other commitments.    

 Jenny Meehan works mainly with either oils or acrylics  creating both abstract/non-objective paintings  and also semi-abstract work.  She also produces representational/figurative artwork,  mostly using digital photography/image manipulation software, painting and  drawing.  Both original fine paintings and other artwork forms  and affordable photo-mechanically produced prints are available to purchase.  

Jenny Meehan exhibits around the United Kingdom.   To be placed on Jenny Meehan’s  bi-annual  mailing list please contact Jenny via her website contact page:  www.jamartlondon.com

Also, you could follow the Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal at WordPress and keep informed that way. 

Note About Following Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal 

TO FOLLOW THIS ARTIST’S BLOG SIMPLY GO TO THE RIGHT HAND COLUMN, LOCATE THE  “FOLLOW” BOX AND POP IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS.  YOU WILL THEN RECEIVE MONTHLY UPDATES. 

You tube video with examples of photography, drawing and painting

by Jenny Meehan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAXqzMIaF5k

Website Link for jamartlondon:  www.jamartlondon.com 

A selection of non objective paintings can be viewed on pinterest:   https://uk.pinterest.com/Jamartlondon/

 

I’m posting this up in addition to my usual once a month post, as it is Holy Week now and I want this up in time!  I am hoping that those in the area who are interested in creative communications and the Christian faith, and would like to invest some time into drawing closer to themselves and God over the Holy Week, will be encouraged to use St Paul’s Church in Hook during those times when it will be open for prayerful reflection, meditation and contemplation.  (or just one of those would suffice!!!!)

Between 7 and 8pm…  Monday to Thursday the church will be open.

On Good Friday the installation will be taken away, but in the evening there will be a performance of  Requiem by Gabriel Fauré which starts at 7pm.

 

Images from St Paul’s Church, Hook  “Holy Week” Installation

First of all there were lots of different areas in the church building used by many different people, and all wonderfully put together and conceived which will provide lots of opportunity for people to guide their prayer experiences…I am just focusing on my own contribution here as this is the focus of this blog, but I will be posting more images on Facebook which will show others work as well.

This is how I chose to use the Chancel area of St Paul’s Church, Hook.  It’s my own place of corporate worship, so it was very lovely to bring myself into the space and express thoughts and feelings in a visual way.

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul’s Church

 

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

Love Bade Me Welcome painting displayed as part of art installation at St Paul’s Church of England Church

 

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

st pauls church holy week art installation jenny meehan

 

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

st pauls church holy week art installation jenny meehan

(not very good quality pictures unfortunately… I really need a better camera!… Looks like I need to pop back and adjust the candles too! These were not part of the original idea, but as is often the case, when you are there you use what you can and how you can.)

 

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

st pauls church holy week art installation jenny meehan

 

On the Altar –  I used a white paper table cloth, a sheet,  and a long piece of white canvas.  I dripped some paint, which I made using acrylic medium and a lot of red iron oxide pigment, along the canvas.  Initially this was in separate spots, but I decided to drip them into each other to create a line, not unbroken, but leading into itself in places.   This led from the centre outwards to a plate and knife and fork at each end.  In the middle I had a single red rose in a single stemmed glass vase.  The rose is open and the petals may start to fall at the end of the week.   I felt these symbols to be very common and not particularly innovative, however, they were there to help engage people with the poem by George Herbert, which I put on display near by.

George Herbert. 1593–1632

286. Love

LOVE bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lack’d anything.

‘A guest,’ I answer’d, ‘worthy to be here:’
Love said, ‘You shall be he.’
‘I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on Thee.’
Love took my hand and smiling did reply,
‘Who made the eyes but I?’

‘Truth, Lord; but I have marr’d them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.’
‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘Who bore the blame?’
‘My dear, then I will serve.’
‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat.’
So I did sit and eat.

Two chairs on each side of the Altar.   Cushions on them, to be comfortable!   Maybe this could be identified as a “Table for Two” !!!!   Altar rail open, of course, as broken, it is the entrance into the area.

 

I put my painting “Love Bade Me Welcome” behind the altar.  Very pleased that the colours worked well.

love bade me welcome painting jenny meehan

love bade me welcome painting jenny meehan

 

 

The Pews

On just one side of the Pews I had a pot of Chrysanthemums; lovely daisy single petal types.  Then another pot from which all the flowers had been cut off.  Then a couple on stalks lying out of water, a couple more in some water, and a few flowers which had been taken apart.

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

st pauls church holy week art installation jenny meehan

 

 

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

Then I displayed the two poems I wrote when thinking through things. The first to go with the flower on it’s stalk, out of water, and the second for the flowers in the pot.

 

A Poem for Chrysanthemums in Holy Week 2016

Cut
from my roots
I lie and wait. Someone will pick me up
tear me apart.
But what difference will it make, to me?
A stranger from my source
with no future destiny.
Another Poem for Chrysanthemums in Holy Week 2016

Gathered together
Clamouring for space;
Dreaming of re-potting,
Positioning, in a different place.
Some golden, garden, Summer
may be our future lot;
Yet, in the present, happily,
nurtured in our pot.

You may come and take one,
and tear the life apart,
And what is done to one of us
will shake us from the heart
Yet this brings opportunity,
new hope and faith to know.
Because where one is broken
another two may grow.

 

(The ones in water are there simply so I can replenish when need be!)

The meditative activity, if anyone wanted to do it, was taken from Stephen Cottrell’s book “The Things He Carried – A Journey to the Cross: Meditations for Lent and Holy Week” This had several points and suggestions to it, which included a reading from Romans 5. 1-11, and a suggestion for breaking up a flower and after holding it for a while, then trying to reassemble it as best you could. Part of this was feeling “how hopeless it is”  (to try and reassemble it) and also watching “it fade”.

Other Areas

I had the Hymn “What a Friend we have in Jesus”  also displayed in another part of the chancel.   No surprise there…I have been thinking about this Hymn for around the last three years!!!!!!

What a Friend We Have in Jesus | Joseph M. Scriven
1. What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!
2. Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
3. Are we weak and heavy-laden,
Cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
Thou wilt find a solace there.
4. Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship
Will be our sweet portion there.

 

Our vicar Luke kindly offered his Father, Iden Wickings’  sculpture for use as part of the installation.

Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Love Bade Me Welcome inspired Altar Piece by Jenny Meehan Holy Week art installation in St Paul's Church religious art Christian contemporary art in church buildings, jenny meehan christian contemplative artist painter poet, contemporary use of art in places of worship, art for worship prayer, religious symbolism in church, symbolic language of art in christianity,

st pauls church holy week art installation jenny meehan

I responded to this sculpture like this:

“Holding On” A poem by Jenny Meehan in response to the sculpture ” ‘Raising the Totem’ by Iden Wickings

Holding on
Substance of my self
standing, but with force, drawing away.
Welded, in baptismal fires
ordained for me.
The effort of this slope of life
is too much…
The gravity and weight of it
beyond my ability to sustain.
Yet
you, Oh Christ…
Within and around me
hold on.
Holding on.

In a single step,
the weight of your love lifts me.
The strength of a hundred men
in just one,
says
“This will last forever”
then
“My work is done”.

 

And I used one of my paintings which I felt worked well with the sculpture visually.  It’s an untitled painting right now… but was painted alongside the Resurrection One and Resurrection Two paintings.  It’s still eluding me a little… I realise the logical and predictable thing is to call it “Resurrection Three” but I might settle for relating it to it’s use in this context, maybe “Resurrection Three/Holding On”

I enjoyed the process of putting it together, especially stretching my arms out when leaning over the altar to smooth out the table cloth.  This has got to be the most profound part for me.. to serve, to bow, to stretch my arms out, maybe there was there a small echo which resonated with my identification with what Christ has done for me.

It’s all part of the service…

Considerations

This strikes me.   I have read it many times before…

“If the Church gained more confidence in the figurative languages on which it is built, it would feel more able to befriend the artists, writers and poets of today with more open and trustful willingness.  Like birds hovering on the strong currents of the air we breathe, people of art and people of faith are keen to discern something of these currents which pull and shape our lives.  It is an exciting task and one that  might create many friendships and maybe even some agreement.   It does not surprise me, then, that it is our cathedrals that, by their beauty of stone, liturgy and music, are housing some of the most reflectice and lively partnerships between the contemporary arts and faith.  It is also our cathedrals for the same reasons, that are attracting many people’s interest in the possibilities of God.   Human beings need intimation as well as specification.” 

Mark Oakley in his book “The Collage of God”  2001.

 

 

Happy New Year 2016!

As usual, I have rambled on in my usual manner with an excess of both words and images!  Do skim over, just stopping as you require!  I use this blog as a personal journal/memo/notebook, publishing it on the net so that anyone interested in my work can find out more, but I do not finely hone it in the way that writers should…It is an unfolding and disorderly discourse, which tumbles off the computer keys and doesn’t get much editing!  I have to manage my time carefully, and though I love writing it, I cannot play about with it too much!  So off we go:

 

This looks good!

https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/abstract-expressionism

How tempting!  The entrance fee often deters me from seeing the exhibitions I want to, but this is one I will visit for sure!  Too interesting not to!

Text from the website:

This ambitious and long overdue exhibition will bring together some of the finest works associated with the movement from around the world.

London has seen retrospectives of the most famous proponents of Abstract Expressionism over the decades, but this is the first time since 1959 that the movement as a whole will be represented in one landmark show. It is an opportunity for us to re-evaluate an artistic phenomenon, and make the case that far from being unified, Abstract Expressionism was in fact far more complex and ever-changing.

In addition to featuring work of the most celebrated artists associated with the movement: Kline, Pollock, Rothko, Newman, Still, de Kooning, Smith, Reinhardt and Gorky, we will also display work by lesser-known – but no less influential – artists to reveal the extraordinary breadth of a movement that gave New York City an artistic identity for the first time.

Cannot wait!  Will have to…

I also just found this, very pleased, as I remember seeing  Ffiona Lewis’ paintings a few years back when popping into the galleries on Cork Street.  Though I took some notes I couldn’t remember where I put them (no surprise there! ) and it was a happy moment to re locate her work!  I rate her painting very highly indeed, and it’s a lovely selection here at the Redfern Gallery.

http://www.redfern-gallery.com/ffiona-lewis_1039

The REDFERN GALLERY
20 Cork Street
London, W1S 3HL Telephone: +44 (0)207 734 1732
Fax: +44 (0)207 494 2908
Email: art@redfern-gallery.com Monday to Friday 11:00am to 5:30pm
Saturday 11:00am to 2:00pm
Closed on Bank Holidays

Oh, these dark days!

Christmas tree lights are still very welcome and much enjoyed!

I am looking through sketch books and note books.  I am not motivated to start any new work right now, but rather still looking backwards. Apart from the watercolours, which are being reviewed, and reflected on!

Some things I have found: An old poem, written at a time I was thinking about beech leaves and made a copper sculpture of one.

Beech Leaf

Pick me up from the pool…

Rescue me from

the depths and heights

of the skies.

Place me in your hand

and treasure me,

Then,

return me,

to my resting place.

 

 

Not one of my best, but interesting to me to review what my interests have been, and notice how consistent certain preoccupations are!

I was struck by the lovely beech leaves on the beech hedging which is near the King’s Centre, Coppard Gardens, Chessington.  Many years of walking that way when the children were younger meant I saw the young tender green shoots turn to soft and downy leaves, and then into their dry, crispy, light brown state;  still held onto the branches even though dead.  I also love leaves floating on water, for the water mirrors the sky, and you have the depths of the water, and the sky held together with an awareness of the boundary between the two marked by the floating object.  I had both in mind.

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography

Here is an old image of the new leaves opening up.  Apologies, cannot find the colour version!

copperleaf sculpture jenny meehan

 

Above is the leaf form I created during a course at West Dean College, which a friend brought.  I haven’t continued with the metal working though I enjoyed it immensely.

New Year’s Resolutions?

I don’t do those… and I feel January is far too early to think about the year ahead…This is still Winter!  Wait until Spring, and then I will start to look forward.  I am still in the curling up on the sofa time!  I am sketching cats, for the forthcoming KAOS “Raining Cats and Dogs” Charity event later on in the year.  KAOS stands for “Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.  I have no idea what I will do for it, and I want to produce about ten pieces of work.  But there is plenty of time.

I have had a bit of a time mending my studio tent.  The winds have been strong, and several times have nearly pulled the tarpaulin completely off!  But hopefully I have worked out the best way to keep it on…It hasn’t taken off yet!

 

Holocaust Memorial Day is coming soon

Below is the link from last years Kingston Event, which included an art competition.  I was awarded third place in the adult category.  It’s nice to look back on.  If you look on the winners images, you can find mine.  The artwork is a poem and painting combined, and was submitted as one work.  As is with the case with a lot of my imagery, I often work a poem into a painting, or vice versa.

http://www.kingston.ac.uk/faith/events/holocaust-memorial-day/

 

Faith and Art: Spirituality and Creativity working together

Religion is a funny word.  It is hard to call myself a religious artist, because of the abstract nature of a lot of my work.  Spiritually orientated art might be a more accurate expression.

See this, which is quoted from: http://www.rowan.edu/open/philosop/clowney/Aesthetics/art_spirit.htm

“Spirituality and the Pioneers of Modern Art

The beginnings of modern art, especially abstract art, have strong spiritual roots. This fact is not always obvious from textbook discussions of the work, which are more likely to focus on the many formal innovations of twentieth century art.

While these formalistic accounts are valid so far as they go, they omit what may have been the most central motivation of the pioneers of modern art. Kandinsky, Mondrian, Arp, Duchamps, Malevich, Newman, Pollack, Rothko and most of the other giants of early and mid-twentieth century painting shared common spiritual roots. For many of these men and women, art was primarily about spirituality, and was perhaps the most appropriate vehicle for expressing and developing the spirituality that the new century called for. Kandinsky expresses this conviction in his 1912 publication “Concerning the Spiritual in Art”; Mondrian mentions it in many of his writings; and so do many other painters, poets, musicians and dancers. Here is Kandinsky, in a selection from his influential 1912 booklet Concerning the Spiritual in Art:

When religion, science and morality are shaken (the last by the strong hand of Nietzche) and when outer supports threaten to fall, man withdraws his gaze from externals and turns it inwards. Literature, music and art are the most sensitive spheres in which this spiritual revolution makes itself felt. They reflect the dark picture of the present time and show the importance of what was at first only a little point of light noticed by the few. Perhaps they even grow dark in their turn, but they turn away from the soulless life of the present toward those substances and ideas that give free scope to the non-material strivings of the soul. (Concerning the Spiritual in Art, p. 33)

Whether they saw their quest as primarily personal, or whether (like Kandinsky) they saw the artist as a kind of prophet in the vanguard of humankind’s spiritual development, many of the great artists of the twentieth century saw their art in spiritual terms. For many of them also, the spirituality expressed in their work derives from eastern sources. Hindu and Buddhist ideas and practices had a strong influence on these artists, in some cases directly, in many others through the influence of Helena Blavatsky, Rudolph Steiner, and the Theosophical Society. Mondrian was a member of this society, and Kandinsky writes approvingly of it. The goal of these and other artists was to develop an art which expressed a reality beyond the material, a consciousness like that of a meditative state in which ordinary reality is transcended. Knowing this purpose casts a different light on the blank or monochrome canvases, the empty spaces, and the simple geometrical or biomorphic shapes of many abstract works. They might best be seen as meditative aids meant to reveal the transcendent or provoke a transcending consciousness. (In fact some of them strongly resemble asian works produced for exactly that purpose.) The same is true for work like that of Jackson Pollack, strongly influenced by Native American spirituality, whose drip paintings are meditative healing exercises like those of Indian shamans and Navaho sand painters (see The Spiritual in Art: Abstract painting 1890 – 1985, pp. 281 – 293 for these connections).”

