Please join me in celebrating the realization of a 25 year vision with the opening of my new art gallery in Los Angeles!
In the continuing quest of evolving consciousness through art this is one of my latest creations:
Below is a photo from my art studio on my easle. This work has a lighter palette than I have been working in lately. It's part of the process of working through the end of a relationship that meant a lot to me. I ended it, I have come to understand, because it no longer served my soul and my growth as a person and an artist. I ended it despite a very strong feeling of love for this person. Art is for me a way of processing my life. I express my thought and emotions through my abstract painting as thoughts and emotions are abstract.
That is the beauty of contemporary art in my opinion: It give us a visible, tangible access to those processes within ourselves, our lives and our emotions that we can't see.
So I've been going back and forth, back and forth on it in my mind. Niggling it, worrying it, wondering about it. But when I think about returning to the same situation, I just can't fathom it. Lately I've been realizing it's important that I acknowledge that I can love some one even if it's not sustainable. People are in our lives for a reason if our stated purpose is spiritual growth. None the less, I can still love even if my soul no longer grows from the connection and thus I can't have them close to me. It's sad in someways but freeing as well. The freedom to grow is the most powerful freedom of all.
This painting, Devotion, is about spiritual devotion and also plain old human love…loving someone intensely and how our devotion to that person can transform us regardless of the circumstances. It’s part of my current series, Consciousness, but also a subset of work I call Evolution – 4 or 5 paintings that represent the leap from one level of consciousness to the next. The Evolution works are dynamic and give a sense of bursting into growth and new awareness. They are loosely tied to the chakras (energy centers in our body), indigo is the color of the 6th chakra and violet is the color of the crown or 7th chakra. This painting is somewhere in between those two…a deep violet or purple indigo representing the transition from one level of consciousness to the next. Some info below on the symbolism of the colors and the Chakras (citation).
Indigo – 6th Chakra (third eye)
Indigo opens the door to the Divine and it is the color that we associate with night. It is at night, when our senses become finer and a different part of us awakens. Indigo brings clarity to the sense organs - your seeing, hearing and feeling. Indigo It is also connected to your sixth sense - your third eye.
Indigo is a bridge between heaven and earth, between the left and right hemispheres and also between life and death and helps to make a transition towards life or towards death. Indigo color energy is an energy of deep change. It allows you to transform the energies of lower chakras into higher spiritual vibrations. You must be cautious though, because you can become ungrounded and disconnected with the life on earth and with your family and friends. As you unfold the petals of your third eye chakra, you begin to recognize patterns. You can see where you have been, where you are stuck, and where you are going.
You begin to experience those "Aha" moments. Moments of insight and clarity. You are recognizing your patterns and are able to relate everything to a larger picture and what it means. Illusions are shattered and dreams are integrated. You begin to experience wholeness and sense of tranquility and inner knowing - wisdom. You begin to see that you can consciously create your life. And that your vision for the future is a creative act of will.
Violet – 7th Chakra (crown (top) of the head)
Violet connects with sadness of letting go and also with joy of transformation. There is peace and tranquility in the new found knowledge of profound change. Violet color is cleansing and purifying. It is the color of magic, ritual, cleansing, purifying, connecting, mystery, and mysticism. It is a color that allows us to glimpse other realities, beyond our physical and material reality of this earthly existence. It is pure cosmic energy.
Violet is a color of reconciliation. Of bringing together polarities - male and female, day and night, hot and cold, heaven and earth, right brain and left brain. In this state of balance, you feel the connection with other beings, with heaven, with earth, with all of Universe. There is no separation, no duality.
Here's a little window into my worldview...daily operation of working towards greater representation....
Enclosed please find a CD containing images of recent paintings from my Consciousness Series. I am seeking representation at your gallery and appreciate your taking the time to view my work.
This series of paintings, Consciousness, represents the culmination of 20+ years of spiritual and artistic exploration. Deceptively simple and subtly complex, like consciousness itself, they represent awareness of thought, emotion and human experience in a greater field of love. This work ties individual, inner experience to the external, physical world and as such communicate a mystical reality. Executed in a meditative trance, they become meditative objects, contemporary mandalas. In addition to the paintings there are a series of poems that accompany the work. If you are interested please let me know and I will provide them. I have included one example in this package.
has crashed through my life
from what has tormented me
and sustained me
I sit here in the silence
in the receding tide
what will become of me
© Jill Joy 2014
I’m happy to answer any questions or provide you with any additional images or information. I would be extremely pleased and honored to be represented by your gallery. I look forward to hearing from you.
