The usual mass of discrete title topics all messed into one…Just the way I like it!

Transgender, Gender & Psychoanalysis (Freud Museum and the SITE conference: Fringe event art exhibition)



pen and ink on torn paper unique print by jenny meehan jamartlondon

pen and ink on torn paper unique print by jenny meehan jamartlondon

Looking forward to being part of this exhibition.

Above is one of two submitted art works which were chosen by the curators for exhibition.  “Pen and Ink on Torn Paper” is composed of a digitally printed torn image, but this is effectively a unique original artwork, in that the tearing is unique to itself. So there is no edition as such. It is a “one off” by virtue of it’s torn substrate. It’s the tearing, rather than the print itself, which would is unique to each one, if I decide to make any more. So if anyone does express an interest in buying it, I can make one for them which would have the same image, but would be torn differently.

(Pen and ink were the original mediums of the figures, but they have never existed together in reality! )

And here, below is “Pink Girl”…


The SITE for Contemporary Psychoanalysis ,recovery psychotherapy,art psychotherapy,british female painter artist jenny meehan,Pink Girl painting in Recovery University of Leicester Instutute of Mental Health by Jenny Meeha

Pink Girl painting by Jenny Meehan © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved

The exhibition is a fringe event which is part of an annual conference…

The SITE is teaming up with the Freud Museum for its annual conference in 2017:

Transgender, Gender & Psychoanalysis

11th & 12th March 2017 at the Freud Museum


The Conference Fringe will include a series of events leading up to the Conference…


Here is a bit about the SITE, quoted from their website:

The SITE for Contemporary Psychoanalysis is a training organisation and a member of the Council for Psychoanalysis and Jungian Analysis College (CPJA) of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). All graduates are eligible for UKCP registration.

The Site was established in October 1997 by psychotherapists from diverse psychoanalytic organisations who wished to create a training programme and an association that would foster critical, reflective and imaginative thinking about psychoanalysis and its contemporary practices.

In 2010 the Site set up a sister training in Truro, Cornwall. This is now a well established part of the Site, with a successful training, an Introductory course and annual public events.

Here is the link to The SITE for Contemporary Psychoanalysis

And here is the information on the event, of which the Art Exhibition is going to be just one part.  I am delighted that my work was selected for this art exhibition!

“SITE announces collaboration with Freud Museum

The SITE is teaming up with the Freud Museum for its annual conference in 2017.

Transgender, Gender & Psychoanalysis

11th & 12th March 2017 at the Freud Museum

The struggles of people of transgender identity have exploded into mainstream consciousness. By crossing the ‘gender divide’, the trans movement has radicalised the question of what it means to be a man or a woman, uncovering a fertile and conflicting arena in which the emancipatory deconstruction of sexual identity intriguingly flirts with the pitfalls of essentialism.

Such a reshuffling of binary and non-binary categories confronts psychoanalysis with new clinical, political and theoretical challenges that push it out of its comfort zone. How can contemporary psychoanalysis meet the demands and the needs that such challenges yield? What does psychoanalysis have to lose? And what does it stand to gain?

The 2017 SITE Conference in collaboration with the Freud Museum will approach these questions critically while exploring new horizons from which to address the complex issues of sexual identity and gendered positioning.”

Here is the flyer for the SITE fringe “Transgender, Gender & Psychoanalysis” Art Exhibition:



Because my forthcoming knee replacement operation is also due in March,  I will not be able to make even the “short walk” to see the exhibition, as far as I can see, if I have just had the op!  Even now, getting to the venue has an added layer of complexity which I never fully appreciated before my own experience of disability in terms of mobility. On the other hand, If I have not had my operation, I am sure I can work out a way of getting to it. I use a crutch for when I am in London, as I need the extra support using public transport, (all those stairs!) and to enable me to walk more reliably for longer and without aggravating the joint to the point of agony.  Agony is not good.  I am now hoping that maybe the operation will be after this exhibition, and I can both deliver and collect my work at least. But I will need to wait and see.

It is a shame not to know how things will be, but actually it is heaven just knowing that I will have my knee joint treated surgically.   Hopefully they will take lots of images at the private view and I can get a taste of it that way, even if I cannot make the event. Until I am well and truly back walking again, I may have to give pursuing any opportunities a miss.

Labels for Painting Styles

Labels…  Kind of a necessity for me, in terms of communicating how my painting relates to other “movements”.  The good thing about movements is they are normally seen best from a great distance, and also, it is encouraging to look back and see other artists who have been as obsessed as you about particular approaches to art making and art working.  It is also helpful for those who enjoy collecting art…  They can explore different movements and will settle on something maybe over time which they find the most exciting and interesting for themselves in terms of a historical period or style of painting.  There are all kinds of ways that an art collector might decide to focus their collection of art work.

The terms I tend to use for describing my main thrust in painting are bouncing within the realms of the following terms: Lyrical abstraction, abstraction lyrique, tachism, tachisme, action painting, abstract expressionism, art informal, informalism.  But these are terms which relate to particular movements in the past, and serve as a way of describing and communicating what to expect with my own painting, and not anything more than that.  And it is the case that within my own realm of art working, I move between several styles…  This is part of the process of development.  I think I have written about this in a previous post.  It is a bad thing to narrow down artistic creation in order to adhere or fit into a style.  If it happens it will happen naturally, and evolve that way. It will grow and develop, playing and toying with different styles and approaches en route!

It is the case, that when using paint, things now are tending to fall within the bounds of my approach, which is process led and focused on formal elements and experimenting with materials. What comes through is a materialisation, a becoming, of my self.  Which references my life experience and emotional and spiritual journey.  Mostly I like to let things happen, rather than plan.  But there is a lot of unconscious planning which happens I think.  There is a lot of emerging!!!

Historical terms and descriptions of styles are good for searching for the kind of paintings you like, and there are plenty of movements which it is helpful for the keen collector of art to educate themselves in.  My own preoccupation is with the formal elements of the painting, and a process led approach.  My preferred terminology for my own work is that of British romantic, poetic, lyrical, abstract and expressionistic painting.  I like the romantic, because of the way it conveys both individuality and intensity of emotion and the importance of these.  I loved my studies of the Romantic poets when at University, and also of the paintings of Turner, which were studies as part of a couple of painting courses at West Dean College given by John T Freeman, (who I credit, among others, with role of welcoming me into the realms of painting as a way of life/vocational activity!)

This is rather helpful:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Serge Poliakoff Composition: Gray and Red, 1964
Tachisme (alternative spelling: Tachism, derived from the French word tache, stain) is a French style of abstract painting popular in the 1940s and 1950s. The term is said to have been first used with regards to the movement in 1951.[1] It is often considered to be the European equivalent to abstract expressionism,[2] although there are stylistic differences (American abstract expressionism tended to be more “aggressively raw” than tachisme).[1] It was part of a larger postwar movement known as Art Informel (or Informel),[3] which abandoned geometric abstraction in favour of a more intuitive form of expression, similar to action painting. Another name for Tachism is Abstraction lyrique (related to American Lyrical Abstraction). COBRA is also related to Tachisme, as is Japan’s Gutai group.

After World War II the term School of Paris often referred to Tachisme, the European equivalent of American abstract expressionism. Important proponents were Jean-Paul Riopelle, Wols, Jean Dubuffet, Pierre Soulages, Nicolas de Staël, Hans Hartung, Serge Poliakoff, Georges Mathieu and Jean Messagier, among several others. (See list of artists below.)

According to Chilvers, the term tachisme “was first used in this sense in about 1951 (the French critics Charles Estienne and Pierre Guéguen have each been credited with coining it) and it was given wide currency by [French critic and painter] Michel Tapié in his book Un Art autre (1952).”

Tachisme was a reaction to Cubism and is characterized by spontaneous brushwork, drips and blobs of paint straight from the tube, and sometimes scribbling reminiscent of calligraphy.

Tachisme is closely related to Informalism or Art Informel, which, in its 1950s French art-critical context, referred not so much to a sense of “informal art” as “a lack or absence of form itself”–non-formal or un-form-ulated–and not a simple reduction of formality or formalness. Art Informel was more about the absence of premeditated structure, conception or approach (sans cérémonie) than a mere casual, loosened or relaxed art procedure.[4]

And there is lots more to read:

More Paintings

eternal one painting jenny meehan referencing afterlife

eternal one painting jenny meehan referencing afterlife

Eternal One

arylic painting for sale purchase surrey fine painting on surrey artist network by contemporary British painter Jenny Meehan based in south west london. Acrylic paint, pigments, various mediums and fillers, sand, glass beads, on canvas coated with very thin coating of acrylic resin for protection. Framed and available for sale/purchase/collection.

Painting referencing afterlife, heaven,future,doorways,entrance,exit,rite of passage,dust,clouds,air,vision,Christian,heaven,ascension,spiritual,spirit,supernatural,death, life,journey,light

Time Passes

abstract acrylic contemporary british lyrical expressionist romantic elegiac fine painting alley outhouses lament past rear access roads passageway memory, jamartlondon, jenny meehan, jennifer meehan, © Jenny Meehan, abstract expressionist female painter 21st century, collectable abstract art,

past remembrances, elergy painting poetic mournful lament

Abstract acrylic painting, using glass beads, filler, pigments, pearlescent pigment,sand,acrylic medium.
Process based painting, with subject matter emerging as the painting progresses, so kind of free association process going on through the painting. This resonated as a memory, memory of past walks through the rear access roads in my area and also childhood memories of playing in alleyways.

Non representational acrylic painting with pigments, acrylic medium, glass beads,filler, wax crayon,oil pastel, pigment.


Upper Room

lyrical abstraction,abstract expressionist fine painting, british english women artist, 21st century painter female, upper room, christian artist art spirituality, contemplative art, meditative art, romantic abstract lyrical expressionism, abstract acrylic painting christian art sacred symbolism jenny meehan

lyrical abstract painting selected for “Not the Royal Academy” exhibition at Llewellyn Alexander Fine Paintings Waterloo in 2013. For sale.

“Upper Room” (reference, upper room in New Testament, where Last Supper took place)

Non representational acrylic painting with pigments, acrylic medium, sand, glass beads,filler, spray paint, pearlescent pigment, pigment.


Update on the current paintings in progress is there is a lot of looking and thinking, mulling and reflecting going on, but not a lot of action.


Printing Papers

While not painting, I have been experimenting with inkjet printing on different types of paper.  For some images I wanted duller colours and not the brightness which comes from using an ink-jet paper. I have a new printer which takes some time to get the head around but with a scanner it offers some new opportunities I am sure.  I have produced a fair bit of work but not anything I want to show at this point as still very much under consideration.

I have many different types of paper and have no rule for what I use for what.  Sometimes ordinary watercolour paper is right, other times, just copy paper.  Ink jet paper yields totally  different results to watercolour paper, quite surprisingly so. I should not be surprised, but I always am. There are different grades of ordinary printing paper that can give some of the benefits of photo paper (cleaner, clearer images; brighter colour; cleaner text) but for less money.

Fundamental differences are:

Weight: The amount of mass of a ream of 500 pages of the paper in question before it is cut down to whatever its current size may be.  Paper weight is simply an simple way to measure the density of a paper.