The above text is written by  Dr. David Clowney, Ph.d , (Rowan University web pages)

 

“They might best be seen as meditative aids meant to reveal the transcendent or provoke a transcending consciousness.”

I seem to have fallen into creating meditative aids myself!

Yet what I do is, and cannot cease to be, related to my particular faith and perspectives. Even if not explicit.  I thought about introducing a crucifix to a couple of my paintings last year as they progressed, but then found this too stark, too obvious,  and much better when fragmented and broken up.   I arrived at Resurrection One and Resurrection Two via a crucifix at some stage in the painting.  Then my concern with light and colour took over, became more essentially part of the paintings than the symbol of the cross could hold up to… there was a fight going on and as the emotion was breaking out far more as a thrust of new life, energy and power, I just went with that, hence the title.  I felt that as the paintings had both brokenness and beauty, this was just exactly what I wanted them to be.

resurrection two, lyrical abstract painting jenny meehan, religious spirituality christian painting, contemporary christian fine artist, christian painter, british women artists 21st century

british collectable abstract paintings

 

british collectable abstract paintings

british collectable abstract paintings

 

I view all that I do artistically as being part of my response to God’s redemptive work through Christ Jesus.  For me, the energy and will to create is a handy by product of the ongoing spiritual renewal that my experience of the Holy Spirit brings into my life.  I have also found my engagement with my own subconscious through regular psychoanalysis a vital part of the development of my artistic work, as it enables me to draw deeply from my emotions and thoughts, and  reflect contemplatively, thoughtfully and analytically, into the processes and various directions which I encounter, hopefully bringing some discernment and wisdom into the decision making processes, as well as relying on aesthetic judgement.   I spend a fair bit of time looking over what I have done, and it is from this that little stepping stones sometimes appear and lead me forwards.  Not straight away.  But it is always very important to look back.  We are living in the now, but also the past and future are with us.  We cannot see the future, but the past might help root us in the ground sufficiently to enable us to gain some insight.  Looking at past works of art, both mine, and that of other artists, is a vital part of any artist’s practice.

I found this recently: http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/title/canon-richard-davey/id/7613

I rather like this, text quoted from an interview with Canon Richard Davey:

“Yet even as he conducts a tour of his paintings, starting and ending in a living room – ‘the abstract room’ – he stresses that what he is not is an art collector per se. The reason, perhaps, is that he has acquired his paintings over the years out of love for them, and in some cases because they were gifts from the artists, rather than because he regarded them as investments. He estimates that only half of the paintings explicitly reflect a Christian message.

However, when asked to define what he means by ‘spiritual painting’, there is a long pause followed by a much longer attempt at an explanation that touches on art and science, the mystery of matter at the atomic level and what this suggests about the cosmic interconnectedness between humans, and between the human and the divine.

“These texts and these works of art will slowly dissolve, just as we are dissolving as we shed skin and so on. What I’m interested in are artists who have a sensation or an attunement to that sense. And I find it interesting and sad. I suppose that‘s why people ask me to write about it. The artists don’t have to be ‘religious’ artists but that doesn’t mean that their faith isn’t important.”  (my bold)

The above is quoted from an interview with Canon Richard Davey, from http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/title/canon-richard-davey/id/7613   I cannot locate the author from the page unfortunately.

Here, once again, endless images.. to help me remember the lovely journey of painting!  I may have posted these by mistake before, apologies for that, if so, I cannot keep track even of this more organised, yet piecemeal, stream of narrative!

As I often write, do skim over!  I tend to use this blog as a diary/notebook as much as anything else, so rambling and too many images of paintings in progress is the norm!

below, wellspring two in progress…

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

above, Pilgrimage, in progress.  I submitted the final work to the John Moores Painting prize,  I am not sure when I will hear about if it has passed the first stage of the selection process.  http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/walker/johnmoores/

Here is some information about the John Moores Painting Prize from the website:

Background
Who or what is John Moores?
John Moores (1896-1993) was the founder of Littlewoods, a Liverpool-based company. A man of fierce local pride and a keen amateur painter, he was concerned at London’s increasing domination of the national arts scene. He established the John Moores Painting Prize in 1957 as a competition open to anyone and sponsored the exhibition’s prizes. He received a Knighthood in 1980, becoming Sir John Moores.

Today, the John Moores Liverpool Exhibition Trust works in partnership with National Museums and Galleries on Merseyside (operating as National Museums Liverpool (NML)) to organise and present the John Moores Painting Prize at the Walker Art Gallery every two years.

What is the John Moores Painting Prize?
The prize is an open competition for artists working with paint, which, since 1957, has culminated in an exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool. The exhibition is open to all artists aged 18 years or over, living or professionally based in the UK. It showcases the best new painting produced in Britain today and attracts a broad spectrum of artists. Named after its founding sponsor, the first John Moores exhibition was a great success and led to it becoming a biennial event. By the early sixties, the exhibition was regarded as the UK’s leading showcase for avant-garde painting. Many of the prize-winning works were purchased by John Moores and presented to the Walker Art Gallery for its permanent collection.

Since John Moores 23 in 2004, the first prize is no longer such a purchase prize. Instead, the painting that wins the first prize may be purchased by the Walker, meaning that the artist receives not only their prize money but the value of the painting in addition.

The John Moores Painting Prize is selected by an invited jury which changes for every competition, and the whole selection process is anonymous – the jurors are not told who the paintings are by.

 

I have never entered it before, as due to finances I need to pick just a couple of competitions to enter each year, especially if you need to pay to submit the work, regardless of if it gets selected or not.  But the John Moores Painting Prize is one competition I have thought about entering several times, so this time around I finally paid my money and sent the image off.  I like the fact that the whole selection process is anonymous… there is some peace of mind in the fact that the work is judged purely as it comes to meet one in the face, rather than influenced by other factors.

More painting in progress images;

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

 

above, those images from “rock strike”  Not sure is this one is quite finished, so will hold off the final image for now.  I enjoyed experimenting with a bit of collage;  wall paper, mod-roc, scrim, and tiny glass beads mostly.  It all feels rather a mess, and that  I have let things fall apart.  However, I recognise this as an important part of creativity, and indeed, of life.   Things get messy. Who knows what will come of it?

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

 

this one above is still waiting, I am not sure how to go with it right now…

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

 

above, “view”… this stayed like this for a long time before proceeding!  Just contemplating it at the moment.

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

 

above, “into the ocean deep”  That one was in progress for at least six months.  I don’t rush these paintings along at all!

Sometimes I wonder, amused, at what has happened with my painting.  Reading things like this;

Jules Olitski (1922–2007) 

“Painting is made from the inside out. I think of painting as possessed by a structure—i.e., shape and size, support and edge—but a structure born of the flow of color feeling. Color in color is felt at any and every place of the pictorial organization; in its immediacy—its particularity. Color must be felt throughout.”—Jules Olitski

and realising a ridiculous (but lovely) love of paint which rules itself and pulls me along with it,  is not very unusual, but something which inspires thousands of painters across the ages, whatever their style.

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

above, “catastrope”…. still thinking about this one..

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

above, one of the “resurrection” series, the full image of which I showed you earlier.   These were a long haul, quite a struggle at times, only coming together right at the very end.

Pillar and Moon

http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/nash-pillar-and-moon-n05392

Quote from the tate site:

Display caption

Paul Nash was deeply affected by his experiences as a soldier and an artist during the First World War. This picture was based around ‘the mystical association of two objects which inhabit different elements and have no apparent relation in life… The pale stone sphere on top of a ruined pillar faces its counterpart the moon, cold and pale and solid as stone.’Though not explicitly about mourning, the deep, unpopulated space and ghostly lighting gives the scene a melancholy air. Rather than depict a real landscape, Nash said that his intention had been ‘to call up memories and stir emotions in the spectator’.
July 2007

Follow the link to see the image.

My “Pillar and Moon” below.

"pillar and moon" paul nash painting imaginative interpretation,jenny meehan jamartlondon.com lyrical and geometric abstraction modern contemporary british female painter,process led painting uk,

 

Found this while doing some sorting, it’s 70cm by 50cm… has some lovely texture in it.  While in Paul Nash’s “Pillar and Moon”  I can share in the calling up memories and stirring emotions… very much an aim which has emerged in my painting, (though unexpectedly I have gone further into abstraction than I expected to),  in my “Pillar and Moon” the relationship between the two is less distant… “‘the mystical association of two objects which inhabit different elements and have no apparent relation in life… The pale stone sphere on top of a ruined pillar faces its counterpart the moon, cold and pale and solid as stone.’… He pulls them together in their almost parallel position at the top of his painting, so you know what he is doing there, but I have pulled mine into even closer relationship and because my painting is  more abstract, their material composition differences,  and the ground/sky relationship are lessened.  My moon is below the pillar even, and earthed with a brown which reaches towards the pillar, surrounded in blue, more resounding of sky than earth.

Pillar and Moon, by Jenny Meehan is available for purchase, please contact me for further details.

Use the contact form on my website:   www.jamartlondon.com

 

 

A Book of Silence….

I read this book several years ago, and it influenced me, so here is sharing a little more about it!

Quotes from http://www.saramaitland.com/Silence.html

” For about the last 10 years Sara Maitland has been trying to understand more about silence: what it might mean in 21st century; what effects it has on people; how it has been used and understood in the past; why we are so frightened of it; and why she has come to love it so much.
Her new book is an account of that adventure, a sort of mixture of personal journey and cultural history, both deeply personal and intellectually exciting. In the course of researching and writing the book Maitland spent silent time in silent places – on Skye in the Hebrides; in the Sinai Desert; in forests and mountains; in a flotation tank; in monasteries and libraries. She was trying to match her personal experiences to those of other people – from fairy stories to single-handed sailors, from hermits and romantic poets to prisoners and castaways, from reading and writing to mountaineering and polar exploration, from mythology to psychoanalysis.

“A serious, important and deeply engaging book, describing with equal honesty the risks and the resources of silence. In describing her own exploration of these, Sara Maitland prompts some very uncomfortable questions about the fear, the shallowness and the lack of attentive listening that so effectively keep us prisoners” Archbishop Rowan Williams

“Sara Maitland’s search for silence and solitude turns into an intriguing spiritual quest which takes the reader deep into her inner thoughts and fears. ‘A Book for Silence’ records a brave and adventurous psychological journey that will speak to all who have doubts about our increasingly over-materialistic society.” Stuart Sim, author of Manifesto for Silence

“I am grateful to Sara Maitland for this joyful book, filled with humour. It is a beautifully written, the fruit of prolonged experience of different sorts of silence, as well as wide reading and real scholarship. It uncovered within me a half-forgotten hunger for silence which surely most of feel in this noisy world.” Timothy Radcliffe, OP

Very struck by the quote below;  I think because I have found articulating my own experiences in life, through visual and written communication, very important and empowering.  I have seen silence as negative, and it has been, very often, very negative.  But I like the expression “presence of something which is not sound” and this struck me.  So, quoted from her book:

Perhaps it is a real, separate, actual thing an ontological category of its own: not a lack of language but other than, different from language; not an absence of sound but the presence of something which is not sound.

Nonetheless the idea that silence is an absence or lack is the commonly help position in contemporary life and especially – this is why it was painful – among the radical intellectual milieu in which I had for so long lived and flourished.

Toward the end of the 1990s my friend Janet Batsleer, with whom I was discussing all this at great length, sent me a (deliberately) provocative letter:

Silence is the place of death, of nothingness.  In fact there is no silence without speech.  There is no silence without the act of silencing, some one having been shut up, put bang to rights, gagged, told to hold their tongue, had their tongue cut out, had the cat get their tongue, lost their voice.  silence is oppression and speech, language, spoken or written, is freedom.”

and another quote from the letter she quotes..

That silence is a place of non-being, a place of control, from which all our yearning is to escape.  All the social movements of oppressed people in the second part of the twentieth century have claimed “coming to language” and “coming to voice” as necessary to their politics.. In the beginning was the Word.. Silence is oppression.  It is “the word” that is the beginning of freedom.  All silence is waiting to be broken”

…..

I like both silence and sound:  both are vital.  Reading this book certainly made me think about the pauses, rests, and other no-noise part of our existence!   However, when I took my retreat at the beginning of last year, I chose not to make it a silent one.  For me, this wouldn’t have sat well, I don’t feel.  Many people have tried it and like it, but speaking matters to me too much to forego it altogether!

I am an expressive person!  I am a communicator!  I simply enjoy being with people too much to deprive myself of communicating with them! And while I find attractive, the “the presence of something which is not sound.” and often enjoy silence (well, as near to it as possible, bearing in mind where I live),  I guess, as a painter, I am still listening and hearing, responding and communicating in the act of painting and the outworking of a painting comes to me very much as a kind of listening and a kind of speaking, even without words. There is a kind of presence which can be felt when looking at a painting, and a kind of listening, maybe a kind of echo or resonating type experience. Spiritual soundings, maybe?  Not audible, but through the eye comes some awareness?

Words, as ever, fail! But I think expression, sometimes termed “sound” can be silent, but also sounding.  Paintings can resonate with one’s spirit, and there is a silent sound which is heard, even if nothing enters the ears.  And it is not a matter of body and materiality being separate from the spiritual, psychological and emotional (soul) aspects of life and experience.   It is not a matter of silence or sound, or any kind of “either”  “or”  matter.    In fact, I feel as a painter, that  the physicality of the whole experience of creating a painting and enabling something to materialize is one of the most incarnational and wonderful things about it.  A unifying, incarnational and sacramental matter!  Outward signs of inner experiences and realisations of wonderful grace, maybe?  This is my take, anyway. When a painting goes well, and comes together, it is like a gift.  I just stand there feeling grateful, relieved, and slightly in  wonder.  Surprised, feeling tired from the work, but feeling that it’s not just my work, but a rather nice present from a Creator God who is far beyond anything I could ever imagine or create. Yet one who likes to share the joy of creation with me!  I moan sometimes about aspects of being an artist, but someone reminded me recently that it is a wonderful gift and worth being grateful about. And I do know what they mean. It’s not simply a matter of ability or skill (important though that is to develop)but it’s an experience of immersion in the creative, of being in the flow, of being opened up and thrown into the unknown, and loving it. That’s faith, isn’t it?

