©jenny meehan grave yard glimmers mosaic and accompanying poem jenny meehan

grave yard glimmers mosaic and accompanying poem jenny meehan ©jenny meehan

 

 

The Grave Yard Glimmers

 

Under grey ground

my shattered self, recovered

crept gentle, back to the moment

when

a younger me-child

within

Summer holiday sunshine

discovered

picking, glass, stones, off graves

was an open treasure chest.

Even while the body laid low…

sighing with relief…

anticipating release…

for each passing moment.

 

Simple time steps.

One strand of self to

reflect

back to me.

 

Porous ceramic spreads moisture

Yet only a shadow

touches

meeting edges

I am sorry that I left, and still sometimes leave

these parts of me behind.

 

Much later,  my rape was a vacation of another kind.

 

I hover, momentarily, over my body

unable to take in, even in  consciousness

the un-do- able

which was done.

 

It takes years to cry.

And bodies lie under the floor

even in houses.

 

Light still

makes glimmers

Glimmers in eyes

meeting.

Glimmers in finding

pieces

all broken

but beautiful.

 

l hold hope, for you

my friend, and myself

on dream-like, flattened

slates… to write all over

a past story, a new one…

 

We wash the silver ore, and smelt it

in the smiles of those we love.

 

Jenny Meehan

August 2018

 

 

Looking forward to working with mosaic in November, tutored by Vanessa Benson, whose inspirational course at West Dean College this year has kicked me off in this direction!

Realising my poetry and all the visual work I do are inseparable.  Well, I knew this already, but now I know it more.  Also, I will always be a materials orientated artist.  One who handles my own materials.

The most annoying saying “Everyone is an artist”.  Is everyone a plumber too?  The role of an artist has a broad skill set attached.

Everyone is innately creative, yes, but everyone is not an artist.  I hate walking past Cass Art and seeing the motto… it’s something like “Let’s fill this town with artists”.  Sounds like a nightmare to me.  Do you want a town filled with artists?   Would be quite a poor town, for a start! But it would, of course, be ideal for the local art shop!!! At least they are honest!

I was reading recently that a survey found most artists earn between £1,000 and £5,000 a year. That sounds about right.  I kind of felt relieved on reading it.  It is hard when you live in a world where finance reflects value.  I know I am doing what I should be doing in life, and feel extremely grateful, that finally, after years of waiting, I am able to work at the work which feels most natural to me.  It’s not to be taken for granted.  But it isn’t a “job” in the proper sense. And all the other work I have done in the past is very relevant, and has been valuable in many different respects.  It’s made me who I am.  I wasn’t unhappy in the work I previously did.  Just not quite so fulfilled. But there are many aspect to being fulfilled in life, and there were parts of me which probably developed, in a good way, which I might have avoided, if I was art working then.   Discipline is important. For an artist, if you have not got it, you cannot be productive, I don’t think.  Getting up each morning to do what you must, is part of every occupation, and we don’t always feel like it!

And now, I cannot rely on a “job” to define who I am.  It’s sometimes challenging.  Like being a mother, I guess.  The key thing is, I think, not to confuse status or money with value. It’s always a challenge! What I do does pay for itself.   Sometimes I feel discouraged, but it’s only passing.  Thankfully enough good things happen to keep me motivated!

 

 

Thelma Narrative Series

My Thelma sculpture project was in 2014 and it is now 2018!   In truth, the project is not finished, because I got a mould made of the essential base of Thelma and intend to make some plaster versions in order to experiment further.  Indeed, I will.  Yet for now, here are the images with text, which does seem to have a degree of being a complete work.  The actual wax sculpture is in a box in my cupboard, and now and again I pick bits off it and add bits on!  It is one figure, which I moved through a series of transformations without thinking about concepts  in a conscious way.

ONEthelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentationONEthelma psychodynamic jenny meehan

ONEthelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA ONE

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA TWO

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA THREE

 

 

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA FOUR

 

 

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA FIVE

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA SIX

 

This is probably my favourite in the series…It’s the one I associate with the ongoing process of participating in psychotherapy!  Hard work, at times,  yes,  but something which can be a tool in bringing freedom from the negative consequences of violence, abuse, and trauma.  This time I spend in therapy is an investment I choose because I value self reflection so much.  Participation in Psychotherapy can be viewed two ways.  One, is that of being a practice of WELLNESS…Which for me, it now is, thankfully. (Mostly)  It’s like going to the gym to keep fit.  (Mostly, not always! Sometimes it’s painful and hard! Still challenging, still uncomfortable. Always will be! )

I find it very harmonious with being an artist, and working in the way that I do with other people with mentoring/spiritual direction/teaching art.  The other way that psychotherapy can be viewed might be summed up with “Gosh, they must be very screwed up to need therapy” maybe?  It is the idea that someone would only participate in psychotherapy if they really had to, because it wasn’t possible to carry on without it.  Because why would they want to do take part in something like that otherwise?  Well, I do understand that perspective.

Personally, I did start my psychoanalytic journey in a very distressing place, and I knew it was what I needed, and things were often very alarming and extremely difficult.  So it wasn’t optional in any sense in 2011.  Yet my journey, and the experience gained from working with a very good therapist, has been so valuable and positive, it seems needless not to carry on with it, as long as it bears fruit, which it does.  I do review it from time to time, but so far, I reach the same conclusion, which is why stop for the sake of stopping?  It might be different if I was not an artist, but it’s become part of the process of my artistic creating, and it’s so useful, even for that, even apart from the other benefits.

It feels like pulling a net through my own depths, pulling it along the sea bed.  It’s an effort, but somehow drawing deep in myself in this way produces a lot of goodness.  Life is vastly improved, and I feel so much more alive than I ever used to be.  So the effort is definitely worth it for me.

Thoughts on the sculpture…

Difficulty of wading forwards… Trolling is a method of fishing….  There is a huge sense of continuity and flow, in this one, with metal outside of the figure clearly relating to the which goes through it’s core.  Through the waters of my mind, in the psychoanalytic work I am doing.  Found this, it’s helpful..

Bodies of Water and the Unconscious
Often in dreams, large bodies of water (oceans, lakes, pools) symbolize the unconscious. As with bodies of water, we often see the surface, but cannot easily see into the depths.

Also, the vastness of the ocean symbolizes the vastness of the unconscious mind. Jung observed long ago that the unconscious mind was much vaster than the conscious portion. His insight has been confirmed by fascinating developments in neuroscience, where new technologies, such as particularly sophisticated MRIs have enabled brain scientists to see that the unconscious processes in the brain dwarf the conscious mind in magnitude.

In those regions of the brain/mind lies the meaning of dreams. Jungian therapy is always aware that, for each of us, much goes on in the depths of those oceanic waters…”  quoted from https://www.briancollinson.ca/index.php/2012/11/jungian-therapy-the-meaning-of-dreams-5-water.html

 

WOW!  The unconscious mind….

Oceanic Waters!

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation THELMA SEVEN

 

Must be the faith aspect coming through in this one!

 

 

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation

thelma psychodynamic jenny meehan personal development psychotherapy and art relationship investigation psychoanalytic visual experimentation   THELMA EIGHT

No doubt some  theme of healing…  And in this one, a mould was made, and the body cast in plaster.

 

Interesting looking back at these.  Rather funny that I depicted my right thigh with what looks like a strip of metal along it.  This was before my knee replacement and before I was having problems with my walking!   Plaster for me is evocative of healing and holding, and showing this  liquid flow over the now plaster form, is something I like a lot.  The flow may be static in that the plaster is set,  but it is suggestive of flow and continuity by it’s very shape, and the meeting point between those forms of underlying form and dripped plaster brings some awareness of touch and being touched to my mind.  As the final figure is the model cast, it’s a new creation but still intimately related to the former figure in brown wax.   I will continue working with this, and post up soon.

 

So this is September…OOOps… Late again, October!

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

 

Painting “Upper Room” by Jenny Meehan 70 x 50cm   This is available, contact me if interested.  Use contact form on my personal website jamartlondon.com  http://www.jamartlondon.com/

Direct link to contact page; http://www.jamartlondon.com/contact/4569980742

Bit about my painting…

About Jenny Meehan’s Paintings

My process led painting…romantic, expressionistic, abstract and lyrical, is simply the result of my own contemplative practice, which I work through in many ways. Let by instinct and intuition, inspired by my own life experiences, and several much loved artists, including Klee, Hitchens, Claude Venard, Matisse and Kandinsky, it provides the ground for the viewer’s own interpretations and responses, and will be whatever you want it to be. My own titles reflect my own interpretation/,sense of meaning, but the beauty and openness of non objective painting allows you a place in the process exclusively yours!

The image doesn’t show the extent to which texture, and various surface finishes are used in the painting, for example, I use tiny glass beads for their effects on light hitting the surface of the painting. Maybe they could be seen as a dance of light and colour? Certainly, as the light in the day changes, the appearance of the painting changes considerably, with different parts being emphasised and other parts sinking into the background. This painting is one which responds, and I hope you get pleasure from viewing it! See more at http://www.jamartlondon.com

 

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images©jenny meehan

 

Boat House, Monotype. ©jenny meehan

Sometimes the simplest of things can give pleasure.  I am looking at this one at the moment, particularly as I think about how I will approach working with mosaic in November.  I think to start with some kind  of simple forms, rectangular, square, maybe a good start.  I don’t see myself going into the pictorial.  I suspect I will need to seriously spend time considering the materials I use.  They will suggest a way forwards, I am sure.  And I want to make more effort with this linkage between my poetry and visual expression. I think that’s key for me.

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images©jenny meehan

Icy Landscape ©jenny meehan

A major theme of my work is recovery from trauma.  The subject of an internal landscape dominates my creative practice.  Tiny glass beads are used in the above painting and they catch the light, transforming the appearance of the work at different times of the day.

 

“Eternal” Painting by Jenny Meehan

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images©jenny meehan

Eternal by Jenny Meehan ©jenny meehan

This is one of my paintings which has been licensed for use as a book cover. The cover designer was Alison Beek.   I really like my paintings being used in this way, and it is a small source of income which helps sustain my artistic practice, so it’s very much valued.

https://wordery.com/quiet-spaces-prayer-journal-mrs-olivia-warburton-9780857465245?currency=GBP&gtrck=S2Z1YnlZVlZsTTV6K1BVYkdyNERsL2JwTWhWcHA3dnM5bERaeTRueE1KNndyem4vbG5ENFJSV2tycFVKK0tnUHpISjRLNFJMY2hnaWJHb2hMMGg4UlE9PQ&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIyLOtiOTn3QIVROd3Ch13IwVCEAQYAyABEgJmVPD_BwE

Finding God in all things, hearing God’s voice for ourselves and others…the Quiet Spaces Prayer Journal will help you to develop and maintain a life of creative prayer. With space to write, quotations drawn from Christian tradition and BRF’s Quiet Spaces publication to aid reflection, this is ideal to buy for yourself or as a gift for anyone wanting to deepen their prayer life. It features quotations to inspire, allowing plenty of space to write.

Quiet Spaces Prayer Journal Spiral bound edition by Mrs Olivia Warburton”

Edited by Mrs Olivia Warburton ISBN-139780857465245Format Spiral bound, Publisher BRF (The Bible Reading Fellowship) Publication date23 Sep 2016Pages192Product dimensions 150 x 210 x 14mm E Weight338g

Quiet Spaces is BRF’s prayer and spirituality journal. Published three times a year, each edition journeys through up to nine themes drawn from the Bible, spiritual writers, the natural world, the lives of Christians from across the centuries or from Christian spiritual traditions. Each theme is explored in twelve prayerful ways using creative activities, your personal faith experience, poetry, liturgy, reflection, imagining and meditation, helping you into a heart encounter with God. Ideal both for those who have discovered the benefits of reflection, meditation and contemplation and are looking for a resource to guide their periods of quiet and for people coming to reflection and meditation for the first time.”

 

I use my own copy!

 

This months post is September and October combined! It’s my aim to write a bit less on my journal each month and work more on my poetry.  As I mentioned at the beginning, a brilliant course on mosaic at West Dean college tutored by Vanessa Benson has provided some interesting routes in using mosaic, and along with my other ongoing experiments with silica sol mineral paint I want to immerse myself more in silence and music and poetry than longer blog entries.  And drumming too.  I am loving my djembe, and enjoying learning some traditional West African patterns.