Point size: Point size is a measure of the thickness of paper, unlike weight, which is a measure of density of paper material. Points are one thousandth of an inch, with heavier papers having higher point sizes. Many types of paper will have no mention of point size, but photo papers/cards may include it.

Brightness: Brightness is the amount of light that is reflected off the surface of the paper.  More reflected light mean  a better colour range is achievable, and better contrast too. So the brighter the paper stock, the better, IF brightness is what you want and the greatest range of colours.   Brightness is measured in values from 0 to 100. For instance, you can  buy fine quality reams of typing paper with a brightness of 90.

Whiteness: Easily confused with paper brightness, “whiteness” is the shift in colour of the paper, for example white can lean towards blue or much warmer red.  There are icy, bluish, and cool whites or whites which lean towards cream.

Paper stock: Related to point size and weight, various densities, thicknesses, and paper qualities have various names, like “Newsprint,” “Cardstock,” or “Bristol.” Many photo papers are heavier weights, often in an attempt to recreate the feel of old style photo prints on light sensitive paper developed with photo chemistry.

Coated Paper:  (for photo papers) They are coated with a layer of chemical bonded to the paper, intended to allow inks to be absorbed more accurately, creating better quality images.  They can be coated on  just one or both sides. They might be gloss or matte.


I don’t always choose to print on coated paper, as what I want the print to look like can vary a lot depending on the image.  Inkjet printers fire ink at pages in small liquid drops and the porous paper accepts the liquid material with capillary action, drawing it out in multiple directions.  This can sometimes be the kind of image I want, and the flow of ink,  though it could be seen as detrimental to the quality of the print, (because the print is less clean and crisp) can also add a softness to the print which is rather suitable.

Coated papers are chemically treated to help the paper be a better printing substrate, well, “better” if crisp and clear is your objective. Ink blots rest on the emulsion in a wet state, but stay neatly put and are also neatly absorbed. Images stay clean, because the absorption of inks into emulsified surfaces is a more controlled process.  As the ink settles and dries, the pigment left behind is effectively locked into the surface treatment of the paper. It cannot have it’s own way  quite as much as it would!



Prints, Editions, Limited Editions, Numbered Editions – Clarity  or Confusion?

I’m popping this in by way of general reference in relation to the way I have chosen to do things.

There are two main strands to my visual creative practice, one being original fine paintings and the other being mechanically reproduced prints (either digital C-prints or ink-jet prints). I do not often artificially limit my prints in number, but it is safe to say that numbers are very well limited by the amount of time I spend on creating them.

Digital C-prints and ink-jet prints made by me personally are numbered and signed, and I keep my own records, but their number will be naturally limited by nature of my own mortality! “Numbered and signed” prints are NOT the same as “limited editions”. I describe them as “numbered editions”, but the number of prints possible is open ended. This gives me greater flexibility as their creator in that I can make them in a variety of formats and sizes, and on different substrates.

Selected imagery is available unsigned and un-numbered for use on print-on-demand merchandise. It’s no less valuable than any other imagery, but if something leans in that direction and I can share it, then I will. Plus, funding is much needed to pay for painting materials and this facility helps in a small way by giving me a royalty from each sale.

Please do consider purchasing some of my printed artwork as this is an easy and mutually beneficial way help support my creative project.
Take a look at

Most of the signed/numbered and unsigned/open edition mechanical prints of my work, are not reproductions of paintings or drawings but are works true to their own medium which is photographic imagery, either originating from a photographic image or from photo-manipulation software. If I think a work in another medium suitable for translation into digital imagery and printing, then I will do this, but not indiscriminately.

I also produce monotypes, using traditional printing techniques and sometimes hand finished digital prints on various substrat

Here is the link to my website jamartlondon which tells you a bit about editions with reference to my own imagery. 


Both Diebenkorn and Matisse have worked their magic on me, and so feeling rather sad I cannot see this.  This review makes for a good read though, and gives a flavour at least of what must be a super experience of viewing the works together.. It’s written by Phyllis Tuchman  and POSTED 01/19/17 10:51 AM January 29.

First Visit to an Osteopath – What to Expect

Well, that is the question. There are lots of answers to that, but for me, the “What to expect” is, rather than the actual  encounter,  if I should expect any kind of improvement or result from the visit.  My agenda in going to see an osteopath certainly wasn’t anything to do with avoiding knee replacement surgery.  The bones are grating and banging against each other in a way which clearly isn’t going to be changed by anything at all.  I have been exercising and working on the muscles of the whole leg, and the rest of my body, since September 2015, starting with GP prescribed quad muscle exercises, gentle yoga, swimming, and then individually tailored physiotherapy from September 2016.  It was hard to imagine that any thing further might change in any way at all. Even with trying something new and unexplored, and having an appointment with an Osteopath.

I was not looking for a reduction in pain either.  I have got used to pain being part of my daily menu in life.  I am getting the knee surgically treated because the knee needs to be treated, and the problem addressed in this way.  I am not a medic,  but it has become increasingly clear to me, as I experience the steady and rather rapid deterioration, that things are not going to improve.  The fluctuations in symptoms which do occur, only belie the underlying reality that I cannot walk very far at all, and the I am turning down opportunities left, right, and centre, because I am now disabled and my life is restricted in a soul destroying way, and in a way I cannot accept.   And I don’t want to sign up to an experience of pain and disability any longer than I need to.

But, as an artist, I have a strong appreciation of the importance of balance.  In an abstract painting, the constant alterations to the balance of the work, which are to do with the form/structure of the painting, make all the difference.  So it is simply logical that the same should apply to my own body.  I have been aware of being very “out of kilter”  and also of how a problem/alteration in one joint affects the whole body.  It affects the way I move, hold myself, and the experience of pain also needs to be managed and negotiated somehow.  The whole body tenses up when in pain.  So I did not go along to an Osteopath to relieve any pain.  Maybe that might be an objective after surgery though!!!

Here is a link if you want an answer to the question “First Visit to an Osteopath – What to Expect” in terms of the general experience of a visit to an Osteopath, the examination, diagnosis, and treatment, plus ongoing care:

My Personal Experience of Consulting an Osteopath

As part of my knee journey, I felt some time ago it would be beneficial to visit an osteopath.  I walk past the British School of Osteopathy quite regularly.   One of the things I had felt surprised about was that at no point in my experiences of physiotherapy had any direct manual work been done on my knee/leg and that this was something which might be beneficial. It just seemed logical.  All those exercises did make a difference to the muscles around the knee joint, and I guess an appreciation of the importance of all the soft tissues and how they are involved did make me think that, even though I will have my joint addressed, it is also important for everything around it to be treated.

I don’t have any great expectations attached to my interest.  I don’t wish to avoid a knee replacement, as my quality of life is too badly affected.  I am fortunate in that I have worked, and continue to work very hard, on my body… The yoga is beneficial, the swimming is beneficial and the physiotherapy was also beneficial.  I have been pulling, stretching, massaging and moving both in and out of water.  I have been working hard for  months and doing all I can, including weight loss, to improve my situation.  I am managing the pain pretty well, though it has to be noted that it has been a lot easier to manage with the forthcoming knee replacement operation well and truly on the horizon.  The thought that I do not have a life long sentence of avoidable pain and disability is a very significant point to make.  I now realise that I will miss my “old knee” to a certain extent… It has been with me for a long while.

Anyway, back to Osteopathy and why I thought I would bring myself along to the British School of Osteopathy and see what happened.  As said, I wondered about the lack of physical manipulation.  The total lack of physical manipulation.  When I was treated with Physiotherapy at hospital I was very grateful for the individually tailored programme of exercises, and I did them very conscientiously every day.  But something about being treated was missing.  People with a long term chronic condition  are in a very different place to someone with a more immediate trauma injury.  The whole experience of knowing that your life will be affected in a very long term way,  is a big matter to get your head around.  But even when you have done your best at that, constantly experiencing pain and disability and knowing this is your daily lot, if it happens to be beyond what you feel you can bear, is depressing and anxiety provoking.  Your WHOLE life is affected, and it becomes more important, that when you are treated, the effect on your whole life becomes an important element of the way you are treated.  More so than if you have something with a clear beginning and end.

So what happened when I went to visit an Osteopath?  Things had deteriorated with my knee at such a pace which did have the overall effect of making me willing to try anything, even if I had not thought about it before.   So I was ready for anything potentially beneficial at all.  I do confess to having dismissed osteopathic treatment, thinking it was probably something not REALLY worthwhile. However, I am pleased to say that the session of osteopathic treatment I had WAS beneficial.   Someone who knows how to pull and push your limb around, and manipulate the soft tissues in theory should be helpful, and it was with this in mind that I went along.   I can now straighten my right leg more than before…  I felt the difference last night lying in bed, and was suitably impressed.  I also noticed some change in how the leg felt when I was swimming this morning.  It does feel more comfortable somehow. It feels straighter.  I did not ask about the details of what she was doing/had done because I did not want to involve my brain and my thinking, or my belief process in the treatment but I just wanted to simply have the limb manipulated and see what happened.

Bearing in mind that I have been working on my right leg for months, and have done what I am able to attempt to increase how straight it can be, including stretching it in the sauna, , plus yoga stretching and standing, and various other activities (with straight leg pressing the back of back of  knee into bed,etc) I am suitably impressed.   The fixed flexion deformity was only slight when noted last year, but all the same,  as far as I understand, it is not a good thing for the knee joint not be able to straighten well, as this I think puts more load on the patella.   From my perspective though, it was simply rather impressive and encouraging that it is possible to manipulate the limb in this way and I wasn’t expecting anything at all. Simply curious and interested.  So it was a positive experience and I plan to come back when I have got the “all clear” after the knee replacement operation, and offer up my leg for some manual treatment.  I do confess to being very keen to ensure that I make the best possible recovery, and that I make the most of my rehabilitation process and get a good outcome from the operation.

As said, I had not considered going to see an osteopath.  But, as I massaged my knee, for pain relief mainly, I felt not only that there had been nothing practically done in the area of physical manipulation, which I was surprised about, (because of the importance of all the surrounding structures), but also that my experience with my knee was effectively a whole body experience. The osteoarthritis, while the right knee has taken centre stage, is part of what is happening for me all round.   The knee joint itself is one part of that.  The best way for me to tell you the outcome is by posting the feedback letter I posted…As I have already written it!


I would be very grateful if you would pass on this feedback from my recent appointment

Dear ………

I just wanted to say how pleased I feel after deciding to come along and see what an osteopathic approach might offer me and to see if I found it beneficial.

I had no particular expectations with respect to any treatment, but my own instincts from massaging my own knee and to thinking about the body in general (in relation to art, in fact…as a mechanism which needs balance in order to create harmony) and also my experience of doing Scarivelli inspired yoga over the last year prompted me to come along. I have walked past the other BSO building many times and had never thought about osteopathic treatment up until then.

While I have certainly appreciated the Physiotherapy I received at hospital, I was surprised and disappointed with respect to the absence of any physical manipulation. This just seemed logical to me. I ended up feeling that my knee was not actually being treated. While all the exercises, (which I have been doing for rather a long time) have improved my leg, it was important to me that when I have the bones of the knee treated surgically that I had an optimal state of leg!

