Kingston Artists’ Open Studios 2020




jenny meehan painting lyrical abstract floral promised land/break out painting

jenny meehan painting lyrical abstract floral promised land/break out painting

Needing some glimpses of colour at the moment, because it is a somewhat grey January day today!  Above a painting which sold a few years back.

spring will come digital image jenny meehan

spring will come digital image jenny meehan ©jenny meehan

And this, because Spring Will Come!  ©jenny meehan





jenny meehan surrey artist london contemporary female artist

jenny meehan surrey artist london contemporary female artist


It is very casual, but I find posting screenshots very convenient! Here’s a photo of me at last year’s Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.  Which reminds me to flag up we now have the dates for this year’s Kingston Artists’ Open Studios! The 2020 Kingston Artist’s Open Studios with be on June 6/7th and 13/14th! Kingston Upon Thames artists open their homes and studios.  Open to all.  Come and meet us!

More info on the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios website here;

The catalogue is not out yet… too early, but you can see previous Kingston Artists’ Open Studios Catalogues on the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios website and also sign up to receive more detailed information for this year’s Kingston Artists’ Open Studios when it comes out.


Time Table


At the end of last year I was experimenting with making short video clips, just for a change.  My very short piece “Time Table” was selected for screening at an event in Manchester. Info below:

screening shown on 3rd December 2019 at STRETCH – Reel Time event. Held at Mirabel Studios 14 -20 Mirabel Street Manchester M31PJ

My statement:

“As an artist, writer, and home-maker, I manage my time by working in a completely piecemeal, and often spontaneous, way. I integrate my creative practice within my domestic life and utilise the flexibility inherent in this way of life. I used my work space, (AKA kitchen) as the setting for the film “Time Table”. I often produce work on my kitchen table is the object in the room which best represents the interrelationship between my artistic work and the other work I’m involved in.

Both forms of work are mostly unpaid, and it becomes a challenge to maintain a sense of self and a sense of value in our capitalist society which measures value by status and money.

The planner in the film has blank pages but rapid movement, because in both dimensions of my work sphere; the domestic and the artistic; I’m extremely busy. However, I find the reality of my work is non existent in many people’s perceptions; it’s blank; because they do not recognise what I do as being work. In our culture activities which take place in the domestic sphere are often side-lined and artistic creation is at risk as being thought as being a “free time” pursuit. I frequently get asked “What do you do all day?”

In reality, “work” reflects more to purpose and perception, than a context.

Like the table, the water in the film is a crossover subject too; from the water in the kettle (tea for a break time), the repetition and rhythm of a dripping tap (associated with labour and maybe monotony) and the water of a swimming pool (swimming being a “free time” activity for me). The pool is also a place for reflection: interestingly contemplative space for an artist swiftly re-orientates itself into a place of purpose for a reflective art practitioner.”

Jenny Meehan is a London based artist working with painting, writing, digital media and contemplative practices.

I don’t have much to add to the text I submitted. An interesting development was that I was able to finance just one month of studio space last November, and this made an interesting contrast to my usual working routine. I found that having the more clearly defined boundaries between my different roles does make things much easier in some ways, so I think in terms of the tangible nature of time…how it is seen, and recognised, or not seen and invisible, having a physical space matters a great deal for an artist, not only in terms of practical matters but also in terms of being a helpful contribution to a stronger sense of self/self-definition. I have found it makes a huge difference on how other people recognise my time as an artist…hence the activities which I carry out within that time/space… I know they matter, but its much easier for other people, particularly those who are not creatives, to recognise that my work is indeed not a sideline/hobby!

In other ways having a physical dedicated space has been restrictive, which I did not expect. There is a kind of pressure… because the time has boundaries, I found that there is this need to fill it in a way which I am normally free of. So not having a dedicated physical space, rather surprisingly, can be a liberty, which I didn’t expect at all. However, as you can see from my work Time Table, there is a big interplay between the blank, empty space in the diary, and the full physical space (I need to leave a lot of piles of domestic clutter around me, because of the need to redirect my energy and time into creating art works! Definitely a balancing act!)

The human being in Time Table is actually my daughter, though she is playing me! So credit to Charis Meehan for playing the part so well!

Time Table isn’t on You Tube at the moment.  I think I will wait till I have sorted out my new website and put it on there.


New Website for Jenny Meehan

I am going to create a new website which will be a little more broad in the mediums it shows.  The existing one has it’s main focus on paintings and some digital prints, but I find that my practice is far more eclectic now as time has gone on.  Now I am on instagram too, and my writing focus rests a little more securely on this Artist’s Journal, I think I can make the website a little more compact.


Coventry Cathedral

There was a very interesting “Open Call” for the commissioning of new vestments and a banner for Coventry Cathedral before Christmas, but the practicalities of it didn’t seem realistic to me in terms of financial recompense.  I think if I was both a designer and maker of banners and vestments then it wouldn’t be  such an issue, but for someone like me, who is a designer more than a maker (well, of vestments and banners, at least!) the making would need to be contracted out to someone else, with massive financial implications…at least, if it was to be done to a high professional standard, for sure.  The actual banner design has significant value, and the copyright matter wasn’t touched on at all.  I did contact the relevant person and put my view/perspective forward, but haven’t heard anything back.  The value of the actual design, and subsequent images of it, is very important, as is the project management, (time wise) and I had an excellent idea to explore with it, but I simply cannot afford to spend hours on something which is basically speculative.  It’s certainly speculative if I wouldn’t consider carrying out the project due to insufficient funds if I was fortunate enough to be selected, so I have just left it.

It is often quite a problem with design competitions and copyright.  If the copyright of the banner design image had to be assigned, and that was part of the arrangement, then it needs to be clearly stated.  I personally don’t assign copyrights ever, and so to need to do so would also be a reason not to enter such a competition.  I always retain copyright for my art and design and for it to be used there would need to be a suitable licence in place.  The value of such of licence agreement, needs to be factored in when establishing the value of the artist’s work, and this affects what can be considered a realistic payment in financial terms.

I am normally pretty flexible, and open to negotiation of licensing fees.  As a member of DACS, there are the industry standard fees which are of course recommended, but it is the artist who has the final say, and for projects with limited budgets, charitable, religious organisations,  particular uses which I have a particular interest and passion about, then flexibility is appropriate.   Something like a banner for Coventry Cathedral would be exactly the kind of thing I would be flexible about, but I do value my work and though I try not to, I cannot help but feel irritated by no mention of copyright and of a task of such massive scale with insufficient funds to cover the costs.  I could be wrong…It’s been known…but we will see.  Someone will do it, possibly very happily.  It doesn’t fit in with the way I value my work to ignore copyright matters and while it would have been a nice project to submit something to, what is the point, when I wouldn’t deliver for the money offered?

Coventry Cathedral

Some comfort to me, bearing in mind the above, was that I was able to offer an animation for showing at Coventry Cathedral on my birthday!  This did make me most happy, and it was fortunate that I had been experimenting with animation a little at the end of last year.  I had something emergent conceptually and the Open Call at Coventry Cathedral for one of their events on New Year’s Eve was very timely, as it gave me the additional impetus to continue working on something which I had started.  Some things are just providential, I have decided.  Timing is often everything.  The Open Call at Coventry Cathedral was perfect timing and I worked obsessively on producing the work which was a duo of a poem and also the animation.  Again, I will put this up on my new website when I sort that out.

The animation was rather more fast than I ideally wanted but I am going to make a slower version.  It needed to be short for the screening, so I went with it moving very fast, rather than somewhere in between.  Both the poem in written form and as word and image animation are titled: “Wonder”.   The poem is below.




Both soft and clear

Beautiful and broken


Light is transformation

Colouring the soul

Endless pattern



Ever differing

Yet completely



by Jenny Meehan 2019


This  is a silent video of word and image. 2.26 duration, in this version. In square aspect ratio.  No punctuation in this version.

Wonder was selected to be shown as part of the Open Projections: Digital Art Exhibition NYE@Coventry Cathedral on 31st December 2019.

Text from the Artist’s Call Out:

Open Projections is a series of digital and moving image projection exhibitions hosted by Coventry Cathedral. The series is hosted by guest curators and arts organisations. Art on show features digital and photographic work created by local, national and international artists. For the latest edition of Open Projections, on New Year’s Eve, We will be projecting onto the ceiling of Coventry Cathedral, using the design of the roof as a screen for each work. We will be inviting guests to lay on the floor and stare upwards (Don’t worry, bean bags and underfloor heating provided).

The brief is for this edition of Open Projections is ‘Spectacle’A visually striking performance or display, or An event or scene regarded in terms of its visual impact.

We are interested in showing work which explores the idea of spectacle and a visually stimulating display inside the cathedral. We have intentionally made the brief for this exhibition open to interpretation as we want to embrace the Cathedral’s space for New Year’s Eve. “


Coventry Cathedral became a major tourist attraction as soon as it was opened in 1962.  It is a very interesting building, and the ruins of the old Coventry Cathedral are also beautiful.