I think I may have exhausted my writing capacity a little bit when writing “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan” last year!  By the way, the knee is working wonderfully.  It’s an “Attune” knee.  I am no longer disabled and able to live a full life. I am so grateful for the South West London Elective Orthopaedic Centre, and the NHS.  My life would be quite different without such a positive experience.

west dean college short course jenny meehan flora and foliage images© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

west dean college short course jenny meehan flora and foliage images© Jenny Meehan

 

Really enjoying these…

http://openchurch.network/chalketalk

That’s me for now!

Do take a look at my website. http://www.jamartlondon.com/

I will be updating it over December.  I have a lot more work than I can show on the internet.

 

 

 

 

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Little Robin Friend

robin my supervisor!

Well, my little robin friend is serving as supervisor in the garden right now!  I go out there just for a look or for a rumble around the studio tent and I hear his chirp, see something flitting through the foliage, and there he is!  Before I know what has happened, I find myself digging around in the earth… weeding, moving pots, filling pots with earth…  I tell myself I am doing this because it needs to be done, but the truth is that while this is true, the most immediate reason is this little robin is telling me he wants me to work in the garden so he can have some insects, worms, and whatever else I reveal!

I am now to be found rustling around myself, not in the foliage but in the studio tent.  This year I am keen on rollers it seems and have an assortment.  I started using them last  year in experiments and now I have gathered quite a few.  It’s good to have new tools to experiment with. So there’s some action happening.  There is a lot of tidying up to be done, and I am grateful for the studio tent.  OK, it has its limitations, but I know of many artists whose studio space isn’t much different, even when “indoors”.  The only difference with mine is that it gets rather damp and wet.  I have extended it now.  It consists of two tarpaulin covered market stalls and has now ventured into the side passage and outhouse.  That’s the wet and damp part, because there is a crack in the ceiling. It’s reinforced concrete.  The good news about having a large crack in your ceiling is that the water does drip down through it.   I’m serious.  It’s better for the water to have somewhere to go than to build up above and then damage the concrete further.  Well, that’s how I have chosen to think about it!

In this new darkened area of my studio tent, or now my studio tent with outhouse extension, is that I can experiment with larger substrates and also light projection.  I have been wanting to do this for ages, so at last a new door is opened.  I have purchased some folding tables too, so I have more table space.  It’s great to have more space.  I cannot quite use it fully yet because of the weather, but it’s not as if I am waiting around to do things.  There is always plenty, and more, to do.

Generally in life I am feeling less frustrated by the demands of the domestic using up time when I could be painting.  It’s always a huge conflict, but acceptance helps a lot.  I am beginning to appreciate the benefits of having my focus fragmented into so many pieces, as it forces a kind of relinquishment which I think probably helps in the long run, even is somewhat frustrating short term.  I have always had workaholic tendencies, and  often found myself doing the work of two people (unfortunately not for double pay!) in past jobs, so I am aware of constantly overreaching and over stretching myself.  This is not a problem as long as one is aware of it.  It needs to be managed, addressed, and disciplined!  And life… Needs to be enjoyed!

I remain secretive, as is appropriate, about current work in progress.  For my eyes only! But always willing to look backwards!

 

Signs of the Times Series

 

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights ReservedQuick Dip print by Jenny Meehan

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights ReservedQuick Dip print by Jenny Meehan. One of the Signs of the Times series

 

There’s a great feeling of rest looking at the smooth flat colours of the signs of the times laminated prints…I’d never bother trying to create that surface in paint which is why I continue to appreciate this series.  And the compositions are still teaching me a lot.

 

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved digital print buy abstract geometric Rush Hour - Jenny Meehan Signs of the Times Series

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved Rush Hour – Jenny Meehan Signs of the Times Series

 

Rush Hour is one of my favourites.  You can buy a version of it here, on Redbubble.com.

https://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/13790846-rush-hour-calm-in-the-cityscape-design-by-jenny-meehan?p=art-print&rel=carousel

 

I get a small royalty from any sale on Redbubble.com.  Every litttle helps!

 

Enclosed Garden (Hortus conclusus) Digital Print from Jenny Meehan's "Signs of the Times" print series. See more at jamartlondon.com

Enclosed Garden (Hortus conclusus) Digital Print from Jenny Meehan’s “Signs of the Times” print series. See more at jamartlondon.com

 

jamartlondon fine art prints emerging female british artist designer visual art exhibition event jenny meehan art prints exhibition cornerhouse with alan and miriam dean deputy mayor and mayoress of kingston upon thames

“Signs of the Times” hung at the Cornerhouse Community Arts Centre, Surbiton Surrey

 

That was a long time ago!  The good thing about the laminated “Signs of the Times” is they can be hung in bathrooms and kitchens.  I have one which has been hanging in our bathroom for years, and it looks just fine.  No mould or any deterioration.  If you would like to buy one of my own signed versions contact me via my website as I have one or two still around.  I am not planning to print any more, as Redbubble do such a great job of producing good quality prints.

http://www.jamartlondon.com/

 

 

No Cares/Take Courage print from Signs of the Times series by Jenny Meehan

No Cares/Take Courage/Leap of Faith print from Signs of the Times series by Jenny Meehan

This is another favourite of mine…Again, available from Redbubble.com

https://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/13790986-no-cares-take-courage-leap-of-faith-design-by-jenny-meehan

 

 

 

geometric abstract colour design art jenny meehan jamartlondon british contemporary femaile artist symbolist graphic colourist contemporary abstraction experimental jenny meehan art for sale to buy prints affordable, jenny meehan abstract art print

The night time version of Calm Moment, maybe calm moment in the dark, partner of calm moment in the light!

Here’s an artist’s statement which was submitted with some of the series “Signs of the Times”

Artist Statement – Jenny Meehan

My current body of work, some of which you can see on the enclosed images, is basically a series of experiments with shape and colour. After having worked throughout last year on a series of very lyrical and process led paintings, I realised that I felt the need for more structure in my work. Fuelled by an interest in conveying emotion and thought through elements of abstraction, while at the same time seeking that sense of formal balance which I consider essential to my work, the series of digitally produced laminated prints which I have called “Signs of the Times” relate to my own life and experiences.

The current series will also form the foundation of further paintings in the future, and bring to my painting practice an element of planning. I think that, far from being rigid and inflexible, this will introduce an initial underlying structure which I will be able to use in a very exciting way as I experiment with the relationship between solidity and fluidity in future paintings. Each step in the process of developing my work opens up numerous possibilities, and I cannot be sure exactly of what will happen, which is rather exciting. I do not take a scientific approach to my art, but view it as a process which defies logic, by necessity, and embraces the irrational and spiritual within me.
So these works, though they stand in themselves and I consider them finished, like everything one does are neither an end nor a beginning, but part of an evolving and organic process which I feel pulls me along with it, to some extent. I feel very fortunate to be able to work with visual language and consider it a great privilege to do so. “Signs of the Times” is an interesting experiment in relating thoughts and emotion to visual language in a very direct way.

Jenny Meehan is a Fine and Applied Artist based in South West London/East Surrey, United Kingdom. She works mainly with painting, drawing and digital photography and also writes poetry and an artist’s blog. Jenny also teaches small groups and individual in her studio space. More examples of her practice can be found at http://www.jamartlondon.com .

There are still some “Signs of the Times” in progress, as I work in a piecemeal fashion over periods of several years.  It’s a very enjoyable way of working with shapes and colours!

 

Easter Art Installation at St Paul’s Church of England, Hook

I was very pleased to be able to create this installation in service to the Church and in order to help the prayers and reflections of any who ventured into the building during Holy Week.  I will post some additional images soon when I have worked on them, but this gives you an idea. Other members of the church also created some beautiful places to reflect.  It was well worth the effort.

 

holy week art installation at st pauls church of england hook jenny meehan jamartlondon contemporary christian art in place of worship

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

holy week art installation at st pauls church of england hook jenny meehan jamartlondon contemporary christian art in place of worship

holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

 

Lots of images!

It all seems rather a long time ago now!

Was a bit last posting up the April blog entry!   Open Studios is rapidly approaching and this is a very busy time of year for me!

Not quite done with the contemplative theme though…

 

The Soldier And The Cross

This is an old poem I wrote a few years back.  I didn’t display it as part of the installation in the church but I have re read it, and edited it slightly.

The Soldier And The Cross

For a moment
I thought you a bit of a wimp…
To turn,
And say to me
“What have I done to you?”

I saw…
In your innocence…
A victim mentality
related to my response to suffering…
A powerless moment

of weakness
and subjection.

And ALL in me,
ALL that grasps onto power…
Felt repulsed
and
disgusted by you.

By the sight of you.

Because…
It was true…You had done nothing,
Yet, I hated you,
and your holiness
frightened me.

 

I,
I am the accuser.
I have raged against you
And despised the look of love on your face.
In paranoid fear
I have threatened you with my wrath
And struck the blow
which tears across your face.
I have hardened my heart
against your love
and pushed you
hard, straight down
against the ground.

In acts of violence
I have hated, and hated more.
I have hated you
More than I dare say.

So  how do I stand?
Do I have  a place to stand against you?
And can I stop your
Love
from breaking me?

If I believe,

just for one
moment

that you might choose to forgive?

 

©jenny meehan

 

 

Drop In Drawing and Painting

I have finished the sessions until September.  I am a trained teacher and I like to use my teaching skills to help people with the development of their own visual expression.

 

jenny meehanccol0033

 

I will be running some more sessions from September.  I shouldn’t call them “Drop in” really, as I do need to know in advance if people can come.  So if you are interested in these do contact me, and I can send you more details.   They are suitable for all levels, as the input is very much individual.  The advantage of them is that it is possible for people to just come for a “one off” session, rather than needing to sign up for a whole course.  This gives more experienced artists a chance for some input as they feel the need, and in pace with their own work flow.   It gives beginners a chance to experiment creatively with support and a level of input normally only possible with individual tuition.  I don’t plan a structured session, but the structure is determined by the individual needs of the students attending.  I do normally throw a few ideas about for possible areas to explore and experimentation, which all those attending are invited to spend some time on if they wish, though normally people come with existing work, or work in progress, or an idea of what they would like to do, or are trying to achieve.   Contact me via my website if you are interested.  There is sometimes a bit of a waiting list, as I don’t hold many.  http://www.jamartlondon.com/

Time Passes Painting by Jenny Meehan

I have this painting on the wall at the moment and am getting a lot out of it.  It’s an early abstract painting but I am still learning from it.  I might well take it along to the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios event this year.

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

 

I have started removing some of my canvas paintings from their frames and will sell them unframed now.  It means I can sell them for a bit less, (£180) and I have found that often people either like to select frames themselves or like to display them unframed.  It takes a lot of time for me to make frames, which I have been doing up until now, and it is also very expensive.  As the pace of my painting has increased, I am less inclined to spend time with framing.

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios (OS18) will be taking place on 9/10th and 16/17th June 2018 from 11am to 5pm each day. I will be enjoying the kind hospitality of one of my KAOS artist companions just a short walk from Kingston Town centre, not far from the Kingston Gate of Richmond Park.

It would make a lovely day out to follow a few of the trails in and out of artist’s homes and studio spaces, so do come along!

For more details, please contact me via the contact page on jamartlondon.com. I will put you on my mailing list and send further information as soon as available!

http://www.jamartlondon.com/

Hope to see you! Jenny Meehan

If you would like to give money to help support my creative practice I can accept it quickly and easily through the Paypal.me process. Simply put the following in your browser:
paypal.me/jennymeehan and follow the prompts. Please consider supporting my work in this way if it strikes a chord with you and you are able to do so. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a way via this system for me to send a “Thank you” to you, so you will need to just simply know that I appreciate it very much indeed!

 

Upper Room Painting by Jenny Meehan

This one isn’t on the wall, but it’s the one I use for the background of my website jamartlondon.com.

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

jenny meehan jamartlondon art work uk licensable images

It’s available for purchase if you are interested.