After my treatment my leg felt fine, but I wasn’t expecting anything much to be different. However, I am pleased to say that my leg does feel more aligned…and more like the left one. I had noticed that their was something a bit different about the right one in terms of alignment but couldn’t quite put my finger on it… it was to do with the way it moved. I also am pleased to say that indeed, something has been released at the back and I can more comfortably straighten it.

It is a much better feeling to do the necessary exercises having had the structure of the leg adjusted. I have noticed that when I do my sit to stands there is less shaking in the quads…They are still shaking a bit of course, because weakened, but there is certainly less shaking. When I am swimming, it feels I am swimming more efficiently. I was getting a lot of “out of joint” ness (cannot think of a way to put it) when swimming “doggie paddle” which stopped me doing that style, and had just been sticking to the crawl, but so far I can now doggie paddle too.

I am most pleased about the way it can now lay straighter though. It might seem a small thing but it really bothered me, because I felt this cannot be helpful for the knee, and though my walking is much better than it was last June, when the ESP noted “a slight fixed flexion deformity (“right knee movement -5 to 110 degrees with springy end feel at both ends”) it was very good to have you actually addressing the matter directly. I had set myself to attempt to address this myself, as nothing was said or done about it when I then got referred on to another Physio at the hospital. I had expressed my concern about the way it was painful there when sitting in “staff pose” but the response was “Well, just don’t do it then”. But I believe that this is a good and healthy sitting position for me to take, for my whole body, not just my leg, and that I should be able to sit that way if I want to. Plus, I really enjoy the yoga I do and I wanted to be able sit like that! I also stretched the back of the right leg in the sauna weekly and in the pool, and in various other ways I could think of. But it is so nice that it feels less tight and much easier to do now. Thank you very much!

All in all, when I do my exercises the whole leg feels stronger and more efficient, and this is a really great experience for me, in the respect that I can now go and have my surgery knowing that things are as good as they can get in the other structures of my leg. I realise that the surgeon will upset things with the surgery, hopefully as little as possible…and that I will need to start all over with the rehab. But it makes sense for things to be as nicely in place as they can at the start and certainly the way the exercising is more effective is very encouraging. It worried me that even some of the simple post op exercises where so difficult for me pre-op, (ie lying down with left leg bent, then doing a low straight leg lift with the right, involved an awful lot of trembling!) and now they are easier, I feel more confident about my body’s ability to work through the whole experience successfully.

So thank you very much indeed, and I look forward to seeing you post op! What a shame that Physio’s are also not Osteopaths, for I would have been able to access this experience much earlier. But thank you for your treatment of me, and I will definitely be coming back.

Kind regards,

Jenny Meehan


Some general information gleaned on Osteopathy:

Osteopathy is a system of diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of medical conditions. It works with the structure and function of the body, and is based on the principle that the well-being of an individual depends on the skeleton, muscles, ligaments and connective tissues functioning smoothly together.

To an osteopath, for your body to work well, its structure must also work well. So osteopaths work to restore your body to a state of balance, where possible without the use of drugs or surgery. Osteopaths use touch, physical manipulation, stretching and massage to increase the mobility of joints, to relieve muscle tension, to enhance the blood and nerve supply to tissues, and to help your body’s own healing mechanisms. They may also provide advice on posture and exercise to aid recovery, promote health and prevent symptoms recurring.

The above is quoted from

and, a small extract quoted from

Raymond J. Hruby, DO, MS, FAAO
Copyright 2000, 2007, 2014 by
Raymond J. Hruby, DO, MS, FAAO

We can define osteopathic medicine as a complete system of medical care with a
philosophy that combines the needs of the patient with the current practice of medicine,
surgery, and obstetrics; that emphasizes the interrelationship between structure and
function; and that has an appreciation of the body’s ability to heal itself. Based on this
definition, osteopathic medicine defines a distinctive set of tenets which osteopathic
physicians use to formulate their approach to patient care.5
These tenets are:
 A person is the product of dynamic interaction between body, mind, and
 An inherent property of this dynamic interaction is the capacity of the
individual for the maintenance of health and recovery from disease
 Many forces, both intrinsic and extrinsic to the person, can challenge this
inherent capacity and contribute to the onset of illness
 The musculoskeletal system significantly influences the individual’s
ability to restore this inherent capacity and therefore to resist disease
From these tenets the osteopathic physician derives certain principles for patient care.
These principles state that 1) the patient is the focus for healthcare; 2) the patient has the
primary responsibility for his or her health; and 3) an effective treatment program for
patient care is founded on the above-mentioned tenets.
Thus the osteopathic physician uses a health-oriented and patient-centered
philosophy to implement the principles of osteopathic medicine in the care of the patient.
The osteopathic physician’s goals are to:
 Seek out and address the root cause(s) of disease using available evidence-based
 Optimize the patient’s self-regulating and self-healing capacities
 Provide an individualized patient management plan that includes emphasis on
health promotion and disease prevention
 Include palpatory diagnosis and osteopathic manipulative treatment to address the
somatic component of disease the extent that it influences the well-being of the patient.”



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
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!

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  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:   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:–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


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.


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.

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 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.

“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.

“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.

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


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

PGCE Primary Education (Roehampton Institute, Roehampton)


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:

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:   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 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.

I had gleaned some of the information myself, but this extract above, which I quote from   contains much more detail than I had been able to obtain on my own.

That’s it, for now!!!!




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  ( replaces the older now deceased website

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also occasionally offers art tuition for individuals or in shared sessions.  Please contact Jenny at or through the contact form at 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:

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


Website Link for jamartlondon: 

A selection of non objective paintings can be viewed on pinterest:

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




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

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

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



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


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

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


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

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

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

Drop In Drawing

If you fancy trying your own fair hand to a spot of Drawing, then remember that I do hold a once a month “Drop in Drawing/Painting” group on either a Wednesday or Friday afternoon, once a month.  Contact me via my website  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”

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.


I have just started some FREE sessions of Yoga with the Our Parks scheme:  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 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:

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:

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:

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.

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

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!

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


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



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  ( replaces the older now deceased website

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also occasionally offers art tuition for individuals or in shared sessions.  Please contact Jenny at or through the contact form at 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:

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 






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

New Start by Jenny Meehan

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

starting out series design by jenny meehan to buy on redbubble

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


The Imagination between Beauty and Goodness

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


Mount Street Jesuit Centre

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

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



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

7th February.

Text from the printed leaflet.  Quote:

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


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

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

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

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


Photoshop Learning

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

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

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

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

Ah well, better late than never!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Tiny Bones


I trod on fragments of bone;

Homosexual, Jew and Gypsy.

Unknowingly desecrating

precious loved ones,

with my soles.


A heartless, human realisation –

I did not know, until the man told me.

When he spoke,

my world changed.

Brokenness took a new meaning.

Even the tiniest


is a terrible thing.


I took one of the splinters –

pressed it

into my skin

and wept.


Jenny Meehan

3 – 22 February 2015

Society of Wood Engravers

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

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

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


Copyright Alert

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


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

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

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

Copyright Information – Jenny Meehan 

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

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

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

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

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

Design and Artist Copyright Society
33 Old Bethnal Green Road
London E2 6AA
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7336 8811
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7336 8822
Offices are open 0930 – 1700 Monday through Friday.


Oliver Mc Ternan – Finding Sense in a Complex World: The Need for a Spiritual Paradigm

Well, it is along way back now, but on Thursday 9th January I made my way to Westminster Cathedral Hall SW1P 0QJ for an event organised by “Silence in the City”.  (  As part of my creative practice this year (and probably many years to come, I hope) I am going to invest more time into the practice of contemplative Christian centred prayer and meditation, and I was very pleased to find an organisation like Silence in the City who organise regular events with speakers and also with a time of silent prayer and reflection.    To my dismay, I realised I was pen and paperless, but tried out my mobile phone’s swipe facility for note taking.  Urm, it was good, very fast,  but problematic when it got the occasional word wrong!  Returning to correct some errors was essential, and this took a protracted amount of time.  However, I did manage to record a few things!  Silence in the City do produce recordings of the talks they host, so if you are interested then go to the website and enquire.

(My notes here are very piecemeal, and miss out huge chunks, particularly when I ended up fiddling around with the mis types of the swype!)

What I came away with, that which stays most prominently in my mind is the importance of keeping open communication with others even when we don’t agree, and the importance of patience and perseverance when there is a breakdown of communication and the potential for conflict.   Oliver is particularly involved in east west relations and conflict resolutions.  I also note his comments concerning the fact that religion has an ambiguity towards violence, and also that peace processes often fail because the religious factor has been ignored.  He stressed the need to understand religious motivations and adopt a mindset which can understand the other in the sacred spaces where we are able to connect with what we find in common.  People can have a spiritual sense of what life is about which is shared, even if there is disagreement over certain matters. There is always a place on a human level where we can connect with each other.    He also talked about how we have grown to privatise our faith, but that faith places an obligation on us to shape the world and to see that each person is able to live in the justice that God intended them to experience.   How we define our spirituality should not stop us responding with sensitivity and awareness to what is going on around us.  This is the real mark of the spiritual.   We tend to try and stay in our comfort zone but need to embrace the unpredictability of God.    It’s very easy to be tempted by reasonable arguments and a sense of righteousness which can stop us from relating with people on a human level.  We cannot circumvent the painful moments in the lives of others.  He noted that the spiritual framework can be symbolised very well in the sign of the cross…  the line travels both horizontally and vertically… relationally it is something which needs to happen both ways.  The divine and the human.

Contemplation  and Contemplation/Garden of Gethsemane 

contemplative pray,garden of Gethsemane, oil painting christian artist painter,spirituality painting expression,expressive abstraction, jenny meehan contemporary female painter

A recent painting… I am pleased with this as it seems to flow in a bit of a stream of my work which I feel runs true to the main current. It makes me feel the way I feel when I look at a painting by Corot, which is good with me, as I love his painting!

It’s on linen, 40x60cm in size, painted in oils. I soon begun to think along the lines of the Garden of Gethsemane, but kept the title more open. Gethsemane means literally “oil press” though, which I find an attractive thought. Maybe I will end up doing what I often do and giving it two titles!  So Contemplation/Garden of Gethsemane.   I think the title of a painting is very important, and sometimes emerges in phases.  I’m starting to rest on the two titles together.  On the one hand I like the title not to reveal too much, because I feel if someone wants it very much, then it would almost need them to re-title it, so what is the point of making the title more particular!  On the other hand, I feel it might be interesting to hint at the meaning of the work for me.  So the general and the particular in a title is good. 