The Blitz of 1940 saw Coventry city centre devastated by enemy bombing and, today, only the shell of the old cathedral still stands.

A new cathedral was built on the site of the ruins and the two stand side by side providing a stark but beautiful reminder of the city’s tragic history and inspiring resilience. The new cathedral would be a sign of faith and hope for the future, and the decision led to the cathedral’s Ministry of Peace and Reconciliation, which has provided spiritual and practical support in areas of conflict throughout the world.

It’s a very inspiring place and I was delighted to have some of my work there, even though briefly.  It’s just the kind of place I like my work to be enjoyed in!


Kalos – Jenny Meehan


Before Christmas I created a few more in my “Kalo” series.  The idea for creating these came initially from a dream/vision.  I think I have written previously about this, so I won’t go into it again.  Having an instagram account is very good for me as it encourages me to post online regularly and it makes me share my work in an quick and accessible form, which is great!



jenny meehan jamartlondon Kalo Kaleidoscope art design geometric abstract surface pattern on redbubble to buy affordable british contemporary artist

jenny meehan jamartlondon Kalo Kaleidoscope art design geometric abstract surface pattern on redbubble to buy affordable british contemporary artist



Poetry and Traumatic Brain Injury

I like using my own poetry with my work because it suggests what the work is about but does not dictate precisely to the person responding to it: their interpretation is valued by implication because the meaning is not made explicit. Poetry is an abstracted form of communication and often leaves many gaps or blanks in our understanding; these unfilled areas are just as valuable and are as much a part of the expression as what is written. It is like this in life I think: sometimes there are no words to say; a silence can speak volumes; it can allow understanding, and communicate a depth of feeling not possible with words.

I write poetry from time to time, alongside other types of writing.  I wrote a lot of poetry between the years of 2008 and 2010, when I was having real struggles coming to terms with the changes in a close relative which they experienced as a result of a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury).  Because it was such a difficult time, and emotionally and mentally I was quite literally “all over the place” writing poetry was extremely helpful as it enabled me to attempt (attempt!) to put into words very difficult and conflicting emotions.  At least with poems, the words which couldn’t be written (and couldn’t even have any presence), still existed and were there, invisible and not logically or rationally understood, but emotively just there…in their absence. That’s how it felt. The unsaid didn’t have to be taboo.

That sound’s a bit odd, I think but what I mean is, there was so much for me for which there were no words, and which there could never be any words sufficient to express.  That’s how it felt. The horror and the complete senselessness, the total insanity, that anyone could do what they did to my relative, was simply beyond comprehension.  And human minds like things neatly packaged in understanding.  We like to have things contained in knowledge and have things which we can hold onto.  It’s not an easy experience to describe.

I experienced much complex traumatic stress myself, partly as a result of my family member’s brain injury. This was, I think, accentuated because I had many early life adverse childhood experiences, and the experience of having the one relationship which previously brought some sense of sanity into my early years of life, torn apart and altered by such an injury, was beyond my own capacity to cope with.

Well, I did carry on with life, thankfully, and there were many helpful practical reasons which made life worth living, even if it seemed overwhelming and I had a lot of fear and pain to contend with. A big part of the positive move forward was to cease attempting to cope with the pain by self-medicating with alcohol and also to start a process of healing from the trauma through psychotherapy.  It really doesn’t help when some senseless violence is the cause of your relatives TBI. It added another layer of  trauma to the situation, because having experienced in earlier life myself various forms of violence, it simply feels like one thing too much.  I think the total conviction that something is too much to bear pretty much sums thing up quite succinctly.

I’m immensely grateful for the help and support I have received, and continue to receive, from various people around me. I’m still working through so much, and that’s the way life goes… Things sometimes come up which plunge you into a difficult place, but there’s no doubt that having faith in a compassionate Creator God, having relationships and connections with others, having creativity and the means to express so much both in words and images; all these things work for good and prove healing and restorative in many ways.  I have found yoga, drumming, and contemplative spirituality, mindfulness, prayer and enjoyment of the natural world all amazingly useful.

Having my life orientated, ultimately, towards Christ, (for my faith tradition is Christian) and trying to walk in the ways Christ taught, is for me the way forward.  The recovery road is endless, because learning and changing are endless and we are never “all sorted”.  It would be unwise not to embrace our brokenness.  However,  even when at times things are hard, that’s OK, for seeking truth and understanding, making healthy connections and aiming to live in love in the best way we can, is liberating (certainly is so far!) and that’s all good.

Sometimes I think I have had a silly amount of trauma in my life, but it’s not a competition, this stress and suffering matter.  We just cannot judge what people go through and don’t go through.  Often it’s mostly unseen.  I’m glad I can touch on some of mine a bit from time to time. I do this because I am able to articulate it and it’s helpful to me to do so sometimes.  I have been surprised at what I have learnt through my experiences of being a relative of a person with a traumatic brain injury. I would never have appreciated previously how much and to what extent one person’s injury can also affect another person.  There is a corporate damage which happens when one person is hurt, and often the relatives and others around a person with a traumatic brain injury need help and support in a way which is easy to under appreciate. Survivor’s guilt is complicated. 

I found the charity Headway exceptionally helpful to me.  Getting good, helpful, informed information and getting educated about certain things can help one retain ones own sanity at difficult times, because it can be very isolating and it’s totally common to feel completely alone.


I found the following a very heartening read:

I think for myself, (though I haven’t previously put the two together), that my increased involvement in visual arts and writing which started to emerge initially from around 2005, may well have begun as a helpful coping mechanism.  I know it was the case a bit later on; It was immensely beneficial for me… just the physicality of it, the contact with materials, and the way it helped me to be in the present moment. My earlier life aspirations of being an artist were something I had left behind years back; I wasn’t in a position to put my energies into the visual arts direction in the first half of my life.  That’s not a bad thing.  I think it was good to have the maturity I had later on.  It’s important to have a sense of direction as a fine artist.  It can’t come from anywhere but yourself.  It means facing yourself, and that’s not an easy thing to do.

Below a bit of blossom.  Hopefully soon I will see some in Chessington and enjoy the colour and scent. Time spent looking at nature is very well spent.



jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography


Knee Replacement Surgery

As you can see from a couple of the pages of this Artist’s Journal/Blog which are titled “The Very Patient Knee Replacement Story by Jenny Meehan” I enjoy writing at length, and my knee replacement surgery in 2017 at South West London Orthopaedic Centre, or SWLEOC, for short was a very significant life event for me.   I had become increasingly disabled, and the experience both before, during and after the knee replacement surgery inspired me to write my story, or at least that chapter of it, for other people to read.  I hoped that it might prove informative and helpful.

My knee was in a very bad state and the recovery was hard work, but well worth it.  I now enjoy walking and being able to live my life.  I’m able to carry on my artistic and creative activities much more easily than I had done for the years running up to the knee replacement surgery.  The enforced rest was very good for me.  It was hard work recovering in many respects, but it also forced me to reflect on many things, and writing about the experience was something I found helpful in the recovery process.  It became a focus for my mind, which is very important, because after a major surgery your whole body and mind and emotions are affected, and it’s vital to have focus….Both on your recovery but also on things apart from it. It can be a disorientating experience to be flung out of your usual routine into a completely new one.

Well, the knee is still going strong.  I did fall on it rather hard on the way home from yoga one day but it’s still working so no worries.  I am just loving being fully mobile and being able to walk around without any restriction at all. If I ever get to the point of needing a knee replacement revision surgery, I guess things may well be quite different in a few years time.  I found this which was of interest:

“17 Jan 2019

Robot revolution for knee replacement patients
Surgeons performing knee replacements at the South West London Orthopaedic Centre (SWLEOC), which is based at Epsom Hospital, have a new cutting edge assistant in the operating theatre – a robotics-assisted surgical system called NAVIO that helps improve accuracy during surgery.

The NAVIO surgical system (which is a hand held tool attached to a computer) uses infrared signals to produce a detailed computer model of the patient’s knee before and during the procedure. The software also helps the surgical team to work out how the knee will move after surgery, and gives real time feedback on alignment and positioning of the implants. The system can also show the surgeon a 3D image of how much bone needs to be removed before the implant is put in and improves the overall accuracy of the position.

Chief Executive Daniel Elkeles, who was given the chance to trial the new tool on a prosthetic femur bone, said: “The NAVIO surgical system is a fantastic piece of equipment and will have huge benefits for our patients. It will assist our surgeons with further improving the accuracy of placement of knee replacements, with the aim of improving their recovery. In fact, with NAVIO, we expect that patients who do not have any complications or other health conditions should be well enough to go home the day after their surgery.

“Nationally, 20% of patients are dissatisfied following their knee replacement surgery, which can often be attributed to the alignment of the replacement joint. Our SWLEOC surgeons and the theatre teams are some of the best in the world, but our new NAVIO will make this process even better, and every new knee joint will be aligned to each individual.”