 

Good News

 

Shortlisted for Kingston Art 2018: My Muybridge' exhibition at Kingston Museum 4 May - 7 July 2018 Wheatfield Way, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2PS

minds eye edward muybridge kingston musuem exhibition jenny meehan

I have had my painting “Mind’s Eye”, image above (sorry, not tarted up image yet!) selected for the exhibition at Kingston Museum this year, details are:

Kingston Art 2018: My Muybridge’ exhibition at Kingston Museum 4 May – 7 July 2018 Wheatfield Way, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2PS

Bit of a departure for me in this one, using images.  Like collage..

 

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 (Jennifer Meehan) is a painter-poet, artist-author  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.  

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

Contact Jenny via her website: 

http://www.jamartlondon.com/#/contact/4569980742

 

 

If you would like to give money to help support my creative practice I can accept it quickly and easily through the Paypal.me process.  Simply put the following in your browser:

paypal.me/jennymeehan

and follow the prompts. Please consider supporting my work in this way if it strikes a chord with you and you are able to do so. Unfortunately there isn’t a system in this facility for me to send a thank you.  But if you do use it, then understand that I am grateful!

Another way you could support my participation in the visual arts could be by praying for me, if that’s part of your daily life. As mentioned above, I also put some of my visual art work on the “print on demand” website redbubble.com. People buying merchandise with my designs on through redbubble.com results in my gaining a royalty for the use of the image concerned.

Signing up as a follower on this WordPress blog also helps, as does sharing the posts when you receive them.  Anything you can do to help me is much appreciated!  Time and money is limited for me, and it’s a challenge being a mother-artist in terms of promotion and increasing awareness of what I do.  I put my energy into producing my artwork.  For the rest, I need any help I can get!

Jenny Meehan (Jennifer Meehan) BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE  offers art tuition.  Please contact Jenny through the contact form at www.jamartlondon.com for further details.  Availability depends on other commitments.    

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

This artist’s blog is of interest to artists, art collectors, art lovers and anyone interested in fine art.  Those interested in British 21st century female contemporary artists, women and art, religious art, spirituality and art, and psychoanalysis and art, will probably enjoy dipping into this Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal.

Art collectors are often interested in the processes, techniques, interests and influences of the artists whose work they collect, and sharing my thoughts and perspectives through a blog is an important dimension of my creative practice.

My main focus is directed towards process led abstract painting, and you can view some examples of this on my website jamartlondon.com.  I encapsulate my painting as being romantic,expressionistic, abstract and lyrical.  Art collectors interested in lyrical abstraction, abstract expressionist, and essentially romantic art, are likely to find my paintings an interesting and exciting addition to their art collection. Art collectors can view a list of exhibitions I have taken part in on my websites exhibitions page; http://www.jamartlondon.com/#/exhibitions/4570944550

Art collectors can see selected examples of my original paintings  organised by year on jamartlondon which gives you a brief overview of the development of my painting over the years:

http://www.jamartlondon.com/#/paintings/4570156802

I am a self-representing artist, whose aim is to ensure  I continue to develop my painting practice in an innovative and pioneering way, rather than attempt some kind of commercial success, and whose aim is also that my work is historically relevant, rather then celebrated in that so called and illusive “art world”.  I hope to add to the number of people who value, collect, and develop an interest in my paintings and to thereby sustain and develop my practice over many years. 

Well, this year’s KAOS Open Studios is all done and dusted!

Now I need to put back all the paintings, prints, easels, etc etc.

There is not enough room in our house, but never mind.  It is what it is.  My favourite phrase for this year.

It was great to show my work with other artists, and we love to chat and spend time with each other over this time as well as welcome guests.   I was showing with Sandra Beccarelli, Cressida Borrett, Lizzie Brewer, Caroline Calascione, Ikuko Danby, Bali Edwards, Yuka Maeda, and Anna Tikhomirova.  This was a good mix of work and people.

For more information on Kingston Artists Open Studios, see here:

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

We are a group of East Surrey/South West London Artists.

Each year we hold an Artists’ Open Studios Event. If you like this kind of thing, contact me and I can put you on my mailing list.  Use the contact form on my personal website jamartlondon.com 

 

The Knee

My knee is good.  So fantastic to be able to walk around without restrictions, stand as long as I need to, and just get on with life.  I write about my experience of TKR (total knee replacement) on “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Page” of this blog.  I wanted to write about my experience in order to both give myself something purposeful to do and also hopefully to help others in some way.  Everyone’s experience of knee replacement surgery is very different, but it is certainly a challenging time.  You can get to the page by following the link to the right handside.

 

 

Feeling good with my new knee!

 

“The Art of Buying Art”  Alan Bamberger.

Nice quote, from this book, which I have read recently…from the chapter on “Building a Collection” which contains a lot of very helpful advice for people who would like to start collecting art but are not sure where to start.  I particularly liked these paragraphs, and think them particularly important for anyone wanting to collect art today.

“Believe in Yourself”

Buy what you want to buy, and collect what you want to collect.  Far too many people deny their own dreams, compromise their tastes, follow the crowd and end up with dull, boring collections.  One collection looks just like the next when unimaginative collectors try harder to be correct than they do to collect.  This type of buying behaviour is all too often based on fears of being rejected, ridiculed, or not doing what’s “right”, of wasting one’s money, and so on.

In a way, fears like those mentioned above are justified.  When you’re true to yourself and you follow your own inner urges, you become vulnerable to hash judgements by others who see art differently than you do.  Your art tells outsiders revealing things about what you like, what you believe in , what your philosophies are, who you like and how your mind works.  And revealing yourself like this can be scary.

But the positive results of honest collecting far outweigh the negatives.  For one thing, you end up owning art that your really love and not art that you feel lukewarm about just because someone else told you to buy it.  you call the shots, you direct the show, you have total freedom and control over your actions and, in the end, you experience a level of freedom that is not easy to come by in this day and age. “

Above quotes taken from my copy of The Art of Buying Art, 2nd Edition, by Alan Bamberger.  I jotted this down a while ago in one of my many notebooks, so I am not actually sure if they are direct quotes or adapted by me!  But I include as quotes just in case.

Reading the above brought to mind the excellent programme I watched this year on Peggy Guggenheim.  She certainly collected what she liked and set about her collection in a passionate and devoted way.  Quite an inspiration!  She was quite ahead of her time, and built a culture changing collection, which must have taken a great deal of determination and love.  The film on the BBC was called “Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict” and offered a very interesting insight into Peggy Guggenheim, an heiress who became a central figure in the modern art movement; “a colourful character who was not only ahead of her time but helped define it.”

 

watercolour painting submitted by Jenny Meehan to the Royal Watercolour Society call out in 2015 cozens inspired internal landscape english watercolour contemporary painting jenny meehan

watercolour painting submitted by Jenny Meehan to the Royal Watercolour Society call out in 2015

Contemporary Watercolour painting by Jenny Meehan “Accidental Shapes” painted with watercolour and gouache  paints made by the artist and soluble wax crayon.

I have been looking at some of my painting with watercolours from 2015 and am using this to inform some more recent larger scale paintings I am working on at the moment.  I am moving up to A1 in size for a change.  It’s helpful to work larger for a while.

 

Contemporary Watercolours

I have decided to spend some time researching contemporary watercolour artists, and finding this was a good start:

http://watercolor.net/british-contemporary/

Do take a look.  Text from above:

Five British artists engaged in contemporary work discuss the use of watercolour in their art practice… Several artists are cited who are currently challenging some of the perceptions about the watercolour medium. Given the diverse nature of contemporary art, it is little surprise that artists use watercolour in a range of ways, sometimes unorthodox, that best suit their ideas and working method.

I rather like what Alf Löhr has to say:

For me, creativity is in the sketch, when the mind is still free to explore and is open for things to happen. That’s why watercolours are always nearer to life and more lively than cleverly executed artistic statements. Watercolours allow you to avoid big, heroic simplifications. You either look for life or you don’t.”

I do like that, and watercolours are certainly super spontaneous, and beautifully immediate,  something which is great for  working in a free manner.  The way they are easy to remove while working  is similar to oil paints, and unlike acrylic.  The difficulty in removing acrylic paint is a restriction. You can remove it before it is dry, but after it is dry it is a matter of painting over the top.  I have found my experiments with watercolour so far to be very exciting and liberating.  It’s nice to have the body colour (gouache) and the watercolour colour relationships to think about too.

I am hoping that looking as some good and exciting watercolour paintings will inspire me in my own direction.  Appreciating other artists work is very important as it opens new ways of seeing things and shows you what a medium can do. Unfortunately I was not successful in having any of my work accepted in the The Contemporary Waercolour Competition, run by the Royal Watercolour Society  a few years ago in 2015.   Very disappointed.  I have a very restricted budget for entering competitions, and it is quickly  used up.  Artists need to pay to submit their work, regardless of whether it gets chosen.  I mention this because many people are not aware of it, and it is one of the things, I personally feel, which does a disservice to artists in this country.  If you are talking about under £10, to enter several art works, (ie not payment per work)  then I have no issues with that. But when you are talking of over £10 for each work, I think you can see that entering your art into competitions becomes somewhat of a luxury expenditure for many artists.

Not all.  For others it will not be a problem.  However, my personal belief is that any artist, from any socio economic situation, should be able to submit art to such competitions for ten pounds or less. And for that, to submit at least three pieces.  Ideally, submitting art to competitions and for exhibitions would be  free of charge, though that may be a little unrealistic.   We need to move with the times and help artists to show and share their work.  Artists bear all other costs in providing their work free of charge for exhibition.  With the internet and digital technology, it takes no more than one minute to view a piece of artwork, even when you consider it thoughtfully.  Two minutes to look at it again when the selection is narrowed down.  Three minutes, as before.   And four minutes at the very most.  Please, if anyone can justify to me why the artists themselves bear these costs, I prepare to be enlightened. I bang on again, and I will continue to do so.  I know I am not alone in my feelings.  I don’t rant very often, but this is one of my popular rant subjects!   I simply want as many people as possible and as much variety of artwork to be on show for people to see.  I know there are costs.  But the  system works in a way which penalises artists and exploits their desire to simply share what they do.

Come on now,  unless an artist is particularly popular and well known, they don’t normally make a profit from their artistic practice.  A sale of an art work exhibited is usually an unexpected bonus.   They may not want to be commercially orientated.  Why should they? Art for the creator, has never been fundamentally about money. If that does come with it, or they want to make it profit making, then that’s up to them.  some do. That’s what they want.  That is their aspiration/need/want/motivation.  It may be their business or a significant part of a much needed income.  But a lot don’t treat their creative profession as a business enterprise,  but still want to exhibit their work. But exhibiting work is not a business venture.  We don’t exhibit in order to sell.  We exhibit in order to show, primarily. We just want to share what we do.  I need to sell sometimes to pay for materials and enable me to continue my work.  This is what matters to me. But it’s never something I count on.  I pray for it, but it’s a venture of faith, rather than by design.  It does not feed my children.

My paintings are like little children though, and I want to send them out into the world to find a home elsewhere.  They cannot live with me forever!  I love to wave them off as they go into the world.  They are my legacy. I seem to live with a sense that I won’t be around forever.  So aware of my mortality. It’s a wonderful gift, to be able to paint as I do.  It also takes a lot of constant work.  I have invested myself in this endeavour, this vocation.  It’s the only way for me to go. It’s great when a collector finds just what they are looking for and loves it.  It’s a pleasure to make an exchange then, and both people benefit.  The problem with galleries and exhibitions isn’t just submission fees but commission.  Many people buying art are not aware of these matters, which is probably one of the reasons I like to rattle on about it.  I think people should know.  And know that the best way to deal with an artist is to deal with them personally.

Spiritual Direction Training 

It’s over two years since I started training in the art of spiritual direction with SPI-DIR!  (nothing to do with spiders!).  It is now finished (well, never finished, as an ongoing process, but that chapter of it!)  and I look back fondly.   This course, along with lots of different short courses, (mostly one day training courses) has been of great use to me and given me lots of useful tools and insights.  Whatever training one has though, it is the Holy Spirit who actually provides the direction aspect of this kind of ministry.  The term “spiritual director”is unfortunate in the respect that it tends to communicate the idea of the facilitator or guide being the one “doing” the direction, which is far from the case!   Here’s another useful description for all unfamiliar with the term “Spiritual Direction” which I hope clarifies the ministry a little better:

Spiritual Direction

What is spiritual direction?

It is an ancient ministry, sometimes called Spiritual Counsel, Prayer Guidance or Soul Friendship. It is about taking the time to meet with another person to talk together about your spiritual journey, prayer and search for God. Many people find that this pattern of reflective companionship can be a significant help.