Andy Goldsworthy 14 chalk stones  on the West Dean Estate and “Chalk Lump” painting

As time goes by, my own participation in psychoanalysis, more time spent working with painting, and more focus on centring myself firmly within my faith and Christ-centred contemplative practice, is all contributing to a much deeper and richer experience of life.  Still scattered with the same boulders, some within and some without. Thinking on the boulder, lump and stone theme makes me  think now of my painting “Chalk Lump” painted at West Dean College during a painting course taught by John T Freeman.  Here it is: 

Chalk Lump on West Dean Estate by Jenny Meehan, oil painting british 21st century, british female uk painter semi abstract,semi abstract ivon hitches influenced painting,romantic lyrical abstraction meehan,

Chalk Lump on West Dean Estate by Jenny Meehan
Oil on Canvas

I found out after painting this painting that  Andy Goldsworthy made 14 chalk stones of approximately 6 foot diameter and placed them in chosen locations along a five mile trail on the South Downs between West Dean Gardens and Cocking Hill. (in 2002 I think)  This painting was painted from (or rather, based very loosely!) on a sketch drawn from observation of the scene before me, as I looked out from the front of West Dean and over towards the chalk stone.  I have wondered if I should change the title to “Chalk Stone” to make the relationship with what it was based on clearer, but I like the “lump” because it expresses an emotional blockage and makes me think of a “lump in the throat”  and is therefore more accurate  in that respect.  I have other paintings of Andy Goldsworthy’s chalk stone at West Dean which I painted at that time and also afterwards, because as a motif I like it very much.  Something just there, incongruous but present.

A “lump in the throat” is described in medical terms as “globus”  and it used to describe the sensation of a lump in the throat where no true lump exists. It was once called Globus Hystericus,  and is sometimes also referred to as Globus pharyngeus.  It is related to many things, two of them being stress and tiredness. I am experiencing globus quite lot myself at the moment, and I do think emotional tension and trouble expressing grief and deep sadness may be related to it.  A kind of holding in of emotional tension which needs to be expressed.  Some people experience a lot of trauma in life, from a very young age,  and this can accumulate and cause problems later  if the emotions and thinking are not worked through and faced.  In the process of working through the tangle (via psychotherapy),  sometimes a backlog of grief builds up, and you feel it.  This is my thinking on the emotional “lump in the throat” matter.   It doesn’t worry me…I have learnt to embrace it as part of my experience, and I think, used in the right way, these odd ways our bodies express themselves can be helpful to us if we heed their complaining and act accordingly.  For me, it is more rest, less doing, more chance to allow my emotions to have their own say in things a bit more then they usually get as I rush from A to B and try and achieve more than I need to!

Concerning the  external “stones”, these things will always be here, things which block and get in the way of love, of truth, of the light. But maybe, with a commitment to the truth, to seeking truth, through living with as much integrity as we can, time will wear them down, and we, in some way, may help the process by choosing to love, in and through all.  

On the psychoanalysis/art topic, this looks great…  The text is from the Freud Museum  website and a few other places!

Psychoanalysis and Artistic Process

Grayson Perry in conversation with Valerie Sinason

A celebration of the launch of a Special Edition of Free Associations:  “The journal, Free Associations, is delighted to announce the launch of a special edition edited by Patricia Townsend on the theme of ‘Psychoanalysis and Artistic Process’”

Grayson Perry won the Turner Prize in 2003 and delivered the 2013 BBC Reith lectures. His major exhibition The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman was shown at the British Museum in 2011-12. He has exhibited his ceramics, sculptures, prints and textiles widely for 30 years and has also written a weekly arts column for the Times and made radio and television documentaries. Valerie Sinason is a poet, author, child and adult psychotherapist and adult psychoanalyst. She is Director of the Clinic for Dissociative Studies and Honorary Consultant Psychotherapist to the Cape Town Child Guidance Unit.

The Special Edition includes articles by Kenneth Wright, Lesley Caldwell, Sharon Kivland and Patricia Townsend, transcripts of talks by Grayson Perry, Martin Creed and Valerie Sinason and an afterword by Juliet Mitchell.

More information here:

It’s fully booked now, so I have missed the boat.

The conference ‘Psychoanalysis and Artistic Process – a day of dialogues between artists and psychoanalysts’ took place on 25th February 2012 at University College London.

The speakers were:

Session 1: Kenneth Wright and Sharon Kivland
Session 2: Grayson Perry and Valerie Sinason
Session 3: Martin Creed and Lesley Caldwell

More here:


Artists Hiring Out Galleries versus Alternative Exhibition/Gallery Spaces

For those with the cash in their pocket to spend, it is possible to rent a gallery and many people do this.   Many galleries need to hire space out in order to run and it is part of their business.   Prices vary and I thought I would include this useful list for anyone who is fortunate enough to have the cash to spend on such a venture:

It’s worth bearing in mind that it is the space and the services of the gallery you get and usually that is pretty much it.  There may be a little advertising in the organisations existing framework, but it’s up to you to promote your work…So you still do the hard work.   And while giving you a nice platform to display yourself and your work,  and maybe a good venue address for your CV…and good experience of exhibiting…  it is possible to get experience of exhibiting your work in other ways, ie through open studios, art fairs,  and approaching restaurants, hotels, bars, theatres, community organisations and community centres, etc.     These alternative venues may not have the perceived “status” of a gallery in a London setting,  but everyone in the know knows which galleries are hired out to artists in this way, and so no extra value will be placed on your work by showing at a hired space.  The only possible benefit would be that it would demonstrate the way that you value your own work, which is a good thing, and also possibly that you have money to spend on such ventures.  It may also be perceived by those who know nothing of how this system works, as being an endorsement that your work is of particular worth.  So if you are in a position to do it, it is probably worth considering.  However, I wanted to add this into my journal because it is very easy to become disheartened if you are an artist with little or no disposable income…it is easy to feel that doors are closed to you if you don’t have the cash.  However, this is not the case, and one should persist in seeking open doors…They do exist, and if you look for opportunities to show and share what you do, they will come.  You seek them, and you offer your art as a service, which it is.  Be creative!

Arrogance Abounds….

Couldn’t resist showing this.  Sad.  Hard to imagine if this person is looking around them?

Well, as a pleasant change and in order to read something more interesting and intelligent, take a look here:

Leatherhead Theatre “Sacred Spaces”  Exhibition 

Miyajima by Hilary Walker

Miyajima by Hilary Walker

Hilary Walker

I’ve been interested in photography for many years. I like the immediacy of a photograph and how it can tell a story. I think that the relationship between the image and the artist is a subtle one with photography; the photograph itself is often (but not always) very representational and perhaps could be seen as little to do with the artist compared to a painting or a drawing. However, the photographer is very influential in the final result. They choose the viewpoint of the photograph, the scale, colour intensity and contrast, the composition and the main focus of the image. Sometimes I manipulate the original a great deal so that it becomes an abstract piece. With these photographs I kept the realism to the fore to emphasise that this is not about the artist as such, more about the people who use these things to relate spiritually to their world

Forms created by animals and the natural world underlie most of Hilary’s work: in particular the way shape and colour interact with each other. She uses her photographs to create images that can range from naturalistic to highly abstract. Hilary embraces a very wide spectrum of ways to express her ideas creatively. She has produced work using acrylics, watercolour, etching and relief printing, pencil, photography, and most recently, the iPad.

“To me, it doesn’t really matter what medium I use; I don’t specialise in that way. If the medium is right for the idea I want to express or the effect I want to create then I use it, it’s as simple as that.”

She has always been inspired by Japan, both by its culture and the landscape itself. After visiting the country, she has created a portfolio of photographs to reflect the deeply spiritual nature of Japan, its people and culture. Hilary’s work can be found on her website:

Icy Landscape - Jenny Meehan

Icy Landscape – Jenny Meehan

Jenny Meehan

The two process led paintings I am showing stem from my imagination, and reference both present and past visual and emotional experiences. The process of building up the painting is slow, which means on some days I might only add a couple of marks! The analytical reviewing of the works formal elements and time spent simply looking at the work to determine how it resonates emotionally is part of a contemplative practice requiring openness and reflection. This is true of all my paintings, even those more figurative, but especially so with non-objective or highly abstracted paintings. I draw on my own subconscious in an attempt to locate some of my most central concerns, emotions, and thinking. As the paintings develop, subject matter emerges, which you can see reflected in the titles.

I am also exhibiting a black and white digital print which is an example of another strand in my work through which I delight in the pattern and dramatic impact of the natural world and its forms, which ultimately initiate and enlighten the imagination for even the deepest inner thoughts and images.

Human experience, emotion, and my own personal life journey form the centre of my work. The brokenness of human experience fascinates me, as well as the potential for growth and renewal.

After a BA Honours (Literature) in 1994 and a PGCE in 1995 I taught in Primary Education. I now use teaching skills integrated with nine years experience as an artist to occasionally offer tuition in painting and drawing.  I am based in Chessington, Surrey, and I exhibit widely across the UK.

Painting is the main strand in my practice, but I am also involved in applied arts and design, digital imagery, printmaking and writing. I always seek creative and innovative ways to experiment with existing skills and knowledge. Curating and organising this exhibition on behalf of KAOS is part of my ongoing professional development. You can see more of my work and exhibition history on my website:  and read about my activities on my blog:

art at leatherhead theatre KAOS kingston artists' open studios exhibition Geranium Johnsons Blue cyanotype by EmilyLimna

Geranium Johnsons Blue cyanotype by EmilyLimna

Emily Limna

In my original prints I combine hand with digital photographic techniques. I capture the beautiful details found in plant and flower structures through controlling light and composition. My methods include hand drawn monoprints, cyanotype sun prints and digital macro work.

I find the geometric patterns and structures found in flora fascinating. Representing these natural forms with intricate mark making and precise photographic techniques becomes a meditative process. Revealing tiny, hidden details through intricate, hand drawn studies and macro lenses emphasises the beauty found in even the simplest natural forms.

The three cyanotype prints shown are rooted in nature through both content and technique. I select natural forms for their structure and behaviour with light. The tiny veins in geranium petals glow with the backlit rays of sunlight. These sun prints are exposed in my garden. Some are direct photograms and others are using negative transparencies of my macro prints.

In a current project with a local writer I am creating a limited edition children’s book. My images for this publication playfully combine miniature figures and animals with the surrounding world.

Emily is also a teacher and examiner of Art, Design and Photography in London.

Well, “Sacred Spaces” is coming up in May, but for the present time I am having a little well earned break from the organisational tasks involved…I got those done early because I know how incessant it can all  seem.  Apart from a little bit of publicity,  I’m not needing to spend time on it right now.

Sacred Spaces Flyer by Jenny Meehan which promotes the Sacred Spaces Visual Art Exhibition at Leatherhead Theatre in May 2014 organised on behalf of KAOS (Kingston Artists' Open Studios)

Sacred Spaces Flyer by Jenny Meehan which promotes the Sacred Spaces Visual Art Exhibition at Leatherhead Theatre in May 2014 organised on behalf of KAOS (Kingston Artists’ Open Studios)

Which is GREAT!  I have some time to look at other peoples work a bit more!