My art is an expression of the unseen worlds of spiritual and emotional energy and their interplay as the individual soul evolves towards a higher state of consciousness.
As a very young child, I was keenly aware of the paradox of death. By my early twenties, enlightenment was a stated goal of mine. All of my work is a record of the evolution of consciousness. The laboratory available to me in this study is that of my own mind, body and emotions.
My personal growth and spiritual evolution inspire my work as does my proximity to the ocean and especially the horizon.
Lately I’ve been finding more and more connection between the inner and outer world as I dissolve the boundaries of my ego. I am at heart a mystic; my work is spiritual and emotional experience made material.
Each body of work on this website is an investigation into this transformation:from my earliest work, The Soul of Memory, through my most recent, Illumination. A series specific statement is included on the webpage for each series and gives more detail about the specific exploration undertaken by each group of paintings.
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
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.
I was at a party over the holidays and found myself queried about my art. It's often very difficult for an abstract artist to describe his or her art because the concepts are often abstract ideas that the artist is attempting to represent visually. When I got home I decided I needed to summarize exactly what it is my work is about. Not just for my fellow humans, but for also 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:
Jill Joy – Purple Sky – oil on canvas – 36×36
“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 - Thought Forms compassion - oil on canvas - 20x60 - 2014
I just got back from 10 days in Europe where I was immersed in the work of French American Artist, Niki de Saint Phalle. A friend of mine works for her foundation and among other places we went to the opening of a museum retrospective of Niki's work at the Grand Palais in Paris and then her Tarot Sculpture Garden in Tuscany.
I can honestly say I am inspired by Nikki. Somewhat by the late work that made her famous (below), but more so by her early work, the process of her life, the progression of her art and the sacrifices she made. Her work crosses the trajectory from the purging of the darkness of early wounds to the reaching for something universal and joyful in her well known “Nana” sculptures.
The photo (below) of one of Nikki's early "Brides" is hard to appreciate if you don’t see it in person. It’s a collage of plastic spiders, babies and other disturbing things. A dark commentary on the limitations imposed on women when forced to take up the role of wife and mother by conditioning rather than choice.
Niki was molested by her father as a child and much of her early work is purging the anger and sadness and sense of betrayal this caused her as well as divesting herself of society’s expectations of her as a woman to be a wife and mother. Some of her earliest work, the Shooting Paintings, express outrage against injustice of all sorts especially against the innocent.
Why am I so taken with this woman’s story? It is the parallels that validate my own path as an artist that make is so powerful for me. I too have seen my work move from the dark, violent and personal to something purer, simpler and more universal or illuminated.
I too have struck on simpler, purified work that seems to have more commercial viability.
I too knew and released the confines of traditional marriage and family. I too have had an on again, off again lover and muse who I simply can not shake despite the best efforts and advice of my friends. I too have sacrificed my health and wealth to create art.
But perhaps more than all of that was my appreciation for her early work and how it caused me to appreciate mine. What I saw in the retrospective at Le Grand Palais was not only the accomplishment and appeal of the later work, but how much the humanity and the personal struggle of Niki’s early work spoke to me. It was like watching the progression from the human to the divine condition. It was the human condition that spoke to me, stayed with me, haunted me. And it seemed much of that early work is still in the possession of her foundation. Niki, perhaps more than I up to this point, understood its value and spent the money and effort to warehouse it, never discarding or destroying it.
Meanwhile I have been balking at storing my early work because it’s too confusing to market to art industry people as I try to make a name and a living for myself. It has felt like a weight on me, a burden, not just because of the physical space it takes up but because it represents old, now dead, released painful emotional experience. Stacks and stacks of canvases that chronicle my personal pain and grief as I released my marriage, my emotionally abusive relationships with my parents and of course my on again off again relationship which triggers all of that old stuff every time it ends.
Learning about Niki and her work made me appreciate myself. She validated my struggles as an artist and confirmed the courage it takes to give everything else up. She caused me to appreciate the journey from personal pain to universal illumination. Even at the end the beginning is present. We hold its hand as we walk into the light.