What can I talk about?

The important thing is that this is a ‘sacred space’ into which we can bring anything but into which we do not have to bring anything. There are no expectations, and no judgement. It is a listening and accepting space.

Sometimes you might have a sense of something happening in your life and needing to make sense of it in a spiritual context: ‘Where is God in this for me?’
Sometimes you might have a particular spiritual issue you want to work through.
Sometimes it is as simple as: ‘How can I pray?’
Sometimes it is an individual’s awareness of God inviting them to ‘something more’, and needing help to work out what that is really all about.
So the answer to the question is: ‘Anything that impacts on your relationship with God.’

Who?

The person offering this ministry will be a person of prayer who makes the commitment to accept you as you are and where you are. The companion or guide’s role is to support the discernment of God’s activity in your life.”

The above quoted from http://www.oxford.anglican.org/mission-ministry/spiritual-direction/

I quite like the above explanation.

Spiritual direction is something which many people are not familiar with, and I tend to use the phrase “Spiritual Mentoring and Guidance”.  It isn’t quite counselling in the usual sense, but I suppose it would easily fall under the umbrella term of being counselling, though not a problem focused activity, which counselling normally is.   It’s been an interesting development for me in terms of activity, and runs alongside the creative project very well.  It is sometimes something I integrate with individual artistic tuition or as part of a person seeking direction in their creativity and artist pursuits as part of one of my “Painting and Drawing Workshops”.  They are on hold at present, due to lack of time but I plan to start holding them again at the end of the year.

I would like to do some further training in the art of spiritual direction in the future, but cannot afford to do so at the moment.  I don’t mind waiting.  I would like my next training endeavour to be related to visual art in some way.  Keep looking at the West Dean College Short Course Programme.  It’s good to use different materials and techniques to keep the vigour in one’s creative practice.  So easy to grow stale, due to lack of extension!

 

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

“Flower Meditation” © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

 

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

 

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

 

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

west dean gardens jenny meehan flora foliage jamartlondon

 

I like these photographic studies I took a while back.  All my painting is inspired by nature ultimately, because this is what I am surrounded by.  The forms and movements of natural beauty as they filter in through my senses keep the creative will alive in so many respects.  That a painting does not look representational does not mean that it represents nothing.  For all around experience and life is breathed in, and for the painter, often breathed out in the work they produce.  This is living in the way I love to live.  This is the joy of being a painter.

 

“The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan”

The recovery and  rehabilitation from my TKR surgery which was on the 8th March 2017 is still a big feature of my life! Getting there a little more quickly now, at around 14 weeks post op.  Goodness, I have often felt an affinity with snails, but little did I know how manifest that would be in terms of a physical experience.  But it is a very positive experience, and the positive part of it started from the moment I was listed for surgery.  My experience of being cared for in hospital was amazing and has helped me immensely in my recovery process.  When tired and feeling challenged, I have been able to look back and remember how well I was looked after, and this reminds me that I need to look after myself in the same way.

Knee replacement surgery is a challenging experience but mine couldn’t have been better!   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!

I will be writing another update, probably in September this year, as that will be six months from the surgery date.  I am still in the early stages of my recovery and rehabilitation. Seems crazy, but it is a LONG HAUL experience.  Still immensely tired, and needing to limit time both walking and standing a bit.   I am looking at a September as being the time when I feel more fully back to normal, and the recovery process takes even longer than that. Up to two years I think.  I am happy with my knee though.  It feels a lot stronger than the how it did before the knee replacement operation. It’s given me some space to take in aspects of my practice which are proving rather beneficial.  It also provided a lot of opportunities for visiting garden centres and enjoying cream teas, which have also been beneficial!  I have realised I work much to hard, and need to spend more time relaxing, resting and enjoying life!

 

 

“The Realm of Between” Painting by Jenny Meehan

© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reservedjenny 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,

“The Realm of Inbetween/Pushing it a bit” abstract lyrical expressionist british paintings jenny meehan© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

 

On the far side of the subjective, on this side of the objective, on the narrow ridge where I and Thou meet, there is the realm of ‘between’. Buber 1949

With “the space between”, I allude to Martin Buber’s conception of a sacred realm which opens when people of different faiths speak profoundly to one another, from heart to heart. In the suggestive words of Buber himself:

In the most powerful moments of dialogic, where in truth “deep calls unto deep”, it becomes unmistakably clear that it is not the wand of the individual or of the social, but of a third which draws the circle round the happening. On the far side of the subjective, on this side of the objective, on the narrow ridge, where I and Thou meet, there is the realm of “between” (Buber 2002: 242f)

“Today, when the word ‘dialogue’ is spoken in educational circles, it is often linked to Paulo Freire. The same is true of ‘subject’ and ‘object’. Yet, in the twentieth century, it is really in the work of Martin Buber that the pedagogical worth of dialogue was realized – and the significance of relation revealed. He wrote – ‘All real living is meeting’ (Buber 1958: 25) and looked to how, in relation, we can fully open ourselves to the world, to others, and to God.”

“I and Thou, Buber’s best known work, presents us with two fundamental orientations – relation and irrelation. We can either take our place, as Pamela Vermes (1988: 40-41) puts it, alongside whatever confronts us and address it as ‘you’; or we ‘can hold ourselves apart from it and view it as an object, an “it”‘. So it is we engage in I-You (Thou) and I-It relationships.”

Encounter

For Buber encounter (Begegnung) has a significance beyond co-presence and individual growth. He looked for ways in which people could engage with each other fully – to meet with themselves. The basic fact of human existence was not the individual or the collective as such, but ‘Man with Man’ (Buber 1947). As Aubrey Hodes puts it:

When a human being turns to another as another, as a particular and specific person to be addressed, and tries to communicate with him through language or silence, something takes place between them which is not found elsewhere in nature. Buber called this meeting between men the sphere of the between. (1973: 72)
Encounter (Begegnung) is an event or situation in which relation (Beziehung) occurs. We can only grow and develop, according to Buber, once we have learned to live in relation to others, to recognize the possibilities of the space between us. The fundamental means is dialogue. Encounter is what happens when two I‘s come into relation at the same time. This brings us back to Buber’s distinction between relation and irrelation. ‘All real living is meeting’ is sometimes translated as ‘All real life is encounter’. This, as Pamela Vermes (1994: 198) has commented, could be taken as the perfect summary of Buber’s teaching on encounter and relation. However, it seems unlikely that he would have agreed with the notion that where there is no encounter life is ‘unreal’. It appears to be in encounter ‘that the creative, redemptive, and revelatory processes take place which Buber associates with the dialogical life’ (op cit.).”

“Dialogue

Dan Avnon (1998: 5) comments, ‘the reality of “space” that is between persons is the focus of Buber’s philosophy’. At its root is the idea that self-perfection is achievable only within relationship with others. Relationship exists in the form of dialogue. Furthermore, self-knowledge is possible only ‘if the relation between man and creation is understood to be a dialogical relationship’ (Buber quoted by Avnon op cit). Significantly, for Buber dialogue involves all kinds of relation: to self, to other(s) anhttp://infed.org/mobi/martin-buber-on-education/d to all forms of created being. Recognizing this allows us to see that it is ‘the conceptual linchpin of his teachings’ (Avnon 1998: 6).”

All the above from Martin Buber on Education

http://infed.org/mobi/martin-buber-on-education/

The dimension that essentially makes us human, it could be argued, is  the “between”: the space between I and Thou which neither party is totally in control of, but is given life only through dialogue. Understanding is not necessarily the same as consent.  It can make one’s own position clearer and contextualise the self as situated in time and space. Interpersonal in-between-ness actually makes one human: the space of the between allows one to find their own voice and gives them the opportunity to step forward as own perspectives on the world.”

 

Images from this years East Surrey/South West London “Kingston Artists’ Open Studios” Event!

 

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

 

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

 

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

jenny meehan at 2017 south west london/east surrey Kingston Artists Open Studios event contemporary female artist painter jenny meehan

 

This is some of the text I displayed with the work this year.   People like to read about it.  I also had many interesting discussions with different people.  I enjoy assisting people in engaging with painting and my own work.

South West London based Fine Artist and Painter
Jenny (Jennifer) Meehan. 

Jenny Meehan is based in Chessington, Surrey. Her personal website jamartlondon gives you an introduction to her art working. For a more extensive online publication of her creative project follow her activities in more detail through her blog: “Jenny Meehan Artist’s Journal – The Artist’s Meandering Discourses – Poetry – Painting – Spirituality” on WordPress.com.

Jenny thrives on experimentation and innovation. Her highly personal style invites the viewer to embark on their own visual journey, opening up their senses to the interplay of light, colour, texture, movement and stillness.

If you are interested in digital prints, take a look at the selection of imagery available as prints on Redbubble.com by following the link below:
To see Jenny Meehan’s portfolio page at Redbubble.com follow the link: below: http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams?ref=artist_title_name&asc=u

Using digital imagery, painting, drawing and writing, I take a primarily process-led approach, acting in response to the materials I am working with. It is a spirit and emotion led practice which I often describe as an articulation of fragmentary experience. This expresses the core of my art-working well, as all I create is autobiographically rooted and expressionistic. It acts as a kind of “re-membering”; a way of bringing things together, and making sense of life.

 

My interest in spirituality and mindfulness mean that I view my art work as a type of contemplative tool, which hopefully enables the viewer to connect with their own emotional life and experiences and gives space in a busy world for imagination and connection. Working with abstraction provides an opportunity for openness, allowing the viewer to determine their own path into my work, and this is coloured by their own experience and memory, unique to them.

Contact me if you have any enquiries. I am happy to arrange studio visits. Digital images of my paintings are numerous, and it is quick and easy to obtain a license for use through DACS (see end of page for more details).

I am a qualified teacher (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) with a BA Hons in Literature. I offer individual tuition subject to other commitments.

I am a member of Kingston Artists’ Open Studios, Guildford Arts, Kingston Arts, and the faith community of St Paul’s Church of England Church in Hook, Surrey. I am interested in spiritual formation and art working in relation to emotional and psychological wellbeing.

 

Jenny Meehan is an established artist who has been exhibiting for over ten years, mostly in the UK. Notable exhibitions include, most recently being selected for the Imagined Worlds touring exhibition of artworks inspired by the poem ‘Kubla Khan’ and inclusion in “Building Bridges, the Female Perspective” at Tower Bridge Victorian Engine Rooms in 2016. Jenny has been a keen supporter of various charity art exhibitions over the years including the National Brain Appeals ” A Letter in Mind” at Gallery@oxo, South Bank, London and the “Anatomy for Life” Exhibition for Brighton Sussex University Hospitals Trust in 2015

Selected by a wide range of judges in open submission exhibitions, her work appeals to the aesthetic and emotional discernment of many, and has been displayed in many prestigious galleries. These include the Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, in 2015, as part of their Open Exhibition, and the Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, West Sussex, as part of the Pallant House Gallery/St Wilfrid’s Hospice Open Art Exhibition in 2010.

Jenny Meehan’s work has been included in several academic projects and and publications including “Speaking Out – Women Recovering from the Trauma of Violence” by Nicole Fayard in 2014 and the ongoing “Recovery” Exhibition project – Institute Of Mental Health/City Arts, Nottingham University, also in 2014. While her romantic, lyrical, expressionistic, abstract paintings offer a contemplative space free from cares and concerns, other strands of her practice engage with subjects ranging from violence, trauma recovery, psychoanalysis, and mental health.

For more information regarding exhibitions go to the “Exhibitions” section of jamartlondon.com

 

Oh gosh,  sometimes I wish my parents could see what I was doing.  I think my mother would like my paintings.  Not so sure about my father.  My mother was Swiss German and came to England to work as an Au pair for Dr Boxall and his family in New Malden.  She was born in Villingen, Deutschland,  and her mother, Rosa Josefina Eicher originated from Eschenbach St. Gallen, and later lived in Basel.  I have no idea why my mother came England by herself in her early twenties, but she did, and she brought with her an appreciation for paintings which I can thank her for now.  Just prints, but they informed my eyes when I looked at them as a child growing up.  Impressionists.  Certainly made an impression on me.  It’s sad to lose your parents when you are fairly young, however it happens.  But as said, I think she would enjoy looking at what I do now, which is a nice thought.  Shame she can’t though. She died when I was 31, which is rather young to lose your mother I think.   “Buried Mother” is one painting painted in memory of her.

copyright jenny meehan DACSBuried Mother/Laid to Rest Oil Painting - Jenny Meehan

Buried Mother/Laid to Rest Oil Painting – Jenny Meehan

Really need to get those oil paints out again.  Paint quite differently in oils!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

imagined worlds exhibition alph the sacred river coleridge kubla khan jenny meehan

imagined worlds exhibition alph the sacred river coleridge kubla khan jenny meehan

 

As per normal, skim down, as I have written far too much for a single post, but added and added and added!!!!

