New Painting: Unraveling

I painted a version of this a few years ago:

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She Never Knew What to Make of Her Own Unraveling, by Joy Murray, 8×10″

I made it for myself — it was a painting  to help me understand the impact of trauma and disability has had on my life, and on so many lives.

I liked the composition and I’ve gotten a lot of good feedback on it.  I’ve been working on a larger version on it for awhile, and finally finished:

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Unraveling, by Joy Murray, 18×20″ Mixed Media

We are all in a continual state of transformation — some feels great, some feels scary.  But however life impacts us, we are a sacred part of nature.

~~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can now follow me on facebook here, and  Instagram@joymurrayart.

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

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New Painting: No One Understands

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No One Understands, 16×24″, acrylic and ink, Joy Murray

~~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can now follow me on facebook here, and  Instagram@joymurrayart.

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

An Homage to Frankd Robinson

I’ve loved Frankd Robinson’s art for probably 2 decades now.  He is a Memphis artist who uses paint, collage, found objects and his own unique style to create vibrant art.  His work honors the reality of urban life, the struggles of Black people and Black women in particular.   He has a way of taking mundane items and the things we discard and turning them into works of art.

I remember when I first saw his work thinking it’s like he’s taken all the trash I see at the bus stop and turned into something dynamic and glorious.  His work made me see how you can create with whatever is at hand, how to integrate words into vivid color.

Here’s a video of him from about 9 years ago, talking about his art:

 

Lately, Robinson has had to deal with diabetes and difficult health transitions.  Although I don’t know him that well, I follow him on Facebook and Instagram.  He posts pictures of his everyday life, of his dialysis, of his physical therapy after amputations, of his friends and family, his barber, his fraternity brothers.   Still telling a story, still knowing his life has value.

He’s made these cool, dramatic necklaces/amulets:

 

 

When I saw this photo:

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I was so taken by the tree tattoo, that I decided I had to do a sort of portrait based on him.

I looked at a lot of pictures of him, a lot of his art.  I read his encouragements to everyone, the way he posts positive things about life, while remaining very real about our struggles.

I worked on it for a over a month, and finished a few days ago.  I call it “How Does Your Garden Grow?”

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How Does Your Garden Grow? for Frankd Robinson by Joy Murray

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Despair accompanies illness and disability, but so does learning and resilience.  And love.  You learn to love yourself enough to survive.  You learn who really loves you, who helps you when you are thrown a curve and your whole life changes; who loves you when they know you’ll never be the same physically.  You learn your limits, but also your strengths.

When I am low, I remember it’s my job to love my damned self.  And when I do that, all these other bits of beauty bloom in my life.

I’m so fortunate to have art in my life, and to have found the art of Frankd Robinson.

~~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can now follow me on facebook here, and  Instagram@joymurrayart.

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.

Afterwards Nothing Was the Same – New Painting

I’ve spent some time painting with my son, Timothy Allen, who’s work is much more intuitive and free flowing than mine, and at times more precise and geometric:

Dark Forest Lights
Dark Forest Lights by Timothy Allen
echoes and the sound of growth by Timothy Allen
Echoes and the Sound of Growth by Timothy Allen
The Day My Cages Turned to Smoke
The Day my Cages Turned to Smoke by Timothy Allen

Watching his techniques gave me some ideas of my own.  I did a bit of paint pouring and worked without really thinking about how the finished painting would turn out.

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Re-purposed canvas on the table

I sleep in my studio, so I just left the canvas alone for a few weeks, let myself look at the shapes and colors and flow of it.  I turned it different ways.  I thought it might be something I would paint over.

Then I found a figure wandering in the chaos.

So I painted her in and added layers and textures.  As I painted, I thought about how much about life we don’t understand.  I thought about disability, trauma, and how little sense life seems to make sometimes.

I thought about the grace of being given a path that allows you to think in ways that others can’t fathom.  But life does that to everyone, not just those who have veered into long-term illness.  We all feel a startling sense of aloneness at times.  And sometimes, we can’t fathom our own thoughts or our fate.

Any way, I finished the painting and then it told me what the title should be.

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Afterwards Nothing was the Same, 12×36″ by Joy Murray, acrylic on canvas
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Afterwards Nothing was the same, detail
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Afterwards Nothing was the Same, detail

What do you think?

I’m planning an open studio and art sale at the end of May here in Memphis.  I’ll keep you posted on dates and time.

~~~

Thanks for reading my post.  If you like it share it.  If you find a typo, please let me know and I’ll send you a thank-you postcard.  

You can now follow me on facebook here, and  Instagram@joymurrayart.

You can get prints and cards of some of my work on Redbubble.  They also print my work on lots of other items, including phone skins, tote bags, shirts and journals:

https://www.redbubble.com/people/JoyMurray?asc=u

If you’d like to support my art and writing, please consider becoming a donor on Patreon.  If I get enough supporters, I can make this blog ad-free!  Here’s a link to my Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=8001665

If you prefer to make a one time donation, you can do so at paypal.com  Please email me at joyzmailbox@gmail.com if you’d like details.