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Lynda Davis Jeha

acrylic, moulding paste, mica, on canvas
24″ x 12″

Lynda Davis Jeha Art

photo credit:  Ashley M. Davis

Clara Lieu, RISD Adjunct Professor

Clara Lieu
Art Prof & Partner

Artist Statement
I grew up in Central Massachusetts and was born into a family of engineers, botanists, and chemists who also explored their creative talents. I was especially inspired by my father, an engineer and painter. In college, I studied marine studies, but found myself divided between following my scientific and artistic interests.

For many years, I had simultaneous careers as an environmental scientist, silversmith and jewelry designer. Currently, I am teaching children and adult classes through Wellesley College Botanic Gardens Program and am a member of the Wellesley Society of Artists. Though primarily self-taught, I have completed studio classes at several art colleges in the Boston area. My paintings have been exhibited in many shows and my works are held in numerous private collections around the United States, Canada, Australia and Austria. 

My adventurous spirit and love for travel around the globe provide inspiration for my paintings. A hallmark of my work is my fascination with color. Some of my paintings are carefully conceived, while others are more spontaneous, but the common thread to all of my work is a bold exploration of various color schemes and the ability to push color past traditional limits.

I primarily work with acrylic paints and mediums. I love the versatility of this medium and enjoy creating mixed media pieces where I can explore not only color but texture, layering, and building up a surface. I am continuously looking for a challenge, trying new materials and techniques. I emerge myself into the process and just go for it to see where it leads me. For me, it is much more about the process than concentrating too heavily on the final outcome.

6 responses on "Art Critique: Lynda Davis Jeha"

  1. Hello! I absolutely love how vibrant and colorful your pieces are! It was very interesting to hear about the process of creating your pieces. I agree with Prof Lieu that it was be interesting to add more volume to your pieces by building up the gel medium; it would be like you are building your own supernovas! Although your pieces already have incredible depth to them, I think that building up with the gel medium more in certain places can really activate the depth of future pieces even more.
    I wonder if maybe you could create a series of these pieces with different color schemes based upon different experiences and the feelings from them. I thought it was interesting how you stated you often create art based upon a feeling after an experience, and it would be interesting to see specific feelings translated in a way similar to the pieces you have here.

  2. I find your fearlessness when exploring media and color so admirable! That is definitely something I strive for in my own work. I get lost in this piece and feel like I could spend hours in front of this in person (and I would definitely have a difficult time refraining from reaching out and touching it if it were in a museum!).

    Going forward, I would recommend really thinking critically about value. You rely heavily on the contrast of colors to create shapes and variations in your piece, which creates a beautiful richness that I love, but I think that the composition could be enhanced by being even more deliberate with change in value. There are moments where you do this very successfully with pockets of light, sheer paint in the midst of lush, dark and sculptural areas. Those are my favorite moments in your paintings!

    Overall, great job! I love how passionate you are about exploring the possibilities of paint!

  3. These pieces are overwhelmingly vibrant, in the best sense! The way the borders between the colors ebb and flow on top of the frosty texture of the gel medium really make me want to pick up the paintings and touch their surfaces. It was also quite exciting to hear how much you experiment in your process!

    I think I’d like to hear a little bit more about the presentation of this piece. With this triptych setup, I think the thinner paintings on the side are made to look inferior to the middle piece, almost like two servants on either side of a queen. If they were hung separately, I think each would get the attention they deserved, and almost make it feel like the viewer were looking through a tiny window into this cosmic landscape. That’s just a minor detail, though. Great job!

  4. I’m really vibing off of your love of color and mediums, it’s really oozing off the canvas! Especially as a chromophile myself, I appreciate that I’m able to visually follow your process making these paintings. The layers are really visible, which is sometimes difficult to show with acrylic.

    Your work reminds me a lot of Lauren Olitski and Dianna Vosburg. That being said, I think I’m looking for a bit more intention or explanation in your visual decisions. Why are you working on such a small scale for such an enormously spacious subject? Why are you using 100% saturation across the whole piece? Why did you apply the moulding paste in the way that you did?

    When you love everything about paint and are really caught up in the joy of that alchemy (because your paintings are alchemy!), it’s easy to fall into magpie syndrome where you want to have a little bit of everything, especially the flashy things, but they don’t necessarily have a driving purpose in the painting.

    Personally, I think being a magpie is fine when you’re experimenting, and you just want to learn how stuff works, but I would also pay close attention to how you’re putting these visual and material effects together and why. When everything is a loud and awesome effect, all these visual moves you’ve made fight for attention and drown each other out. For instance, getting your mica to really sing might mean dulling the tone and saturation of some of the colors behind it, or brushing on a matte medium to create a contrast in luster.

    I think you have a lot of skills, versatility, and passion really going for you in these paintings, so when that organization comes into play, you’ll be golden!

  5. I just learned about a method of priming paper that I think you’d really get a lot of good results from! If you get some nice thick arches watercolor paper, (or bristol board – different results for each) and soak the page, then add drops of different colored waterproof ink onto the wet paper. once this is done, lay the paper between two boards and add weight…I mean, a lot of weight! The local Colorado artist who taught me this trick said he would sometimes drive his car over the board to really get some good pressure onto the paper. Anyway, when the process is done you have a phenomenal cosmic quality to the page, and that’s just the start! You can then work on top of this wonderful process, and add some more depth to the image! I can really imagine your work done on paper primed this way, and it would be a great way to add a great sense of depth.

  6. I love how lush and vibrant these paintings are – I only wish I could see them in person! You’ve given us so much to sink our teeth into, between the rich colors and textures, the pieces of mica, the application of the paint and the way it all blends together….It’s clear you’ve done your due diligence experimenting with all of the materials you’ve mixed together, and that really pays off with a final product that feels cohesive but exciting. The only thing I can think to suggest is that you take this work to a larger scale next time; especially considering your cosmic inspiration, I want to see one of these pieces on a huge canvas!

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