Imagined Worlds Exhibition – A touring exhibition of artworks inspired by the poem ‘Kubla Khan’ written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1816.

Good news.  My work has been selected for this touring exhibition “Imagined Worlds Exhibition – A touring exhibition of artworks inspired by the poem ‘Kubla Khan’ ”

Imagined Worlds Exhibition – A touring exhibition of artworks inspired by the poem ‘Kubla Khan’ written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1816. This is a celebration by the Friends of Coleridge supported by Somerset Art Works, working in partnership with the National Trust, CICCIC Taunton, and Art at the Heart, RUH Bath.

CICCIC Memorial Hall, Paul St, Taunton TA1 3PF 7 October -12 November 2016 . Special PV 21 October 2016

Mid November – January tbc

RUH Bath Mid January – Mid April 2017

Coleridge Cottage Nether Stowey Mid April – May 2017

I am delighted about this.  Coleridge is a poet I both studied at degree level and very much enjoy.  So pleased to make my own response present in this way.  The work I submitted is here, shown above,  along with the information I prepared to accompany it.
Jenny Meehan is a well established South West London based artist whose art work evolves in a process led way, dependent on both intuition and imagination. She studied Literature at Kingston University and after working as a teacher for several years has spent the last ten years developing her creative practice, which includes painting, printmaking and poetry.
The artwork submitted responds to the water element in the poem ‘Kubla Khan’; “Alph, the sacred river” whose mysterious flow runs through its lines. Resonating with emotional highs and lows and “meandering with a mazy motion”, it carries the listener along with it.
Water is a subject matter which often preoccupies Jenny, occurring as a repeated motif in many of her paintings and prints. An interest in the subconscious and the resulting exploration of “caverns measureless to man” attracted her to this image in the poem.
Other Information
Jenny Meehan
j.meehan@tesco.net
Title of Work: “Alph, The Sacred River 1”
Image sent with email. Price: £ 200
Dimension 36 x 27cm
Medium: Ink jet Print on Cartridge Paper 1/10 Limited Edition

Over the Summer we stopped by outside Coleridge Cottage Nether Stowey.  We had got a little lost but when I saw the sign I took it as an added bonus to see the cottage, if only from the outside!

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/coleridge-cottage

It does not seem to be open every day, but a few times a week.  I am very pleased to think of my visual art residing in the same building as the poet himself.   I am very pleased with the way I framed it.. I found the frame over the Summer and instinct told me to buy it…I knew it would be useful.  It works well with the flow feeling of the print.  I am also pleased that there is an illusion of reflection happening.  The photograph here was taken without glazing, yet there is an appearance of reflection which is apt for the piece.  I have now glazed it, and it looks doubly reflective!  Suitable for a poem by Coleridge!

 

 

 

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white copper work metal work copper foliage jenny meehan

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white

Above:  Copper Fern 1 by Jenny Meehan  (Image of “Copper Fern” by Jenny Meehan)

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white copper

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white

Above: Copper Edge (Image of “Copper Edge” by Jenny Meehan)

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white copper work copper jenny meehan

jenny meehan jamartlondon photo black white

Above: Copper Fern 2 by Jenny Meehan (Image of “Copper Fern” by Jenny Meehan)

 

Ah, October.  Lovely spiders, everywhere.  I walk into them.  Watch them weave. And leaves are changing. Creeping edges of colour; yellow, orange, black, red.  Damp green grass, and the birds sound louder.  I like this time of year. Even the rain.

I planned to start some printmaking, but my right knee, with it’s osteoarthritis, is making everything take longer.  And so time is short; too short to start a new project right now.  I cannot walk very quickly.  I have had a lot of pain in the last few weeks.   I am doing a lot of  exercise, and physiotherapy, and “Better Bones” classes.  But my bones are not better.  It is what is around them that needs attention. My legs are certainly stronger. And I am less heavy.  Let the weight loss continue.  But how I wish I could walk for longer than 20 minutes, without a stick, and without severe pain at the end of it. I do not like this.  It is a miserable matter.  I cry and get cross.  Cry and Cross! There may be a title for a painting there!

So, with domestic work, and various voluntary activities,  plus exercise, exercise, exercise, the time is all used up. But I have managed to make some frames for paintings carried out over the Summer.  Which I quite like doing. And need for next year.  And I have also spent some time discovering more about Bessel van der Kolk…

Bessel van der Kolk

http://www.traumacenter.org/about/about_bessel.php  Very interesting.  Just listened to a talk by Bessel van der Kolk, MD called “Trauma, Body, and the Brain: Restoring the Capacity for Synchronicity and Imagination,” an exploration of how the brain is shaped by experience and how our relationship to ourselves is the product of our synchronicity with those around us.  Wonderful talk, very interesting and inspiring!

I have also been listening to several different talks which I was able to access through an online training summit, all focused on Neuroscience, Trauma, Mindfulness, and Attachment Therapy.  I am a big fan of Margaret Wehrenberg (not personally, because I don’t know her at all!!!) but certainly of her books which I have found very helpful personally, and as she was speaking on one of the sessions, I thought I would sign up for the summit…

Little snippets/notes from listening to Margaret Wehrenberg which I found particularly interesting and helpful…

She spoke on “The Purpose of Worry and How to Manage It” .  Under this banner highlights for me personally were…

how fear and worry are different…

why do we worry? anxiety is a normal condition. it is they way we feel in response to ambiguity.  sensation of anxiety gives us some motivation to look for and identify potential problems and look for them but with a disorder we feel anxiety in the absence of any actual threat or problem…  get into “what if” thinking and worry becomes persistent, disruptive, and robs people of the joy of being alive.

fear and worry distinguished…if there is a distinct threat, basically  something which has an objective observable cause… that is fear and it prompts action, look for a way to escape from what it is that scares us, we can imagine that we would be afraid…that is not the same as worry… worry is persistent however it  never solves a problem where as fear can solve a problem

some people are wired up to be worriers more than others and have not very effective stopping mechanisms or brain shifting capacity… lots of her techniques attempt to equip the person to shift gears manually, and eventually this becomes more automatic with repetition using brain to change the brain.

stress creates conditions of anxiety as an outcome of stress…  so stress reduction is key.    ie body care sleep eat,    causes people to feel generally uneasy..  thinking what could be going wrong…

anxiety is a condition looking for content… asking all the time what could be causing me to have this kind of arousal?  seeking relief, ie with health anxiety..  internet searching!!!    scanning for health concerns.. looking up symptoms and trying to diagnose themselves, does not typically help. Calmness while searching, act of reassurance in seeking, and while online person may feel calm,  but better to respond to the feeling of a needing some reassurance through other ways not internet searching…

people believe if is it is possible to happen then it is probably going to happen….start to behave as if it is going to happen or is even happening right now. But it may only be remotely possible.  Are you worrying about something which is possible or probable? 

do you have a real problem, if so you can plan a way to solve it… so planning is a good tool a real antidote to worry

if you cannot make a plan then it is not a real problem, or at least not yet, so then worry is the problem itself.

 

Well, the above is a little taster.  Excuse the note form.  As said, I use this Journal not as a finished piece of personal narrative, but as an unfolding notebook/journal/record, for my own use as much as sharing it with any interested parties.   If you would like to find out more about Margaret’s work she has a website:  http://www.margaretwehrenberg.com/   The two books I have read by Margaret Wehrenberg are “The 10 Best-Ever Depression Management Techniques: Understanding How Your Brain Makes You Depressed & What You Can Do to Change it” and “The 10 Best-Ever Anxiety Management Techniques: Understanding How Your Brain Makes You Anxious and What You Can Do to Change it”.

I liked very much the writing style of the books as well as the content and organisation.  I read  “The 10 Best-Ever Depression Management Techniques: Understanding How Your Brain Makes You Depressed”  when I was very depressed several years ago, and found the tone very helpful, as not patronising.   I had a pre existing interest in the neuroscience, due to my brother’s head injury, and I found the matter of fact approach, with reference to how the brain works,  good for me personally.  Also, being someone possessing sound intelligence and being of a practical nature, enjoying concrete and material things, as well as theory,  I was glad to find something which suggested that I could manage what was happening to me and that I had some kind of influence over it.  This is always a big step when feeling depressed, however it is a crucial one.  There were so many small and accessible things suggested that one could do.  This was just what I needed.  I never had an expectation of quick and easy answers, and was looking around to access psychotherapy at the time, but as I was unable to access it for six months  I needed something to help me manage things in the meantime. It might not suit everyone, but was perfect for me.

There were plenty of other speakers also. I don’t have the inclination to share any more here, but one of the little bits of information I picked up from another talk was with regard to a term “Window of Tolerance”. “Window of Tolerance” is a term coined by Dr. Dan Siegel, and is now widely used in understanding normal brain/physiology reaction responses, as well in trauma-informed treatment terminology, and in all areas of mental health. Efforts are made to assist individuals to learn how to widen their personal, unique Window of Tolerance, as well as to have methods to stay in the Window of Tolerance via self-soothing and self-regulating behaviours. When an individual “jumps” out, or feels “pushed” out of their Window of Tolerance on the upper or lower sides, the prefrontal cortex is essentially going offline, with only subcortical brain regions (limbic system-emotional brain, and brain stem) staying active, removing ability to think through actions and consequences. Before any type of talking or making sense of a situation can occur, individuals need to find a way back into their Window of Tolerance, through self-soothing and self-regulating behaviours, which will allow all regions of the brain to get back online, and our processing system to function appropriately.

Mmm, as you can see.  I am really into this!

quoted from:  http://www.drmariedezelic.com/window-of-tolerance–traumaanxiety-rela

I found this terribly interesting.  Not quite sure what I will do with it, if anything right at the moment, but wanting to record it here in the Journal so that I will at some point look over it again, and it won’t just disappear in the computer without memory!

This is such a psychological post in the Journal…  I am also interested in numbing!

Numbing is a biological process whereby emotions are detached from thoughts, behaviours, and memories. As I look back into the significant period of depression I experienced, which was over the period  from about 2010 to 2012,  I am aware very much that the numbing I experienced was a traumatic stress reaction, and one which hid what was going on inside emotionally.  It is this, and the feeling of separation from others, because of the emotional disconnect, which makes it all the more distressing.  The impact of trauma is felt very greatly by the person, but is not very easy for others to recognise, because the emotionless-ness hides the distress and masks the levels of stress experienced.   It is efficiently kept to oneself. But it is a sad isolation. Alcohol to self-medicate does not help either.  You cannot deny your emotions on a long term basis.

A Brief Writing on It…

The detachment

The feeling of the

need

to connect

The gap, which imperceptibly widens

The falling apart, within, without

The without-ness growing like a huge plant

Which sucks the water from the soul

This is the abyss in which I have fallen.

 

It’s a long time since I have written any poetry.  Must do some this Winter.  And must put some visual content in this post… I have been doing a lot of research recently and very little painting.  The painting below dates from between 2007 and 2012… (around 2010 I think).  Certainly carried out during those “wilderness years”.  Didn’t like it at the time, but I like it now.

sketch of chessington rear access road jenny meehan

sketch of chessington rear access road jenny meehan

 

Love working abstractly… So interesting.  But great to have something there to bounce off too!

Determined to do some painting, despite the obstacles in the way, the pain, the slowness of walking, the mounting of domestic tasks, the knowledge that as I stand to paint, the end result will be I cannot stand at all in the evening. I must instead tend to my knee with ice, massage, heat, and whatever else I fancy.   Going out to network is out of the question.  I do not anticipate pain coming to me… I am using mindfulness to good effect, however it seems doggedly faithful. And arrives an uninvited guest.  What I will achieve in the future, with this situation of disability is a matter of concern to me, even while taking one day at a time.  So I look back and enjoy what I have done.  I will do more…It just looks like it will be more difficult.  Knee replacement at some point.  Often feel unsure of how long I can keep this up.