Watercolour Experiments 

Having made some watercolour paints last year, I have been keen to experiment with these.  I think I mentioned that in more detail in my last post.   I am jumping into the deep, and learning lots about this paint, and it helps me that I made the paints myself.  It is not hard, and I had the pigments.  It feels great to have been with the paints right from the beginning, and I can be generous in my experiments, as the water colour paints are more economical and far less expensive than if I had purchased them.  I have been blessed with a lot of pigment…pure and lovely, … so much to play with!   I am getting to know them well.  I am working with inorganic pigments which I obtained initially for use with silicate mineral paint (I was going to use with potassium silicate as the binder)  but which are now bound with some gum arabic solution I made up.  I have plenty more for use with other binders if I want to, but working on paper is interesting indeed, and though I cannot tell what the outcome will be, the process is very interesting!  I will post some up later on in the year, when I have worked sufficiently with them.  I showed you the two I entered for the Royal Watercolour Competition, but I have around twenty more I am working on.

Spiritual Direction/Guidance

I continue my mental touselling, (a word which does exist, even though the spell checker tells me that I have spelt it incorrectly!) over the term “spiritual director”.  As most of the population have never heard of a spiritual director, the term says all the wrong things and so I am continuing to experiment with ideas for how to better describe the role of a spiritual director in a short, quick and easily understandable way!   Here is something I rather like from the Mount Street Jesuit Centre website:

“Would you like the chance to meet an experienced prayer guide to share your thoughts and reflections about your own journey in life within a sacred and secure space where you will be listened to and accompanied on your path?

Typically, people meet with a spiritual director every 6-8 weeks for about an hour. There are no requirements other than an open heart. So, if attending any of our events leaves you wishing you had someone to talk things through with, this could be for you. There is a large local network of spiritual guides and we can put you in contact.”

That is pretty much the best and clearest description I have come across.  I like the expression “prayer guide” and the description of the space also.   I like the term “spiritual guide” too, which is much better than “director” as a word.   I often say to people who ask me what a “spiritual director is” is that it is a kind of mentoring, spiritual counselling, and listening type role, which aims to help people in their relationship with the divine and the spiritual dimension of their life experience/ God, in the way that they understand God,  and how this is working in their life.  I say that it is something open to all, whatever faith tradition, or none.  It seems to be, maybe not surprisingly, that most people who come to seek spiritual direction do have some background in one church or religious group setting or another, and have a faith tradition, however, this is not always the case.  What is beyond us is often an awful lot, (actually, always!) and I think  there are times in our lives when we want to ask ourselves what we believe, and why, and just make space to examine our consciousness and hopefully increase our awareness of where we are going, and why.   I come from a Christian perspective, and it obviously influences my approach and how I work as a spiritual director.  However, I am hoping that when I do complete my training with SPIDIR I won’t just be seeing people who happen to have similar affiliations to me.

In the SPIDIR course recently we had a brilliant session from Tim Stead on Mindfulness.  Tim is very thoroughly trained in Mindfulness and in delivering Mindfulness workshops and it certainly showed.   It was very helpful for me, as I had been seeking clarification on a few points.  It really was one of the best sessions so far.  Very inspiring.  Mindfulness, I think, is something ever more necessary in our current time, and essential to develop and cultivate.  Details of courses on Mindfulness run by Tim Stead can be found here:  http://www.hthq.org.uk/mindfulness.html

And also here:  http://bemindful.co.uk/learn-mindfulness/

 

New Redbubble art work…

I have just posted up some more artwork on Redbubble, do take a look!  My son likes Star Trek and I wanted to play around with ideas of speed and space.  I am pleased with the result, and he will get a T Shirt as one of his birthday presents!

 

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/20306316-not-long-until-i-reach-warp-speed-star-trek-parody-logo-design-with-transparent-background?grid_pos=132&p=t-shirt

 

For general look at my Redbubble portfolio go here:

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams?ref=account-nav-dropdown

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Copyright in all images by Jenny Meehan is held by the artist.
Permission must be sought in advance for the reproduction, copying or any other use of any images by Jenny Meehan. Individuals or businesses seeking licenses or permission to use, copy or reproduce any image by Jenny Meehan should, in the first instance, contact Jenny Meehan.
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Copyright for all visual art by Jenny Meehan is managed by the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS) in the UK. If you wish to licence a work of art by Jenny Meehan, please contact Jenny Meehan in the first instance to clarify your requirements. There is a contact form on my website www.jamartlondon.com

Licensing an image is quick and easy for both parties and is organised through the Design and Artist Copyright Society. (Note, my images are not shown on the “Art image” selection on the Design and Artist Copyright “Art Image” page. This does NOT mean you cannot apply for a license to use an image of my work from DACS… They simply have a very limited sample selection of work in their “Artimage” page!)

 

 

As usual, a very eclectic assortment of random things which have caught my interest…Skim over in that “facebook” kind of way and stop where you will!

 

giuseppe passeri,web christ falling beneath the weight of the cross

giuseppe passeri ,web christ falling beneath the weight of the cross

 

Another post… As always, this is rather like an open journal…So I have been unconcerned if I ramble on… Yet you have the power of skimming as fast as you want and scrolling as furiously as you need to in order to avoid reading anything which is not a good use of time for you right now!  And….. YOU CAN JUST LOOK AT THE PICTURES!   So off I go!

Giuseppe Passeri (12 March 1654 – 2 November 1714) was an Italian painter of the Baroque period, active in his native city of Rome.

This drawing “Christ falling beneath the weight of the cross” by Giuseppe Passeri  is a wonderful example of drawing, and when I look at drawings like this I do feel only awe!  True masters of the art of drawing can only inspire…  There is so much emotion in all those bodies, the forms  radiate emotion…   Not including the human form in much of my work right now, but apart from abstraction, it is  my other main interest.   I cannot credit this image as I took a photo of it from a book years ago and cannot remember the details!

Drop In Drawing

If you fancy trying your own fair hand to a spot of Drawing, then remember that I do hold a once a month “Drop in Drawing/Painting” group on either a Wednesday or Friday afternoon, once a month.  Contact me via my website www.jamartlondon.com  for more information if you are interested in this.   Here’s a little more information:
“I won’t be planning a structured session but I am there to help people on a one-to-one basis with achieving their own objectives.
Many people just come now and again, so the more people who know about it the better. Please do mention to anyone you know who might be interested in trying something visually creative as the session is suitable for all abilities, from beginner to advanced, due to the emphasis on individual tuition.
You do need to bring your own materials and equipment. If you need some advice about what to bring, just email me and I can give you some guidance. I normally have a few additional resources available, if need be, ie, pencils and paper, chalk pastels and poster paint.
The idea of holding these sessions is that I am available to help you to develop your own projects and ideas. I will be there to add my technical and practical input, and help you by discussing your direction and the difficulties which may be encountered along the way, if you so require. As to what you actually do, this could be from drawing from the imagination, copying something from life, designing something abstract, or making a collage of text and images. Or simply experimenting and exploring what it is like to use a particular material or method of drawing.
I will provide some ideas if people like, but anticipate people coming along with some idea of what they might like to do beforehand. However, just a vague idea is just fine! If you want to use paint, then of course, certainly do, however, for practical reasons, you might need to work outside if you are painting on a medium to large scale and the group is running to full capacity.
These workshop style session will give you plenty of individual input and opportunities for feedback, discussion, and analysis, as you consider ways of developing your own direction. I also offer individual tuition in oil painting, painting with acrylics, and drawing which can be arranged if you wish. ”

I haven’t held any structured art classes (ie with set activities/objectives and/or areas of focus for the group as a whole)  for ages because I have found that though they are great fun to plan (nice to use my teacher training and experience in this respect!) with a small group of four people (which is all I can accommodate) it makes more sense to offer a kind of individual tuition/workshop style approach and let people go off in their own direction completely!  People also learn a lot from listening and seeing what is going on and talking and sharing some aspects of  what they are doing, (if they wish)  which is encouraged.

Inclusive Church Movement

Quote from the Inclusive Church website:

“Inclusive Church was born on 11th August 2003 at St Mary’s Putney, at a Eucharist attended by over 400 people. The cause of this gathering was the deep unease felt by many within the Church of England regarding the resignation of The Rev’d Dr Jeffrey John as Bishop of Reading.

Working with individuals and partner organisations we seek to raise awareness about the ways that people feel excluded by the church.

An on-line Petition was set up requesting assent to a Declaration of Belief. The response was immense and we soon reached nearly 10,000 signatories. On 15th September 2003 a small group of supporters met to consider this overwhelming response, and concluded that Inclusive Church was here to stay.

Over time this group has met and developed. We are now “…a network of individuals and organisations whose make-up reflects the breadth and scope of the Church of England and beyond. We come from differing traditions and differing locations but we are united in one aim: To celebrate and maintain the traditional inclusivity and diversity of the Anglican Communion”

We work closely with a large number of organisations. The partnership work which has emerged over the past few years is very valuable – we work with, among others, the Association of Black Clergy, Women and the Church, the Group for the Rescinding of the Act of Synod, Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement, Changing Attitude, Affirming Catholicism, the Society of Catholic Priests, Accepting Evangelicals, Courage, Modern Church, Progresssive Christianity Network and Integrity (US).

Inclusive Church is so much more than a single issue organisation. We are committed to working for a church that is welcoming and open to all. We welcome other partnerships. If you would like to work with Inclusive Church please contact us”

http://inclusive-church.org.uk/about-us

I’ve included this because I stumbled on the following article on facebook recently, and it got me thinking about what a blessing being open to change is, and how important it is that those people who start to explore the possibility that God might actually be inclusive in all respects, realise that they are part of a very positive movement, and that there is a lot of help and resources around to draw from, as they consider themselves where they are in relation to all that is happening at the moment.   Here is the post below:

This is a very well written post on the LGBT/Christian debate, which will be a helpful read in exploring thinking around the matter.

https://julierodgers.wordpress.com/2015/07/13/an-update-on-the-gay-debate-evolving-ideas-untidy-stories-and-hopes-for-the-church/#comments

Yoga

I have just started some FREE sessions of Yoga with the Our Parks scheme:  http://www.ourparks.org.uk/.  Well, it’s amazing!  I am enjoying it immensely and finding it very beneficial…already…. I have only been to two sessions!  I have been trying out things at home a bit which has helped me to get into it too.   I have found that, even though I have been working for three years on trauma recovery with my psychotherapist (lots of adverse childhood/early life experiences!) my body more often than not, full of tension, and still feels constantly uptight.  It’s odd, because I know I don’t come across as an uptight person in  any other sense, but my body seems to hold the fight/flight thing in itself rather dearly!

I found with the Yoga practice a lot of releasing of tension, and it was rather liberating.  I think it must be the whole thing of connecting your body with your mind more, because this feeling of distance/disconnection between the two is something which I have been living with for a long time. So much so, that when I walked back from my first Yoga session, I couldn’t quite believe how I felt so integrated.  This is a huge deal for me. It might seem rather too soon for me to feel such positive effects on the one hand, but when I consider things which are particularly resonant for me, ie  I did ballet from the age of 5 to 15, and the whole thing of me focusing on my body and movements brings to me to a place of re-connecting with my body/self which is emotionally profound.  It helped me to see how much over all physical sensation and  body awareness I have lost… The main physical sensation I have let lead me has been my stomach (I expect this has contributed no doubt to the whole over eating thing!), and now I am thinking that if I focus on other areas of my body, I might well end up a little more well balanced, and possibly less overweight?

The second session made me cry a bit (after the session)… not because of pain, I hasten to add, (there was some discomfort at times, but not pain!)  but because of some of the mental blocks I faced, some of the self-judgement and having to accept my body as it is now, rather than hark back to my ballet days.  It is pretty hard to realise that you used to spin around en-pointe and now you cannot even lift one leg up for a tiny amount of time and balance for one second!  Well, good for humility, I guess.  And will crush any spirit of competitiveness, for sure!!!  However, though I may struggle, and feel challenged physically, mentally and emotionally, I will certainly push on through.  Body injuries in various places/over-sized body/post traumatic self and wounded spirit, yes, … Here I come, you are all mine, we will go for it!

When I started psychotherapy in 2012, one of the most helpful things my therapist pointed me towards was that deeper kind of breathing,  something I tend to think of as baby breathing, (not sure why?) but it’s called “diaphragmatic breathing”, oh, thank you Wiki:

Diaphragmatic breathing, abdominal breathing, belly breathing or deep breathing is breathing that is done by contracting the diaphragm, a muscle located horizontally between the chest cavity and stomach cavity. Air enters the lungs and the belly expands during this type of breathing.

This deep breathing is marked by expansion of the abdomen rather than the chest when breathing. It is considered by some to be a healthier way to breathe, and is considered by some a useful form of complementary and alternative treatment.

Diaphragmatic Breathing is also known scientifically as Eupnea, which is a natural and relaxed form of breathing in all mammals. Eupnea occurs in mammals whenever they are in a state of relaxation, ie when there is no clear and present danger in their environment.”

Interesting last line there…with accumulated trauma related stress in your life,  the whole thing of doing anything which is a natural thing to do when there is “no clear and present danger in their environment”  is immensely appealing… that made me smile and laugh when I read that!

Well,   using that kind of breathing over the last few years has been very helpful, essential, I would say, at times of flashback/anxiety/panic attack especially, and also helpful to use in the psychotherapy session when things were overwhelming, and I needed to breath in order to stay present during trauma therapy…It helps you stay grounded.   It was this positive experience with breathing in this way, plus my past ballet training (which did use some yoga stretches, so I felt kind of comfortable with it as a form of physical training…) which made my ears prick up when I found I could try it out!  I am so glad I did.

I plan to devise a kind of Yoga-Ignation Examen combo practice!   I have been using the Ignation Examen for a while.. I must confess normally just two or three times a week, though the aim was every day!  Here’s a quick description, quoted from the ignatianspirituality.com website:

This is a version of the five-step Daily Examen that St. Ignatius practiced.
1. Become aware of God’s presence.
2. Review the day with gratitude.
3. Pay attention to your emotions.
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow.
– See more at: http://www.ignatianspirituality.com/ignatian-prayer/the-examen#sthash.yquODWgJ.dpuf

So you can see it’s  very much an examination of consciousness.