Mr Feroz Dinah, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at SWLEOC, who has been leading the introduction of the NAVIO robot to the teams, said: “This is an exciting development for us. The surgeon still does the operation, but the robotic-assisted technology is a reliable way of getting the cuts to the bone exactly to where the surgeon intends. Using infra-red tracking technology, the computer creates a virtual 3-D model of the patient’s knee on the computer screen in front of the surgeon. Although the operation takes a bit longer initially as we get used to the system, early experience has shown that some patients are able to go home the following day due to reduced pain and swelling. This is a team effort, with everyone from pre-op assessment to theatre and recovery staff, as well as physiotherapy playing essential parts in this improved patient experience.”


Quoted from:


WOW!  That’s amazing!

If you are in need of a knee replacement it is really important to be well prepared for how it can impact your life.  It is a surgery which requires a lot of work from the patient afterwards to really maximise the potential positive effects.  Do take a look at my knee replacement recovery pages if you are interested in gaining a patient’s perspective and experience of knee replacement surgery in the UK.  It is going to be different for everyone, but I found it helpful reading around a bit beforehand, as it helped me to appreciate the importance of the rehabilitation process afterwards, and also to not be completely shocked by the challenges which normally follow a TKR.

I’m just grateful I can walk around… I will never take that for granted again!  I had many intentions of continuing to work on my writing from the knee replacement time of my life, hoping to narrow things down and bit, cutting it down to size and maybe making some kind of e-book or similar, but I don’t have the time to do that at the moment.  However, it’s on the internet so it’s nice to know it might prove useful to people even if it is in rather a massive textual glob!


January 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.

In commemoration of this major anniversary, London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames, working with the Landmark Arts Centre, will be showcasing artwork, poetry and prose submitted by schools, community groups and individuals from across the borough. This exhibition will be a moving commemoration of the Holocaust and, by featuring work from many different areas of our community, a fitting reflection on the national theme for the 2020 Holocaust Memorial Day: Stand Together.”



holocaust memorial jenny meehan

Image above is “Lasting Stones” an acrylic painting by Jenny Meehan ©jenny meehan

The painting is part of my painting-poem piece; the poem being titled “Tiny Bones”

So glad to be part of this exhibition.  Such terrible genocides which have happened, and still happen, have been something I have touched on in my artwork before. The senseless violence and hatred which happens in our world demands awareness and I think it’s very important never to forget how extreme things can get, if allowed and encouraged.

Quoted from above:

“Why is it so important that we remember the Holocaust and how can we make sure future generations never forget?

The Holocaust is a contemporary issue. It cannot, and should not, be an event consigned to history.

Paradoxically, the reasons for this lie in its ancient roots. The Holocaust is not bound by a few years in the mid-20th century; instead, it stretches back, past the parameters of the modern era, into the medieval age and beyond to the inception of antisemitism.

Would the Holocaust have been possible without the Protocols of the Elders of Zion? Without Dreyfus? Without the Spanish Inquisition? Antisemitism, discrimination against Jews of all walks of life, was not a new concept in 1933, but was widespread and prevalent in many countries. It is therefore incorrect to let the Holocaust be consigned to the period of the Third Reich; the Nazi regime manipulated and amplified the latent prejudices of its citizens. It did not create them.

This makes the Holocaust a contemporary issue because it demonstrates the atmosphere in which genocide can take place. How many people pertain to prejudices which are unfounded and illogical, but which are unconsciously adhered to? These beliefs survive both because they are socially acceptable and because they remain unchallenged.

There remains in our society a degree of antisemitism, but furthermore levels of xenophobia, Islamophobia, a fear of the travelling community, of black and Asian communities. Indeed a recent survey has shown these prejudices to be on the rise.

It is therefore important to remember the Holocaust because it is an example of how these trends could evolve into something far more threatening.”

It is vital to remember the Holocaust. Vital.

Here is a good site on genocide today:


My own mother, a Catholic, was born in Villingen in Germany, but immigrated with her mother to Switzerland just before the Second World War. Unfortunately she is long dead now, so I cannot ask her questions about it, and she was only a few years old, but I understand that Catholics were also in the ranks of the persecuted, which I had not realised until recently.  I will never know why they left Villingen, it may not have been related to any persecution, but somehow, for me, with so little factual knowledge about my own history, due to very little being said when it could be said, the possibility remains.


Well, that’s it for this part of my Artist’s Journal.  It has been hard to get around to writing it… Rather late in the month for it to come out.  However I find the process of writing it helpful.

Finally found a title for this painting!

Image above: Road to Recovery ©jenny meehan   Early oil painting by Jenny Meehan


Jenny Meehan – General Information


My original artwork has two main strands: Lyrical Abstraction, painterly, fluid, with a lot of focus on light, how it bounces off the surface, textures and finishes, and Geometric Abstraction (created through digital imaging software) in which I focus on flat areas of smooth, solid, and translucent colour; ideally intended to be printed on even, matt or semi-mat surfaces.

While I’m experimenting with the overlap between the two, and make it my practice to regularly try out new mediums, in order to keep my artwork fresh and steadily evolving, identifying the strands in this way is helpful for clarity.  I use writing and poetry in my art working and now prefer to use sol-silica paint over acrylics or oils, though I am still known to dabble in many different types of paint, due to their particular material and visual qualities!

If you would like to give money to help support my creative practice, I can accept it quickly and easily through the process. Simply put the following in your browser:
and follow the prompts. Please consider supporting my work in this way if it strikes a chord with you and you are able to do so. I do need support in order to continue my artworking.


Signing up as a follower on my WordPress blog ( also helps, as does sharing the posts when you receive them.  Anything you can do to help me is much appreciated!

My artwork is particularly suitable for themes of: faith, religion, philosophy, Christian, church, all faith traditions, inter-faith, spirituality, the subconscious, psychoanalytic themes, mindfulness, contemplative practices, healing, health, both physical and mental, trauma recovery, metaphysical and psychological focused writings, the devotional life, and many other subjects.

All my images are licensable and this is arranged through the Designer and Artists’ Copyright Socitety (DACS). If you wish to use my artwork, please contact me in the first instance.


Alongside my mainly lyrical abstract paintings, there is another important strand in my work which includes more of a narrative.  Well, some kind of narrative. Through my writing, and my participation in ongoing psychotherapy, I draw on my subconscious.  It’s this process of self reflection, examination, and other contemplative practices which are rooted in my own faith tradition as a Christian, alongside a good dose of yoga and West African drumming, which have created an exciting way ahead for my work with visual art.  I think it’s the relationship between my writing and visual work, particularly through poetry, which helps determine the direction in my art practice.



Victoria Miro Trip – Surface Work Exhibition


A quick shimmy around some of the paintings on show!


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018



victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


A bit of self indulgent selfies and digital alterations!

victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018

victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018

victoria miro surface works visit 2018 jenny meehan british contemporary lyrical abstraction abstract expressionist romantic painter artist non representational british female painter artist london

victoria miro surface works visit 2018


You see, I may not be hanging in a gallery like Victoria Miro’s, but I can still hang around in one, and be inspired.  Many muses sit on the shoulders of those who carry a paint brush (or any other paint applicator!)

It was great just to be there…Great encouragement among some of the remains of work done by other women.  The older I get the more wildly I feel I love painting and the more it matters.  Yet I was also thinking very much, and reflecting on the words:

Business! Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!” is a quotation from A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens


Business! Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence,

were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the

comprehensive ocean of my business!


Reflections on Artists and what their “Business” is!


With all the ambitions in the world, all the hopes of being remembered, and of having one’s painting remaining, after you die, (and hopefully in more than a charity shop), in all of the random thoughts about the significance of the work you do, and whether it would ever have a high value placed on it in the realm of financial exchanges or not…Many of us artists entertain such fancies, even though we might not admit to them.  It seems that in this current time, artists are treated as entrepreneurs, who operate primarily in order to make money.  Yet the vast majority of us, in my opinion, do what we do in order that we might continue to be able to do it.  This is a non-profit making endeavour. The motivation is not financial. It is much, much greater than that. It’s about humanity, culture, depth of experience, connection with others and with oneself. It is creating a vessel for inner life.  The inner life of us as individuals, yes, this is an essential part, and even doing this can be quite a challenge,  but this also applies to a much larger expanse… Our relationships with the world around us and the inner life of not just our own body but humanity in it’s most inter-relational dimension and expressions. Art is essential, not a side line matter, or something to hold status just because of monetary value, or not.   Any trade is always going to be a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business.  And I am very glad I have sorted this out in my own head!