Posting Recent List of Exhibitions..

Here is what I have done so far in the way  of exhibitions.  Just skim down quickly if they are not of interest!  Just need to remind myself of what I have done at the moment!

Exhibitions List Up to Date. To October 2016

Imagined Worlds Exhibition – A touring exhibition of artworks inspired by the poem ‘Kubla Khan’ written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1816. This is a celebration by the Friends of Coleridge supported by Somerset Art Works, working in partnership with the National Trust, CICCIC Taunton, and Art at the Heart, RUH Bath.

CICCIC Memorial Hall, Paul St, Taunton TA1 3PF 7 October -12 November 2016 . Special PV 21 October 2016

Mid November – January tbc, RUH Bath Mid January – Mid April 2017, Coleridge Cottage Nether Stowey Mid April – May 2017
“The Art of Caring” ( second exhibition curated by Peter Herbert) at The Conference Centre, St Pancras Hospital, NW1 OPE 21st July – 13th October 2016
KAOS OPEN STUDIOS 11th / 12th and 18th / 19th June 2016 (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios)70 artists taking part at venues around Kingston. Annual event.
Kingston Artists’ Open Studios Taster Exhibition at Cass Art , 103 Clarence Street, KT1 1 QY in “The Art Space” Kingston Upon Thames. 6th – 20th June 2016
“Anagrams” at Kingston Museum, Kingston Art 2016. Juried. Wheatfield Way, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 2PS. 29 April 2016 to 2 July 2016

“Building Bridges, the Female Perspective” 8th March – October 2016 organised by Southwark Arts Forum & Tower Bridge Art at the Bridge #7. Tower Bridge Victorian Engine Rooms, Tower Bridge Road London SE1 2UP.

“The Art of Caring” Exhibition curated by Alban Low at The Upper Circle Gallery, The Rose Theatre, Kingston-upon-Thames 12th to 24th May 2016.

2015

CornerHouse Charity Exhibition for “Straight Talking Charity at Cornerhouse Arts Centre, Surbiton, Surrey Nov 30th – Dec 31st

Challenging Behaviour Foundation Charity Exhibition Sun Pier House, Sun Pier, Medway Street, Chatham, Kent, ME4 4HF 3 November 2015 – 29 November 2015

Court Farm Cafe Group Exhibition, organised by Kingston Arts Cafe at Court Farm Garden Centre, Worcester Park, Surrey KT4 7QH October 2015 – January 2016

A Letter in Mind – The Art of Journey, Charity Exhibition at Gallery@oxo, South Bank, London SE1 9PH 8th October until 18th October 2015. My donated work sold for this worthy cause.

Brighton Sussex University Hospitals Trust National Transplant Week 2015 (7th-13th September) public art exhibition in Brighton UK at the Brighton Jubilee Library Jubilee St, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 1GE. Items 13 and 14 were my donations.

Jenny Meehan’s donation can be found on page 10 of the following publication:

To bid, go to the Ebay store, here’s the facebook link:

‘The Story So Far’, organised by Acton Arts Forum, at W3 Gallery, 185 Acton High Street, W3 9DJ . From 1 July to 14th July 2015.

KAOS (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios “Selfie” Exhibition in The Art Space at Cass Arts, Kingston Upon Thames. 6 – 14th June

KAOS OPEN STUDIOS June 2015 (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios) at venues around Kingston. Annual event.
“Flying Colours” Joint exhibition of prints, Leatherhead Theatre, Leatherhead (Jenny Meehan and Chris Birch) 3rd – 30th May 2015

“Day of Reflection on Spiritual Homelessness” at St Nicholas Church, Guildford GU2 4AW on 11th April 2015. Six paintings shown as part of a group exhibition.

“Tiny Bones and Lasting Stones of Memory” (poem and painting) shown as part of Holocaust Memorial Day – Keeping the Memory Alive Through Art Exhibition: Kingston University, 16th – 17th March; Kingston Museum, 26 March – 23 April 2015, Kingston College, 24th – 28th April 2015 and at the Council Chambers, Kingston Upon Thames 1st February (Third prize in adult category)

2014 Exhibitions

Holocaust Memorial Day – Keeping the Memory Alive Through Art Exhibition at the Council Chambers, Kingston Upon Thames, Sunday 1st February (Third prize in adult category)

KAOS Exhibition at All Saints Church, Kingston upon Thames
KT1 1JP 11th Nov – 25th Nov. Kingston Artist’s Open Studios Group Exhibition

“Breaking the Chains” (Anti human trafficking) Exhibition at Tower Gallery, Memorial Community Church, 395 Barking Road, London E13 8AL. 16th October – 6th November. Selected

“A Letter in Mind”…The National Brain Appeal’s Exhibition Charity Exhibition) at gallery@oxo, Oxo Tower Wharf, Bargehouse Street, South Bank, London, SE1 9PH. 2nd October – 5th October. Selected and donated work sold.

Dulwich Picture Gallery Open Exhibition, Gallery Road, London SE21 7AD 30th Sept – 12th Oct 2015. Juried, (Selection panel headed by Ian Dejardin, and including Rebecca Fortnum, Clive Head, Nicky Hirst and Elo Schuneman).

NewArt@Baker Tilly, Baker Tilly, 3rd Floor, One London Square, Cross Lanes Guildford GU1 1UN 7th June -20th September. Selected

Court Farm KAOS (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios) Cafe at Court Farm Garden Centre, Worcester Park, Surrey. 3rd May – 27th July

Multiple Sclerosis Trust “The Secret Art Show” (Charity Exhibition) Spirella Building, Bridge Road, Letchwoth Garden City, Hertfordshire SG6 4ET. 30th April – 7th May

Artistsmeet Open Exhibition, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire WD3 1EH. 3rd March – 6th May 2014 Selected.

“Drawn Together” Riverside Gallery, Old Town Hall, Richmond Upon Thames TW9 1TP. 1st March – 25th May 2014 Juried.

“Sacred Spaces” KAOS Exhibition curated by Jenny Meehan, Leatherhead Theatre, Leatherhead. May 3 – 31st 2014. Seven members of Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.

“Speaking Out – Women Recovering from the Trauma of Violence” Embrace Arts at the RA Centre, Leciester University, Leciester. 13 January – 28th March 2014. Juried.

“Drawing Inspiration” Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, A-Side B-Side Gallery, Hackney Downs Studios, E8 2BT. 23rd Jan – 3rd Feb 2014 Highly Commended awarded. Juried.

“Recovery” Exhibition – Institute Of Mental Health/City Arts at Nottingham University NG7 2TU Nov 6th – May 2014

2013 Exhibitions

“Recovery” Exhibition – Institute Of Mental Health/City Arts at Nottingham University NG7 2TU Nov 6th – May 2014

Brixton Drawing Project Exhibition. Brixton East, Brixton, SW9 Sunday 6th October.

Orange Tree Theatre KAOS Group Exhibition. Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond upon Thames, Surrey 23rd Oct – 30th Nov.

PARTIA “Collective Nostalgia” at Aintree University Hospital, Liverpool. 1st Oct-1st Nov 2013. Selected.

Court Farm KAOS (Kingston Artist’s Open Studios) Group Exhibition. Cafe at Court Farm Garden Centre, Worcester Park, Surrey. Sept 3rd – November 2013

“Not The Royal Academy” exhibition at Llewellyn Alexander Fine Paintings. London SE1 June – August

“Allotted” Curated Exhibition at The Beetroot Tree Gallery, Draycott, Derbyshire 15th June – 27th July 2013 Selected.

“Lines” Curated Exhibition at The Strand Gallery, London. Selected. June 2013

Cornerhouse Arts Centre, Surbiton, Surrey. Jenny Meehan Recent Work, Solo Exhibition. June 2013

Group Exhibition “Order and KAOS” (Four Painters from Kingston Artists Open Studios). Leatherhead Theatre (curated by Jenny Meehan) 4th-31st May.

Dugout Women’s Inclusive Festival – The Hoxton Arches, Cremer Street, E2 8HD (2nd March 2013). Juried.

Open Exhibition at The Classroom Gallery, Nottingham. Selected. March 23 – April 5th.

National Open Exhibition 2013 at Electric Picture House Congleton, Cheshire. March 9th -30th. Selected.

2012
September – December Alliance Healthcare Exhibition, Alliance Healthcare, Chessington Surrey (SOLO)

The Bog Standard Gallery, Artistsmeet, Watersmeet, Rickmansworth Hertfordshire. WD3 1EH December 2012

The Ark Centre Autumn Exhibition, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG24 9NN. October/November 2012

Artistsmeet Open Exhibition, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire WD3 1EH. September/October 2012

Cranleigh Arts Centre Open Exhibition, Cranleigh, Surrey GU6 8AS June 2012

“Some Kind Of Narrative” Joint Exhibition at Leatherhead Theatre, Leatherhead, Surrey KT22 8DN Stephanie Greenslade – Jenny Meehan. 29th April – 25th May 2012. ”

Hidden Artists” Exhibition at Denbies Picture Gallery 2012, Denbies Wine Estate, Charity fundraising event for NSPCC.

2011
Jigsaw4Uinternational.org project “Strong Voices” Event 2011 at The Rose Theatre, Kingston Upon Thames in October. (sculpture and photographs). Charity event.

Cranleigh Arts Centre Open Exhibition 2011 at Cranleigh Arts Centre, Cranleigh, Surrey GU6 8AS June 2011 Juried Exhibition

“Hidden Artists” Exhibition at Denbies Picture Gallery 2011, Denbies Wine Estate, Dorking, Surrey. Fundraising exhibition for NSPCC.

2010
“John Lewis Prize” Exhibition (of shortlisted work) at “The Place To Eat”, John Lewis, Kingston Upon Thames. 8th September – 10th December 2010 Juried Exhibition

Pallant House Gallery/St Wilfrid’s Hospice Open Art Exhibition at Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, West Sussex. 3rd June – 2nd July 2010. Juried Exhibition.

Surrey Artists Network Ist Anniversary Exhibition at Otters Pool Studio, Guildford, Surrey GU1 4QG Ist May – 22nd May 2010. Juried Exhibition.

Denbies Open Exhibition 2010 Denbies Vineyard, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6AA January 7th-17th, 2010.

2009
“Doorway” Visual Meditation 2009 (Jenny Meehan and Mary Reid) at St Paul’s C of E Church, Hook, Surrey. February 22nd.

2008 – 2006

Kingston Contemporary Open 2007 (Stanley Picker Gallery, Kingston Upon Thames, Surrey, UK). Juried.

Kingston Contemporary Open 2006 (Stanley Picker Galllery, Kingston Upon Thames, Surrey, UK). Juried.

SOLO EXHIBITIONS (Self Organised in Community Spaces)

” Jenny Meehan -Recent Paintings and Prints” Cornerhouse Arts Centre, Surbiton Surrey June 2013

“Paintings – Jenny Meehan ” Alliance Healthcare, Chessington, Surrey Sept-Dec 2012

“Inking Outside The Block” (CornerHOUSE Arts Centre, Surbiton) December 5th to December 31st 2011.
PRIZES/AWARDS

Painting and Poetry – Third Prize in “Keeping the Memory Alive through Art”, Kingston Inter Faith Forum, Kingston University, Kingston Upon Thames February 2015

Painting – Highly Commended – Needhams Open Art Competition 2009, Cambridgeshire, UK. Juried Exhibition.

Poetry – Finalist (second place) in “Literary Mary” poetry competition March 2009

Painting – Highly Commended – “Drawing Inspiration” Competition Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, January 2014

QUALIFICATIONS

BA Hons English Literature (Kingston University, Kingston Upon Thames)

PGCE Primary Education (Roehampton Institute, Roehampton)

COLLECTIONS

Kingston Museum

John Lewis Partnership

Bog Standard Gallery

Private collections in the United Kingdom

 

This is getting to be a rather long post… As often happens…

Walter Darby Bannard, 1934-2016

A lovely write here:

http://www.artblog.net/post/2016/10/walter-darby-bannard/

Notes from the Life of an Artist by Franklin Einspruch, an artist and writer based in Boston.