Starting to invest more time in looking at Clyde Hopkins’ paintings

Before I start, I am no great writer, but writing is enjoyable to me, and at least attempts to put what seems, with painting, the mostly impossible into words…Well, it doesn’t do that,  it cannot, (thankfully) but it tries, in a clumsy way, to put logic this way and that, hopefully in an interesting manner.  I view writing about paintings as tempting, but always likely to miss the point, the point being ON the painting.  Something might be gained though by forcing my brain to use words as I look at a painting, even if what I say falls away, at least I will have invested the time in looking and thinking about it.  My brain is lazy.  It’s just a natural thing!  So over the next few journal posts, I will take the time to mull over Clyde Hopkins’ paintings.   So first comes:

Clyde Hopkins
Your Choice of Cereal (for Breakfast)
Oil on linen
Canvas size: 30 x 25cm

Copyright Clyde Hopkins

Well, that is kind.  My choice of cereal for breakfast.  In our house this is no small matter.  If your choice of cereal is not there, all hell breaks loose, it does, completely.  Maybe only slightly worse is the situation where there is a very small amount of cereal in the packet, but the person before you has scoffed pretty much all of the rest.  So the title, it relates.  How it relates to the painting will maybe need to remain something nice and personal to the painter himself, unless you happen to ask.  This is good.  It is kind.  It makes the start of my writing very simple.  And the painting is kind too.

The colour is kind.  Yes, colour can be kind.  It can relate respectfully to its surrounding colours, yet shine.  It can take up its room, and not trespass on someone else’s room.  This happens with this painting and it happens with all of Clyde’s paintings  (well, those I have seen (on the net) so far.  It is not easy to use so many colours when playing with space on the picture plane.  I have only just started to touch on what a skilful, sometimes painful,  task this can be.  So I am not surprised I find these paintings inspiring.  In my own painting I am tending to prefer soft edges rather than hard edges, but the undulations in this painting are just sufficient to relieve me of any “hard line stress” (invented term!)  that otherwise may creep into my mind as I look at them.

Those tiny little dots.  They call out “crafted”…We are applied, we are placed, with care.  They make a pleasing perceived and actual (though I cannot see from image, I am sure) texture.  It is great to have something hit the eye in this manner.  I think it has an energy of it’s own which works very effectively against the areas of flatter colour, though again, I suspect that, face to face, I would see a lot of what I am missing by just using an image.  There are other more subtle things going on.  But to have the obvious and heightened surface…to have it meet your eye in this way is a great visual sensation.  There are some patterns in this painting, but the regular areas both cover and reveal…they do this by being a covering but also making me think of the substrate underneath, in this case the linen.

More next post…

Baker Tilly in Guildford 

Here is another of the prints from the forthcoming exhibition at Baker Tilly in Guildford.

digital print buy abstract geometric Rush Hour - Jenny Meehan Signs of the Times Series

Rush Hour – Jenny Meehan Signs of the Times Series

I also now have available selected prints from the “Signs of the Times” series on my Photobox Gallery.  The Photobox Gallery is a handy facility for enabling people to buy my prints in a quick, easy and affordable way.  The prints I describe as “Poster Prints” because they are not signed and checked by me, but I am very confident about the quality.  They are in fact  A2 and A3 sized laser prints…So, they are photographic quality…by this, I mean they are printed on archival quality photographic paper using a chemical process, rather than ink-jet prints.  Here is the link to my Photobox Gallery:

Here is the link to my Photobox Gallery:

There are other options for different types of prints on the Photobox Gallery, but at the present time I am restricting the distribution of my work over the Photobox Gallery to just A2 and A2  prints.   However, if you do want something specific, just contact me with your requirements and I am completely free, (thanks to not limiting these images to “limited edition”) to arrange to have prints made to varying specifications and to be signed and numbered.  Prints which come from me personally are signed and numbered, even though not limited in number.

The laminated and mounted  prints which will be on show at Baker Tilly are signed on reverse with both my signatures.  I have two signatures, one is a combination of my initials and the other my usual signature which I use in daily life.  I tend to sign paintings just with the combination of my initials and prints with both.  I also sign my paintings on the back, as I don’t like to put marks on the front of my work.  Sometimes I do with drawings.  But it depends on the work.  I always use my initials signature, for all my work now.  I like the way it can be used on any material, for example, clay and even stone, quite easily.

Jenny Meehan is a painter and designer based in East Surrey/South West London.
Her website is  ( replaces the older now deceased website

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also offers art tuition.  Please contact Jenny at or through the contact form at for further details.   Commissions for paintings are also undertaken at affordable prices.

 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 (prices ranging from between £60 and £700) and affordable photo-mechanically produced prints are available to purchase.

Enquiries welcome.  I have more artwork than I can display on the internet, so let me know if you are looking for something specific in terms of style, function, or subject matter. 

Jenny Meehan exhibits around the United Kingdom and holds regular Open Studio/Studio Sale events.  To be placed on Jenny Meehan’s bi-annual  mailing list please email requesting to be kept up to date.

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 

I would be very pleased if you would  choose to “follow” the Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal at WordPress and keep informed of what I am up to this way.   Just press  the “follow” button and pop in your email address.  You determine how often you get updates and you don’t need a WordPress account to follow Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal.  I don’t have a Facebook page as yet, and won’t be on Twitter.  So this is the best way to follow my art practice.  Though I ramble on, I try to organise things for easy skimming, so you can pick and choose according to your own interests quite easily!    

You tube video with examples of photography, drawing and painting

by Jenny Meehan

Website Link for jamartlondon: 

Digital photography can be viewed on

Notice regarding my use of images on my Jenny Meehan Artist’s Journal blog:   I always try and contact the relevant artist if I include images of their work on my blog and make clear the source.  Where images are taken from other websites, I make it my practice to  cite the source and normally include a link to the place where the image was found.  When I include images I do so in the belief that this will not cause commercial harm to the copyright holder. I  believe that this is fair use  and does not infringe copyright.  Images are used in order for me to comment and reference them in relation to my own creative and artistic practice.  When I include extracts of text, I also do so with the understanding that again, this is permissible under the widely accepted fair usage terms with respect to copyright.

I’ve popped subheadings in for easy skimming!

Please sign up to  follow my blog!  You don’t need to have a WordPress account, just head to the Follow button and pop in your email.  You will get my posts emailed to  you.  You can choose how often in the settings.

London Downpour Painting – The Flooding Thames and Relentless Rain!     

London Downpour- Jenny Meehan painting abstraction at The Strand Gallery London as part of "Lines" visual art exhibition, jenny meehan jamartlondon london downpour process led painting british contemporary female abstract expressionistic painting, claude venard style work of london southbank tate modern river thames,contemporary emerging artist exhibition london.

London Downpour- Jenny Meehan painting abstraction at The Strand Gallery London as part of “Lines” visual art exhibition. Lyrical and geometric abstraction painting southbank london from the imagination! painted in a process-led, intuitive guided fashion, external impressions from regular trips to London appear to have seeped into my subconscious!

Gosh, that was a while ago!  I didn’t realise  that “London Downpour” was quite so relevant.

london downpour, excessive rain flooding london thames uk,painting thames southbank intuition imagination,jenny meehan jamartlondon process led painting,imaginative landscape cityscape riverscape, urban city river,

 “London Downpour” was purchased by a collector, and I think they too may possibly be enjoying the relevance of their painting!

Creativity In The Prison System

An interesting read regarding art and other forms of creativity in the prison system:

Click to access Intermediate-outcomes-of-arts-projects.pdf

“The National Offender Management Service has published a review of the outcomes of arts projects with offenders. The review determines that while there is a lack of good-quality research evidence that explores the impact of arts projects with offenders, the best available evidence indicates that arts projects are effective at improving in-prison behaviour (such as compliance with rules and engagement with the regime) and individual psychological factors (such as depression and a sense of purpose). The review (or rapid evidence assessment) is the first stage in a wider project funded by the National Offender Management Service to develop a framework for outcome measurement which can be adopted by organisations that deliver arts projects to offenders. ”  (Quoted from the London Arts in Health Forum website)

It could quite possibly be that the most important things in life are the hardest to quantify, assess, and judge?  It’s heartening to see the outcomes of art projects with offenders being looked into, and a necessary part of any type of education is indeed to examine how the process has helped, or not.   The “best available evidence” though is enough,  and I find myself wishing that more time would be invested in delivering arts projects, rather than measuring the outcomes.

Wimbledon Art Studios

I try to visit Wimbledon Art Studios once a year and in November 2013 stopped off once more for a little keeping up to date… It has taken me rather a long time to posting this little part of my blog!

A re-visit to see Vaughn Horsman….

I find what Vaughn does very inspiring…This is someone who really does push creative boundaries, and there is non of this “art bollocks” going on…So refreshing.  It’s very important for artists to embrace new technologies, materials, processes, etc. and amazing what can be achieved with the right technical knowledge and experience, plus creativity.   In the end, it’s all about pushing oneself and the boundaries which present themselves in various ways.   It’s great when people hand carve and cut wood, but it’s also great when people use machinery.  And using technology/machinery is no less virtuous…because the boundaries are always there, maybe in different places, but always there, waiting, suggesting, inviting you to just try something new, or a different approach.  The skill is in the continual process of assessment, adaptation, experimentation, problem solving, and analysing.  You may use many different tools and mediums as an art worker.  Some are old and some are new.  It’s amazing.

47 Nelson Square 


47 nelson square surviving houses,jenny meehan psychotherapy art post traumatic stress, painting modernist 21st century female british fine artist. house mind process led painting,guild of psychotherapists art,therapy painting,
Final version of Surviving Houses/47 Nelson Square
47 nelson square surviving houses painting jenny meehan, art therapy psychological trauma stress, psychotherapy guild london mental health creativitiy,jenny meehan female british contemporary fine artist,
47 nelson square/ Surviving Houses exhibition image hoxton arches as part of the Dugout Inclusive Women’s Festival

Rather oddly, I have just discovered that in a past blog entry (March 2013) about the Dugout Inclusive Women’s Art Festival and my painting “47 Nelson Square/Surviving Houses” I omitted to include an image of the painting!  So here is an image of  “47 Nelson Square/Surviving Houses”, and also below the questions which were posed by the curators of the exhibition regarding the painting.

Do you feel this painting is like a self-portrait?  

I see it as showing a journey inside of myself, so it is a sort of internal portrait.  Psychotherapy  feels like going on a journey through your own ways of thinking. Sometimes it’s hard to find your way, and work out a sense of direction.   I wanted  the painting  to show a mixture of outside and  inside views so that the person looking at it would  experience the same sense of difficulty and feeling as I have experienced in therapy.  Before deciding to start therapy I also had a dream that my own mind was a house, and that it was crumbling and breaking up because the foundations were all destroyed.  

Why did the building catch your attention? Why did you decide to learn its history? 

The building caught my interest because it is part of a small terrace of old buildings (built  1807 – 1814) in a square of blocks of flats which are all much newer.  I wanted to know why.  Because I go inside  47 Nelson Square often I know how wonky the floor inside is. So I knew something had happened!  Lambeth Bomb Damage maps which mapped all damage during WW2 in London show that  all other houses in the square sustained some damage,  ranging from “General Blast Damage – not structural” to “Seriously Damaged; doubtful if repairable”. Though 47 and it’s neighbours did  survive the bombing it was not unaffected by the impact.  Rather like me!  So I felt a link with it.  