Thoughts of success in the business sense of the word are most probably an illusion. For me, personally, I think this is the case, and I have happily dispensed with the ambition, (for it has popped its head in the door on a few occasions).  It’s taken time to sort out WHY I do what I do, and WHY it matters.  Art making is NOT business for me and it won’t hold that place in my life either. It’s been perfectly acceptable for artists in the past to have day jobs and also be an artist, and there hasn’t been any shame in that.  For me, my “day job” is a mother and homemaker, and undervalued in our society as this job is (not even claiming the merit of being a “job” because it is not paid work), it’s an important and worthwhile occupation.  I have to confess to being grateful that as my offspring get older, I have more and more time released for my artistic endeavours!  There is always a (mostly) healthy tension between the two.  Both affect each other and it’s an interesting relationship.  Less frustrating now than it used to be when the children were younger.

For some artists, for their art working to be a business, may be what they want and aim for…It may matter a great deal, and/or it may need to matter. It may just happen; a fortunate combination of the right factors and knowing the right people, having the funds to get where they want to go, or other advantages which pave the way forward.  Or it may be a huge struggle of the most difficult and challenging type with very little advantage or fortune, yet they manage to do it anyway.  Or a bit of both, from time to time. This is all very admirable, and I think it’s great.  It’s not my path though, and I will always be content as long as I am able to work with materials in the way that I do.  For me it is ALL about working with materials, enjoying writing, and loving relationships. That is loving…and relationships, and loving relationships!

I think that even if an artist’s work does enter the business arena, this  does NOT actually make it more valuable in any but material currency.  The value of your work is the value of your work.  It is part of your life story, and it’s significance lies mainly in that.  It is the expression of your very self and that is why it matters immensely.  I read recently somewhere…I cannot remember where it was… that art is “a vessel for the interior life” and I just love this. Love it to bits.  Involvement and commitment to the arts is a humanistic endeavour; it’s about relationships and interactions with other people and our environment.  Ideas, thoughts, new perspectives, spirituality, insights, human development.  Emotional, spiritual and mental engagement, reflection, and creative regeneration.  Now, more than ever, the interior life is in danger of being depressed.  The time to dwell, reflect, and just be… The time of gazing, experiencing, allowing space and light to exist with no other reason to need to be than that they are.  I guess that is my painting popping into my head now.

Artists bring the artistic imagination into everyday life.

Creative expression is a fundamental human right.

Let’s not forget that.


We all, naturally, are pleased when people appreciate our work as artists and show they value what we do. We are especially pleased when collectors decide to buy our work and pay money for it, because money is very useful indeed and can open lots of creative doors in terms of enabling us to try out new ideas, develop professionally, and increase our skills.   Unfortunately, this cannot be counted upon.  It isn’t sufficient to keep us to the task we are engaged with.  A lot of strength and determination need to come from within.  If thoughts of public appreciation and recognition are realistic or not, (and it’s always nice when work is appreciated) ultimately, it doesn’t really matter one bit, because indeed, it’s just “a drop of water” anyway, this money matter.  The business of life, in truth,  is much greater.  I find it helpful to remind myself regularly of this though, because I get so caught up in what I am doing it’s easy to loose all perspective!  Such is the problem of any passion, I suppose. This is most probably why I am taking the time to write what I am now.  I write to myself, as much as to anyone else!

So I am content with my selfies in this gallery, with esteemed work behind me, even though not my own!  Great inspirational visit, much appreciated.

Kingston Artists’ Open Studio!

Kingston Artists’ Open Studios (OS18) will be taking place on 9/10th and 16/17th June 2018 from 11am to 5pm each day. I will be enjoying the kind hospitality of one of my KAOS artist companions just a short walk from Kingston Town centre, not far from the Kingston Gate of Richmond Park.  I will be part of the KAOS 9 studios which is based at 14 Liverpool Rd KT2 7SZ   Parking available (metered Sat)

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

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

Hope to see you! Jenny Meehan

I need and appreciate greatly your support!  I don’t take part in any other event, so the Annual Kingston Artist’s Open Studios in Kingston Upon Thames Surrey is the only time I get out there and invest time in this type of activity.  Most of my collectors come across me in other ways.  But it’s a good way to meet me and other very talented creatives!

Basically I work on a non-profit making basis, as any money I get from my creative activities gets fed straight back into my creative project.    Materials, professional development, research activities and writing, plus all the associated tasks which are part of my practice all take time and money. I am fortunate that I can work in the way I do, and I never take it for granted.

Like many artists, I don’t have  profit making aspirations, for me it is simply a matter of wanting to continue to be able to do what I do in life. To be true to myself. And share what I have with others, if it helps and enhances their life in any way possible. I sell my paintings when I have spent sufficient time learning from them and when they have been exhibited.

I sell my original paintings for between £200 and £400, which is amazingly affordable.  I do this deliberately because I would rather my paintings be affordable and bring pleasure to others in an accessible way.  If something strikes a chord with you about my work, then follow your instinct and buy one if you can. If your are not able to, then thanks to the wonders of the internet, I am glad you can at least see them that way.

There is such a wide variety of artists and their work.  All so different and wonderfully unique.

So come along and support your local creative community.  Kingston Artists’ Open Studios is a voluntary organisation which supports creativity!


© Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved lyrical abstract expressionist colourful textural art painting spirituality christian religious faith licensable image book covers etc see

joy pain painting by jenny meehan © Jenny Meehan DACS All Rights Reserved lyrical abstract expressionist colourful textural art painting spirituality christian religious faith licensable image book covers etc see

Joy/Pain Painting by Jenny Meehan .  One of the works which will be displayed as part of this years super Surrey arts event: “Kingston Artists’ Open Studios”. VERY busy at the moment getting work ready for this.


“My Muybridge” Exhibition at Kingston Museum


At the same time as the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios is the “My Muybridge” Exhibition, flyer below.

My piece is rather dark and delves into the subconscious mind of Eadweard Muybridge as I imagine it might have been.  Work is a funny thing.  We can do fantastic and amazing things, but in the end it is our being which makes the most significant mark of our existence.  What we do matters, of course, but nothing can take the place of happiness, contentment, relationships, love.  It’s very important for artists to remember this, because we get so caught up in our work.  This is lovely, and yet our work is only one little aspect of us in the end.  I guess I felt I wanted to go beyond his work, as this has had its impact, and it’s out there, well known, appreciated, clearly seen. And it will always be seen and noted.  But I tend to be interested in the things which are not so obvious, and while  speculative, and imaginative, it gave me a lot of pleasure to make this painted collage.  I did this after doing a great deal of research on reports and perspectives, both factual and imaginative,  on Eadweard_Muybridges personal life, as much as we know.

If you are not familiar with Eadweard Muybridge you can do your own little bit of research here…


Here is an extract from my statement about the work.  Unfortunately the artist’s statements are not shown in the exhibition.  This is a bit of a shame I think, as often new perspectives on a subject are made much clearer when the artist’s thinking and approach; their rationale, is at least glimpsed at.

“My creative practice includes poetry and painting and the relationships between the two. My interest in the subconscious provided the foundation for this work which touches on both lack of affect and the murder of a man.

The Mind’s Eye
What thoughts and memories
might dwell in the unconscious mind of the artist
as he works?
Projected onto models…
Figures of his own past
touching new pain in the mind’s eye?
Shot images…
they infiltrate the heart
yet, even the most animated
leave it
so solitary.

Jenny Meehan 2017”


Quite a nice change for me to produce something with a particular subject in mind from the outset. Immense amount of research went into the work.


artists and subconscious mind, artist interpretation of muybridge, kingston museum exhibition 2018, british female contemporary artist jenny meehan, brain injury muybridge and emotional affect, imaginative interpretation, projection into creation, minds eye muybridge artwork jenny

minds eye muybridge artwork jenny



Kingston Arts at Kingston Museum My Muybridge exhibition surrey cultu

Kingston Arts at Kingston Museum My Muybridge exhibition surrey cultural event 2018


Things which make me happy:  Art Collectors who kindly let me know how they feel about my work!

This lovely quote, written by one of my collectors!  It is always a great happiness to sell and painting, and this is not a simple matter of money, though we all need that, it is far, far more!

“I thought your picture was the finest thing in that exhibition — I am very pleased to be acquiring it. I have lots of things in my collection — Terry Frost, Clifford Fishwick, Sandra Blow, Barbara Hepworth, John Hoyland, Keith Vaughan … Also a fin de siecle artist called Charles Conder.”  

I keep the buyer confidential as I am not in the habit of listing other people’s personal possessions, but it’s bringing a smile to my face, of course!  It’s a few years back now.


Kaleidoscope: Colour and Sequence in 1960s British Art

1 April 2017 – 3 June 2018

Looks very good!

Text copied and pasted from the website:

“An Arts Council Collection Touring Exhibition

British art of the 1960s is noted for its bold, artificial colour, alluring surfaces and capricious shapes and forms, yet these exuberant qualities are often underpinned by a strong sense of order, founded on repetition, sequence and symmetry. Bringing together outstanding examples of painting and sculpture from the Arts Council Collection and other major UK collections, Kaleidoscope examines 1960s visual art through a fresh and surprising lens, bringing into view the relationship between colour and form, rationality and irrationality, order and waywardness.