“The Daily Examen is a technique of prayerful reflection on the events of the day in order to detect God’s presence and discern his direction for us. The Examen is an ancient practice in the Church that can help us see God’s hand at work in our whole experience.
The method presented here is adapted from a technique described by Ignatius Loyola in his Spiritual Exercises. St. Ignatius thought that the Examen was a gift that came directly from God, and that God wanted it to be shared as widely as possible. One of the few rules of prayer that Ignatius made for the Jesuit order was the requirement that Jesuits practice the Examen twice daily—at noon and at the end of the day. It’s a habit that Jesuits, and many other Christians, practice to this day.”
– See more at: http://www.ignatianspirituality.com/ignatian-prayer/the-examen#sthash.yquODWgJ.dpuf

The following is a deeper explanation, just an extract quoted from:  George Aschenbrenner, SJ  From Consciousness Examen, part of the Somos Católicos series 

Examen of Consciousness
For many people today life is spontaneity, if anything. If spontaneity is crushed or aborted, then life itself is stillborn. In this view, examen is living life backwards and once removed from the vibrant spontaneity and immediacy of the experience itself. These people today disagree with Socrates’ claim that the unexamined life is not worth living. For these people the Spirit is in the spontaneous and so anything that militates against spontaneity is not of the Spirit.
This view overlooks the fact that welling up in the consciousness and experience of each of us are two spontaneities, one good and for God, another evil and not for God. These two types of spontaneous urges and movements happen to all of us. So often the quick-witted, loose-tongued person who can be so entertaining and the center of attention and who is always characterized as being so spontaneous is not certainly being moved by and giving expression to the good spontaneity. For people eager to love God with their whole being, the challenge is not simply to let the spontaneous happen but rather to be able to sift through these various spontaneous urges and give full existential ratification to those spontaneous feelings that are from and for God. We do this by allowing the truly Spirited-spontaneity to happen in our daily lives. But we must learn the feel of this true Spiritual-spontaneity. Examen has a very central role in this learning.
When examen is related to discernment, it becomes examen of consciousness rather than of conscience. Examen of conscience has narrow moralistic overtones. Its prime concern was with the good or bad actions we had done each day. Whereas in discernment the prime concern is not with the morality of good or bad actions; rather the concern is with the way God is affecting and moving us (often quite spontaneously!) deep in our own affective consciousness. What is happening in our consciousness is prior to and more important than our actions, which can be delineated as juridically good or evil. How we are experiencing the “drawing” of God (John 6:44) in our own existential consciousness and how our sinful nature is quietly tempting us and luring us away from intimacy with God in the subtle dispositions of our consciousness—this is what the daily examen is concerned with prior to a concern for our response in our actions. Hence it is examen of consciousness that we are concerned with here, so that we can cooperate with and let happen that beautiful spontaneity in our hearts that is the touch of God and the urging of the Spirit.
– See more at: http://www.ignatianspirituality.com/ignatian-prayer/the-examen/consciousness-examen#sthash.Ygh4hnyG.dpuf

I am hoping that along with the classes, which I am happy to follow as they happen,  I will develop my own pathway of combining Yoga practice with the the pattern of the Examen, (which I have got used to over the last year or so, so comes pretty naturally now), my general prayer practice and meditating on whatever the Holy Spirit brings my way.  It’s all good stuff.   The whole “grounding” emphasis has been completely helpful to me.  (And I will try to look after my feet, because they bear a lot! )

In celebration of this new found enthusiasm… What is needed here is a piece of art!

yoga mindfulness, yoga meditation contemplative spirituality,contemplative christianity,grounding techniques, trauma recovery, complex post traumatic stress body work, examination of consciousness, head in the clouds but feet on the ground art image jenny meehan

head in the clouds but feet on the ground art image jenny meehan

I’m calling this “Head in the Clouds but Feet on the Ground/Contemplation”  (I often give two titles!)

 

Outsider Art? Insider Art?  Outside In Art or Inside Out Art?

I’ve been shimmering over the net, skimming here and there for a bit for a while with respect to the category of “Outsider Art”.  This is very problematic a term, and though it is used a lot, it means so many different things to so many different people and groups.  Now “Outsider Art” is maybe a world of it’s own, but not the “world” of it’s own that it used to be, because that exclusive and private world has now blow out in a host of other bubbles and into the atmosphere of the so-called “Art World”… Which is itself, not a world at all, but a network of activities centred around… yes,  you know, money and connections.

You can see I am having problems from the start, and I haven’t even started yet!  I remember speaking to someone a while back who went to study art at degree level, or it may have even been an MA,  and yet he got a fair amount of resistance to his own work in that setting because he was so self directed and knew what he wanted to do, and did it.   Would he be termed an “Outsider Artist”?  He could maybe be described as an “Inside but Outside artist”???  According to some thinking, the fact that he was in this kind of education setting would disqualify him straight away from calling himself an “Outsider Artist” (if he wanted to) because he had an awareness of the contemporary art “scene” “world” “culture” other artists, and also, had the capacity to think about his art and work in a certain way.  But the education/training or rather lack of, as a criteria for discerning if it is appropriate to term someone’s art or themselves as an “Outsider Artist” falls down flat on it’s face, because there are of course many artists who have received training and education, and who through mental health challenges, traumatic brain injuries, or many other kinds of life experiences, or disabilities, find themselves in a place where they either no longer care, or are not interested, in anything as dubious and unreliable as the so-called “Art World” (whatever that may be or mean), and simply want to get on with their art working.  They may also have received training, education and awareness from many other different sources, the internet, adult education, personal relationships, etc, and they may have gone to college, picked up a load of rubbish in terms of ideas about art, and happily dispensed with it because they realised that it was a waste of time and energy, for them at least.    Does this work produced by sometime “trained” (could be questioned, I guess, if that is the right word!)  but no longer interested in banging their heads against a brick wall with a lot of conceptual stuff, type art and artist count as “Outsider Art”?  Is the difference an educational and or class one?  is the question which quickly follows.

I put myself on the Pallant House Gallery “Outside In” web gallery for a while last year, mostly because of my experiences and journey with mental health difficulties/challenges, my participation in long term psychotherapy (which includes a great deal of interest in the subconscious!) and because I view my art work as part of my trauma recovery experience, (though certainly, this is only one aspect of it, as I view it as plenty of other things too!)  I also put my work there for a little while because I wanted to align myself with those other artists who I could feel very much closer to in terms of values and purpose,   I think, much more so than the alternative so called “Art World” construct, which didn’t fit in with the direction I was looking in, and look in now, at all.  However, I  took myself off the Pallant House Gallery “Outside In” web gallery after a while because I was unsure if  it was really quite “fair” to be there.  I wondered how one could really make a judgement about such things, and I think I probably could be on there, but then I felt that bearing in mind that I am pretty good with words, I do have the kind of power because of that which many artists because of learning disabilities and such like, didn’t have.   So it felt best to leave that space for those who really needed supporting in that way, even though I wanted my work to be there symbolically as it being a place I would rather align myself with in terms of a values and focus.

Now “Outsider Art” is more of an “In Thing”  this also brings much interest to Outsider Art, which kind of brings it into a different place, one which has many educated, intellectually incisive, and, well, able, people, mentally and physically, into it’s realm, both as makers, collectors and dealers.  If “Outsider Artists” are termed that by merit of disadvantages in society and in relation to that ever illusive “Art World” I need to ask: “How do you make judgements about disadvantages anyway?  I could be described as disadvantaged compared to some people,  (more so in terms of my past) but advantaged compared to others   My period of what I will call, deconstruction, has brought me into a new place in thinking about brokenness in general, where I see it as a positive dimension to life, rather than something negative, and would even say that my difficulties in life, though being a disadvantage in some respects are also an advantage in others.

To use relative financial wealth/success or not is also problematic when thinking about “Outsider Art”…I cannot afford to do what I would do with my artwork if I had more finance, and this is a disadvantage, (I can hear the cries from pretty much all the other artist’s I know echoing the same words!!! )   but on the other hand I have a level of security which rolls me firmly off the “Starving Artist” spectrum.   I am a woman and a mother, and a “Stay at Home Mother”, so these might also move me into a disadvantaged position in terms of the way that the “Art World” swings in favour of men (which is does, imo). But I also appreciate fully and know it well, that I am hugely advantaged compared to so many, even if my plans and aspirations tend to hit the wall because of lack of funds.  In the end, the family need feeding and clothes.. (thank goodness for Lidl! and Asda).  I could go to work and get a job which brings some more money into our household, but then I wouldn’t have the time to do the art work I do.  The art work I do I need to do, because this is something of my life blood in life, it keeps me motivated for living and keeps me sane, very often times!  I do what I do because of necessity, as well as a choice, which I must say, I am constantly  grateful for.

I can say that most of the exceedingly brilliant and wonderful artists I know could easily be termed “Outsider Artists” for a huge variety of reasons, yet all might differ in their life experiences and situations to quite a large extent.  And most of them don’t make much money, if any, or certainly no financial profit, from their art working and their art work. Many have various mental health challenges or disabilities…Even if they are not actually their own, they are closely involved with or caring for those who have them, and therefore their lives are entwined with a much larger spectrum of experience, which is, theirs, even though not tangible or obvious to see.  And it is all felt and lived through.  I keep in my mind just one of the things I learnt when I was finding out more about traumatic brain injury and it’s effects on both the person with the injury and those close to them.  Traumatic brain injury is often termed the “hidden disability”  and when I recall my experience of coming to terms with my brother’s, among other things, I am aware of this shared nature of tragedy, and the way our lives impact on others, and vice versa.  There is a lot of hidden injury around.  So we really cannot make judgements and have to accept that categories, of all kinds, are going to be problematic from the outset to the end.

So where might I take my meanderings, with respect to “Outsider Art”?  Maybe I might ask myself where I would place myself?  I would place myself as an “Insider-Outer” artist I think, because I have taken my inner life and let it out…but not just as catharsis, oh no, and not without training, or education.  Not without awareness of the other artist’s both past and present, and not without consideration or analysis…There is certainly plenty of analysis going on in the confines of my psychotherapy sessions.   I am always pleased when something good happens and something gets chosen for an exhibition, because I want my art work to be used, because I am in this funny old world of ours and I am a funny little part of it…I don’t identify myself with the word “outsider”, well, not now, not any more.  Isolation can be acutely felt, and it’s not great at all.  Outside says the wrong things to me…because I am not on the outside at all.  We  are all on the outside of some things, groups and places, but it is what is happening in the inside of our lives which helps us to forge the connections and relationships we need and love to experience.

I found this writing on the net with respect to Outsider Art and  found it helpful to read.

http://www.jameselkins.com/index.php/essays/253-there-is-no-such-thing-as-outsider-art

Naïfs, Faux-naïfs, Faux-faux naïfs, Would-be Faux-naïfs:
There is No Such Thing as Outsider Art
James Elkins
This was originally published in: Inner Worlds Outside, exh. cat., edited by John
Thompson (Dublin: Irish Museum of Modern Art, 2006), 71–79.]

Quote from website:  “The argument here is that “outsider art” and similar concepts (“naive art,” “primitive art,” etc.) are constructions of modernism, and only exist as ideals understood as contrasts to normative practice. It doesn’t mean there aren’t artists outside of the traditions of modernism and postmodernism, or outside of academic art—rather that the value we place on them is itself characteristic of modernism, so that “outsider” or “naive” art is not distinct from the modernist enterprise.”

James Elkins is E.C. Chadbourne Professor in the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism, School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Such a helpful read!

 

Details from recent process led painting experiments!

Well, here we are.  PAINTING!  I have popped some text on the top of these thinking this might be helpful to anyone interested in my painting who stumbles upon my work and wants to know quickly where to see more!  As these images are fragments/close ups/details, they serve a great function for me in helping me remember various painting options and ideas when I sell (hopefully) the final painting.  Also, because these highly abstracted paintings go through several stages, and sometimes morph rather unexpectedly along the way, it helps me to remember some of the lost paintings which are often  part of the work, but can not be seen again in quite the same way in the final piece.  They are very much there and present, and exerting an influence, however, sometimes covered, I still need to remember what was happening underneath if possible, particularly if I was trying out something new, (which didn’t work/did work).

I am rather fond of the idea of “lost paintings”…The sense that what is in the past/gone/dead/buried, is lost but still present.

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

jenny meehan jamartlondon lyrical abstract expressionistic paintings in progress

Painting and Physicality…

Come to think about it, it is the physicality, and the way I focus on the materials I use in painting that helps me feel  connected with myself … I haven’t thought about it much but it IS very therapeutic!  I have around 20 paintings “on the go” at the moment, but they are not all moving forwards at the same time, and I am having a short break right now.  Not sure what’s happening with them, but some are falling into the water and flow category…solid/liquid, block, flow, water, waterfalling/waterfalls, some centring just on expression of some fundamental feeling/emotion, lots of pushing out experimentally in terms of trying out new things.  There’s a few shelters/tents/refuges/tower type imagery emerging.  It’s wonderful weather for drying paint!

Having a great time in the “Studio Tent” … Might start calling it the “Tent of Meeting”… This is influenced by me preparing a talk to give at St Paul’s Church of England, Hook, in a couple of weeks on Psalm 84… (Lovely Psalm!)… In researching the talk, I discovered that the phrase “tent of meeting”  is used in the Old Testament as the name of a place where God would meet with His people. ” Usually, the “tent of meeting” was used as another name for the Tabernacle of Moses. However, before the tabernacle was constructed, God met with Moses in a temporary tent of meeting: “Now Moses used to take a tent and pitch it outside the camp some distance away, calling it the ‘tent of meeting.’ Anyone inquiring of the Lord would go to the tent of meeting outside the camp. . . . As Moses went into the tent, the pillar of cloud would come down and stay at the entrance, while the Lord spoke with Moses” (Exodus 33:7, 9).” (quoted from http://www.gotquestions.org/)

Wow, well there isn’t a pillar of cloud at the entrance of my Studio Tent of Meeting, however, I do feel the Holy Spirit a lot inside it… and it is heaven to simply have that space, and to paint, pray, and meditate in there.  It is a place of a lot of blessing and happiness! It’s a kind of oratory!

Here’s Psalm 84:

Psalm 84  Good News Translation (GNT)

Longing for God’s House[a]
84 How I love your Temple, Lord Almighty!
2 How I want to be there!
I long to be in the Lord’s Temple.
With my whole being I sing for joy
to the living God.
3 Even the sparrows have built a nest,
and the swallows have their own home;
they keep their young near your altars,
Lord Almighty, my king and my God.
4 How happy are those who live in your Temple,
always singing praise to you.
5 How happy are those whose strength comes from you,
who are eager to make the pilgrimage to Mount Zion.
6 As they pass through the dry valley of Baca,
it becomes a place of springs;
the autumn rain fills it with pools.
7 They grow stronger as they go;
they will see the God of gods on Zion.
8 Hear my prayer, Lord God Almighty.
Listen, O God of Jacob!
9 Bless our king, O God,
the king you have chosen.
10 One day spent in your Temple
is better than a thousand anywhere else;
I would rather stand at the gate of the house of my God
than live in the homes of the wicked.
11 The Lord is our protector and glorious king,
blessing us with kindness and honor.
He does not refuse any good thing
to those who do what is right.
12 Lord Almighty, how happy are those who trust in you!
Footnotes:

Psalm 84:1 HEBREW TITLE: A psalm by the clan of Korah.