Sometimes I am caught by what I read, and this part caught me:

I’ll let you in on a secret: the scorn never mattered. Darby lived well. His was a life full of brilliant friends, talented colleagues, and passionate relationships. Throughout it all and up to the end, he painted. When he was painting, canvases tacked to the floor, surrounded by jars of acrylics, and an arsenal of squeegees, brooms, and brushes at the ready, his enjoyment was unassailable. Art rides in on pleasure, he says in the Aphorisms.

The pleasure carries something with it, something very precious to us that is inseparable from the pleasure itself.

I live with that something every day, but I can’t say what it is. No one can. If you have an eye, you comprehend it in an instant; you feel it and you know it. That’s that.

And now that really is that.”

The above quoted from:  http://www.artblog.net/post/2016/10/walter-darby-bannard/   Do take a look and read the whole post.

There is such a lot of distraction.  But I will certainly be taking a look at http://wdbannard.org/ and reading some more!

Researching Family History

I have dug around a bit. Stumbled on this:

Some of my family history

While not possible to trace much of my mother’s side due to lack of information,  I was grateful to find this recently:

Born in Boscombe, Hampshire in 1882, Albert was the son of blacksmith, Colin Gray and his wife Selina. He had an older brother, Colin Bertie and a younger sister, Laura. In 1891 the family were living in Victoria Road, Pokesdown, where they also took in a lodger. They later moved to Hannington Road, Bournemouth. By 1901 Albert’s brother was working as a decorator, whilst his sister was employed as a laundress and later as a dye cleaner in the textile industry.

Albert seems to have followed a similar career path to his sister. By the age of 29 he was a wash house foreman, in a local laundry. This is probably where he met his future bride, Gertrude Harradine. The daughter of a railwayman, she was originally from 104 Palmerston Road, Wimbledon but was boarding in Bournemouth, having found work as a laundress. The couple married at Holy Trinity Church, Wimbledon on 3 August, 1912.

During the war, Albert joined the Royal Field Artillery. He served with the 189th Brigade, part of the 41st Division. This was formed in Aldershot in 1915 from units raised in southern England. Comprising 3 – 4 gun batteries, the brigade was sent to France in May 1916 and was initially based in the area between Hazebrouck and Bailleul. As field artillery for the 1st Army, Albert and his comrades would have fought in the Battle of Flers-Courcelette. During this week-long offensive in September 1916, artillery and infantry tried, but failed to break the German line and leave an opening for cavalry attacks. In November the 189th brigade was also involved in the Battle of the Transloy Ridge, part of the third and final offensive of the Somme campaign. Fighting was made all the more harrowing by terrible weather conditions and a battlefield devastated by months of artillery fire.

Promoted to the rank of sergeant, Albert must have shown bravery and determination during his military service, as he was mentioned in dispatches. He survived the war, albeit briefly and died of influenza on 25 November 1918, just two weeks after peace was declared. He was buried at Gap Road Cemetery and is commemorated at Wimbledon Parish Church. His widow continued to live at 28a Wycliffe Road, Wimbledon, after his death.

That widow was my father, Gordon William Gray’s mother. I never met her, as they were estranged.  I don’t know why as it was not talked about.  My maiden name of Gray, yet another interesting journey of discovery!

I had gleaned some of the information myself, but this extract above, which I quote from http://cis.photoarchive.merton.gov.uk/entity/186931-serjeant-albert-william-gray..   contains much more detail than I had been able to obtain on my own.

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. 

 

Website Link for jamartlondon:  www.jamartlondon.com 

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

My prints and some merchandise which uses my artwork can also be purchased safely and easily through Redbubble.com

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

 

 

COPYRIGHT INFORMATION

All content on this blog,  unless specified otherwise,  is © Jenny Meehan.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts of writing and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jenny Meehan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  Images may not be used without permission under any circumstances. 

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.

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 ever, a LOOOONG title:

Spiritual Direction/Guidance…What is it? – Franz Marc – Past and Present Paintings – A Letter in Mind – The Art of Journey – Chakra Dance type Paintings – Artists and Open Exhibition Submission Fees/Payments

As ever, skim as you will, like water boatmen on the surface of the water!

Well…

I am enjoying the spiders busy making their webs…How clever they are!

Due to a nasty osteoarthritis flare up (I now understand what it was!) I have been rather disabled physically, and in a lot of pain.  Now I can walk again, though not for a long time, I hope to get around to visit some more galleries in London once more, though the toilet is pretty much the only place I have been visiting recently!!!!

I never would have expected so much pain, both day and night, was possible.  A good incentive to loose weight.

This has confined me to a period of hobbling around the house, however, I have done many useful tasks on the computer and also spent time reviewing some of the paintings from earlier on in the year.  Painting activities will now involve a lot of contemplation and not much mark making.  Some of my process led paintings take a year to complete.  They must not be rushed and I would rather keep something unresolved and come back to it rather than push it forward if it feels like it is going downhill.  Sometimes things have to crash before they come to life, however, it feels so much more rewarding for a painting to just float along, and take the time, space and thought that it needs.

Here are some recently resolved paintings:

 

 

And this has come together well:

 

drop in the ocean painting jenny meehan romantic lyrical abstraction expressionist abstract fine painting drop in the ocean painting jenny meehan

british collectable abstract paintings

 

That’s going to be called “Jesus Calms the Storm/A Drop in the Ocean”.  I like more than one title.  I often have two things floating around in my head when I reflect back on paintings recently completed.  Why restrict the title to one thing?

That will do for now…but more coming soon!   Colour is welcome in Winter, and I have enjoyed the dance of colour and light I have taken part in this year!

 

Spiritual Direction/Guidance

When I googled recently “spiritual guide” the main thing which appeared was either to do with having some kind of spirit guide or having a guru/shaman type person… Neither of these reflect my use of the term Spiritual Direction or Spiritual Guidance, as I use the term in within the context of the Christian tradition, which seems to be something that people in the Catholic church are more familiar with, though in the Anglican tradition the role of a Spiritual Director/Mentor is also quite well established.  Though I have had a committed faith in Christ for years, I only came across the term “Spiritual Director” in the last few years…  And now I find I am training in this area.  The idea behind the “Director” part isn’t that you are told where to go/what to do, by the way, it is rather that your spiritual guide/mentor seeks with you to find out how the Holy Spirit is working and directing you in your life…It is rather a case of finding out which way the wind blows or the water flows with you!  It is a service ideally completely dependent on the Holy Spirit, the aim of it being to encourage insight, wisdom and help someone in gaining their own sense of direction.

Many people would like to grow in the way that they relate to God, and something like a Spiritual Direction session once every few months could be very helpful.  Having recognised how much my own faith has been encouraged through one-to-one input, the opportunity for contemplation, reflection, and discussion, about things which compose this life of mine, I feel quite keen to be of some use to others in this way.  I am still training right now, and enjoying the process very much.

Here is a good description!

“What is a spiritual director?
A spiritual director is someone who offers a safe space where he/she can help us explore and reflect on our relationship with God, however fragile that may seem.
Over a period of time we share our faith story with this trusted person, in confidence. We bring the things that mean the most to us, including our hopes, dreams and struggles.
Each one of us meets God in our own everyday experience, sometimes we just need a little guidance and help to recognise it, and celebrate it.
Who becomes a spiritual director?
Ordinary people who have journeyed through the ups and downs of life, and who feel called to this ministry.
They are from all walks of life. Most spiritual directors have extensive training and experience, and are excellent listeners.
They offer time, attention, acceptance and encouragement.
So where did the idea of spiritual guidance come from?
Since the time of the early Desert Fathers in the 3rd Century, spiritual guidance has been part of the tradition of the church.
A growing number of people are rediscovering how helpful it can be in today’s busy, confusing world to have someone to walk alongside them on their journey of faith.
“Where two or three have gathered in my name, there I am in the midst of them”. (Matthew 18: 20)
So is spiritual direcdtion/guidance for the super-spiritual only?
No. It is for anyone who is interested in drawing closer to God. God seeks us where we are.
How can spiritual guidance help me?
As a relationship of trust with this spiritual companion builds over a period of time, there will be opportunities to explore and develop ways of praying, meditation and reflection that may be helpful.
Through a more developed self-knowledge, we can become more aware of God’s grace and movement in our daily lives. A good guide can bring a different perspective to issues, both pat and preent, that we may have been grappling with for some time.
As we speak more honestly and openly about ourselves and our struggles, we can grow more open to God. This greater transparency can lead to a growing sense of God’s presence in all things, and a more grateful heart.
There is help and support in making dificult choices, which can be helpful in the decision-making process.”

The above text was taken from: http://www.holyangelsash.org/noticeboard/diocesan-events/

 

Franz Marc

 

Oh yes,  Another artist’s work which has inspired me along the way…

Franz Marc (February 8, 1880 – March 4, 1916) was a German painter and printmaker, one of the key figures of the GermanExpressionist movement. He was a founding member of Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider), a journal whose name later became synonymous with the circle of artists collaborating in it.”

 

 

franz marc creation woodcut

franz marc creation woodcut

Working with design in black and white is very, very difficult.  I was amazed how challenging it was when I attempted it a few years back.  To keep the balance in the work is hard, but this woodcut is a super example of someone accomplished in the balancing act of artistic creation!

 

 

 

 

Images from the Wiki page..

The one above makes me think of  Max Beckmann, another favourite of mine.  I have some woodcutting tools and keep meaning to try it, but this may be a later endeavour I think, due to other demands on time and the need to continue to push the painting forward as a priority.

 

The Storyteller

I’m posting this older work of mine because it involves recognisable objects and I find it useful to reflect on how I decided to render them.  An awareness and thought on the matter is still relevant to my current work, even though non-objective, because paintings is a way of thinking…an approach, a venture into an unknown future, even if the future is only five minutes away, what makes one do this, and not that, is worth consideration.  I often look back and the choices I made in the past inform the present work, even if it looks totally different.

psychotherapy and art, psychoanalysis art painting, carl jung artwork, carl jung the storyteller oil painting jenny meehan

the storyteller oil painting jenny meehan

I was thinking about Carl Jung and his work with the imagination, and the belief that the  foundations of personality are archaic, primitive, innate, unconscious, and universal.  He believed that every human being or human personality has a story to tell. and that derangement comes when individuals are denied the chance to tell their story or the story is rejected.  This painting was painted from the  imagination, rather than from observation.

 

bosham landscape view painting jenny meehan

bosham landscape view painting jenny meehan

 

This painting however was painted from observation.  I painted it with rather wet feet…and kept sinking into the ground when painting as the land was rather boggy and wet!  Bosham is in West Sussex, UK.  This painting was purchased by a collector very quickly indeed, which was pleasing!  It came out well…I was experimenting with my style, and as said, this work informs even the work of the present.   I remember being fascinated by the stillness of the water, which was disturbed at one point by a lady taking a small boat out onto it.  She had a dog with her who also splashed around.   It was a lovely hot sunny day and the paint is thinly applied onto primed hardboard, which worked well.   I wonder if I have this experience in mind when I worked on the series of Boat house paintings…Though I don’t know the location of the building I painted…I didn’t take enough note of the exact geographic location!

Recent Exhibitions

Other Exhibitions coming up in 2015:

A Letter in Mind – The Art of Journey, Gallery@oxo
Oxo Tower Wharf
Bargehouse Street
South Bank
London SE1 9PH

From 8th October until 18th October. This is a charity exhibition with artworks being sold for £80 each. The National Brain Appeal will benefit from your purchase! Entry is free.

 

Here’s the blurb from the website:

A huge thank you to everyone who submitted an artwork for this year’s exhibition – which runs from 8 to 18 October at gallery@OXO in London.