As the first Arts Council Collection survey of 1960s British art in over twenty years, Kaleidoscope assumes a wide angle, looking across media and movements to find fresh correspondences. From this perspective, the mind-bending surfaces of Op Art, the flattened repetition of Pop, the mathematical order of Constructivism, and the sequential placement of brightly-coloured abstract units found in New Generation sculpture find a common language shaped by sequence and symmetry.

Kaleidoscope represents the work of over twenty artists including: David AnnesleyAnthony CaroRobyn DennyTess JarayPhillip KingKim LimMary MartinEduardo PaolozziBridget RileyTim ScottRichard SmithWilliam Tucker and William Turnbull.” 

I am not going to get there to see it in person, but thankfully so many resources online, I can have a very good research session!!!


“Christ Under the Tree/Contemplation/Garden of Gethsemane”

It is always a great pleasure to sell a painting.  I find it interesting and exciting to meet those who decide they like my painting so much they want an ongoing relationship with it!!!  Some of my painting I hold onto, (often for quite a while!) maybe because I am still learning something from it, or I am wanting to hold it for an exhibition or event, or I would like to do some writing around it.  I am always happy to let it go… I see this as part of the process in fact, and I have no wish to die under a pile of my own work!  But I do not paint in order to produce.  Bit of a paradox there!  I have realised I need to keep the creation process completely separate from any other journey the work might make.  The painting has a second life, apart from me, and it has the life which has been happening during its creation. The two are not connected. The reason for the paintings existence cannot be equated in any way with what will happen to it.  It must speak only for itself.  And that must be completely enough reason for its existence.

I have painted only a couple of works as commissions over the last ten years.  I don’t doubt there’s a place for this, but it is not my usual way of working at the present time.  The very good thing about painting something for an external reason or purpose,  is it can introduce very specific challenges which are great to get stuck into. The “Mind’s Eye” painted collage was like this.  And I enjoyed it, for the challenge. It involved a lot of research which takes time.  But it is interesting intellectually.  In creating something for a particular purpose things often get more conceptual at a stage when I wouldn’t normally think in clear thoughts.  Usually the thinking and reflection comes long after I have painted something.  So getting all conceptual can be an interesting dimension to a work.  Or sometimes the challenge can be practical, as it was when I created a painting for the company “All Glass”  So I am always open to external reasons for a painting to be.  However focused I am on what I am doing, I think I always need to be open to change, development, challenge, debate, discussion.  But above all,  nothing should interfere with the process of creation, and the relationship I have with my painting needs to be focused.  This seems to be the main challenge in painting, for me I find.  It’s an act of contemplation which takes time and discipline.  It’s great!


The painting below  “Christ Under the Tree/Contemplation/Garden of Gethsemane (yes, THREE titles!)


holy week art church of england hook jenny meehan

I am pleased that this has now a new home.  Also such a lovely comment and feedback on it.  As recent I am not going to quote, but as always, thank you.


Another Exhibition at Kingston Museum


me in front of anagrams kingston museum banner surrey art event

me in front of anagrams kingston museum banner

Gracious!  This was me in 2016… I have lost quite a bit of weight thankfully!  Kingston Museum chose to use part of my painting on their banner which was good, and here I am standing in front of it!  That was before my knee replacement when I couldn’t walk very far or well at all!  Apologies, this is a bit of repetition.  I write in a piecemeal fashion.  Happens sometimes.  Cutting down time by leaving as it is!

You can see some very interesting pieces of art, including my own offering, at the My Muybridge exhibiton!   Details:  Kingston Art 2018: My Muybridge’ exhibition at Kingston Museum 4 May – 7 July 2018 Wheatfield Way, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2PS


Kingston Arts at Kingston Museum My Muybridge exhibition surrey cultu

Kingston Arts at Kingston Museum My Muybridge exhibition surrey cultural event 2018

Ooops! Bit random, already wrote about that.  Must remember not to write my blog in the same way I paint my paintings! Piecemeal!

Wrote that earlier too!  Ha Ha!  More of the same!


Studio Tent… In the Spring and Summer it’s a wonderful place!




studio tent jenny meehan




There’s a lot of work going on in my studio tent at the moment.  This time of year in the run up to the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios is always full on!  Love it!  Yet I don’t tend to share my work at this stage in the making…It feels better to keep it to myself.  There is a lot of colour mixing going on.  A fair amount of finishing off too.  A lot of preparation for the Kingston Artists’ Open Studios.

So what I can show you now is a few past photos from the archives.  Though I don’t tend to paint from direct observation very much at all anymore,  I still get my inspiration from creation around me.  Everything goes in through the eyes.  I love looking and look hard as much as possible.  Taking in all the wonder and beauty around me.  Endless beauty and design, beautifully expressed.  So much. So immense. So inspiring.


©jenny meehan

Creation and nature is so wonderful, I love it!  Cannot bear to copy something like this flower above, because it is so perfect anyway!  Do enjoy taking photos though!  It’s all colour, light and composition which are such a joy.



A small selection of memory images

I’ve posted these because I don’t tend to show my photography anymore…it’s all paintings I exhibit.  But my archives are full of photographs and my photographs are memories which still beckon in visual directions and serve some kind of purpose for me in reminding me of things which have made an impression on me and which I thought worthy to remember.  Though my photographic output is not what it was, due to the need to focus on painting, I like to share past digital imagery.


jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome


jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome


jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome


jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome


jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome

jenny meehan jamartlondon photography monochrome




jenny meehan photography

jenny meehan photography


As you can see, water is a repeated theme.  In various forms, from ice to unfrozen!  Vast amounts and small amounts.  I spend a lot of time looking at water!  Water is an element which repeatedly inspires! It’s immensely relaxing, interesting, and amazing!




Digging Up Old Posts…Fragment from 2012 Jenny Meehan WordPress Artist’s Journal

I always enjoy a reminisce, and here is one:

“If you are in London this Summer,  take a look at the “Not The Royal Academy” exhibition of original artwork at Llewellyn Alexander (Fine Paintings) Ltd situated very close to Waterloo Station. There is a  varied selection of paintings on show, and seeing them makes me think I really ought to try to enter something into the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition next year. It helps to think that if you don’t get something in the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition itself, you could have a chance of getting something on show at Llewellyn Alexander’s “Not The Royal Academy” exhibition instead.

The exhibition of paintings at Llewellyn Alexander is changed around every three weeks, so I think I need to go and take another look soon.  The paintings are representational and taking a quick look at the website it looks like the prices are around the £400 mark in the main.  It is a very pleasant gallery, they are always very welcoming and though the space is quite compact, they always seem to use it well ensuring that the do have quality, fine painting on show, rather than paint squeezed out a tube, with a long explanation of what it means!

Thinking about the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition , and possibly entering a painting in it, it is a lot of hassle for a very small chance of success, but on the other hand, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained” comes to mind.  You never know.  It’s all a bit random I am sure, pot luck really, but it is exposure and I have realised that I can save some money by reducing the pages on my website next time it comes up for renewal, so I might just re allocate the money saved to enter the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition next year.  If I paint a representational painting, it might get into the Llewellyn Alexander show, so I might just do that.”

I was up in London near Waterloo Station recently and noticed that Llewellyn Alexander was, by all appearances, at the end of its’s life.  And I find it is all done and dusted!

“After 31 Happy years of trading,
the Llewellyn Alexander Gallery
closed its doors on February 24, 2018.

Best wishes to the many customers
and artists who enjoyed our exhibitions.”

Well, all things do come to an end.  But I will miss the gallery immensely.  It was a lovely place to visit…I particularly liked their miniatures and the “Not the Royal Academy” exhibitions.  The year after I wrote the text above I did submit to the Royal Academy and then, rejected in due course, trundled over to Llewellyn Alexander with my painting “Upper Room”.  Interestingly, though it is an abstract painting, they received it and exhibited it, and this is something I am very grateful for.  I felt it  somewhat of a compliment, bearing in mind the work is so abstract.  It’s a great relief when people can see quality in an abstract painting.  For indeed, though bold, abstract and  bright, the painting did involve a sensitivity and discernment which is not always spotted by all who cast their eyes on it.

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.


I do still have this original painting, so contact me if interested.  I am normally happy to part with paintings if they have been shown in a public exhibition at least once.  And if I have dwelt and learnt from them long enough, which is the case with this one.   I am happy for it to go to another life now.  It’s a signature painting…What do I mean by that?  I think it marks a decisive point in my creative evolution. It was awareness of presence and the importance of this in a painting which became a clearer goal.   And those glass beads, of course, and pure pigment.  Which continue to feature in much of my painting.   I sell my original paintings, when ready to roll away with the waves and embark on their new life with another person between around £130 – £500.  I would rather have them appreciated by other people than just hanging around here, so keep the price on the low side… Gotta be realistic.  There’s a lot of wonderful art work in the world. A lot of choice.  My prayer is simply that the paintings find a friend they can live with, are appreciated, and that the person that buys them LOVES the painting, and continues to get a lot of solace and enjoyment from gazing at it.  Then it has done its job and I have done mine.  And as long as I can continue to do the work I do I am happy.   Here’s some old text about the “Upper Room” or “The Upper Room”.