 

Well…. That is it for now… Till next month! 

Ah, just couldn’t resist this photo I stumbled on when doing a bit of computer sorting!  Me and the children, a few years back!  I’m totally passionate about art, but never forget, people are more important than art will ever be!

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography

 

 

 

Jenny Meehan. All Rights Reserved, DACS

TO FOLLOW THIS ARTIST’S BLOG SIMPLY GO TO THE RIGHT HAND COLUMN, LOCATE THE  “FOLLOW” BOX AND POP IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS.  YOU WILL THEN RECEIVE MONTHLY UPDATES. 

Jenny Meehan is a painter, poet, and Christian contemplative  based in East Surrey/South West London.   Her interest in Christ-centred spirituality and creativity are the main focus of this artist’s journal, which rambles and meanders on, maybe acting as a personal (yet open to view)  note book as much as anything else.  If you read and enjoy it, this would be an added bonus! 

Her website is www.jamartlondon.com.  (www.jamartlondon.com replaces the older now deceased website http://www.jennymeehan.co.uk)

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also occasionally offers art tuition for individuals or in shared sessions.  Please contact Jenny at j.meehan@tesco.net or through the contact form at www.jamartlondon.com for further details as availability depends on other commitments.    

 Jenny Meehan works mainly with either oils or acrylics  creating both abstract/non-objective paintings  and also semi-abstract work.  She also produces representational/figurative artwork,  mostly using digital photography/image manipulation software, painting and  drawing.  Both original fine paintings and other artwork forms  and affordable photo-mechanically produced prints are available to purchase.  

Jenny Meehan exhibits around the United Kingdom.   To be placed on Jenny Meehan’s  bi-annual  mailing list please contact Jenny via her website contact page:  www.jamartlondon.com

Also, you could follow the Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal at WordPress and keep informed that way. 

Note About Following Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal 

TO FOLLOW THIS ARTIST’S BLOG SIMPLY GO TO THE RIGHT HAND COLUMN, LOCATE THE  “FOLLOW” BOX AND POP IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS.  YOU WILL THEN RECEIVE MONTHLY UPDATES. 

 

 

 

 

Fifty Names for Jesus

May 30, 2015

As always, skim down and stop when your interest is caught!  Too lengthy for a “blog”  this is rather more a journal, and I post once a month only, so end up squishing too much together!  If you are wanting just a quick look over some images, it’s easy to scroll down.  The wonders of mobile phones!

I have sown various seeds in the garden, and the snails are eating the little shoots as they shoot!

But I like snails…

I don’t like slug pellets and I don’t use them.

Hopefully something will survive!

Sunflowers

Well, it’s not quite the sunflower stage of the year, but oh how generous is the bloom and how strong the stalk of the sunflower, and how it lifts my spirit to even think of a sunflower. I love the motif of a sunflower, and use it in a lot of my painting and drawing.

Here are some of my sunflower explorations:

 

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon  colourful flowerhead

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon colourful flowerhead

 

 

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon  colourful flowerhead yellow  art to license uk

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon colourful flowerhead

 

art to license uk sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon  colourful flowerhead

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon colourful flowerhead

 

 

The Sunflower image below is one I have used for several experiments, including using the sunflower for a surface pattern design.  Nothing very clever, but sometimes the simple things can be most effective, and it is rather exciting to see more of something that you like splattered all over an item of some kind!  I love creating patterns with various adaptations of my paintings and photographs.  There’s something very satisfying about bringing a strong pattern into play…While my painting with it’s rich colours and textures, the interplay between the two, and the subtle nuances of light and surface, which take me into the realm of the unknown and the unpredictable, there is something very reassuring to be found in a repetitive pattern! It’s a completely different experience, but very enjoyable.  I am hoping that in time, more of my art work will be licensed, because I like to see it used.

 

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon  colourful flowerhead

sunflower digital image by jenny meehan jamartlondon colourful flowerhead

 

 

I have posted some products with this “Sunflower” Design on Redbubble, here is one, so take a peek:

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/13937496-sunflower-surface-pattern-design-by-jenny-meehan?grid_pos=53&p=iphone-case

Looking at this page, I think if you go to the portfolio link, you will then arrive at my main Jenny Meehan Redbubble Page and if you click on the Sunflower image you will see all the other products which can be purchased via Redbubble with this Sunflower design on them!

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/portfolio?ref=breadcrumb

The sunflower as a symbol has often been used to represent the unwavering faith that guides a soul to higher spiritual attainment, though what the sunflower symbolises is different depending on which culture you are looking at.  However, I rather like the faith version!  Sunflowers have been in existence since ancient times .A carbon dating was done to some clay found in  North America, which seemed to have some kind of seeds in it, and the dating showed both that the seeds were sunflower seeds, and also that they dated back to a period of time approximately  3,000 years ago.

The shape of the sunflower—the large disk in the centre and the ray-like petals emanating from it—resembles the sun. The florets in the centre of the sunflower,  that later become seeds, are arranged in a complex pattern of left and right spirals and are placed according to the Fibonocci mathematical formula.  The resulting pattern is not only beautiful, but it is practical too, being the most compact way that the florets can be fitted. It is just one of the many marvellous details in nature that point to the goodness and wisdom of God.  Though you cannot see the seed pattern in this design, I hope that the bright, fresh, boldness of the design will strike you with its flash of uncompromising yellow.

The  flowering time for sunflowers is from around May to October,  so some of them do flower much earlier than I have in my mind…They always make me think of the late Summer.  Another name for sunflower is Helianthus, and in the Greek, the meaning of “helios” is sun and “anthos” means flower.  The way that the Sunflower faces the direction of the sun is something that a lot of flowers do, but I guess because it is rather a big flower, we notice this fact about it more vividly.

I have a drawing here, which I have called “Sunflower and Rose Bowl”

sunflower and rose bowl drawing jenny meehan graphite on cartridge paper

sunflower and rose bowl drawing jenny meehan

 

This drawing was one of the results of a spontaneous quick drawing session.  I armed myself with a large pile of paper and drew quickly and without any preconceived ideas about subject matter.  I was interested to see what would come from my subconscious.  What did come were several landscapes, loose and flowing, which I will share another time.  But “Sunflower and Rose Bowl” was the one which interested me most.   There are rays of light indicated as coming from the left of the drawing.  The Sunflower springs up from a distant point far below and it’s centre echoes some random, rather creative,  patterns at the top right of the drawing.  Below the Sunflower is a bowl which contains just one empty and thin stalk, and that alone.  To my thinking the drawing shows a contrast between life, and the life force, like powerful light pushing upwards and radiating outwards, and, in contrast, the grid like pattern of the wires on the restrictive rose bowl, holding that one thin and flowerless stalk,which  though more dimensional, is more static and less promising.  I wondered at one point if the sunflower was foolishly looking at the rose bowl and wishing to be contained, but finding itself too big and not in fitting with the rose bowl.  Why is it looking there?  Is the ordered pattern of the grid an alternative to the free flowing patterns within its own seed head? Is there a wish for order, in the chaos of creativity?  Possible.  Certainly, there is a need for containment, for my self, which I do feel quite acutely at times.  So it could be the wishful thinking of a sun loving flower!

 Nice Quote from William Blake, which is rather relating to the Sunflower and Rose Bowl

“Shall painting be confined to the sordid drudgery of facsimile representations of merely mortal and perishing substances and not be, as poetry and music are, elevated to its own proper sphere of invention and visionary conception? No, it shall not be so! Painting, as well as poetry and music, exists and exults in immortal thoughts.” William Blake

Yes, indeed, and yet, as high as it goes, like the Sunflower, still looking down to the sordid drudgery!  (I personally feel that in the routine and everyday, much rooting and grounding takes place, needful for even the most aspiring Sunflowers!)

 

Fifty Names for Jesus

This is based on an exercise that my spiritual guide on a recent (February 2015)  retreat gave me.   It comes under the heading of “A Thousand Names for God”, but that is rather a lot.  So, bearing in mind “Fifty Shades of Grey”…But, I hasten to add, having nothing to do with it!, here is my “Fifty Names for Jesus”  (there ended up more than fifty in the end)

Passion flower,
Silver Snail Trail,
Sunlight Falling, Moonlight rising,
Sound of footsteps…Coming…

Breeze of moving.

Wonder in a child’s eyes,
rustle of leaves and falling snow.
Smile of God,
Laughter of God,
Tears of God,
Sorrow of God.

Stray Note.

Sound in Silence, Silence in Sound.

Generous hearted.

Concerned one,
Compassionate one,
Flamboyant one,
Sense of humour one,
Contented one.
Holy One, Holy Two, Holy Three…

Further than far, nearer than near.

Companion Jesus,
Leader Jesus,
Surgeon Jesus.
Maybe, mother Jesus.  Maybe mother Jesus?
Therapist Jesus
Teacher Jesus,
Dancer Jesus.  Leaper, Prancer Jesus!
Pigeon Jesus and Rock Dove Jesus…(Because the same, but not in name)

Moon and Sun Jesus,

Ultimate Christmas Jumper Jesus,
Healing Jesus,
Kind Jesus.

Perceptive Jesus,
Searching Jesus,
Knowing Jesus,
Discerning Jesus.

Suffering Jesus
Bright Star Jesus.
Ultimate Vision Glasses Jesus.
Tender Jesus, Loving Jesus
Listener Jesus.
Listen Jesus.

Listen, Jesus.

 

It was very enjoyable to do this!

 

 

The Studio Tent

Jenny Meehan's Studio Tent for Painting

Jenny Meehan’s Studio Tent for Painting

Oh, it’s just great to have the Studio Tent!  The image up here is a bit out of date…It’s in action now, and I use it just for painting in acrylics, and drinking tea and praying in!  The sound of the birds is lovely, and the flapping sides of the tent as the wind blows is pretty relaxing too.  It’s great to have all the acrylics, pigments, glass beads and fillers, inks, and all the rest all together under one roof, even if it is a tarpaulin roof!  Though not a mobile studio, as Emily Carr’s “Elephant” caravan was, I know I am going to get some interesting painting done within it’s confines!  I will post a more up to date image soon.  One side of it has become a palette of sorts. Well, not for mixing, but just some examples of the contents of some of the containers, so jolly useful to have up there on the wall.

The kitchen/studio is better for oil painting because I cannot store all my paints in one place as I have too many, so I will keep the kitchen table for painting oils I think.  Flitting back to Emily Carr, what a wonderful exhibition at the Dulwich Picture Gallery that was earlier on this year, and what an interesting lady! I found this:

She experienced everything with uncommon intensity, a factor which fuelled her frenzied periods of enormous output, yet contributed to her self-doubt which led to a lengthy and marked slowdown–some would call it a regenerative hiatus–in her painting. Nevertheless, she pulled herself up out of depression, came to ignore public disregard, surrounded herself with pets, sang hymns to her half-finished paintings out in the forest, and, at fifty-seven, won her way to her most productive and original period of painting, producing the works for which she is most known. And always, always, she was seeking.

Carr looked for answers to questions of life, soul and God from many sources–the Bible, despite her early intolerance of scripture readings being forced upon her in a pious household; the essays of Ralph Waldo Emerson, particularly striving to emulate his thoughts in “Self Reliance;” the poetry of Walt Whitman in Leaves of Grass, which encouraged her to see a universal God in all life; works of Theosophy and Buddhism, as introduced to her by the painter Lawren Harris of the Group of Seven, though she ultimately rejected them as too abstract in not incorporating God and Christ; Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the textbook of Christian Science, by Mary Baker Eddy; and the teachings of Raja Singh. All of these sources, together with what she observed from Native cultures, combined to help her define her own personal spiritual foundation which served as the basis for her mature work, and as the source of her strength.”

I THINK this quote is the writing of Susan Vreeland, but I am not quite sure, as it appears on the net on several blogs, but I am doing my best here to credit it.   Here is the site link: http://www.svreeland.com/  and see here:  http://www.svreeland.com/real-ec.html  This is just a small snippet of some very interesting reading, and it is well worth a look at the rest of what Susan Vreeland has written about Emily Carr.

I am rather encouraged that it was at fifty-seven Emily Carr experienced her most productive and original period of painting!  I have time!!!  And, yes, we must always be seeking.. Seeing and seeking!   I do think that to have a personal spiritual foundation IS indeed very helpful, and certainly a source of strength.  Many creative s and artists find this, and benefit from the continual refreshment and focus that a spiritual direction offers them. Well, one thing is for sure, all the encouragement you can get is needed in order to carry on.

 

Advance Notice:

This year you can meet me and some of my fellow artists from Kingston Artists’ Open Studios… Studio KAOS 2, at 14, Liverpool Road, Kingston Upon Thames Surrey KT2 7SZ on the following weekends: Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th June and Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th June from 11am until 5pm. This is within walking distance of Kingston Town Centre, and also near Richmond Park. Come along! If you have time, follow the whole Kingston Artists’ Open Studios trail.

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios is a voluntary group of artists, and there are many studios open in and around Kingston Upon Thames… A whole trail! The Open Studios event is part of the bigger Surrey Artists Open Studios network event.

I cannot decide what to bring along to this.  I was going to bring some drawings, but I think I might just stick with some paintings and some prints.  I haven’t done the Surrey Artists’ Open Studios before, so I am looking forward to taking part.  You need to join Surrey Artists Open Studios first, and then pay more to take part in the event itself, so I certainly hope I do sell some things in order to recoup the costs!  I will probably bring along just acrylic paintings, as my oil painting style is quite different to the work I produce when using acrylics and it will all be placed pretty close together.  And some digital prints.  Take a look at my website for a taster:

www.jamartlondon.com 

Silence in the City 

Here is some information from the Silence in the City website:

About Silence in the City
This series of talks on silent prayer and the Christian contemplative life has been running since 2007 in London’s Westminster Cathedral Hall. We invite a range of speakers, each of whom is committed to the contemplative life; each meeting includes one or more talks, and at least one period devoted to silent prayer.

The speakers are invited to concentrate on the value of silence and the possibilities of silent prayer, but they are also encouraged to discuss any or all of the other monastic values of solitude, simplicity and contemplative service. The series is ecumenical in nature; we may in due course include representatives of other faiths.

Silence in the City is organised by lay members of the World Community for Christian Meditation and Contemplative Outreach. Our inspiration is the practice of silent prayer itself, and while we hope that this series of talks will continue, its real success will be measured by individuals’ discovery of a method of silent prayer that is right for them.

See the website here: http://www.silenceinthecity.org.uk/index.html

I’m looking forward to two forthcoming events:

Wednesday, 17 June 2015 (10a.m.- 4 p.m.)

