ART & SOUL
I am deeply passionate about awakening people to the power of art. My intention is to create the kind of artwork and dialogue that invites and encourages EVERYONE to engage in the visual arts and sheds light on how art can change lives.
We all have secret and different ways of interpreting imagery that is based in our unique lineage of life experiences. I encourage those viewing my work to delve into their own personal history and relationship with art. When we understand viewing artwork as a tool that allows us to create meaning and form connections, we begin to gain clarity on how to best surround ourselves with what we need most.
When it comes to art making, art gives each and every one of us an opportunity to explore and express our most complex thoughts, emotions, feelings and memories through drawing and painting when words alone are not enough. Which is why for thousands of years our ancestors regarded art as not only the windows to the soul, but also the language of the soul. Referencing our human ability to communicate to one another on deep intuitive levels largely by means that are unspoken. In today's world we know this to be "meta-emotions."
To understand this concept without question, is to have been in the presence of artwork so saturated with spirit and mystery, that it actually stirs us at our core by eliciting strong emotions that wake us up to who we are and where we are going.
EVOLUTION FROM ANCESTRAL EMPRESS TO LEADING LADY
Lady Lucent evolved from my years as an artist and as a psychotherapist/art therapist. She was created to hold a message that would be relevant to all of our stories… mainly that we are able to utilize art when seeking joy, catharsis, significant contemplation, connection, transformation and healing. She stands as an example and reminder of how we can honor our story on a soul level, through art.
I have been a visionary artist for as long as I can remember, and an art therapist for over the last 12 years. I have used art making to work with many people in search of ways to heal in some of the most complex and heavy moments of their lives.
This has been intense, rewarding, and humbling work… it has taught me so much about the kind of artist I want to be and the work I feel is most important to make.
This piece was born out of a series that is directly inspired by the many years I have spent facilitating daily art therapy sessions and weekly empowerment groups. It was during these art therapy experiences that it became all to clear just how many people struggled daily with feelings related to their perceived sense of self worth or value, and an overarching desire to find meaning in their world. Best described to me as a restless ache to understand their world both past and present. Regardless of how these feelings came to the surface, ie. through trauma, mental illness, loss and grief, addiction, or other various life circumstances - I began to notice that an individuals interpretation of their life story in many cases had become a direct measure of their self esteem and purpose here on the planet. As if their sense of self and identity had become inseparable from various traumas or moments in time that had greatly damaged their spirit.
In response to these conversations I began to develop a method of art-making as well as art pieces that I referred to as part of an Inner Empress or Inner Illumination series. I began this exercise by encouraging clients to use their imaginations to visualize a part of themselves that felt like a spark or flame, or that they could acknowledge was alive and well inside... or even a part that at the very least is connected to something that they could relate to as "bigger" than themselves. What did they see as sacred about their life story and why?
These were undertakings in the scope of both art and therapy. For starters- what does that mean let alone look like? Eventually through the use of drawing, painting, symbolism and various artistic adornment- we set out to use art to construct self portraits representative of our personal and spiritual journey. This method is similar to those depicted ancient wisdom traditions and rituals. Collectively, this imagery is most accurately described as "Soul Portraiture." This process guided us to visually identify where to re-write and re-tell parts of our stories. I witnessed art setting the stage for uncensored honest sharing and introspection in a way that felt unexpected and new for most. Paint brushes, feathers, beads and colored pencils helped to build and restore a person’s sense of self love unlike anything they had experienced because it transpired organically through an artistic loving lens…
It is powerful to watch beauty emerge from some of the least expected places within ourselves… to bear witness to imagery so far reaching that it becomes capable of transforming some of our most broken pieces of our self or hurt and pain… into artistic badges of honor and survival.
I truly believe that telling our story through art and reflecting upon our feelings/responses while in the presence of art…allows us to be vulnerable in a way we can not access in the same capacity through words alone. Being open to these experiences and engaging art in this way - is quite possibly some of the bravest work and self exploration that we could ever do.
…In fact everything I wore during the creation of Lady Lucent… was given deep thoughtfulness when chosen and took weeks to curate and combine. This includes so many family heirlooms and keepsakes. There are pieces from my grand parents, my wedding, there are personal mementos that were added because they were significant to me when I was artistically discovering myself around the age of 14 or so…and on and on.
I’ve embedded the most meaning and intention that I can into this piece, so that when the piece is viewed… all of that love and energy and unseen parts of myself can be felt… in the unseen parts of others.
For me the greatest works of art are not about what they look like, but how they make us feel. As a visionary artist, my art is often about awakening, connectivity, spirituality, consciousness, compassion or quiet transcendence. Mostly it is about the evolution of soul and self.
So hopefully by creating a piece that engages the viewer in an enchanting moment of either awe or wonder or mystery… that if only for a moment, people will be content to stop in their tracks… because the piece speaks to them on a soul level.
I have seen art change lives and I have seen art save lives. Because art at its best can inspire and transform us. It reminds us that not only are we not alone in our story- but that we are all connected to something so much bigger than ourselves… Making it so that the human spirit is so much stronger than anything that could ever happen to it.
My vision for this piece was that it serves as a strong visual reminder that art is a powerful and viable resource when it comes to making positive change in the world and change within ourselves. That again this art welcomes viewers to explore themes of both the personal and universal journey as they stand in front of this “soul portrait”…. to share a lucent moment reflective of the sacred within us all. A painting hung as a gentle salutation to the resilience of the human spirit through art.