This all seems rather a long time ago, but “47 Nelson Square” is currently hanging in my studio as I review it once more and see what I can draw out of the experience again.  Bomb damage is something which in my thinking speaks of traumatic events and their effect on the mind…on faith, on the ability to be in touch with ones emotions, on the ability to connect, in all kinds of ways.  While the realisation of devastation very hard to go through, it is part of our life…Looking back on some past painting, the painting “Christ”, which I have dug out and have hanging up on the wall once more,  I remember well the sense of realisation which hit me as I was painting the work.  A kind of touching of brokenness…

semi abstract expressionistic painting oil, british female contemporary artist jenny meehan, expressive painting process led from figure 2008 at west dean college during john t freeman's
expressive painting process led from figure 2008 at west dean college during john t freeman’s course

It is very useful, helpful, and important to look back periodically on one’s past work.  I cannot overstate the importance I feel that psychotherapy has had on my life and my artistic creative processes.   Initially I started therapy a couple of years ago in order to negotiate my way through a intensely difficult  period of depression, but now, out from the thick of it, I am finding this analytical approach and awareness very useful to me, and I have decided to continue in the practice of engaging in analysis.  Not only does it enhance my experience of life, but it also feeds into my artistic practices in a way which I find exciting and interesting.  It has been, and will continue to be, a good tool in the formation of my life and work.  I am grateful for the paths it has led me on, and see no conflict (though some do!) with my Christ-centred faith and psychotherapy. It is a complete blessing to me, which has deepened my internal wells, and enabled me to be much stronger as a person, and more responsive to the work of the Holy Spirit in my life and in the lives of others too.

Back to the theme of  bomb damage, I love the way that there is the shell of a bomb  which fell through the roof of St Edmund King and Martyr right in front of the altar of the church.  The bomb made a hole in the roof of the building, but the damage was then made into a square window.  The window is a little off centre!   St Edmund King and Martyr was damaged in both World Wars by German bombs but it is the incendiary device which landed on the church during the First World War, in 1917 which is encased in front of the altar.  (I think…if incorrect, let me know! )   The church has  only just been restored in the 1930’s, before being struck once again, this time in the Second World War during the London Blitz.  So it is unique in being the only one of the London Churches to have been damaged in both World Wars.

window in place of bomb damage st edmund the martyr and king lombard street london centre for spirituality, london centre for spirituality image roof ceiling,first world war bomb damage london churches, jenny meehan contemporary fine art
window in place of bomb damage st edmund the martyr and king lombard street london centre for spirituality

I am enjoying the fact I now have a phone with a camera!   Images are not so good in quality, but OK for little snaps useful for jogging memory!

Notepads and sketchbooks.

I keep many sketchbooks, but often they contain as many notes and as much writing as they do drawing.  I cannot seem to keep everything in once place…Just picking up random books here and there does make things interesting though and sometimes result in new ideas happening which otherwise I think would not.   I found this little cutting…I cannot remember where it is from, but I kept it aside  and stuck it in one of my sketchbooks…

“Estimates are that when we lived more natural lives – as indigenous people in other parts of the world still do – we would typically spend around three days of the week collecting food, firewood and so on, and the rest in community cooking or washing together, talking laughing, dancing, eating and telling stories, caring for children and the elderly.  In our pursuit of a better world we have sacrificed that dignity of life.”

We cannot turn the clock back can we, but all the same it is a good reminder regarding work/life balance, the importance of investing time and energy into relationships and making relating, communicating, and interacting a core part of life rather than something we do AFTER everything else if we have time left. I need to remember this!

Sea Wash Balls for Painting With!

At the end of last year while walking along the shore at Bognor Regis I found loads of Sea Wash Balls!   Just love the sound of that!  I thought at first that they were natural sponges, but they did look a bit different so I checked them out and discovered that indeed, they were not sponges but Sea Wash Balls.  One of the larger marine snails in British waters is the common whelk, Buccinum undatum, and what I had found was clusters of the egg capsules glued together to make Sea Wash Balls.  There were so many, I can only think that this was because of the very stormy weather the few days before.  Sea wash balls can be very big indeed, up to 50cm, but my largest was around eight cms long.  Sea wash balls get their names from their use by early mariners as a substitute for sponge.  I read that if you use them they make a nice lather, so I tried this out, but I think I will stick with my ordinary flannel!   I did use them with students in my acrylic ink painting session recently, and they made some lovely marks.  It was also great not to need to worry about expensive natural sponges being ruined because of the rapidly drying acrylic resin in the ink!

Jenny Meehan’s Favourite Paintings

Just love this…

The Round Table – Braque

The Round Table Braque

The Round Table Braque is one of my favourite paintings.

Oil, Sand and Charcoal on Canvas   dated 1929

Size  57 3/8 x 44 3/4 in.; 145.7325 x 113.665 cm.

Braque information

Text quoted from the Phillips Collection website:

CompositionallyThe Round Table is related to Braque’s large vertical still lifes from 1918 to 1919, when the common French pedestal table known as the guéridon first appeared in his paintings. With this work, Braque substantially expanded his color range, increased the scale of his canvases, experimented with textures and materials, and devised a more complex use of pictorial space. Pushing the table into the corner of the room, he creates an unusual perspective that presents multiple viewpoints at the same time. The result is a grand, luminous canvas in which oil has been mixed with sand over gesso to create a textured, fresco-like effect.

At the time of its purchase, The Round Table was the largest, most abstract painting in the museum’s collection. Phillips considered it to be “one of [Braque’s] greatest and most exciting works—a consummation of the artist’s best powers . . . all that was hoped for in the founding a school on Cézanne’s cubes and cones. . . . The rest is architecture. . . . It is functional and majestic in its forms and in its chromatic range it is exultant.” Soon after, Phillips began installing works by Braque in groups or units in the museum’s galleries.”

See for the source of the quoted text.

I took a photograph of the image from a book, but I cannot remember which one in order to credit this.  It might have been Braque – The Late Works?    However, as you can see I have found the painting to be part of the Phillips Collection and so will of course give the credit due for including it in my blog.   (As an aside, The Phillips Collection website also includes very useful and helpful information on images and “fair usage” which I will include here also, as it’s rather helpful to know).  Take a look at the excellent Phillips Collection website too.  You will find a better image of The Round Table than mine, and be able to take a clearer look as you can see it enlarged on screen!

FAIR USE IS PERMITTED (from the Phillips Collection website)
Fair use of copyrighted material includes the use of protected materials for non commercial educational purposes, such as teaching, scholarship, research, criticism, commentary, and news reporting. Unless otherwise noted, users who wish to download or print text, audio, video, image and other files from The Phillips Collection’s website for such uses are welcome to do so without The Phillips Collection’s express permission. Users must cite the author and source of this material as they would material from any printed work; the citation should include the URL”

This is a nice little slide show of some more examples of Braque’s paintings…

Another little plug…

“Sacred Spaces” – Free Art Exhibition, Open to All.  Disabled Access.  Children Welcome. 

See this exciting and interesting collection of work by Kingston Artists’ Open Studio artists Chris Birch, Emily Limna,  Jenny Meehan,  Richard Tomlin,  Derek Turner,  Hilary Walker, and Jude Wild.

The exhibition is curated by Jenny Meehan on behalf of Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.  A varied mixture of  18 original paintings, monoprints and  photography by  seven  professional artists is sure to delight and interest you.  The title of the exhibition “Sacred Spaces” references the inner lives of the artists , the process of creating artworks,  and evidence  expressed  physically  in the artworks themselves.  In our creation we bring body and substance from our own inner contemplation, reflection and response to life and all we experience,  both internal and external.

Details are:

It runs from 2pm on Saturday 3rd May until Friday 30th May  during normal theatre opening hours which are normally 10am – 10pm. Sometimes the theatre closes at 4pm so best to check exact times with the theatre first. Phone:  01372 365141).

Leatherhead Theatre:  7 Church Street Leatherhead Surrey KT22 8DN.     The exhibition takes place on the ground floor main theatre foyer, and is accessible to all. Children are welcome.   There is a coffee shop too, so you can enjoy a drink while you look at the exhibition.

Contact Jenny Meehan at for more information. Or see and

Visiting Information:

The Leatherhead Theatre
7, Church Street
KT22 8DN

Tel: 01372 365141
Fax:     01372 365195

Accessible location – 5 mins from M25, Junction 9

5 minutes walk from Leatherhead British Rail Station.
Town centre location, close to local shops and restaurants.

Three car parks within a few minutes walk (free after 6pm)

Parking is free on Sundays at the Swan Centre

Access to the exhibition is from Tuesday to Saturday inclusive.  The theatre is not open to the general public on Sundays or Mondays.

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios Exhibition at the Riverside Gallery, Richmond Upon Thames

Also, The Kingston Artists’ Open Studios Exhibiton at the Riverside Gallery, Richmond Upon Thames.  This is being organised by a group of artists from Kingston Artist’s Open Studios and will be a treat to visit.  If you would like an invitation to the Private View then just contact me or anyone else taking part.

Art@Work Guildford Arts

Text below from the Guildford Arts website, with details of the art@work arrangement.

“Art@Work is a series of art exhibitions arranged within the offices of two major organisations based in Guildford. It is a programme that has been running successfully for over 10 years and provides a platform for painters, print makers, ceramicists and sculptors from the Guildford area, London and the South East. Participation is by invitation only.

The aims of the programme are:

  • enhance the quality of the working environment
  • encourage a broader awareness of the visual arts
  • promote the work of visual artists
  • generate funding for the arts

Exhibitions continue for a three month period and are viewed by staff, company clients, Guildford Arts members and, by arrangement, members of the public.

A private viewing is held for each exhibition attended by members of GA, their guests and guests of the exhibiting artists. Most exhibits are available for purchase. Some works may be on view to obtain commissions.

The host organisations provide the catalogues and food and drink for the private viewings. They also place details of the exhibitions on their company intranets so providing, potentially, international exposure of the exhibitions.

Four exhibitions a year are held in each of the offices of Clyde & Co, solicitors and Baker Tilly, accountants.”

I have been invited to exhibit some work this year for the Baker Tilly venue from 7 June – 20 September.  I will show some original paintings and some prints.  If you would like me to send you an invitation to the private view on Tuesday 29th July please contact me via my website.  One of the paintings I plan to show,  again, with a somewhat watery feel to it, is “Deluge” which was painted in 2012

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

Jenny Meehan is a painter and designer based in East Surrey/South West London.
Her website is  ( replaces the older now deceased website

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also offers art tuition.  Please contact Jenny at or through the contact form at for further details.   Commissions for paintings are also undertaken at affordable prices.

 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 (prices ranging from between £60 and £700) and affordable photo-mechanically produced prints are available to purchase.

Enquiries welcome.  I have more artwork than I can display on the internet, so let me know if you are looking for something specific in terms of style, function, or subject matter. 

Jenny Meehan exhibits around the United Kingdom and holds regular Open Studio/Studio Sale events.  To be placed on Jenny Meehan’s mailing list please email requesting to be kept up to date.  Also, follow the Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal at WordPress and keep informed that way. 

You tube video with examples of photography, drawing and painting

by Jenny Meehan

Website Link for jamartlondon: 

Digital photography can be viewed on

Open Studio and Studio Sale on Saturday 9th November 3pm – 7pm

Come along and take a look at a variety of paintings, photographs, original artwork and affordable prints.  If you are interested, then contact me via my website contact form and I will send you more details.  Come to look,  chat, discuss.  I am happy to consider commissioned paintings too. My price range is between £200 and £400 for  unframed paintings under 50 x 70cm, but I also have smaller artworks available to buy for much less, starting at only £15 in the form of digital C prints. 

