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‘Godsend’ an exhibition throughout July by Jenny Mather

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‘Godsend’ is Jennny Mather’s title for her exhibition throughout July in the Sir Richard Morris Lounge at Derby Cathedral Centre. Jenny trained at the Slade School of Fine Art and then taught in Nigeria for ten years. Returning to Britain she obtained an MA in Art and Psychotherapy at Sheffield University and lives in Bamford, working as an art therapist as well as producing paintings of her own, often based on landscapes, either locally in the Peak District or in response to experiences gained on visits abroad.

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As a committed Christian she has chosen for us four large paintings, all of which express her personal belief in the presence of God’s spirit in the creative process. The following descriptions rely largely on Jenny’s own words.

‘In Touch’ includes images which represent hands, ‘God’s hands, our hands, reaching out and touching in space and time the riches of different cultures and yet unfolding all’. After that she began painting two saints, Hildegarde of Bingen and Hilda of Whitby. Why? ‘I believe they chose me, or at least they kept nudging my subconscious until eventually I began to paint. As I painted I discovered more about their lives from the scant records available and from visiting where they had lived, treading in their footsteps’. 12th century Hildegarde is depicted where she lived, by the river Rhine amidst hills covered with vineyards. God blesses her ‘with a vision of grapes and wheat, the elements of communion’. Two paintings depict Hilda, a 7th century Saxon princess, called to be a nun and an abbess, ‘I know her landscape intimately as it is also my childhood home area, I have painted her with outstretched hands receiving her gifts of diplomacy and organisation’ Jenny concludes ‘It’s good to be able to exhibit these paintings in 2015, the year in which the Anglican Church has appointed its first women bishops.

Jenny’s paints in a vigourous style, distinctive and personal, giving life to the visions she has of God’s creative spirit working through the lives of his saints.

Her Exhibition will open on Wednesday 1st July and continue until Friday 31st July, Monday to Saturday, 9am to 5pm, closed Sundays.

Geoff Robson (Exhibitions Officer)

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