Yuliya Lennon Artwork & Art Philosophy
I believe that the function of art in society is to reveal the unseen, the reality that lives beneath appearances. In my case, I aim to uncover that reality through physical objects and people, using reality as a springboard to a deeper meaning.
I am inspired by Medieval art and the perennial philosophy that sees us at one with the world and nature, and also promoting cultural acceptance. My writing and art work represent knowledge acquired by synthesizing theories of the development of consciousness by Owen Barfield, morphic fields and resonance theories by Rupert Sheldrake and the writings of Ananda K. Coomaraswamy and Frithjof Schuon. I think we are at the end of the period of withdrawal of participation from our spiritual side, and from nature, and we are about to swing back towards seeing ourselves as part of a bigger picture. This is what my art is about.
I was born and educated in Russia, following the tradition of a realistic academic artistic education. Having moved to England after University I spent four years at the National Gallery in London researching the techniques of oil painters. I also completed a PhD in Psycholinguistics, a field which studies both languages and the psychology behind the use of words.
During the same period I was accepted into the Painter Stainer's Guild of London, the oldest art institution in the UK dating back to 1268, where I still exhibit each year. I made a career as a portrait painter in the UK, with sitters like Alexander Prior, Chief conductor of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, and the television presenter Richard Hammond.
Life took me from the UK to California in 2016, and I now live and paint in Santa Barbara. I am currently working on a series of paintings that reflect my PhD research at the Prince's School of Traditional Arts in London, which I hope will result in a book about Medieval ways of artistic expression.
Coming from a traditional painting school, my practice has evolved and absorbed a number of influences. My artwork is still grounded in reality which undertakes a transformation through my experience of seeing things and situations. Sometimes it takes multiple events and thoughts to come together in one image. The most eloquent description of this process I found in an article by Ananda Coomaraswamy entitled "Transformation of Nature through art".