Here’s some information on my painting “The Upper Room” which is to be included in the “Not the Royal Academy” exhibition at Llewellyn Alexander (Fine Paintings) LTD.  (I just love to include the “fine paintings” part!   I know I could miss it out quite easily!)

“The Upper Room” is a painting in which I started with no idea of the direction it might take me in, instead responding to each mark and colour as the painting progressed in a process based approach. Using both my instincts and formal considerations, I ended up with this. Emotionally, it made me think of the New Testament account of Jesus taking the Last Supper with his disciples, I think because of the sense of presence and warmth it communicated to me emotionally, (The Holy Spirit, the comforter, “I will be with you”) even though it contains a large area of black. Also, because of the way it is held together with a building type structure; upper and a lower areas, and suggestions of both entrance and exit. Pentecost also happened in an “Upper Room” though not the same one, I don’t think.


Well, that is more than enough for this month! I have a habit of continually popping different pieces into place!



If you would like to give money to help support my creative practice I can accept it quickly and easily through the process. Simply put the following in your browser: and follow the prompts. Please consider supporting my work in this way if it strikes a chord with you and you are able to do so. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a way via this system for me to send a “Thank you” to you, so you will need to just simply know that I appreciate it very much indeed!    Putting work into exhibitions does unfortunately cost money, and yet I like to get it out there.  Submission fees are the bane of my life, and I will spare you the moan. Because I have moaned before on this blog and there is no need to moan again!  (The Kingston Museum Exhibition was fine, by the way,  and no gripe with that, very very good arrangements, and very fair,  but so many exhibitions require considerable chunks of cash JUST to submit…)   That’s even before you get your work shown, (or not).

My ego doesn’t matter, it’s not about that. It is NICE to have work selected, yes, it’s a nice affirmation, but only a bonus. An artist makes their work for themselves primarily. The have to hang it in the gallery of their soul and be completely happy for its presence to inhibit them forever!  But when it gets hung elsewhere, it’s great too, because it is shared, and who wants to keep something all for themselves when it can be shared? But It’s the way things are this paying to show your work to others. A right pain.  Sometimes just a small amount.  Not a problem. Just a bit of a shame when money is made out of artists wish to exhibit their work, sometimes so ruthlessly.   As an artist, you just want your work to be seen, because as music is made to be heard, art is made to be seen. Simple as that.

Jenny Meehan on

Redbubble is a great “print on demand” website and I have some of my images there.  The world is full of fabulous artists and Redbubble is a good place for buying merchandise which is original, exciting and contemporary.  The artists on Redbubble get a royalty payment from any items that you purchase there, so it is one way to support the creative community and help artists gain a little bit of income from their work.  Do take a look!

I get around 30% of the price you pay for the merchandise you buy.  Every little helps!




Just digitalized two recent paintings “Icy Landscape” and “Tower”.  After “Whatever the Weather”, and enjoying painting with a lesser number of colours, I’ve taken the plunge to paint with just one, and just two, very watered down acrylics, and what a pleasure that was.  Working on the bare canvas with various textures and fillers created an interesting ground for working on top with the dilute acrylics.  These two paintings are almost like notes….There are a few passages I will take special note of, and just having them up on the wall serves as a memory aid and reference point for elements which I may well use again.  Though I have got very much into experimenting with different hues over the year, and in particular, experimented with  varying pigment load in the paint, to work in this delicate way, both with boldness and yet also paying attention to the finer details, and to see depth created in a kind of watercolour way, is very exciting and definately a path to travel on in the future.   Maybe a little return to my work with oils during 2010?  Oh, oils would be a fine thing with more drying space.

Not great to view paintings like this on the net, because of their need for close observation under good light in order to appreciate the tactile qualities, however, must do.  The fragments shown might help.

Starting with the end of my title strand, rather than the beginning,  with notification that my old website is now no longer operating and instead of, I have a new site   I think the new website might risk sounding a little pretentious, but my reasoning is rather basic.  I liked the Jam part, because a while back someone nick named me “Jenny Jim Jams” which sounded rather nice and relaxed, and I liked it as a nick name.  Also my initials are JAM and I now sign my work this way.  There were already a couple of websites with jamart in the title, so, with the location included, seemed a sensible option.   So http://www.jamartlondon it is.   and the com is pretty meaningless, of course, but seems the preferred ending for a website if you can get it.

Though the weather is cold and uninviting,  I find this time of year very good for research and getting around London and the surrounding areas to see what other artists are doing.  The value of looking at other peoples work should never be underestimated.  Artists both past and present work in distinctive ways which only add to inspiration and clarification of where we ourselves are located.  What is more, it brings joy, to see creativity expressed in so many marvellous ways.

When visiting Wimbledon Art Studios I always pop in and see Andrew Fyvie’s      tactile and skilfully constructed sculptural pieces which sit so well next to the collages of Paul G Emmerson, ( no site,    and artistically strike the same kind of notes, rather like different musicians in an orchestra or something like that.  I like very much Paul Emmerson’s latest work: the longer format works very well, and the panels at the sides are in accord with the general “interiors” feeling…maybe in my mind suggesting movement through one space to another, (rather as moving from one room to another).   I think this may be the thought behind my feeling.   It was very pleasant to actually meet Andrew Fyvie, as I have not done that before, and learn more about how he constructs his work, and about some of the materials he uses.

While this causes a certain amount of conflict within me, (as I do like a bit of 3D form making myself), and now I have a list of a few materials I would like to try out,  it is worth suffering the tension of a pull to three dimensionality, because this is not a bad thing for a painter to feel.  I am aware, for example, that when I visit exhibitions with both paintings and sculpture in them, it is normally the sculpture which leaves the greatest and most profound impression on me.  I think this is because of the tension in space.  Hard to put into words, and I am most probably terrible at it, well, (at least compared to some other very accomplished writers) but I have been thinking about space experience when viewing paintings and space experience when viewing sculpture.  The fact that I have to walk around sculpture is dynamically engaging.  The physical space between elements/parts/features of a sculpture has a presence which is more intimate, more enquiring of me, in terms of emotional response.  It is more blatant. More intrusive. More confrontational.  On the other hand, the space experience in a painting is more of a suggestion.  It is generally more fickle.  There are more whispers?  Sometimes less reliability?  (Light will change the surface of a sculpture however, so alterations come in that way.)  Light on a painting also changes… something I have been experimenting very much with myself recently and most probably the reason for my focus on texture and the different ways I can make light bounce off the surface of the canvas.  This can alter the way space is perceived in a painting too. And this, even without or with very little colour, as I am now exploring, which I will post up soon no doubt.  But I think that because of all the angles that light approaches a sculpture, there is  a  more lasting  and immediate presence.   Plus the contrast between solidity and space.  It is greater.  (I stumble and trip with words, as I alway will do. I will continue to mull, pointlessly, over the matter! )

AM interested in this attraction I have right now.  I like paint too much to do without it.  However, at a recent visit to Poussin Gallery (Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3UW) to see “Douglas Abercrombie: New Paintings and Peter Hide: New Sculpture, it was Peter Hides emotive heavy but fluid steel constructions which caught me in themselves.  Not keen on the smaller pieces…the scale of the larger works fitted better with the work in my opinion, but the way he uses the steel , from the folded “soft” areas, and the harder more angular forms, to the little incisions and the “bites”…the “damaged” areas to the carefully attended to part: this all worked together in a perfect balance of, well, I guess I am back to the structure and flow idea.  I do like steel too, of course.  And having spent a good few pleasurable hours manipulating it myself, I understand (a little) and respect the skill involved in creating these sculptures. That oxidised surface too…like velvet.    See

Popped  in to see Paul Lemmon   and enjoyed seeing his recent work, which I like very much.  New subject matter…figures by water, sun splashed, and lots of diagonal brushstrokes, (as previously), but something is happening which I am excited to see…lots of the new studies have a greater presence due to less markmaking but strokes placed with the benefit of further years of painting experience, which comes across more strongly and I think even more effectively. Something is moving forward.  This is essential to any artist, progression.  I am very much looking forward to seeing what happens, and one of the reasons I make a point of visiting Wimbledon Art Studios regularly is that I find it very interesting and useful to see different artists work over a span of several years, as the interest lies not only in the products produced but viewing what is happening from a distance.  A distance that is only possible with the passage of time.

