Artist Statement

Paintings with a Purpose:  A collection of paintings that aim to bring awareness and gratitude.

The idea that brought this collection into existence was simply my desire to give back and to remind myself to be grateful.

Knowing that many people across the world live in extreme poverty while I get to live in beautiful prosperous Canada, has constantly made me think of how I can use of my own God-given talent and abilities to enrich the lives of others.

For years I grappled with how I could help, until recently my family and I planned a trip around a visit to a Mexican landfill community, called Gardena.  It was here I got to meet the native people (Nancy, Alisha and their families) who make their livelihood from scrummaging through their local landfill to find objects that they can then trade for monetary value.  These beautiful, generous people offered me their collected, salvaged objects that had no monetary value. 

The salvaged objects were my technical inspiration throughout this collection; however, the awakening of gratitude through these objects is my overall desire.

My aim for each piece was to create a stand-alone, beautiful, interesting and captivating painting that is precisely composed with its different mark makings, mediums, colors, and rhythmic details to complement each salvaged object within its own expression.  

Therefore no two paintings look similar because each salvaged object is different.  This made for a fun, yet challenging process for me - the artist, as I was always needing to reinvent my process and application of the different mediums.  Some salvaged pieces where sharp and angular which led to bolder sharp marks, while others where soft and organic in shape, which led to a more flowing and softer paint application.

My hope is that the viewer may engage in each piece as they search amidst the colors,  details and brush strokes I have composed, and then to reflect upon the salvaged object that represents all the blessings one has in comparison to those across the world. 

I want the viewer to leave filling grateful and inspired to see their life more positively and maybe even be moved to help others.


Thank You Julie Witten-Land