Not Just A Pretty Face #art #contemporaryart

In addition to being an artist, I am a budding art collector. My fourth purchase of original art just arrived by UPS. I was so excited when I saw the package was from the Lois Lambert Gallery in Los Angeles. Some of you may know I’ve switched to being a full-time artist from corporate marketeer, so I could ill afford, really, to buy a piece of art. But I was cold calling galleries in November and I saw this photograph. It immediately spoke to me and I had to have it.

Tamar Levine - What A Life #5 - Digital Photograph - 1/15 - 2014

Tamar Levine – What A Life #5 – Digital Photograph – 1/15 – 2014

The fall had been a tough time to say the least. My on again off again relationship was off again at the end of the summer, this time permanently I believe. There were other things going on in my life that were difficult, hard choices to move my creative life forward at the expense of material security among other things. Those close to me were experiencing hardship and uncertainty. All of which had me feeling adrift.

When I opened the box I was moved to tears. Because emotionally this photograph is right where I am at. I thought to myself, this is the pure purpose of art, to make us feel. Because when we allow ourselves to feel, we become whole. We heal. It also helped me accept life. This is life after all. We sometimes feel adrift. We are constantly challenged. It never ends. We reach one pinnacle, only to find another calls our name. This photograph and the photographer also made me feel as though I was not alone. It pointed me to our shared humanity. Which is such a gift these days in an isolated world of sole proprietorship, telecommuting and social networking rather than face time.

One of the good things that happened this fall was finding an art gallerist in Florida who really seems to understand my work and what it is about, the drive for conscious evolution and spiritual healing toward enlightenment. The first step to transcending where we are is to acknowledge where we are and to feel.

“I want to encourage people to experience feelings and memories that they have lost touch within the course of their lives. If for one moment in an individual’s day they can step away from the confines of the structure of their life and indulge their eyes and minds in a work of art, perhaps they can reconnect with a part of themselves or of the world that might otherwise be forgotten.” – Jessica Salameh, Wall Street Fine Art, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.

That’s what Tamar Levine’s photograph does for me. Like the model, it brings me right beneath the surface of the ocean of my mind and plunges me into feeling. So yes, when buying art we sometimes want it to make us feel good and we sometimes want it to match the wall color or the couch and harmonize our surroundings. But that is not the most powerful purpose and application of art. Helping us drop into the ocean of our subconscious experience is. Thank you Tamar Levine for allowing me to know myself.

Enlightenment – Elevator Speech #art #abstractpainting #arts #enlightenment

I was at a party this weekend. My slightly beer-addled brain was unable to encapsulate exactly what it is I am doing with my art (add to that jammed circuits because my ex was present). Never mind describe the actual paintings (always very difficult). So when I got home, I  thought, I need to summarize this. Not just for my fellow humans, but for me. So here’s what I came up with that seemed to encompass 20+ years of painting and the evolution across a multitude of styles (see below):

Jill Joy - Intertwined - oil on canvas - 30x60 - 2014

Jill Joy – Intertwined – oil on canvas – 30×60 – 2014

“My work is essentially about enlightenment: Transcending individual thoughts, emotions and experiences towards identification with something beyond the self that is universal and all encompassing. My art seeks to understand our place in the universe, the transience of life and the existence of a broader vibrational field of love that encompasses us all.”

Jill Joy - Growth - oil on canvas - 60x48

Jill Joy – Growth – oil on canvas – 60×48

Thwarted Desire #art

Jill Joy - Thwarted Desire - oil on canvas - 48x48" - 2013

Jill Joy – Thwarted Desire – oil on canvas – 48×48″ – 2013

What can I say about this painting? I can say a lot but sometimes I wonder, how much should I say and when is it best just to let people have their own experience? If you want to know some of my experience in painting this and then posting it, read on.

So many of you know the story of my muse, a long time on again off again lover, who inspires many of my paintings. He’s currently on again, but when I started this painting we were off. But I’m posting it now, not out of thwarted desire for him (the original inspiration) but out of thwarted desire for a lost artistic and financial opportunity; something that was dear to me and occupied my thoughts for many months and about which I had great hopes and expectations. Not too different from what I bring to my love relationships (for better or worse).

What I find so interesting about this is how a painting speaks to a “universal” experience. I am discovering this in the microcosm of myself. I painted it about one situation dear to my heart, that situation is remedied for the moment. But a subsequent loss re-triggered my identification with the painting, which is why I’m posting it now, many many months after I started and finished it. As an artist, this helps me to understand how my work can be relevant to others. When a painting or a poem captures the energy, the emotion of an experience, the circumstances don’t really matter and the viewer is free to project themselves, their life and their feelings on the image.

Growth – New Work

This is a painting I completed recently. Again, part of my expanding Consciousness Series. What especially pleases me about this painting, aside from the intense sense of bursting and movement it captures, is that is seems to be the first painting where my two styles, Consciousness and Energy, intersect.

Jill Joy - Growth - oil on canvas - 60x48" -2013 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Growth – oil on canvas – 60×48″ -2013 – $1,950 USD

As though my emotional and spiritual lives are getting closer to merging. See below an example of Energy and one of Consciousness. It occurs to me that this could be what enlightenment is, when there is no separation between the calling or knowing of the soul and one’s emotions.

Jill Joy - Aftermath - oil on canvas - 48x60" - 2012 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Aftermath – oil on canvas – 48×60″ – 2012 – $1,950 USD

Jill Joy - Two Worlds Collide - oil on canvas - 72x48" - 2011 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Two Worlds Collide – oil on canvas – 72×48″ – 2011 – $1,950 USD

New Work – Gathering Storm

Jill Joy - Gathering Storm - oil on canvas - 48x60" $1750 USD

Jill Joy – Gathering Storm – oil on canvas – 48×60″ $1950 USD

I finished this large piece this week. It’s oil on canvas from my Consciousness series. I’ve noticed that while these paintings are calmer than those from my Energy series I am still brimming with emotion as I approach the canvas. It just seems when this is the type of work I produce, I have a better perspective on what I am feeling and my place in the universe as opposed to feeling like I am one singular struggling soul.