Janet O’Neal

Janet O’Neal’s work is strongly inspired by symbolism and mythology in the area of collective consciousness, in particular the theories of Carl Jung. Within O’Neal’s online artist statement, she claims great influence from Abstract Expressionism also, believing in a connection between herself and these past artists (she mentions Mark Rothko).

‘I also believe in our relationship as an artist to this space in time and the expression of our experience of it, whether it be conscious or subconscious.’ (O’Neal, personal website).

This statement from within O’Neal’s artist statement is extremely relevant to my current studio practice because it derives from understanding the world we are in, as it stands at this moment in time: society, and the symbolism imprinted on the unconscious mind by everything that we encounter as today’s dynamic world. O’Neal’s work varies, but her mixed media pieces display her emphasis on symbolism and her Abstract Expressionism:


Cosmic Dreams IV, Mixed Media on Canvas


Visions #3, Mixed Media on Canvas

The paintings here engaged me because of the intensity that O’Neal has created. Not only is her use of colour expressive and potentially suggestion of the colours one would fine in The Red Book of Carl Yung (https://meganroseosborne.wordpress.com/2015/02/20/red-book-carl-gustav-jung/), of whom she claims to be a follower of, but the way she composes the symbols of her mind is chaotic, which is personally an important factor to incorporate in my work because of the infinite production of visual stimuli that my brain subjects me to, consciously and unconsciously, which is principally how I am depicting the imaginative capacity of a human mind.


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