Just rediscovered an old gouache painting from around 20 or more years ago!….very abstract and vivid in colour, it was made by using my left hand only. I remember it being strange to paint with the unfamiliar left hand, as it has so little control. But this resulted in a very unplanned piece, yet still very harmonious. It’s like entering into the psyche and popping out something unexpected, unpredictable and exciting, and full of symbols like moons, water, circles of life and so on…hope you enjoy also!
This month, the artworks I’m looking at again, are from a series of “Goddess” paintings I made 20 years ago. Oil paints were the medium. Many of these paintings were from my first solo exhibition “Journey to the Forest within”.
It’s good to reflect on where we’ve come from, and motivations and inspirations from an earlier time. In the late ’80’s to mid ’90’s I spent time researching ancient goddesses from old Europe. These archaeological finds were mainly of small statues, quite simple in appearance yet conforming to a particular style, which over millennia changed very little. They seemed to represent aspects of the earth goddess which people of those times relied on for providing them with all their needs. We are talking about times from around 7000 till 2000 BC, the last remnants of the goddess civilisations being that of the Minoan civilisation.
I loved the simplicity yet power of these designs, and their decoration. Many of these finds were made in Eastern Europe, and were originally researched by Marija Gimbutas. This information was collated in her book “Goddesses and gods of Old Europe”.
I used the goddess image and decorative motifs in a group of paintings made over many years. These symbols used have remained with me till the present time, and are occasionally found in recent paintings. In the old paintings the most common ones were the curved moon, lines representing rain, decorative zigzags, dots, triangle representing fertility, spirals, birds and circles representing home or inclusion. I used them both with the original meaning and also for decorative purposes. So I’ll just put up a small sideshow for your enjoyment.