The work exhibited is a response to the work I continue to do with homeless men and women. During the last three years, I have been involved in a series of journaling/art workshops in a program called “ Art for the Homeless”. We meet twice a month for about two hours welcoming clients from Frontline Services. The purpose of the program is to create a safe space where clients can express themselves visually through journaling and art experiences. Some clients attend regularly while others drop in when possible. Many face daily trauma and difficulties and the workshops often put them in a better place. The time provides an opportunity for dialogue and an exchange of ideas; creating a warm friendly environment where every work is regarded as major step forward.
My work has always been a kind of geometric abstractionism. Realism has always been too specific and in some ways too perfect, when life is not. The Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, tells us that nothing in life is perfect or ever complete, everything is in a state of transition. The work in the Barrier Collection came from observation of windows, doors, and blinds that block us from entering and seeing what is beyond. I remembered riding subways and entering through turnstiles. This became a kind of metaphor challenging us to knock down the barriers in our own lives; barriers like illness, poverty, sexuality, lack of education, weight and so many others. The turnstiles serve as the strong design element blocking our way while gaining entrance is a matter of commitment, strength, drive and fortitude. Some do it with ease while others give up and remain isolated
Visit my other website at www.shopvida.com/collections/will-jean that provides information on my fashion creations.