Interested?  If you cannot make it on Saturday 9th November, but might like to come another time, then contact me though my website and I will place you on my mailing list and let you know when I hold another similar event. 

Empathy and Compassion in Society

Wow!  This looks  good, shame the cost (while no doubt standard for this type of thing) makes it completely unaccessible to me at this present moment in time.   However, I take heart when I see this kind of activity going on, and it looks like it will be a wonderful day.   I think by the time I post up this blog entry the Empathy and Compassion in Society Conference will be over as I see it’s down for the 24th October but they have a mailing list which can be joined, so I expect there will be future events and forums to go to.   Info on the Empathy and Compassion Society below, not sure why it has appeared like this and if I can re-arrange it or not, but I will just leave like this for now!

Empathy and Compassion in Society is a forum for professionals to explore what compassion is, how it can be cultivated, and what benefits it brings to the modern world.Empathy and Compassion in Society aims to present universal and well researched methods for cultivating empathy and compassion, show how these methods can enhance one’s personal and professional life, and share concrete examples of organisations and public institutions where these methods have been shown to be effective.
Internationally renowned neuroscientists, psychologists and thinkers share their insights and present methods for developing compassion.Innovators are also invited to submit case studies demonstrating how compassion has been a force for change in their area of work.The conference is for professionals from all sectors, including those working in management, policy, law, education, health, social care, as well as in the private sector.

Imperial War Museum Architecture of War Exhibition 

Here is the information given for the Imperial War Museum’s art exhibition “Architecture of War”

“29 July – 5 May 2014

Through IWM’s art collection, Architecture of War presents artists’ responses to the impact of warfare on landscape and environments.

The selection spans almost a century of British art, from the First World War to the present day, and explores themes such as construction, destruction, cities and interiors.

Some artworks show the united purpose of humans and machines in factories, others show tension in divided cities. Many artists have used ruined buildings to symbolise the effects of warfare on people. Others show the claustrophobic conditions of control rooms and shelters.

Architecture of War displays oil paintings, prints, sketches, drawings, watercolours and photographs by artists including William Orpen, Ronald Searle, William Scott and Langlands and Bell.”

Well, I took a walk around the Imperial War Museum and though it is in the process of being renovated, I managed to find my way around!   I did not know this but the Imperial War Museum possess thousands of paintings and other artworks and there are two exhibitions on at the moment, not just the Architecture of War but also one as part of the “A Family in Wartime” section.  I was fortunate to stumble in just before the guided tour, which was very interesting.  I have to say I felt the lighting very poor and it was frustrating to see the paintings in such dim  and erratic lighting.  The guide was lovely, and I brought up the subject of female artists, who, I was informed were much better represented in the selection of work which was hung currently than they were in the war art schemes of their time!!! No surprise there, I guess.

On the Imperial War Museum website, it gives more information about the  art collection  held there:

“This exceptional collection is one of the most important representations of twentieth century British art in the world. It includes many great works of art from the British government war art schemes of the First and Second World Wars, which employed the greatest artists of their day, including leaders of the avant-garde. These included Paul Nash, C R W Nevinson, John Singer Sargent and Sir William Orpen.” and “Important works from outside official schemes can also be found in the collection, by artists ranging from Edward Burra to Willie Doherty. The collection of almost 20,000 items includes paintings, prints and drawings, sculpture, and works in media such as photography, sound, and film. IWM also holds the unique War Artists Archive, which reveals the day-to-day running of the war art schemes and gives fascinating glimpses of the artists’ experiences.”

Well, I never knew.  I will be keeping an eye out for future exhibitions.  I am interested in twentieth century British art, so this may be a good place to snoop around in from time to time!

Paintings in Progress

I have several paintings in progress at the moment.  All acrylic paintings, and mostly non-objective at this point in time anyway.  As I now mix up many of my own paints, thereby getting more control over the intensity of pigment  among other factors, the problem of acrylics just being liquid plastic in my thinking is lessened a little.   I have need of rapid drying times…  And the family don’t like the smell of oil paints very much.  But I love oils, and have decided to work on some smaller paintings, around 16x12inches,  in order to indulge myself in this avenue.   When the Summer comes back to see us next year, I will set up my outdoor “studio”.  This studio consists of tarpaulin over a frame, but it will be just the job for allowing me to work on some larger oil paintings without having to clear up everything after each session.  This clearing up matter does somewhat spoil the process of immersing oneself into the work I find.  With oils, the whole uncontrollable mess  business seems to help the painting somehow.  The mess in my kitchen studio is normally washing, washing up, and other people’s items.  This can be ignored with some determination during a painting session, I have learnt.   But it is joyful to leave things out, to be surrounded by the materials you work with, to be completely steeped in the rearrangement of your surroundings which happens when you are working. I am looking forward to it.

For now, here are a few acrylics in progress.  Don’t take any notice of the way up they are, as this will most probably change:

lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress - jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental markmaking contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress – jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental mark making contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress - jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental markmaking contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress – jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental markmaking contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress - jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental markmaking contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
lyrical abstract romantic expressive painting in progress – jenny meehan British female fine painting experimental markmaking contemporary modern abstraction jenny meehan UK
In recognition that the above paintings are very much in progress, I thought you might enjoy seeing some completed artwork in the form of the painting for Allglass:
jenny meehan british contemporary abstraction female painter acrylic for Geoff, Glass Beads Painting Geometric Abstract for Allglass by Jenny Meehan

Glass Beads Painting Geometric Abstract for Allglass by Jenny Meehan

The light on this image doesn’t really show off the way the beads are working in the piece, so maybe more images up later on. 

The Menier Gallery

I often pop into the Menier Gallery to see what is showing there, and I particularly enjoyed these two paintings by Paul Whitehead. What beautiful, fine and restful work, with such wonderful flow and composition.  Mountains and water have been and will continue to be a favourite subject matter of mine, and to see the imagination melded so gently with some of my favourite subjects, executed so skillfully, is a real pleasure to behold.  (Beholding is such a great word!)


It’s revealing for me to see what I am attracted to in terms of techniques and also subject matter.  I always fall for a figure viewed from the back  (great to identify with) and a water falling over rocks.  It seems I may be an incurable romantic.  And who wants to be cured?    It’s very heartening to see such sensibly priced work too, which makes it more accessible to a wider range of people.  It’s a very large space at the Menier Gallery, very large indeed.


Back on the War theme, I have been looking at my own painting “Pillar and Moon” an awful lot recently.  It’s giving back a lot to me.  Thanks painting.  Is this vanity? No, not so, I don’t think.  I am looking and thinking and pondering and wondering.  I will take the subject matter forwards, for sure.   Inspired by my trip to the Imperial War Museum I looked up the Tate blurb on Paul Nash’s “Pillar and Moon” as follows:

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

My pillar doesn’t have it’s sphere!    I did paint another painting with a sphere in it around the same time as “Pillar and Moon”, which I trashed.  Rather sorry about that, as it was interesting, but I turned it into something else.  (That one’s still in the cupboard waiting to be taken for another outing!)  To me, the painting by Paul Nash  “Pillar and Moon” does have a sense of mourning about it, which I like.  Maybe an awareness of disconnection between two related entities?  Maybe the hard and cold and near, needing the light and soft and far?  Maybe and maybe not…But an interesting relation, clearly, which is why I took it up.

Mine seems less mournful.   My moon is linked with the pillar with a broken line, so they still have a relationship.  I also painted a reflection too.  I think about the painting this way long after completion…It’s not something I am conscious of at the time…these possible ideas which might be floating about in the back of my head,  which is the way I like it to be.   I’m not taking the analysis any further than this though.   I am sure I could go into what moons, orbs and pillars might symbolize and in the process create an interesting “explanation” for the work.  The main pleasure for me in “Pillar and Moon” is that it is quite different from a painting with a clear intention at the outset! Quite different, more of an exploration, not just of the surface and colours as is the case when using a pre-existing design like the recent Allglass painting, but rather of the mystery of the process of painting itself?  Well, a stirring of emotions, yes.   That will do.  Stirring of emotions is a great reason for any painting to exist, and paintings don’t need anything more, though it is always interesting to speculate as to what might have been going on there I guess.

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

I’ve got this painting up on the wall right now, and it’s nudging me gently into doing some more painting!

Can I find the image I had of the Paul Nash “Pillar and Moon”…. NO!  But it is well-known and easily found.  I get a great deal of pleasure from looking at his work and so in the absence of “Pillar and Moon” here is, at least, another beautiful work by Paul Nash to feast your eyes on.

Paul Nash Edge of the Wood Silverdale 1915

Paul Nash Edge of the Wood Silverdale 1915

Just found this:

Getting into a productive routine of studio practice, prayer, study and the usual domestic matters

I am reaping the benefits of a regular studio schedule,  and find the beginning of the week much better than the end of it!  Discipline is very important and I am finding that making that studio time sacred is very helpful, as is indeed generally organising time in a more structured way.  I have always been a very disciplined person in terms of working, but it has to be said that the challenges of being both a mother and an artist need careful management.   And yes, you don’t actually need a separate studio to have sacred studio time!  Hooray!  It is the structuring which happens within and is expressed outwardly which can bring the necessary environment, thought this probably is harder without the physical space defined before you start working!   I currently focus on painting on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays…though Fridays often get used for making frames and other less intensive tasks. Tuition and teaching or other projects sometimes slip in…Also painting boards white.  Mixing up new colours.  Research, reading, study, promotional things.   I’m making more regular slots for exercise and prayer. which has got to be good for body and spirit!  I pack as much domestic activity into the parts of the day which I know are less productive for me creatively, ie after 4pm in the afternoon is the best time to throw myself into domestic chores and all things domestic.  The prime part of the day for me is from 8am in the morning till around 2pm…I work best then.  If I set up at 8am, then I have a good foundation for a days painting work.  I’ve stopped moaning about the restrictions of my situation and instead now recognise the benefits of being in control of my working schedule.   I said to another female painter I met recently how I felt it was a great privilege to be able to paint, and she didn’t get what I meant at all…She saw it as a right I think…  I think “I could be living hand to mouth, with hungry children and little shelter”.  I always feel immensely fortunate to be able to work with paint in the way I do, and not a day goes by when I take it for granted.   Maybe it is the years when this was less possible for me which have taught me something, because life has been more precarious in terms of survival in the past.  While life is certainly not problem free, particularly in the current economic climate, and the choices we make are never without cost of some kind, basically I find myself blessed with sufficient resources to use for the passion which drives my life forward, and this has not always been the case.

Interesting Listening to Amy Sillman

I enjoyed listening to this podcast…So enjoyable to have an interview where the artist has plenty of time to talk, and manages to convey the organic processes which come into making paintings, and also talks without pretence of anything greater than the simple encounter which forms the core of any painting…

Interesting to find out more about what has been involved in the formation and development of her painting journey.