Took a look at the work of Vaughn Horsman    who has only been at Wimbledon Art Studios for a few months.  Got very excited about this work.  One, I love wood and this appears to be his main material and two I have for many months been thinking along the lines of what makes a beautiful work of art is a balance between structure (I guess I mean mathematics…in the sense of forms being geometrically based/constructed…((for me as a painter, then we would speak of the grid, I suppose) and illogical, random, flow…organic, free formed, with no underlying determinate.  So, of course, I loved these creations.  How exciting to see!  It is new to me, and encouraging because I really do feel that this is something significant…and to see digital technology in tandem with practical, manual skill has got to be good.  We live in a different age, the whole thing seemed to say to me.  (At the risk of sounding profound!)  I teased him about  the whole thing being  Geeky.  (But that is a positive, in my opinion, if you are creating things like this!) I trust that forgiveness is extended my way!

Spurred on by the wonders of technology, I have taken some time for some geometrical playing around myself, and have come to the unexpected place of rather enjoying flipping various shapes around in Photoshop.  This is, I think, of use to me…just the sheer speed is helpful and it is allowing me to experiment with what may well become some underlying structure/composition to use in later paintings.  I am undecided right now, but have recognised on reviewing my work over 2012 that I do like to have a strong sense of structure in my work, and the paintings I felt would take me forward into the following year are indeed the ones which had plenty to hang the fluid and well, more illusive, marks, gestures and accidents on.  (Nice title for a show that, “Marks, Gestures, and Accidents”…must make a note of that. ) Some of the playing has produced imagery which I will get printed onto paper, and then play about with it that way too, maybe with some cutting and some paper stencils, which I am most fond of.  Some of them I feel have reached their own ending, though it is too tempting with Photoshop to experiment…forever.   Paint is better though.   Here are some of my playful experiments:

It is such a delight to experiment so freely and fluently with composition, and I will continue to develop and play with some of the experiments over the Winter Months.  It is likely that after a few months of working with these I will select some and get them printed out for one of my exhibitions next year.  It’s only by doing that you learn, and being able to work with shapes, the symbolism possible through different combinations, and quickly altering basic colours (while no way as subtle as pigment, for a rough idea, the screen colours are fine)is just great for me right now.   I cannot afford to experiment in this way physically due to time and money/material restrictions, and using Photoshop at least provides some foundational sketches, some of which might well end up being used in paintings, and others which may well stand up on their own two feet as prints.

I’m FREEZING!  Keeping the house warm in one room is fine, but means that walking around the house becomes very daring, as I disturb the air, and wonder if I really can wear gloves indoors?  Why not?  No reason.  Just feels odd.  It is soooooooo tempting to turn up the heating, but just a small thought of rising electricity and gas bills quickly changes my mind. (Quick diversion in discourse!)


Lots of impressionistic scenes.

Lots of weak non-objective painting.

Those were the negatives for me.

But each to their own, and if it sells, it sells, and that’s what this event is all about.   And we all have our own likes and dislikes.  I won’t complain, I won’t explain. 

BUT!!!!   Standing out for me, oh JOY, I found myself meeting two paintings by Philip Maltman, who I have not come across before.  I liked “No Leaf” the best.  My heart!  How inspiring to see painting like this!  Philip Maltman’s painting was at the fair via ArtDog…

Other bright lights for my visit:

John Scarland “Large Picnic”, Dooze Storey “Red Bow”  Charlie O’Sullivan “Gathering Thoughts on an Incoming Tide” (Nice Title too!) Roisin O’Farrell “A Moment of Truth”  De Angel “Power Struggle” Nicholas Chistiakov “The Red Room with Two Visitors” Relton Marine “Low Row II” and Russel Frampton “Winterbourne, Droves Road”.

They will be in my notes, for sure.  What interesting work.  I find it vital to identify artists and particular paintings by them, in order to spend time looking and learning from the evidence of their hand and eye.  Skill is learnt, and it takes years of experience and years of  study.  “Gift”  is not something which you are just “given”; there is an element of that, yes, but it must be grown and developed, and this takes practice.  I am finding at the Art Fairs I am making a point of visiting right now that in some painting, the years of work reveal themselves…You can actually see it in the painting.  It’s an almost tangible sense of what the eye has seen and the traces it has left on the painting (and this is the same for non-objective painting!).  I think it’s about inner vision, being communicated.  Wether expressed through recognisable objects or not, there seems to be a point at which you can say this has been successful or not, and it is the somewhat mysterious “point” (which maybe is the meeting of the emotion and intellect) along with the drive, of the artist, and the meeting of that with the materials, which creates a kind of joyous and beautiful creation.

My visit to the Affordable Art Fair has pretty much sealed my decision to concentrate on non-objective painting this year, even though I struggle internally with the feeling that I OUGHT to be painting objects!  If people don’t have the eyes to see non-objective painting, if they don’t give it the time, if they don’t give themselves the time, then let that be their loss. Not mine. One has to stay true, and I haven’t signed a contract with myself not to paint representational paintings; there is a time and a season for everything.  I can always indulge myself with a little obvious subject matter, if I please.

I think it more pressing right now to work on developing an intimacy with my materials, and I feel that through this, whatever I do, my painting will benefit.  There is also the need, whatever goes on around me, to bury myself in what I am painting in the moment I am painting it.  I loved the painting of all those painters I have listed, and I will, as always, take the time to find out more about their work and see more of their paintings.  It’s on my agenda this year to widen my awareness of what is going on around me, and I am already learning a lot through this process.  It’s helping me steer my own way ahead, and enabling me to develop more focus and direction in my painting.

I’ve also been to see “Die Harder” 22 Feb – 6 April at Southwark Cathedral.  An amazing sculpture by David Mach RA.  The blurb says: “The figure of Christ in paint and anguish pierced by thousands of spears, that single body acting as a conduit for the cares and woes in the world.  That body can feel everything and the hangers don’t just pierce: they stand on end, electrified like thousands of antennae transmitting messages out into the word and receiving them back simultaneously”

I’ve started another blog, with Blogger:

It’s going to have pretty much the same as this one in it I expect.

I’ve just seen the Joan Mitchell exhibition of some of her later works at Hauser and Wirth and LOVED the scale of them.  I also noticed a little iridescent paint on one of them, which I am experimenting with myself at the moment.  I have been drawn to her painting for some time.   I love the sheer single-mindedness of it.

“Contemporary Artist”  Mmmm.  Images of pretension stand before me, and I don’t like them.  But when people look for visual art on the net, they look for “art” and “artists”.  So I have to settle for that.

Back from an excellent course at West Dean College led by Ted Vincent.  “Woodcarving” was great…I like wood, I had a feeling I would (Ahhh! I did not intend that pun!) and I learnt some very useful things, most importantly for me how to sharpen my tools and which tools to purchase.  I will carry on, maybe not in 3D…I liked working in 3D, but I have been wanting to try out some woodcuts.  It’s a logical next step forward. 

Here’s an image of my produce.  I am playing around with how I like it best arranged, and since taking this image, I think I have found a better way, but here it is for now.  I also have some small adjustments to make.  I have to admit to a certain complacency on day three of the course, as I had done the majority of the cutting, and I wanted to practice sharpening tools.  So I faffed  about.   I liked the polishing wheel and the grinder: it brought back memories of my Dad, a Locksmith and Toolmaker, and I spent a fair bit of time first making tools blunter than they were when I got hold of them, and finally making them sharper.   


Still have some adjustments to make.  Was a lovely course, great tutor, really helpful and encouraging.  Did a fair amount of research over the time there too.  Looking at Paul Nash (again!), examples of Japanese pattern/printmaking, and Christian symbolism.   


I could make that title so much more wordy,  if it wasn’t so early in the morning.

My feet now are recovered from my thirteen hour walk around this years London Art Fair. 

I joined a guided tour led by Pryle Behrman Curator of Art Projects, and I was glad of this because it was interesting and nice and relaxed, not pretentious, which I feared.  He said that he would be happy to talk until “the cows came home”.  I am still waiting for “the cows to come home”, and so the talk I imagine is still in progress…

What stood out for me, alongside waiting for the cows to come home, was, of course, some of the paintings.   Judith Bridgland’s paintings hit me like a kick in the stomach, which doesn’t sound good, but does at least express a little bit of the punch which someone who handles paint like it springs from the tips of their fingers can give to a viewer through the experience of looking at their work.  I am not a great lover of thickly applied paint generally, but when its done like this…I love it.  

Seeing one of Henry Moores prints on hessian was also a highlight for me.  The scale and physicality of the print on the surface of the hessian was something which i have wanted to view “in the flesh” for a while.  It made me note down to remember to experiment with some hessian in my own work.  I’ve done it before but didn’t like it.  However, that’s never a reason not to try something again.   The Boyle Family’s work “Study For The Fire Station With Melted Records” 1989 (Painted fibre Glass) was another beam of similar happiness because to see the actual work in front of my eyes was a proper encounter and one which I have wanted for longer than I can remember,  Well, I can just remember stumbling across their work as a teenager;  it made a huge impression on me.  Looking back on my own work over the last few years, particularly the series of photographs of the ground in my local area, I can see how it seeped into my life unawares.  The unexpected benefits of pushing pushchairs around my locality!