The Art of a Journey invited artists to respond visually to a journey that they have experienced: whether emotional, psychological, real or imagined – using a simple envelope as their starting point. The concept of a journey is specifically relevant to artists as it mirrors the production and culmination of an artwork.
Our aim is to raise awareness of neurological conditions through artistic questioning as patients at The National Hospital embark on their own personal journeys.
Submissions have come from established and emerging names in the worlds of art and design, architecture, illustration, graphic design, film and the dramatic arts; the envelopes have been built in, drawn on, painted, written on, cooked, wired, collaged, sewn and had artworks sealed inside them! This year’s international entries have come in from all over the world including Ireland, Belgium, Spain, USA and even Venezuela!
We are delighted to announce a selection of our artists: Grayson Perry and Billy Childish, Gill Rocca and Natasha Kidd, Harry Pye – artist and magazine editor, Horace Panter – artist and bassist for The Specials – actors Joanna David, Phyllida Law and Kevin Eldon and comedian Jo Brand, illustrators Polly Dunbar, Chris Haughton and Tim Hopgood, BP Portrait Award winner, artistic director of the Royal Drawing School Catherine Goodman and contemporary British architects Professor Will Alsop and Amina Taha (to name but a few)! Alongside our supporters, students, designers, drawing clubs and the general public have also shared their extra-ordinary talent in aid of The National Brain Appeal.
All of the artworks are now being processed and photographed and will be available to view from September in our online gallery.”

Link to the gallery is here:

http://www.nationalbrainappeal.org/letter-in-mind-gallery-shop/

Can you guess which one is mine?  Last year’s sold, so I am hoping this year is the same, as it will help the charity!

 

Also, in November:

Challenging Behaviour Foundation Exhibition, Sun Pier House, Sun Pier, Medway Street, Chatham, Kent, ME4 4HF
3 November 2015 – 29 November 2015

And ones which have just been: 

Brighton Sussex University Hospitals Trust National Transplant Week 2015 (7th-13th September) public art exhibition in Brighton UK at the Brighton Jubilee Library Jubilee St, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 1GE. Items 13 and 14 were my donations… Bidding is open!

Jenny Meehan’s donation can be found on page 10 of the following publication:

http://issuu.com/anatomyforlife/docs/afl_artist_statements_2015/12?e=9456284/15283286

To bid, go to the Ebay store, here’s the facebook link:
https://www.facebook.com/AnatomyForLife/app_149115948441659

‘The Story So Far’, organised by Acton Arts Forum, at W3 Gallery, 185 Acton High Street, W3 9DJ . From 1 July to 14th July 2015.

http://www.w3gallery.org.uk/index.php/what-s-on

I hope this gallery continues… I think it was closing and the exhibition I was in was the last one!  This is tragic if it is the case.  Artists need affordable ways to show their work.  All the above were free to exhibit…  I simply cannot afford to pay £25 here and there for a chance… I mean a chance to show my work.  Submission fees don’t mean that artists definitely get their work shown…You pay anyway, just to submit…  This is the terrible truth, and it is quite frankly wrong.  Most of the general public are not aware of this fact.

FREE for the public AND  FREE for the Artist!

Artists are being used to help organisations make money.  Artists should only pay if their work is shown in open call competitions, and  if so, the fee should be minimal.  I mean, minimal, under £10.  (a true admin fee, could be justified!)  The whole system is at fault really.  It favours those who have disposable income to spend on their art working aspirations.  I choose one or two paid submission opportunities each year, at the most, and when submitting I wave bye bye to the money knowing it will never return to me.  I simply hope that I sell a painting at some point in the year which might pay for it.   I also dislike the way that commission is taken for this kind of exhibition…it is quite uncalled for,  and shouldn’t really be applied. It means that the buyer has to pay more, because the artist has to make the price higher knowing that 30 or 40% will be taken off if it does sell.  And the higher price means it will be less likely to sell!   It is a different matter if an artist has a contract with a gallery, in that case, the gallery is actually working for the artist in order to promote them and the artist gets benefits from this.    Thankfully there are alternatives…but not as many as would be great to have.  Other buildings and venues can be used to show art, and that is pretty much the way to go I think.   I sometimes have a rant about this.  It helps a bit.  Bear in mind I have a lot of un exhibited work here in my home and studio, and that is not because I don’t want to show it.  The internet helps, at least it can be seen.  However, it’s much better to see artwork in the flesh.

Every now and again I have this very same rant.  And I will continue to do so, as it lets of a tiny bit of steam!  There are some cafes, bars, pubs, hotels, churches, and community buildings  etc who will have work hung for free and more of this needs to happen.  Giving the organisation 20% of work if it is sold seems to work out well for all concerned.  However, some organisations, seeing this as an opportunity to make money, have taken to emulating the open call/competition status quo, and ask artists to pay to exhibit, even though they are not a gallery in the true sense of the word.  That stinks.   Let’s be clear about this… They get lovely free artwork hung for all to enjoy… ie decoration, in the finest sense, if one wants to be utilitarian about it.  The artists get to show their work, yes… But generally that is all they get from it… the odd sale might occasionally happen, but they do the work….     Organisations will find that artists are generally very helpful and co-operative with respect to consultation about hanging equipment, and together the practicalities can be worked out for mutual benefit.

I have had several exhibitions in community spaces, ie theatre and community arts centres, and they have worked to the benefit of both parties, with no charge being made to exhibit.  Only sold two pieces, over a total of five exhibitions, mind you!   I personally am not in a position where I can pay to hold an exhibition,  and the vast majority of artists are in the same position as me…particularly in the current climate.  Even when we get together, it can still cost a couple of hundred to show work.. That’s just crazy!  Sweep out of you mind the few successful and prominent artists who catch the media’s eye and may create an image of money being no object, and of no concern to the “true artist”, and instead replace this with the reality of lots of lovely art work and lovely artists who cannot simply show what they do to as many people as they would like to.  If we want to educate the community about art and artists, then there needs to be a greater range of art and artists available to enjoy.  FREE for the public AND  FREE for the Artist!   At the current time,  I am donating more of my work than doing anything else…I am pleased to do this to some extent, because sometimes  I would rather donate a piece of work than pay a submission fee to show my work…though I have in the past viewed the submission fee as a kind of donation if it is for an organisation which I wish to support.  However, artists do need money in exchange for their work if they are to buy materials and pay for travel costs, and suchlike.   Do people think we just like showing it, because we want to show it off?  No, we do not.  We want to sell it because we don’t want a house full of our own work, we want other people to own it and enjoy it, and we would like money for our work, as this is an investment in us and what we do.  It says  “This Matters”.    And rant is not over… but I will pause in it for now!!!!

I feel the need to post my “Yoga Inhale” and “Yoga Exhale” as I take a deep breath… So here they are!!!

chakra colours painting, chakra colours art, chakra movement opening, yoga inhale yoga breathing inspired abstract painting by jenny meehan

yoga inhale yoga breathing inspired abstract painting by jenny meehan

 

yoga chakra colours opening painting art, chakra art, chakra dance, yoga exhale yoga breathing inspired abstract painting by jenny meehan

yoga exhale yoga breathing inspired abstract painting by jenny meehan

Looking at these, I thought of dancing chakras!  (in Indian thought) each of seven centres of spiritual power in the human body.   Though not a familiar tradition of thought for me,   I am sure there are various understandings and believes about chakras which I wouldn’t share in, but energy and life do run through us, and might well be thought of/understood  as different colours.   As an artist, those colours wouldn’t be limited to rainbow colours… there are too many colours/variations of the same colour,  for things to be that simple.  I dislike labelling one colour as this and one colour as that…It just goes against the grain when you work with colours/light perceptions with paint.  Working with colour and seeing how acute the tiniest adjustment can be, and also how colours affect one another, it’s very hard to reduce things to a series of seven colours.  However,  I am ignorant in the matter, not having spent any time looking into it, so apologise for my limited understanding! I think the colour aspect is just one tiny bit.    I also don’t have any sustained interest in chakra theories  themselves, as I am more interested in painting… Though I do LIKE the idea of my coloured blobs and areas being representative of things going on in the human being.  For me, the colours are related to feeling and emotion.  I wouldn’t want to start naming things though.  It is the whole effect of the completed painting which is the expression.  It’s not about analysing different parts.   It might be that I am painting a kind of chakra dance in the sense that I am concerned with balancing out the painting in an aesthetic formal sense and using the areas of colours as the matter with which I work with.

There is a huge amount of different beliefs and thoughts regarding chakras of which I know nothing of, and I am investing my time and self into manipulating paint…this is my “healing art”, I guess, and this, and any other healing I get, I see as coming straight from the grace of God, through the work of Christ Jesus. The truest source of my being, and the light of life! When I am doing yoga and we focus on different parts, I embrace the sense of it, think of the colour if referred to,  and resolve to open up all parts of myself to the Holy Spirit.  For I am known in Christ, through and through, and all the mysteries of God are revealed in God incarnate, that is Christ, and Christ in me.

But some Christians have terribly fear induced and extreme ideas about anything which is a bit of a mystery to them, and chakras and any thoughts around that area are thought of as demonic in some Christian circles.  I have the belief that there is a lot of wisdom around, and that the Holy Spirit can guide us with discernment as to what will be beneficial to us and what will not be.  People are all different, and what is OK for some won’t be OK for others.   We feel comfortable with different things, and uncomfortable with others, and have our own sense of integrity as to what is good and true.  (I am not talking about behaviours/morality here, rather beliefs).   I believe that all truth belongs to God… and it is he who reveals his knowledge and insights, and gives them to people… all people can receive insights which come from the Spirit of God, whatever their beliefs or non-beliefs. What is problematic is things like manipulation, people controlling other people,  cults or cultish-ness (not a word!)and deception and lies.  These are the real dangers in life…and happen across the board, in all religious and belief systems.  Holding different beliefs and thinking different things about stuff, having different understandings and theories about things, isn’t a problem at all.  It is the fruit of our lives and the way we behave, how we relate to ourselves and to others, which tend to be more revealing.

A working definition for chakra might be that they are thought to be “centres of energy, located on the mid-line of the body. There are seven of them, and they govern our psychological properties.”  Both transmitters and receivers of energy, the idea is that in order to be healthy the chakras and meridians will be balanced.  Sometimes blockages and instabilities cause problems.  For me, thinking about how paintings work, and how unresolved areas need balancing out for the painting to have the beauty and harmony of a well balanced composition, I can relate to this idea quite well.  We do run on energy, and there are pathways for blood, nerves, lymph, so there could easily be pathways for energy too.  We are infused with God’s divine energy, “In him we live and move and have our being”.  You get my drift!  It’s possible that chakras are spiritual energy centres…and I know from when I have received healing prayer in the past, that it is possible to feel the flow of God’s energy moving around in the body!  A long time ago I was prayed for and felt a strong current of energy moving up and down both my legs…There was no imagination in that at all.  (in the John Wimber era!)  Recently someone prayed for my knee, and I felt something very definite going on then too, though in that case it was pain I felt, however, afterwards there was improvement.  God can release energy into our bodies, and that energy would flow around in paths, I should think.

What IS important to me as a committed Christian,  is that I wouldn’t ever limit God into being a mass of energy, or something impersonal, ie just a force.  A vital part of my own perspective and faith is that God is a personable, personal, compassionate and loving God, with an interest in relating to us, his lovely creations, in a very intimate and personal way.  I’m not into many of the associated beliefs and thinking which come with chakras, (as far as I know, and I don’t know a lot! ) and the Saviour of the world isn’t an energy field,  but neither do I think one should reject everything just because it is unfamiliar, and not part of one’s tradition.  We all have a lot to learn.

 

Peacock Image

This image was taken at Kew Gardens a few years back.  It is digitally manipulated, but not as much as one would think…

As a painter, my interests lie very much in light, colour, and such matters, so the feathers of a peacock are very inspiring.  Here’s some info from Wiki:

“As with many birds, vibrant iridescent plumage colours are not primarily pigments, but structural coloration. Optical interference Bragg reflections based on regular, periodic nanostructures of the barbules (fiber-like components) of the feathers produce the peacock’s colours. Slight changes to the spacing of these barbules result in different colours. Brown feathers are a mixture of red and blue: one colour is created by the periodic structure and the other is created by a Fabry–Pérot interference peak from reflections from the outer and inner boundaries. Such structural coloration causes the iridescence of the peacock’s hues since interference effects depend on light angle rather than actual pigments.[2]

peacock feathers, colour image of peacock, colour image graphic peacock, peacock plumage digital image by Jenny Meehan

peacock plumage digital image by Jenny Meehan

 

http://www.redbubble.com/people/jennyjimjams/works/16696815-peacock-showing-plumage-full-colour-digital-image-from-jenny-meehan

 

I’ve just put that up on Redbubble, if you fancy seeing it on something you own, or as a picture on the wall!

 

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

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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. 

 

 

 

 

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