Jenny Meehan is a painter and designer based in East Surrey/South West London.
Her website is  ( replaces the older now deceased website

Jenny Meehan BA Hons (Lit.) PGCE also offers art tuition.  Please contact Jenny at or through the contact form at for further details.   Commissions for paintings are also undertaken at affordable prices.

 Jenny Meehan works mainly with either oils or acrylics  creating both abstract/non-objective paintings  and also semi-abstract work.  She also creates representational and figurative artwork,  mostly using digital photography/image manipulation software, painting and  drawing.

Jenny Meehan exhibits around the United Kingdom and holds regular Open Studio/Studio Sale events.  To be placed on Jenny Meehan’s mailing list please email requesting to be kept up to date.  Also, follow the Jenny Meehan Contemporary Artist’s Journal at WordPress and keep informed that way. 

I have been helped a great deal by the writing of Caroll Michel and this interview makes interesting hearing.

Some beautiful painting here by painter Michael Sole:

I tend to start playing around on the computer at this time of year, researching, thinking, reflecting over the year which draws to its end.  Haven’t painted for a while, but this isn’t a bad thing, it’s good.  Because the thinking and reflecting is very important in painting.  Now I take a seat with the work in front of me and ask “So what have you got to teach me?”  “What are you saying?”  “Why is it important” and “Where will you take me from here?”  In working through the process of the work again, this time from a distance, I can realise a lot of things which I wasn’t aware of when painting.  It’s quite exciting.  There is always so much more.  Experiment and explore.  That’s the whole point.  Here is one stage in a recent painting “Surviving Houses/47 Nelson Square”

painting and art working through trauma and emotional psychological issues in psychotherapy

Recovering from past traumas and working with paint

Above, the painting in progress.   I tend to work in a piecemeal fashion.  It gives plenty of time for thinking and looking, as well as applying the paint.

And here is the final version:

painting art and emotional and psychological trauma /therapy/ recovery/psychotherapy

Final version of Surviving Houses/47 Nelson Square

I keep putting “Nelson Road” instead of  “Nelson Square”…!!  I’ve gone through the text and corrected, I think!

It’s quite interesting looking back on the past stages of a painting.  Like watching someone struggle up a mountainside or negotiate their way somewhere without a map.   I had to prepare some blurb for entering the painting into another competition, so here it is:

” I  deliberately kept this process led painting as organic in conception as possible, drawing on my own subconscious in an attempt to locate some of my most central concerns, emotions, and thinking. My work on personal past trauma through   weekly sessions of psychotherapy at the Guild of Psychotherapists (47 Nelson Square ) certainly came through. The intention of the painting is that it conveys the emotional challenge of facing uncertainties and suggests the type of psychological negotiations involved when encountering realities which shift when someone is seeking to open up new ways of thinking and relating.”

I don’t like writing about my paintings much, it is kind of necessary evil in my view. However, it might add interest for someone else. Sometimes it is helpful to pin things down in such a way.  (Not as good as talking about the work, not as good as a dialogue though).  I think writing in the first person is best, and just being true to oneself.  I ask myself “What on earth was I doing and why on earth was I doing it?”.  This seems the best, and maybe only question to ask!!!!

Sometimes there is no easy answer!!

Is that OK?


But what does it mean for society?  What was your investigation?  How is it relevant? What does it MEAN?

Haven’t the foggiest.

Well it doesn’t matter then.  If you cannot articulate with words what is going on, then quite clearly nothing is.

Why doesn’t it matter?  Why, as a painter, do I need to use words?  I write poetry with words.  I paint with paint.

Because it’s just a painting.  Just itself.  It’s not even part of a series.  You quite clearly don’t have a focus.

Yes I do.


Working with paint.  I have to.  Because its part of living. That is enough.  I don’t need it to be more.  I have a focus, but it is not explicit and it is not clear. But still, there is some point.  It is not articulated in words.  It is not defined in that way.  It’s changeable.  I cannot fix it.  Sometimes I get a glimpse.  That is all I need.  I get a glimpse here.  I get another glimpse there.  I do not have the necessary perspective to know what I am doing entirely.  Sometimes I do not know what I am doing.  Sometimes I have a sense.   That is OK.

I have diverged into an interior imaginary narrative.  Quite enjoyable.  Must do that again.

I note also, that with many things, what we think we are doing at the time turns out not to be the case.  We look back years later and see that what was going on had many different dimensions to it, which we were not aware of.  I often look back at past work and see what I was up to in a much clearer way, and also I am able to identify aspects of my work which I did not  recognise as important features at the time,  but then, seeing how they have been reiterated in different ways, I understand that they are meaningful to me and a significant part of my practice.

So maybe it is wise not to be too prescriptive in the way one speaks about ones work, or at least, whatever you say, realise how ultimately shallow/mistaken/inaccurate  or even pointless it might turn out to be. Maybe it is best to let others do the talking if they want to.   I am sure I will cringe as I look back in years to come at things I have written and said.  However, if we didn’t move on, that would be more of a concern.   It may be better to look back and cringe, but at least give yourself a little pat on the back for trying to say what you meant, and just be glad that now you can see a little more of the bigger picture, yet, still, always incomplete.   Meandering over!

PS There is a lot to be said for working in a series.  But a series doesn’t have to be similar in an obvious way.  For example, my recent paintings were painted together, though they diverge in several  significant directions.  I worked on around 5 at one time and used the same, and similar colours, paints, materials and canvas size. And the same approach.  With very diverse results!

I also note that there are what I might call “long-term emergent series” which happen naturally, for example, my photography now has fallen into focus:  Black and white, trees, rocks and water, in different images, has gradually developed as my main subject matter, and I could easily make a series by sorting out this strand over the years as it gradually emerged.  The preoccupation was there, and slipped itself in gradually, in ever-increasing amounts, without me ever once deciding in a conscious way that this is  what I would focus on.  And I think it valuable to see that strands in ones work, maybe subject, medium, manner, whatever, are not deliberately tied or arranged too much.  It may well convey a more professional front to have rows of paintings which make a harmonious exhibition, and there is a place for this, but I also think that the more sensitive and responsive eye will see the links between works which are not so explicit and obvious.

I popped into The Menier Gallery recently to take a look at the space itself and also to see the exhibitions which are on at the moment.  It’s a great space, and I had some lovely chats with various people including Andrew Carnegie, whose paintings were strong in emotional content and very much full of interest for me.  I found this lovely video on the net too…    Oh, let’s embrace the mystery of painting, and take those steps of trust, though we inwardly fear and tremble!  Funnily enough, the exhibition downstairs took the title “No More Fear”.  I enjoyed that too, in particular the beautiful digital prints of masks.

I am attempting to sketch more and plan to spend the winter months returning to drawing and experimenting with line.  Here is a recent sketch, done outside on Leith Hill.  What a lovely place that is!

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

While I love experimenting with abstraction, drawing is essential.   My eyes will go blunt if I don’t draw!

Just see the line up for The Ark Centre Autumn Exhibition, so nice to be in it!  I look forward to looking at the other artist’s work, and what a fantastic show that is going to be!   The standard is high…It looks like one of the best assortments of work  I have seen for a long time (and I am not just saying that because I am one of the selected, though of course, it slips off the lips more easily).  I am hoping like mad I can get to the opening night, but circumstances beyond my control might have a bearing, however, I am hopeful!

I’ve just visited the Threadneedle Painting and Sculpture Prize exhibition at The Mall Galleries, London.  I would pick as my favourite painting “Watch the Birdie” by Bev Broadhead.  This is fine, indeed.  Just beautiful.  Hopeful.  Hopeful for painting.  Hopeful for life.  Hopeful full stop!  Take a look on the Threadneedle Painting and Sculpture Prize page:

I have to say I was disappointed with the majority of the painting on show, the sculpture was far more interesting.   Looking on the Threadneedle website it looks like there were some interesting pieces which were not hung or I may have just missed a room by accident.   Jaana Fowler – Jug Frame, Cement,  brought much appreciation from both myself and my friend.  I do LOVE cement sculptures and it’s on the list to experiment with as a material at some point.  There were some very excellent drawings, (far more impressive than I encountered recently at the Jerwood Drawing Prize exhibition)  Fran Giffard – One of Every Species found in Hong Kong cage, Graphite Pencil on Paper took my breath away, as did Planar Resonance – Ilse Black, Graphite powder, pencil, charcoal on paper.  Always fond of a bit of iron, how delightful to see it used so responsively in the two works by  Peter Sainty, both Claw Coupling 3, Cast Iron,  and the other Claw part.  Just what I like to see…SKILL, achievement.  Success!  From Success to Defeat, but not in accomplishment.  The fine sculpture by Robert Truscott – Defeat, Mixed Media, Plaster, Epoxy Putty, Material on Armature.  Looking at each beautifully expressive figure.  It restores ones faith.  There is no shoddy carelessness in a piece like this.  There is a sense of relief to be had in the knowledge that someone is putting such work and devotion into what they do,  and creating such emotional resonance with the viewer, as to leave one in no doubt that the visit was well worth it, even if only to see that one piece.  David Firmstone – Dreaming 2, Oil on Canvas, was a fine sight to see too.

It is quite interesting to look at the archives of the Threadneedle Paintng and Sculpture Prize, take a look here to see what it was like over the last few years:

A good read is to be found in the following Art Rated interview.  Jonathon Beer interviews David Schnell, a very interesting interview with a fine painter.  Again, (as is always the case when I read these interviews, I am very jealous of the studio space, however, he is quite clearly using it for wonderful work, so I can get over it!  I have had thoughts regarding perspective and using it in my own painting crop up over the year, particularly with “Yellow Path” which while very basic and crude with respect to brush strokes, did signify a step forward in suggesting some hint at using perspective.  I love how David Schnell uses it in his work.  Something inspirational there, for sure.

Yellow Path, below.  Primary in every sense of the word, but if it is a step forward, then it’s worth it.  The main thing is what is happening over all.  Not individual paintings so much.  And to move forward, you have to trip, stumble, and rummage your way ahead!  I do like what I am experimenting with in terms of colour and space.  I’m not keen on the brush strokes and I think it would have been better to use oils, but I am seeing this painting as an exercise. It worked in some respects.

experimental exploratory abstract contemporary landscape jenny meehan british painter,space colour expressionistic modern collectable paintings uk

I’ve just finished some inkjet prints for the Dorking Museum shop.  I would like to work on some cockerel images and plan to experiment with some of the printed material from the Museum archives over the Winter months.  I am not sure exactly when Dorking Museum is about to re-open but I think it is in a couple of weeks.  It looks amazing inside, with a fantastic design and wonderful displays.  It will be a wonderful learning resource and I have come away with a couple of ideas for some mixed media work on paper, which makes a nice change from the painting I spent my time with over the Summer.

My neighbour has hens, and I have grown rather fond of them, so I have some live models to sketch from too!  I LOVE the Dorking Cockerel which is 3.4m high and made from 1 tonne of steel.  It’s on the A24/A25 roundabout on the east edge of Dorking, Surrey and you often see it wearing different things from time to time.  It was made by Peter Parkinson.  See: There is a very interesting article on the sculpture in Surrey Life:

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