I purchased a book on Michael Honnor.  Because I like landscape paintings, and while I don’t sit outside much and paint myself, to see his work reminds me that I ought to.  Plus I like very much the way he draws into the paint and I need to be continually reminded of that!  I have a notebook full of other painters and paintings which in some way “fed” me, and reminded me either of something which I have just started, or need to try out,  in terms of technique or subject matter.  It’s quite beneficial to see such a mix of work in one place and as the time goes by you gradually recognise more clearly what it is that you are personally drawn to. This itself can be quite helpful in terms of being able to recognise what you love and where your passion and interests lie, and, free to see it in others work and not your own, you get ideas as to different ways you might extend your own experiments.  I am sadly lacking in the amount of critical input I would ideally like in my painting practice right now, (apart from a few fellow painter friends), however, one must be one’s own critic and sustain that position throughout.  I know.  I like other people’s perspectives though.  They are so much more interesting than my own!

On the Duncan R Miller Fine Arts stand “Paxos Fishing Boat” beckoned me…A boat with flowers tied to the front of it.   I’ll say no more, but remember this, and resolve to explore this motif for myself sometime. 

Robert Denny’s 1958  oil on board  painting  (June 1958) cried out for more space, and it’s a problem viewing large paintings in settings like this, but what an inspiration it was.  Very strong dark and light compositional structure held the mixture of strong, heavy brushstrokes with the lighter more fluid areas.   I took some time with this painting, asking “What exactly makes it work so well?” and returned (once more) to the underlying conclusion, (which seems to be proved to me time and time again), that when the composition is right, you can do whatever you want and it will look good.  Well, maybe not “whatever” but let’s just say, you can manage to carry things off in a respectable manner! 

So I leave the fair, full to bursting with paintings I need to paint.  It’s painful, these time limitations and so I must make a hasty exit from this journalling matter to at least increase my chances of getting some block of time today to get some painting done.  I’m pleased to say that I haven’t seen anything like some of the directions I have in my mind to pursue, so that’s good.  Nothing is new, but it’s exciting to think that in some small way you might be wandering off the well trodden path into an area of the forest which is relatively unexplored. 


Now is a time for me to look back on work carried out over the year.  This painting “Break Out/Promised Land” was interesting to paint.  I concentrated on bringing texture and different surfaces into play and it was quite nice to let the textural information inform choices in colour and the direction of the next marks or brushstrokes.  I let the painting grow naturally, so I didn’t have an idea from the outset of how it would develop, but seeing it at the end it rang true.  I have learnt through it, which is my main objective.  It would be nice to do some more of these,  and it is the case that acrylic paint is just the right medium to use for paintings like this.  I always feel slightly disappointed with the colour intensity of acrylic paint, though adding pigment of course is always an option.   I have not painted with an acrylic underpainting and oil on top yet… so maybe this is something I might explore next.

(Note: later sold to a collector)

Looking back and reviewing work this year.  A lot of experimenting with texture.  And pigment.  A lot of painting done from an uncertain beginning but somehow finding itself in the process, and other paintings with a clear design, which only have a small element of unpredictability.  This painting “Sack Of A Great House” came straight from the unconscious into being, and rang true, which is pleasing.  However, I hope to spend a little more time soon with a clearer idea of subject matter from the outset…Not so much as to ruin the important role of the process, but I think the painting I have done so far suggests that I can trust myself to express what I want, and with that knowledge, I feel confident to set to the business of painting with more assurance than I have so far demonstrated.  There is always a strong sense of direction, even in the most spontaneous painting.  Maybe I should create more of an environment for the imagination, pull things in a little tighter, and see what happens with that?

Rain, Rain,Rain.

I just want to put the final coating of Keim 694 Waterbased semi-permanent anti-graffiticoating ON THE MURAL.  It’s sitting here in front of me, but cannot be used “if rain could fall within 5 to 6 hours”.  The way the last few days have been going, all my expected times and days have melted into the ground and evaporated!  I haven’t even seen the mural since John last came in to finish the cartoons, so I haven’t even seen it finished yet!  Hopefully one day next week….

Once I have coated the mural with the anti-graffiticoating, I will be working on a presentation on the whole process for the school.  And then the work really will be finished.  I have to say a really big thank you to Keim Mineral Paints again for their part in the project, which in the end turned out to be very significant, because I found their silica-sol paint “Soldalit” of great use for the linear parts of the painting, and John used this for the cartoons too.   I now intend to continue to use Soldalit for other exterior murals I paint, as the colour range is fantastic, and though I like to mix up my own colours, (as I did for the colour areas of the Trafalgar Mural, using the Beeck Full Colour mineral paints), it does save a lot of time if the colours are already mixed.

I’ve learnt a lot from this project….

1.  I love and hate the weather, but it’s kind of nice to be subject to it.

2. Some companies have great customer service, and others need to improve.  However great, you can only build on the foundations below you.  That means, every little person matters.

3.When you paint murals on party walls, it can take a long time and a lot of effort to get permission to do so, but if you use a porus silicate mineral paint, there is no good reason for refusal, as the wall can “breath”, so no damp issues arise.

4. Don’t assume anything

5. Children are worth working with.  My thanks to the lovely children who painted with me, and to all those wonderful artists who produced such amazing cartoons under the expert and sensitive guidance of John T Freeman.  If the mural was bigger, all the cartoons would be in the mural…every single one.

6. It will ALWAYS take longer than you think, and extensive preparation, including research, is always worth it.

7.  The composition has to be right.  If it’s not, don’t bother.

8.  Silicate Mineral Paint offers the best colour quality possible, far superior to acrylic paint in terms of its ability to reflect light.   Having spent hours looking at the difference, I have no doubt in my mind about this matter. It’s beautiful.  It is more demanding to use, but it’s worth it. And Keim Soldalit, their sol-silicate paint is much easier to use than the Beeck.

9. Take the rough with the smooth…In this case, quite literally.  The wall surface was rough!  Painting straight lines on such a surface doesn’t make much sense, but as they say, “where there’s a will, there’s a way” and nothing’s impossible.

10. Give generously, receive generously.

It might seem a bit early to put this down, but as the rain is stopping me from going any further, I might as well do this now.  I would like in the future to put together something on practical techniques for mural painting with silicate mineral paints to help others who might consider using this type of paint for exterior or interior murals, but to be honest, I have so much happening right now I cannot see myself being able to do this for sometime.

The Keim website is worth a look.

They have been stellar in their customer service, and helped immensely.  I’m very grateful.

I now have work to sort out for exhibition at the Rose Theatre in October, Gallery 63 in September, The CornerHOUSE in December and later on Leatherhead theatre in May 2012, which is great, but means the mural work has to stop for a while.  I am working on a mural in a garden, just a simple grey and white one  .I would like to do another exterior mural at the school later next year.  I’m also in the process of applying for the Artists Access to University Scheme, at Kingston University in order to develop my practice.  That should be enough for now,  plus running the house, and all that domestic bliss!

By way of a little deviation, some images of other things I have been creating!




I can’t resist the odd photograph now and again.

Pencil sketch done at West Dean College during last stay recently

Another part of the journey….


I thought I would continue with non-figurative painting for some time, but I am wondering right now if it might be best to push myself back into the representational arena for a while…It’s not that I don’t like working with no specific focus, because I feel the focus is there under the surface regardless of what one sees on the canvas, but there is something that affords a painting more accessible to others if it contains objects and as we live in a world full of objects maybe it might be an idea to pick some up from time to time and work them into a painting.  These can be from the imagination of coures, they don’t need to be taken from the “outside” world.  Also, though I meant to do this sooner, I still have many potential paintings I wanted to paint based on my immediate environment.  And while the sky here is wonderfully vast and interesting, there’s lots below it.

I think its a good idea for any painter to move from one to the other, I mean, from objects to no objects in painting because one should pay attention to the physical qualities of the paint and whatever form your painting takes it’s a valuable process in itself.  You can always cast it away afterwards if you want to.  There’s no contract involved!  There is maybe, at least there was for me, a slight concern that if you drop painting objects you will be in a place of “no return” and your destiny is sealed. Maybe for a lifetime of people, confused,bemused, and less able to engage with your painting, because they cannot “see” anything in it. 

What is life like?  Can we “see” things with a focus all the time?  Is it always clear to us?  Is it sometimes figurative and sometimes not?  I look back with interest on the path that my photographic work took, from very photographic photographs, to images resembling linocuts, well, in a kind of “photographic linocut” way, to blurred images, and then, to black and white, contrasty and detailed type images, mostly of trees.  The order was not so ordered as this sentence with its logic falsely suggests, but vision is ever moving and ever changing, and I think it would follow then that in terms of expression, painting would be as ever, never fixed!!!

Ramble over…..

What a pleasant walk.

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