James Finley PhD: Transforming Trauma: Exploring the Healing Power of Spirituality (A one day healing retreat)

A one day retreat devoted to exploring the healing power of spirituality. The day’s reflections will focus on seven traumas or wounds to which we are all subject as human beings and then go to explore methods of meditation and other steps we can take to help ourselves and others heal from each of these seven wounds. The emphasis will be on the lifelong process of learning to be a healing presence in the midst of the world. Time will be given for brief periods of silent group meditation and discussion of the themes presented. Those in ministry, in the healing professions, trauma survivors and all who are interested in exploring healing power of spirituality in their own life and in today’s world will benefit from this day of prayerful reflection.

The Seven Steps of Spiritual Healing Explored in the Retreat Are:

Be grounded in your experience of who you are as a human being in relationship with others. Take responsibility for the healing that needs to occur there.
Have faith in the subtle flashes of spiritual awakening that occur each day. Trust these moments reveal that although you are ego, you are not just ego. You are a spiritual being created in the image and likeness of God who is spirit.
Realize that the root of suffering is estrangement from spiritual experience. The root of happiness is spiritual experience.
Follow the mystics on the path of prayer and meditation that heals the root of suffering in its origin.
Follow the path of the saints in compassionate love that heals the suffering that has found its way into our minds and hearts (facing and working through bodily and psychological suffering in a spiritually grounded way).
Learn to live in the axial moment that transcends suffering in the midst of suffering, that transcends death in the midst of death.
Devote yourself in prayer, meditation and compassionate love to the lifelong process of learning to be a healing presence in the midst of the world. Be resolved to continue living in this way until the last traces of suffering dissolve in love and only love is left.
Venue: Westminster Cathedral Hall, Ambrosden Avenue, London SW1P 0QJ.

Refreshments provided. Suggested donation £20.

Text from the Silence in the City website.

And also, I will be attending:

Wednesday 1 July 2015 (10a.m.-4 p.m.)

Rev Dr Cynthia Bourgeault: Harnessing the Power of Love – Unveiling the New Breed of Trinity (one day seminar)

Venue: Westminster Cathedral Hall, Ambrosden Avenue, London SW1P 0QJ.

Refreshments provided. Suggested donation £20.

Rethinkyourmind 2015

It was lovely last year to have “Well Spring” chosen to be included in the Rethinkyourmind Yellow Book.  Anything positive related to mental health matters a great deal to me.  My mother was seriously mentally ill for the majority of her life, and my sister also.  Though pretty psychologically resilient myself, I do know what it is like to experience  anxiety and depression,  and also what it means to engage in the processes of recovery from  trauma.  It’s hard work; long, often painful, and very challenging.  Without my engagement in psychotherapy, I know that I wouldn’t have  been able to move forward personally myself, at all.  So I am eternally grateful for the place I am in now, and feel passionately that projects like Rethinkyourmind have lasting value and influence, and do make a significant difference to many people.

This year I entered a couple of photographic images in, and was delighted to once more find my art work selected!  The selected photograph was  “I Feel Better When Walking by Trees and Water”  (this also has  it’s previous title which is “High Water Thames”).

Here it is!

jenny meehan copyright DACS all rights reserved highwater, i feel better when walking near trees and water

highwater, i feel better when walking near trees and water

 

A lot of my artwork has more than one title…It is not a matter of changing the title, I find, but of having further thinking time on the work and realising more about the motivations I had,  in slightly more depth.  Normally I find this happens quite naturally over time.  I have always been quite conscious of the correspondence between the patterns of nerves in the brain and the patterns of branches of trees, and when contemplating the scene before taking the photograph, the reflection of the branches in the water spoke an additional  sense of connection (with the water, the life-source) to me which I liked very much, along with the patterning of the branches.  I have discovered through reading an extract from  “Fractal Brains: Fractal Thoughts by David Pincus Ph.D. lots of fascinating things about fractals!  The brain has a fractal organization, as indeed do many natural systems.  A fractal is a branchlike structure, and when you think about natural structures like trees,  rivers, snow-flakes,  the circulatory system, and such like, an awareness of the beauty of fractal organisation is certainly highlighted.  Interestingly, researchers in psychology have been finding many examples of fractal patterns, for example in visual search and speech patterns. They have even found that interpersonal relationships are organised as fractals and that the self-concept is a fractal, with complexity being associated with health.  I found this all wonderful reading:

“Essentially, fractal systems have many opportunities for growth, change and re-organization. Yet they also are very robust. They maintain their coherence; they hold together well, even under tough circumstances. They are balanced in this respect, between order and chaos. They are simple, yet also very complex. This balance is often referred to as “criticality,” thus the title of the article: “Broadband Criticality.” And the term “self-organized” is often added because systems tend to become fractal on their own, simply by putting a lot of system components together and allowing them to exchange information. Think of a party. All you need to do is come up with enough people at the same place and time and they will start to form complex patterns of connection with one another.

Self-organizing critical systems are also very good at connecting, both internally and also to other surrounding systems. The branches of a tree are connected in a very lovely way. If you shake one branch, you’ll see broad shaking across the tree. Fractal structures hang together nicely. Yet they branches may be trimmed without affecting the overall structure. Indeed, if you trim them far enough out (above the growth bud, “post-traumatic growth” or “whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”) they will often grow even stronger, with more complex connections in the outer branches. Finally, branchlike patterns easily connect to other systems – a literal web of life. A tree with many fractal branches (and also roots) can better connect to the sun (and soil) to gather and exchange life sustaining nutrients.”

This is a quote from Fractal Brains: Fractal Thoughts
Our Brains are fractal, with far reaching branches; Post published by David Pincus Ph.D. on Sep 05, 2009 in The Chaotic Life   https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-chaotic-life/200909/fractal-brains-fractal-thoughts

Oh wow, well, I hope that my “post-traumatic growth” serves me well…according this the above I may grow even stronger, with more complex connections in my outer branches!!!!

This posting is very photography orientated!  I am painting, but it is all behind the scenes for now, and a lot of ground laying activity is going on which I don’t intend to post on the internet for some time!  I am a very prolific artist, and quite frankly I cannot keep up with bringing an account of what I am doing all the time as well as doing it.  At the moment I am doing a lot of organising, taking images of paintings for the archive, tidying up the studio tent, preparing work for this years Surrey Artists’ Open Studios Event, and preparing some more canvases for future paintings.  Also, very importantly, as ever constantly reviewing my photography, painting and drawing to see how it can inform me right now.  This is probably the most important task.  I’ve stopped fretting about representation (finally) and have jumped into the realm of colour, texture and form most fully, without angst.  It seems right to loose myself in these eternal layers of colour and texture if that is the way things are going.  I enjoy the occasional bit of drawing here and there.  It won’t disappear!

 

Copyright and Licensing Digital Images Information – Jenny Meehan

www.jamartlondon.com 

Copyright in all images by Jenny Meehan is held by the artist.
Permission must be sought in advance for the reproduction, copying or any other use of any images by Jenny Meehan. Individuals or businesses seeking licenses or permission to use, copy or reproduce any image by Jenny Meehan should, in the first instance, contact Jenny Meehan.
Any persons discovered to be reproducing, copying or using images by Jenny Meehan without prior consent, authorisation or permission will be put on notice that Jenny Meehan is the copyright owner and asked to immediately cease and desist the infringing activity. If a satisfactory response and / or compliance is not forthcoming promptly, the matter will be pursued. For clarification of the laws of copyright, please contact the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS). http://www.dacs.org.uk

Copyright for all visual art by Jenny Meehan is managed by the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS) in the UK. If you wish to licence a work of art by Jenny Meehan, please contact Jenny Meehan in the first instance to clarify your requirements. There is a contact form on my website www.jamartlondon.com 

Licensing an image is quick and easy for both parties and is organised through the Design and Artist Copyright Society. (Note, my images are not shown on the “Art image” selection on the Design and Artist Copyright “Art Image” page. This does NOT mean you cannot apply for a license to use an image of my work from DACS… They simply have a very limited sample selection of work in their “Artimage” page!)

Also, please of course feel free to contact me if you are looking for a particular type of artwork image, as I have a large archive of images myself. I will also be able to let you know the maximum size the digital image is available at. If you then wish to license the artwork image, I then refer you to the Design and Artist Copyright Society to arrange the licensing agreement according to your requirements.

Rich, interesting, lyrical abstraction, full of texture, colour, and variations, emotionally expressive and poetically resonant, my expressive paintings are ideal for book cover design and many other design purposes.  Licenses for digital images suitable for cover-art for books are really easy and quick to organise through DACS.  My artwork is unique and having developed my own direction over the last few years it’s ripe to use. I am relatively prolific, and my main current work centres around painting with a lot of  experimentation with layers of colour and texture, though I have a lot of digital photographic (tending towards pictorialism) imagery too.  

 

If you need any further clarification, the DACS website is clear and very helpful indeed, and they would be happy to help you.

DACS
Design and Artist Copyright Society
33 Old Bethnal Green Road
London E2 6AA
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7336 8811
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7336 8822
email: info@dacs.org.uk
website: http://www.dacs.org.uk
Offices are open 0930 – 1700 Monday through Friday.

Jenny Meehan – General Introduction 

I am a painter/visual artist/contemplative/poet/writer and mother, based in Surrey/South West London, UK.
Interested in spirituality (particularly Christ centred spirituality), creativity, emotional and psychological well-being.

A vocational, rather than a professional artist, I exhibit mainly in the UK, and am a member of Kingston Artists’ Open Studios. I am currently training with SPIDIR as a spiritual guide/mentor. I am a trained teacher and hold occasional small groups in developing painting and drawing skills, and general visual creative expression.

Contact me via the contact form on my website http://www.jamartlondon.com if you would like more information with respect to art tuition, and/or if you wish to receive my my bi-annual newsletter.

My artistic training has been through the Short Course programme at West Dean College, Surrey and through local adult art education classes. Professional in approach, I exhibit widely over the UK and some of my paintings and prints are available for purchase.

Please note that all images of my artwork are subject to copyright law: All rights reserved: Jenny Meehan DACS (Designer and Artist Copyright Society). In the first instance, contact me, and I will refer, as/if appropriate.
http://www.jamartlondon.com

TO FOLLOW THIS ARTIST’S BLOG SIMPLY GO TO THE RIGHT HAND COLUMN, LOCATE THE “FOLLOW” BOX AND POP IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS. YOU WILL THEN RECEIVE MONTHLY UPDATES.

 jenny meehan uk british contemporary fine artist uk boarded window photo jenny meehan

boarded window photo jenny meehan

Above “Boarded Window” photograph.  One of the Chessington Series.  copyright Jenny Meehan DACS

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios “Selfie” Exhibition at Cass Arts, Kingston Upon Thames

Another task is the self portrait for the KAOS exhibition at Cass Arts, in Kingston Upon Thames.  (103 Clarence Street, Kingston upon Thames KT1 1NW).  The exhibition will be called ‘Selfie’ and Kaos members  will submit at least one self portrait.  It is planned to hang the exhibition on 3rd June, and Cass Art have kindly offered to sponsor a private view on Thursday 4th June.  This will be the official opening exhibition for this year’s open studios.   I have a few photographic works which I might submit, but the most likely one would probably be “Woman and Home” which was one of three digital art prints which where part of the very excellent ” Speaking Out – Women Healing from the Trauma of Violence” project at the University of Leicester (Dr Nicole Fayard and Stella Couloutbanis).  The “Speaking Out” (2014) project involved an exhibition of painters, printmakers, installation artists, sculptors, writers, photographers, and performers coming together because of their particular interest in gender violence.   “Woman and Home” was one of my submitted images.  It is a self portrait I took by holding a camera above me, as I was sorting through a huge pile of washing.   After manipulating the image I then added a layer of headlines taken from the front cover of the “Woman and Home” magazine.  Here is the text from the catalogue regarding the art work which was included in the exhibition “Speaking Out”:

“Jenny Meehan’s photography provides powerful representations of the psychological damage that can be inflicted on children who witness domestic abuse.  Children acquire their positive sense of self and self-esteem from powerful role models, usually their parents or carers.  Trauma occurs when this relationship is broken.  The traumatised individual will incessantly re-experience the suffering caused by the events that shattered their sense of identity, independence or their trust.  Meehan explores such a mother-daughter connection by keeping both subjects separate but connected by their gaze.  In “Pages in my Story Book, It is Hard to Turn the Page”, eight juxtaposed copies of the same image of the artist’s daughter shot in high angle capture the sense of traumatic repetition that affects the child’s sense of self.  This contrasts with the image of the artist herself in a point of view shot in “Woman and Home”. Whilst both subjects are separated by the angle of the shot and the frame of the photograph, their gaze appears to look in the same direction. “Hide and Peep” shuts us out of the scene and offers the view of an insider – the child – looking out, conveying a sense of entrapment.  This oppressive mood is however contrasted as “Woman and Home” is superimposed with empowering messages.  The camera angle and the dialogue between “you” and “me” in the messages, which appear to reflect the survivor’s stream of consciousness, both act to restore her sense of self.  The sharing of the experience of trauma and empowerment might also provide ways of bringing the disempowered together.  By addressing her work to a wider community (“you”) Meehan implies that it is intended to function as a narrative of empowerment for a community of fellow-sufferers in similar positions.”

There is more text, but as usual, this Jenny Meehan Artist’s Journal is longer than it was ever intended to be, so I will skip the rest! The above text credit is as follows: “Speaking Out” University of Leicester 2014

 

Embrace Arts (University of Leicester Art Centre) Speaking Out: Women Healing from the Trauma of Violence Art Exhibition Following then along the same thread, was a decision to submit some work for the forthcoming Embrace Arts (Universityof Leicester’s arts centre) exhibition 2014 which is titled ‘Speaking Out: Women Healing from the Trauma of Violence’. It’s a collaboration of Embrace Arts and the School of Modern Languages.The exhibition will be at Embrace Arts from Monday 13 January through to Friday 28 March 2014. “The aims of Speaking Out are to promote awareness of the processes of healing from the trauma of violence against women and girls; communicate women’s experiences through contemporary art and from their testimonies; foster a dialogue about the connection between violence and mental health; break the secrecy and silence about the prevalence of abuse against the disabled; inspire confidence by speaking out to empower women and girls.” All really worthwhile stuff. And some more of the blurb: “The artworks that will be on display in Speaking Out will demonstrate that art can educate us about the effects of violence perpetrated against women and girls. The exhibition will foster the engagement of survivors with the processes that can help overcome traumatic experiences, and promote a positive view of women’s forms of resistance and empowerment through art.” Jenny Meehan "Woman and Home" photographic imagery submitted accepted for Leicester university

“Woman and Home” One of three submitted and accepted artworks for this valuable and worthwhile project.

