Refugee Crisis –

The worldwide refugee crisis is a phenomenon that we can no longer ignore. It seems that every time you turn on the TV you see people transitioning in some way. There are millions of displaced people traveling across Europe, looking for new homes as their land has become uninhabitable due to war and terrorism.

I was in  New Zealand listening to a news report about the town of Dunedin in the South Island where the whole city turned out to welcome a plane load of Syrian refugees. There was a wonderful air of support, compassion  and simple human kindness being offered by the citizens, to these refugees, who have been through such harrowing experiences.  We cannot even imagine the pain and suffering they have been through.

Now you might wonder what all this has to do with art. Well as it turns out it actually has quite a lot to do with art and in particular my art.  What follows is an interesting insight into how the subconscious mind works, and how creativity flows.

During my recent New Zealand trip I visited Rotorua and took several photos of the hot pools there.  On returning home I used some of these photos as source material for some abstract paintings.

The first work used this photo as it’s source.

Refugee Crisis,Rotorua hot pool

When I was about three-quarters of the way through the work  I was wondering what title to give it when the word refugee popped into my head. At the time I couldn’t figure why, why refugee???


Refugee crisis,Kadira Jennings,refugees


I could see that the figures in the middle of the painting looked very frightened and harrowed.The funny thing is that I was talking to one of my students about the painting and we had previously been discussing how I would like to return to live in New Zealand (I currently live in Australia.) But at this point in time that is not possible for me. So when I was telling her about the painting being called Refugee, she looked at me and looked at the painting and said ‘but you’re a refugee, aren’t you? ‘ This was quite astonishing because I’d never thought of myself as such.

This got me to thinking further about refugees, the refugee crisis and displaced persons in general…… and so began the birth of a new series – the Art of Transitioning.

This Weeks Question: What are your thoughts on the refugee crisis? 

Look For Next Week’s Post: A vlog of the second painting in this series and more on refugees.

Maiden Sleeps II

Maiden Sleeps II

progressed from Maiden Sleeps I – as you would expect. Again it went through an orientation change and became a portrait format rather than the landscape format of the previous work.

I also decided to bring back some of the historically decorative elements that have been seen in my work before this.  For example, if you look at the design element in the work below you will get an idea of what I was thinking about.

Maiden sleeps Chronos - Kadira Jennings


So as you look at the finished version of Maiden Sleeps #II, you can see how this influence has crept back into the figures here.  I began working int his way after a trip to Europe in 2005 and wanted to incorporate some of the history of art into my work. As artists we always stand no the shoulders of those who have gone before us and I wanted to acknowledge this in some way in my work. The above work owes much to the influence of Fortuny of Venice.

And here is the Maiden sleeps II.

Maiden Sleeps II - Kadira Jennings

Maiden Sleeps II 24″x18″

 Look For Thursday’s Post:  Blue Lady

Next Monday’s Post: Gratitude – Success Secrets Continued

Posted by : Kadira Jennings


West Wind

West Wind

The West Wind is the title of this work, which went through a few different incarnations before finally coming to rest in its current form.  It began life in the Secrets  painting as you see below…

West Wind Inspiration

West Wind Inspiration

This was the beginning and it went through a few different transitions, which I don’t seem to have documented.  So after spending fifteen minutes trolling through all my painting photos I can only show you the finished painting. I loved the way some little animals crept into this work,  even though there is the very energetic West Wind rushing all around the place!


The West Wind - Kadira Jennings

The West Wind 26″x18″

This work is available for purchase at the princely sum of $585

Look For Next Thursday’s Post:  Look for Maiden Sleeps II as the ’Secrets’ series continues….

Next Monday’s Post: Doubting – Success Strategies – What the?

Posted by : Kadira Jennings

Maiden Sleeps I

Maiden Sleeps I

derived from this original part of the secrets painting.

Maiden Sleeps I

Secrets Inspiration

I played with it for a while and developed it into this….

Maiden Sleeps I Development - Kadira Jennings

Maiden Sleeps I Development

This is obviously an improvement.  However the painting still seemed to be very closed in on itself.  There was more work to do, however I wasn’t sure just what that might be.  So I left it for several days – turned to the wall. Got it out again and felt rather like Eeyore – ‘Its no better from this side,’ he says, shaking his head sadly.

Maiden Sleeps I - Eeyore

Eeyore floats to the other side

So after several turnings of the painting finally my other side of the river then looked like this…


Maiden Sleeps  I

And indeed – this time it was better. At this point I had something to work with. After a few tweaks it resolved into the painting you see above.

Look For Next Thursday’s Post: ’Secrets’ series continues with The ‘West Wind’

Next Monday’s Post: Kid’s Art

Posted by : Kadira Jennings

Photo Credits: Eeyore – Illustration by Ernest H Shepard

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