Personal Prayer Flag Paintings

Letter to Myself, mixed media, 24"x24"

Letter to Myself, mixed media, 24"x24"

The idea for this series developed from a couple of places. I have always loved clotheslines and often put them in my paintings. Then last year my husband did a trek in Nepal and came home with some Tibetan prayer flags that he hung from our deck. They looked beautiful waving in the breeze and I found myself wondering what the words on them meant. I began to think about what my own prayer flags might look like and what words would be on them.

I decided to do some prayer flag paintings. I soon found that my strings of flags often looked like clotheslines, so I started to do this on purpose. I interspersed flags with the laundry on the line and sometimes put writing on the clothes.

The flags and clothes may take center stage or may be part of a larger landscape. Sometimes there are cats or birds on the lines. In one painting, Illumination of Necessity, the flags are symbolic images of what is being “prayed” for: a home, clothing, and light.

Illumination of Necessity, mixed media, 24"x24"

Illumination of Necessity, mixed media, 24"x24"

Many of the flags have words on them. These words aren’t meant to be legible. They are bits and pieces of thoughts, poems, song lyrics, and other things that are important to me. They are written directly into the paint or onto collage papers that are then glued into the painting.

Personal Prayer Flags, mixed media, 19"x24"

Personal Prayer Flags, mixed media, 19"x24"

A selection of my new series of paintings, Personal Prayer Flags, will be on display at Arts Alive! in La Conner WA, November 3-5. I’ll be at the opening on Friday November 3rd from 5:00 - 9:00.

Arts Alive!

November 3-5
Maple Hall, 104 Commercial Street, La Conner WA
http://artsalivelaconner.com/


To see more of these paintings: http://www.jacquibeck.com/personal-prayer-flags/

Jacqui's Palimpsest Exhibit Video

Here’s a video of a presentation I gave at Columbia City Gallery during my Palimpsest exhibit in May 2017. Filmed by Eliaichi Kimaro.

Palimpsest: Layers of Words

I’m working on a series of paintings called Palimpsest. These paintings will be exhibited in my Featured Exhibit at Columbia City Gallery, New Works: Palimpsest (Apr 5 - May 14 2017) and at the Women Painters of Washington Gallery in the Writing on the Wall show (April4 -  June 30 2017)

Hidden Thoughts  17"x14"

Hidden Thoughts  17"x14"

For years I have incorporated words into my paintings in a variety of ways. As I started painting for this exhibit, I became fascinated with the concept of ‘palimpsest.’

Wikipedia: A palimpsest is a manuscript page, either from a scroll or a book, from which the text has been scraped or washed off so that the page can be reused for another document. Parchment and other materials for writing or engraving upon were expensive to produce, and in the interest of economy were re-used wherever possible. 

One thing about these “washed/cleaned” manuscript pages is that often the original text wouldn’t be completely obliterated. The residual writing remained and could be seen as a kind of ghostly image under the later script.

I have worked to create this kind of imagery by using layers of paint and collage materials that are semi-transparent. It is not my intention that the script in my paintings be legible. I write things that are important to me (quotes, thoughts, poetry, song lyrics) on the collage materials that I glue into the paintings, but then I obscure the words using various techniques. I want the writing to be partially hidden so that its essence is deep in the painting but isn’t clear.

Palimpsest_detail1.jpg

For me, a palimpsest is a metaphor for the human condition where, as we go through life, we have experience after experience. Our new memories are layered over older ones and can become changed and distorted as a result. This series of paintings represents our multi-layered human experience.

Keep an eye on Instagram, Facebook, and my webste: www.jacquibeck.com, for information about the exhibits and images of these paintings, and join me at the Women Painters of WA Gallery and Columbia City Gallery receptions to see these paintings in person.

A Real Conversation  16"x16"

A Real Conversation  16"x16"