 

I need to add, with respect to the following:  “This oppressive mood is however contrasted as “Woman and Home” is superimposed with empowering messages.  The camera angle and the dialogue between “you” and “me” in the messages, which appear to reflect the survivor’s stream of consciousness, both act to restore her sense of self.”   I liked this reading of the work, and so was happy to accept it for the purposes of the catalogue, which, rightfully, had an emphasis on the positives and recovery, rather than just the damage and negative effects of violence and trauma.    It was a pleasing reading, and I always value and appreciate others perspectives, though, the reality of the matter for me, at the time of making the work, was not optimistic.  I was in a place where I was re-experiencing quite strong bouts of emotional distress/flashbacks with respect to some of my own  past traumatic experiences, and the original image (of 2006, before I re-worked it ) was inspired by childhood experience of domestic  violence:  the power of existing within a schema of subjugation, rather than anything positive.  I was  struggling with  low self esteem also, and the work, from my own perspective, was more to do with feeling trapped by the messages from the media with respect to how I should be…A kind of media oppression!   And of feeling the weight of all that was involved in running a household,  and just about managing to do it while in the slough of despond.  I was feeling completely overwhelmed by media communicated expectations and images of what both a “woman” and a “home” should be.  So it was rather an expression of negative, than a positive, experience.  However,  I chose not to input this material into the catalogue, because, as said,  I didn’t dislike the interpretation.  I have always viewed women’s magazines with a lot of cynicism and not personally found them a source of empowerment…I am sure that they work very differently for many other people though.  And I do believe it is important to acknowledge the positive dimensions of having experienced a lot of suffering in one’s life, and to realise that there are many strengths which can be developed through having experienced extreme adversity.  I found a brilliant book on this, which I reference later on in this post.

 

Healing and Recovering Thoughts…

Even with very helpful experiences of divine healing, thanks to the Holy Spirit, and assisted  by some  influence from John Wimber’s ministry in the eighties,  plus all the other benefits of faith in a Creator God,  since around 2008, the accumulation of unresolved trauma (and lots of damaged ways of operating ) suggested (strongly!) that I seek professional help,  which I did in 2011.  For me personally, psychotherapy and its various approaches have been something which I have (and still find) very complementary to my faith and relations with others and God, and my interest in psychology of many approaches,  frequently brings my way lots of very interesting reading material which I find very useful when I look at my painting and other creative pursuits.  Something I have been reading recently is “The Posttraumatic Self: Restoring Meaning and Wholeness to Personality” Edited by John P Wilson…

“The Posttraumatic Self: Restoring Meaning and Wholeness to Personality” – John P Wilson  Routedge

I have to confess to only having read extracts of it on the internet, as I often do!  I cannot afford to buy all the books I might fancy reading, and I have not enough room to put them in anyway, but I do find my dipping into articles, extracts and papers which are easily found on the internet a great asset to my thinking about things!  I am finding “The Posttraumatic Self: Restoring Meaning and Wholeness to Personality edited by John P. Wilson immensely helpful.  Here is the blurb on it:

“Filling a gap that exists in most traumatology literature, The Posttraumatic Self provides an optimistic analysis of the aftermath of a traumatic event.

This work appreciates the potentially positive effects of trauma and links those effects to the discovery of one’s identity, character, and purpose. Wilson and his distinguished contributors explore the nature and dynamics of the posttraumatic self, emphasising human resilience and prompting continued optimal functioning. While taking into consideration pathological consquences such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the authors study the impacts a traumatic event can have on one’s inner self, and they help the victims transform such an event into healthy self-transcendent lifecycles. The Posttraumatic Self will help victims and healers transform the way they deal with the complexities of trauma by making important connections that will allow for healing and growth.”

It is such an excellent book, but even second hand it is quite pricey.  Maybe at Christmas!  (put it on the list!!!)

Trauma certainly is complex, and even more so when you have had lots of it over the years.  I have found reading the parts of this book I have had access to very helpful in balancing out the tendency to be more aware  of the negative impact of having had lots of very traumatic experiences (and the related consequences) than I am (at times) of the positives.  I know the positives are there, and experience them too,  but seeing them outlined has been immensely useful to me.  It’s much more common to be aware of the  pathological consequences as you push on through and forwards in the recovery processes.  It is easy to become discouraged by the physical tension you feel every day,  occasional flashbacks (which always take you by surprise!),  negative expectations, anxieties, etc, even though you know why you have the feelings and expectations you do.  I have come a very long way in the last several years,  and everything is now far more balanced, stable and joyful than it used to be.     I am getting my head around my life, and recovering a sense of meaning which isn’t totally fragmented and broken.  And even, seeing the blessing in it. There is a lot of blessing there for the receiving.   My awareness of my brokenness isn’t a negative.  I have often held onto this. And I have needed to, because I need to accept that I won’t ever recover completely.  Not in the way that you “get over” something.  It is more a matter of acclimatization and adjustment.  Re learning.  Understanding. Getting better at recognising what is happening emotionally and psychologically,  and acting accordingly.  And getting the spiritual sustenance I need.  Which brings me on to this!  …..

Canticle 74 : A Song of Our True Nature (Julian of Norwich)

Christ revealed our frailty and our falling, * our trespasses and our humiliations.

Christ also revealed his blessed power, *

his blessed wisdom and love.

He protects us as tenderly and as sweetly when we are in greatest need; *

he raises us in spirit and turns everything to glory and joy without ending.

God is the ground and the substance, the very essence of nature; *

God is the true father and mother of natures.

We are all bound to God by nature, *

and we are all bound to God by grace.

And this grace is for all the world, *

because it is our precious mother, Christ.

For this fair nature was prepared by Christ

for the honor and nobility of all,

and for the joy and bliss of salvation.

(the little stars are there to indicate that you make a long pause.  This is quite useful, as it stops you reading it aloud too quickly.)

 

I mentioned in a past posting about a very helpful workshop I attended at Mount Street Jesuit Centre,  “Life Before Death” and I was so grateful for this input, as it has been very much in line with my interest in making important connections which will allow for healing and growth.  I have had a chance to review my notes and the material, and while I can offer only a glimmer, putting it here in this Journal is a good way for me to keep a note of it.  I find my paper notes, like my art work, paintings, poems and drawings, tend to float around the house and are very hard to retrieve!  Using this Journal means I have at least one river which flows in a place I can always find it!

Just briefly then,  the day focused on the psychology of flourishing…  Basically, paying attention to “what makes life worth living” and included considerations on analysing what happiness and well-being is.  A recommended read was “Thinking Fast Thinking Slow” by Daniel Kahnemann.  The distinction between the experiencing self and remembering self is something I would like to read more about. (I cannot really give a great account of the content of the day, as so selective is what gets into ones mind and not, but these little scraps will help me!)  Also a couple of books by Martin Seligman will be worth reading, I am sure.   Routes to well being can come through positive emotion, engagement, positive relationships, meaning, and accomplishment, and all these are underpinned by character.

Other notes: (not necessarily particularly accurate…lots of information caught on ear wax on the way in, I think!  )

How important it is to look beyond us, especially the importance of HOPE!!!!!  Pitfalls of the “damage and deficit model of growth”…the idea that if you want to grow and change to be a better person you need to look at what is wrong with you and what you are lacking, and fix it.  The challenge is not solely  to fix and repair, but live with things creatively and work with them.  He wasn’t saying there isn’t a time to sort out mess if people get stuck, and wasn’t anti therapy or anything like that, it was more that it’s really important to look further than just inside ourselves.  (note, in my own reading regarding the pros and cons of psychotherapy, it certainly is a very focused way of working…I rate this and find it very helpful, but like any approach, it does have its pitfalls, and what is it’s strength may also a times be it’s weakness too…)  My notes on Character… Use your strengths to solve problems or to cope with things that cannot be changed.  Build a life around what you are good at.   Point about the way we have ended up with a “victimology”… the character as a moral agent has declined, personal responsibility matters.  Lots of practical ideas to try out, which I won’t go into here, but will try out!  Linked the psychological stuff with growth as a Christian and drew parallels between traditionally recognised virtues and values and positive psychology.

Oh, I cannot do it justice here, but I was most impressed, because I even had some homework to do, which I like immensely!

jenny meehan well spring rethinkyourmind NHS mental health resource art book selected jenny meehan

Well Spring is one of the artworks in the new Rethinkyourmind mental health resource

 

“Well Spring” above is suitable to go with this Journal entry…  It was one of the paintings chosen to be included in last year’s “Rethinkyourmind” Mental Health resource.

A lot of interesting thoughts and ideas regarding Flow.  (Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi) … All good and interesting.    Also, never to be forgotten , the heart.  So much information, great, exciting, super, interesting.  But as well as head, the heart.  Give me grace!

 

Mark Cazalet’s Recent Work

http://www.markcazalet.co.uk/news.html

I love these pastels by Mark Cazalet!

Mark Cazalet was one of several very inspirational teachers who taught me at West Dean College as part of their Short Course Programme, and I am so glad I took these images of students work on the course on colour, all those years ago!

mark cazalet course west dean 2007  students work

mark cazalet course west dean 2007 students work largest image jenny meehan’s painting

mark cazalet course west dean 2007  students work

mark cazalet course west dean 2007 students work early part of course

 

mark cazalet course west dean 2007  students work

mark cazalet course west dean 2007 students work middle part of course

 

mark cazalet course west dean 2007  students work

mark cazalet course west dean 2007 students work final part of course

I hasten to add that no LSD (or any other hallucinogenic drug!)  was given to students as part of the course… The dramatic change in the colours was due to the tremendous confidence and boldness encouraged over  the course, which is testimony to the art of the tutor as much as the students!   It was only a four day course, I think, so a lot happened!

I am recalling this course now I think as I am pretty sure that it was this time of year I took part in it!  Unfortunately I can no longer afford to continue with formal art training,  which is a shame, but I do have many happy memories.   I applied for a residency recently at the London City and Guilds Art School, but didn’t get it.  It was going to be one way of getting into an Art Education Institution, but not successful, sadly.  There is an Artist’s Access Scheme that some Colleges run, so maybe that might be worth looking at in the future.  See:  http://www.aa2a.org/

Well, looking back,   I have just put up one of my drawings which I drew from life during one of my West Dean College stints.

" room for a view" charcoal drawing by jenny meehan jamartlondon.com charcoal drawing landscape west dean college and west dean estate  jenny meehan romantic

” room for a view” charcoal drawing by jenny meehan jamartlondon.com charcoal drawing landscape west dean college and west dean estate jenny meehan romantic

 

This is available currently.  contact me for details via my website www.jamartlondon.com

I look back with fondness on the time when I painted from observation more than I do currently.  However I still draw from observation, in order to keep my eyes keen.  I don’t count out painting from observation, at all, but I have to go with the flow of what I am learning, and trust in the direction I have been carried in through my own process of discovery.  I was saying to someone recently that when I look at nature, I feel it is so wonderful I don’t want to insult the beauty of it by attempting to replicate it in any way.  I think this is why I have immersed myself in abstraction.  I feel that patterns of beauty can still be discovered and experienced but without attempting to copy something already there.  However, I feel that observation is very important indeed, and I spend a lot of time looking, and often drawing from life.  The time I have invested in exploring surfaces and colours, textures and composition, has meant my focus has been  off the external world somewhat.  But though I don’t put it down on paper, I spend a great deal of time looking!

Leatherhead Theatre Flying Colours Exhibition..

Will be hanging this exhibition of fine art prints with Chris Birch on Saturday 2nd May…

We are really grateful to the theatre for hosting the exhibition and hope it brings a lot of pleasure to many!

free art exhibition jenny meehan and chris birch Flying Colours Leatherhead Theatre

free art exhibition jenny meehan and chris birch Flying Colours Leatherhead Theatre

Drop In Drawing/Painting Sessions for 2015 – Fridays- Daytime-Once a Month-Workshop Style-Beginners and Experienced Welcome
Friday 27th February 1 – 3pm
Friday 20th March 1 – 3pm
Friday 17th April 1 – 3pm
Friday 15th May 1 – 3pm
The idea is that I am available to help you to develop your own projects and ideas. I will be there to add my technical and practical input, and help you by discussing your direction and the difficulties which may be encountered along the way, if you so require. As to what you actually do, this could be from drawing from the imagination, copying something from life, designing something abstract, or making a collage of text and images. Or simply experimenting and exploring what it is like to use a particular material or method of drawing.I will provide some ideas if people like, but anticipate people coming along with some idea of what they might like to do beforehand. However, just a vague idea is just fine! Participants also need to bring their own materials along with them. I am gearing it mostly to dry media, ie pencil, charcoal, oil pastels, chalk pastels, pens, biros, markers etc. If someone sneaks a bit of paint in, I won’t complain though.. (how could I?) however, for practical reasons, you might need to work outside if you are painting medium or large scale!The idea of holding the sessions on a “drop in” basis is that is it often hard for people to commit to a regular group a long time in advance, however, you do need to let me know the same week if you will be attending, as there is limited space and so I need to know about numbers. I won’t be formally planning a structured session… On these occasions the session takes a “workshop” style approach, with plenty of individual input and opportunities for feedback, discussion, and analysis, as you consider ways of developing your own direction.
If interested, then please contact me via my website contact form http://www.jamartlondon.com for more information.   Thanks.
 Some Painting
 Some painting would be a fine thing…There is too much rubbish in the house which needs sorting!  Too many outstanding household chores, jobs, mending, admin, etc etc.  However I reflect that it’s not a bad thing to have gaps in one’s creative production.   Ill with some flu type cold, and minus my voice for a few weeks forces me into silence, and also into a nostalgic trip into the past as I look through images on CDS and put them onto a portable hard drive.  It’s great to be able to document my work myself.    For a nice escape, I took a tour.
Fancy a little tour around some of the National Gallery?   This little “Life of Christ” tour may be an enjoyable investment of time!
I have also started a mini blog on the Artists Newsletter site.  This is an attempt to make a somewhat narrower stream than river which is this meandering discourse.   I envisage this being orientated around just what I am working as I am working on it, rather than a broader span of past and present artworking.
I am concerned that I might be spewing out too many words, however, I cannot deny that I find it helpful to my creative processes.  I suspect this might be something I start and don’t continue…this does happen sometimes, but it might be useful to try, maybe focusing just on my sculpture/3D work.  ???
I have also looked back on the photography blog site…Something that kept me happy when the children were younger.   I would like to pull together some of the past imagery and self publish a book with some poems maybe.  At some point.
“When we were children, we used to think that when we were grown-up we would no longer be vulnerable. But to grow up is to accept vulnerability… To be alive is to be vulnerable.”
Madeleine L’Engle
Yeah, so true.
Past Work Review 
New Start by Jenny Meehan

New Start by Jenny Meehan

 There is something of the moon in here…Something of an orbit…It is one of the geometric abstract works from the “Signs of the Times” Series.  I had painted some flat abstract paintings several years earlier, but didn’t enjoy painting  sharp lines and didn’t see the point in going to a lot of effort to make intense, flat, smooth areas of colour with paint, when I could do so far more easily,(and get the effect that I wanted ie..smooth smooth smooth, and completely all over satin finish…so that the light would hit the physical surface in exactly the same way), far more easily with vector graphics and wonderful rich pigment ink printed by Poster Pigeon.  I don’t mind plugging them because the service and prints were excellent.
These colours I like very much, I may take and use as a start for a painting.  The moon pops into a lot of my paintings too.  Why the moon?  Maybe just because it is nice and round and white…I suspect this is what attracts me.  Looking at the moonlight as it sometimes floods into the house on a dark clear night is a wonderful experience.  The quality of light, light reflected, does seem to bathe  one in a way which the sunlight cannot.  It is more gentle, more mysterious, and a deeper kind of light.  Reflected light.
As I often do, I have played with this image, and produced this:
starting out series design by jenny meehan to buy on redbubble

starting out series design by jenny meehan to buy on redbubble

This is one of a series.
I have put these up on Redbubble.  The cards and other products are quite reasonably priced, so take a look.  If you would like to support in some small way my art working, which is far, far, from profitable in the monetary sense of the word, at least, then buying something this way will, at some point help me pay for materials.  ( I say “at some point” because I haven’t yet even reached the small amount of sales which mean that any due payments will get processed!)   I get around ten percent of whatever the cost of the item is. Only three items with my design have been sold in the last five years…!!!!!  This is common, because the pool of lovely art work is so large.  Which is good, though doesn’t make it that much of a feature in my life.  I do feel it is good to make things available though, which is why I bother with it.  I have completely given up on the idea that I might ever generate anything resembling an income from my art working.  And I don’t wish to make what I do commercial in the sense of really gearing myself up in that direction.  However, it’s always a little boost when something happens! And, materials are expensive.  We are fortunate to  get by financially as a family, but the fact that I don’t earn because I am investing my time in other directions, means that I don’t mind making little pleas like this from time to time.  I don’t paint on thin air.  It all has to come from somewhere.
Look under the products to narrow down the shown selection to something you are most interested in.  The cards are super and very good value.
If you take a look, see something you like, but don’t wish to buy at, then even enabling a “share” will be great!
If you have some inclination to support my art working in a rather more substantial way, then Cass Art gift vouchers always come in handing for art materials.  Or an Art Fund card, Tate Card, Royal Academy Card…anything like that which helps me see lots of art… A useful thing for any artist to do.  Keeps one fresh.   (feels odd to mention it, but  why not?) 
Psychotherapy
I was thinking today that we are all wounded…This is something which every single person shares with each other.  We are all the same in this respect.  Some people have a larger portion than others, but it is foolish to make measurements about such things.  We tend to be  defensive, and guarded about our suffering.  For self protection, I think.   I was reading about how groups of hens peck their weakest member, and I can see we all have a bit of this instinct in us too.  It is horrible, but true, that signs of weakness, particularly if we are not able to identify, embrace, and accept our own vulnerabilities, weaknesses and struggles, sometime contribute to decisions, both subconscious and conscious, to give other people a hard time.  I am grateful I have opportunity to delve below the surface of my own experiences, both past and present.  Therapy has been a great asset for my art working for sure.   And it has introduced me to the area of  depth psychology, which in turn leads me at times to spend time reading about different theories and approaches.  As always, there are endless numbers of different schools of thought and theories.  None on their own make up the whole picture, thankfully.  But very interesting to read about!
(Logotherapy is a form of psychotherapy proposed by the Austrian neurologist, psychiatrist, and holocaust-
survivor, Dr Viktor E. Frankl.)
Quote from:
Fabry, Joseph B.
The Pursuit of Meaning : Logotherapy Applied to Life
. Cork (4 Bridge St., Cork):Mercier Press, 1975.
 Fabry writing about a type of psychotherapy approach called Logotherapy:
” It tells him that he cannot change his past, but that he is not its slave either; that he can change his present and influence his future. It tells him that he has limitations but also great freedom within these, and that the use of this freedom can make the difference between a full and empty life; that, if not used responsibly, freedom will turn into meaningless arbitrariness. It tells him that he has choices to make, at every moment, and that he must make them in the face of constant uncertainty, that he never can wait until all answers are in. It tells him that each person is alone, yet participates in a reality that far transcends him and his understanding; that success in life does not depend on the obvious; that individual life is geared to ultimate meaning. It tells him that he can never grasp the reality of the Ultimate, whatever name is given to it, but that everything depends on how he responds to its demands. Logotherapy assumes that ultimate  meaning exists but that it is ultimately un-knowable for the individual. He only can guess at it by means of his conscience, which is part of his human make up and therefore can err. And what his best guesses will reveal is not the overall Master plan but only the meaning of one life situation at a time. He can participate in ultimate meaning only by responding, to the best of his limited capacities, to the meaning demands of the moment. The day-by-day pursuit of meaning gives content to his life. Happiness, peace of mind, satisfaction, success are only by-products of his pursuit of meaning.”
I like these thoughts, though I don’t sign up to any particular school or approach to therapy, (not knowing enough about it in the first place!)  I do rather like this quote from Fabry in addition to the above: “In philosophy something wholly new is likely not to be fully true. That holds for psychotherapy, too. If Logotherapy had achieved nothing more than to rediscover and reformulate old truths even then it would have contributed to the advancement of psychotherapy.”

 

The Imagination between Beauty and Goodness

http://www.transpositions.co.uk/2014/09/the-imagination-between-beauty-and-goodness/

Rather a snippet… But as said before…This blog is my notebook!

 

Mount Street Jesuit Centre

I am benefiting from my visits to the Mount Street Jesuit Centre.  While I cannot shake off the feeling that I am venturing, soaked in Protestantism, onto Catholic territory, I don’t mind the feeling, indeed, I quite like it.  I haven’t found it a problem, rather, it is very interesting, and I am finding, as far as I have experienced so far at least, that those who are looking to deepen their experience of the Creator God through investing time in listening and learning, and whose focus is on deepening their own personal spirituality in a determined and dedicated way, have a wider conception of the body of Christ than that exclusive idea that it is limited to one’s own particular church or church tradition.  (Thankfully!) So I am having interesting discussions and meeting lots of lovely people who were not brought up in a Baptist Church and who don’t go to an Anglican Church.

When asked what I considered myself to be recently, found myself faltering, and saying “nothing really”, explaining that I had been in a great variety of churches, including charismatic, Baptist, evangelical, house churches, and now the Anglican church.  I did mention that my choice to be baptised as an adult was particularly significant for me.  I went to a Baptist Church (Hampton Wick Baptist Church)  as a child, and the female minister Sister Edna Black was such an inspiration to me…I realise this more now as an adult than I did as a child.   So my deep roots feel mostly of that variety.  Choosing to be baptised is the most significant turning point in my life, and the symbolism of that resonates mostly through my self, particularly at this present time.  I have the Baptist  ideas on adult Baptism to thank for that.  I see it as the most helpful marker in my own experience and walk in faith.   Other people have different markers.  I don’t feel that one should have to be baptised or anything like that.  I feel that our Creator is interested in the constant conversion of our hearts as we bumble along in everyday life most of all.  Conversion as a constant, and dedicated baptism process of death and life.  Immersion in the Holy Spirit.  Identifying ourselves with Christ, and taking our identity in who we are in Christ.   But now later on in my journey, I am glad I took part in that particular rite of conversion, because it’s so rich in symbolism, in a continual kind of way, rather than as a one off experience, also.

 

 

Can we still experience the sacred in a secular world?  Ignation and Buddhist Perspectives – Facilitated by Terry Walsh SJ

7th February.

Text from the printed leaflet.  Quote:

“Fr Terry Walsh is a Jesuit priest and a philosopher. His curiosity about the roots of human experience – cognitive, ethical and religious – led him to the practice of Buddhist meditation at a time in 2007 when he was living among the Tibetans in exile in northern India. Since then he has returned to Asia every two years to teach philosophy and to continue the practice of meditation in monasteries in Thailand, Laos, and Sri Lanka. There he has discovered not an identity, but a valuable and enlightening correlation between the Buddhist concept of mindfulness and the Ignatian focus on the desires that compel the search for the divine as the interior realization of freedom.”

and:

“Do we believe that in the present state of secular culture marked by unbelief in God and indifference to religion it is still possible to experience the sacred? I believe experience of the sacred is attainable, but there are obstacles mostly of our own making that must be overcome. As the parable of the sower in Matthew’s Gospel suggests, it is possible to have ears and not hear, eyes and not see, hearts and not understand (Mt 13). The sacred might surround us and thoroughly penetrate our lives; yet we don’t perceive it.

Both Buddhism and Ignatian spirituality direct us to enter into ourselves, to search for traces of a hidden yet real dimension of the sacred within the fabric of mundane experience, which we unthinkingly dismiss as too ordinary or profane to contain the divine.

The workshop will explore how these two schools of spirituality offer concrete ways to achieve a freedom that arises once we have let go of preconceived notions of the sacred that blind us to its authentic presence and constrict our experience. We need to allow our minds and senses to grow accustomed to the darkness and emptiness of spirit, because this is where grace takes root and thrives. For whatever we think of the holy, it is not just another object in the world, there to be egotistically manipulated for personal satisfaction.”

For more information on the Mount Street Jesuit Centre, go to:

http://www.msjc.org.uk/

 

Photoshop Learning

There is so much to learn, and while I really should have picked up this little gem of knowledge before, I only recently found out the following!

Merge Layers – All layers that are selected are merged into a single layer

Merge visible – All layers that are not hidden will be merged into a single layer

Flatten Image – Will merge all layers and discard any layers that are hidden

Ah well, better late than never!

Holocaust Memorial Day 2015: Keeping the Memory Alive at the Council Chambers, Guildhall, Kingston on Sunday 1st February 2015

This was a very valuable event with lots of variety and different presentations by many people, including the Revd Andrew Williams who gave an excellent presentation on the visual arts in relation to the Holocaust.  I was very pleased to receive third prize in the 16+ category of the art competition which was part of the event.  The judging panel was made up of representatives from the Kingston Synagogues, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, the Inter Faith Forum and the Volunteering Service at Kingston University.

How lovely it was to receive a prize, and a lovely one, at that, some gift vouchers to spend at a local art store.  So useful too!  I met some great  people, and was glad of the opportunity to spend time in reflection not only on the Holocaust, but on other genocides which have happened since, and to receive the sobering message that our intentions should be strengthened against the prejudice and fear which often starts such horrific processes festering, and adds fuel to the creation of such atrocities.

The plan is that over the coming weeks several local exhibitions will be mounted in order to display the work.

lasting stones of memory painting by jenny meehan for holocaust memorial day kingston

lasting stones of memory painting by jenny meehan for holocaust memorial day kingston

Above:  Lasting Stones of Memory – Painting by Jenny Meehan – Acrylic on Canvas Board

Tiny Bones

 

I trod on fragments of bone;

Homosexual, Jew and Gypsy.

Unknowingly desecrating

precious loved ones,

with my soles.

 

A heartless, human realisation –

I did not know, until the man told me.

When he spoke,

my world changed.

Brokenness took a new meaning.

Even the tiniest

prejudice

is a terrible thing.

 

I took one of the splinters –

pressed it

into my skin

and wept.

 

Jenny Meehan

3 – 22 February 2015

Society of Wood Engravers

I always go and see the exhibition at the Bankside Gallery by the Society of Wood Engravers, as I love it so much.  Here is the text which I quote from the website:

“The Society of Wood Engravers is the principal organisation and rallying point for those interested in the subject, and it also maintains a lively interest in other forms of relief printmaking. Essentially, it is an artists’ exhibiting society. There are about seventy members, practising artists who have been elected or invited to membership on merit.
An international exhibition drawn from an open submission of wood engravings and other forms of relief printmaking. In this show there will be over 130 original prints by elected SWE members and others, plus a special section spotlighting the work of Sarah van Niekerk and her great influence as a teacher of engraving. While the exhibition will comprise mainly of wood engravings other forms of relief print such as woodcut and linocut will also be on display”

Well, I saw it again this year, and it always delivers.  Something about black and white is very challenging, and very useful and important.  The combination of mark making variations, types, directions, characters, all give a lot.

 

Copyright Alert

A blog run by someone else has pinched one of my drawing images and has posted it up as their own work.   Just for the records, the image below is my work.  In this case it appears difficult to track down…mshahzis.blogspot.  But no way of contacting that I can see right now, anyway.   But for those that like to know what they are looking at…This pencil sketch is mine!

 

Leith Hill Surrey Pencil Sketch Jenny Meehan Contemporary British Artist surrey artist artwork for sale to buy affordable english romantic artist modern, tree trunk bench resting place,

This pencil sketch is by Jenny Meehan.
Copyright jenny meehan.

I’m not flattered when people do this.    Those that have respect, ask permission before using others work on their blogs and certainly provide clear credit and a link, so that there is no confusion.  For full information on copyright matters, see below.

Copyright Information – Jenny Meehan 

Copyright in all images by Jenny Meehan is held by the artist.
Permission must be sought in advance for the reproduction, copying or any other use of any images by Jenny Meehan. Individuals or businesses seeking licenses or permission to use, copy or reproduce any image by Jenny Meehan should, in the first instance, contact Jenny Meehan.
Any persons discovered to be reproducing, copying or using images by Jenny Meehan without prior consent, authorisation or permission will be put on notice that Jenny Meehan is the copyright owner and asked to immediately cease and desist the infringing activity. If a satisfactory response and / or compliance is not forthcoming promptly, the matter will be pursued. For clarification of the laws of copyright, please contact the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS). http://www.dacs.org.uk

Copyright for all visual art by Jenny Meehan is managed by the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS) in the UK. If you wish to licence a work of art by Jenny Meehan, please contact Jenny Meehan in the first instance to clarify your requirements.

Licencing an image is quick and easy for both parties and is organised through the Design and Artist Copyright Society. (Note, my images are not shown on the “Art image” selection on the Design and Artist Copyright “Art Image” page. This does NOT mean you cannot apply for a licence to use an image of my work from DACS… They simply have a very limited sample selection of work in their “Artimage” page!)

Also, please of course feel free to contact me if you are looking for a particular type of artwork image, as I have a large archive of images myself. I will also be able to let you know the maximum size the digital image is available at. If you then wish to licence the artwork image,  I would then refer you to  the Design and Artist Copyright Society to arrange the licencing agreement according to your requirements. Once paid and agreed, I then supply the high resolution image directly to you.

If you need any further clarification, the DACS website is clear and very helpful indeed, and they would be happy to help you.

DACS
Design and Artist Copyright Society
33 Old Bethnal Green Road
London E2 6AA
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7336 8811
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7336 8822
email: info@dacs.org.uk
website: http://www.dacs.org.uk
Offices are open 0930 – 1700 Monday through Friday.

 

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