Jada Griffin


Tribute Responses

"I must tell you how articulate you are, what a beautiful writer you are, and in this case, how you infuse your beautifully crafted words with such deep emotion and heartfelt honesty. You lay bare both Thomas and yourself, which is remarkable, and the reader gets to know the two of you, as individuals and as the beautiful couple you were, and still are. (When I write these words I get all choked up). I have learned so much about each of you, and for this I am so grateful."

Merle Strauss, musician, poet, dancer, healer. 

 "You are such a wonderful writer - also such a creative and very capable, accomplished, caring and interesting woman. Need I say more? We love you, Jada."

 Merle Strauss, musician, poet, dancer, healer. 

 ~"Wow!! I read your BEAUTIFUL tribute yesterday morning. It has taken me more than 24 hours to process it all. I feel like I know this wonderful man and amazing human, having read your eloquent depictions. We are so humbled to have played a small role in your experience of that day. You are truly a gifted writer."

Carole Ramsay, MA, MS, MS. Actor, writer, screenwriter, publisher at StereoAtypical Press, author of The God Seed and the Dalai Lama's WIfe and The Gates of Athena, development economist.

"Your tribute essay is like a pure chime, perfectly resonating the logos that humanity needs to hear/know- the meaning of love - love shared, love manifested, love animated. Your Thomas is love embodied. (As are you.) What seems to glow and flow from Thomas is this free-form generosity of spirit, so alive and in I-thou relationship with everything. I speak of the hero's journey every chance I get. I speak of life's call to adventure, of courage, of gold in the dragon's cave.... of meaning and mystery, compassion and creativity, and flow... and always, always... love. When I speak to educators, mental health folk, etc., I speak about the human experience and the dehumanizing forces at work all around us... mechanizing us... detaching us from our souls and from each other. What you have described here, your beautiful love with Thomas, as well as his personal essence, is a metaphor, is its own story, its own myth - capturing precisely what humanity needs to bloom and blossom. Your lovely essay and poem are so gentle yet so powerful."

CC,  mental health educator and speaker. 

 It takes courage, as painters, to put our work in front of the public, for it is equivalent to placing our souls on view. Take both validation and what may feel like rejection in the same spirit. There is no way to gauge the thoughts or actions of any one individual and neither should value be equated with them. Know that inspiration comes from a miraculous, non-rational place where beauty is convulsive - a magical garden with real toads in it. It is accessible only to the true artist in tune with the authentic energies of the Cosmos. I hope that my paintings hold the instinctive elegance of wild geese flying reflected in the lake, neither birds nor body of water cognizant of stirring the human heart and awakening the human mind to the unconscious glamour of the Universe.

Janice Jada Griffin

 Janice Jada Griffin’s paintings are boundary-pushing. They advance into spiritual realms that are waiting to be found. They inhabit a place of beauty, strength and freedom that is beyond time and space. Janice Jada’s "landscapes" explore the edge between physical fact and the dimensions of dreams. Through them we feel a numinous connection to the stars, to Nature and to the entire cosmos. These pictures ask us to know their country, not from the perspective of rational, structured intelligence, what we think we already understand, but as wild animals know their country, from an open and connected brain as hot and flowing and flexible as the magma within Earth itself.  While Jada’s likenesses of women contain an underpinning of pro-women’s progress ideals and take on a political stance against Patriarchal systems that seek to silence women’s voices and confiscate their worth, these canvases go past any news headline sound bites, becoming poetic metaphors for deeper underlying truths. In a relative world that longs for absolutes, they take on the copious ambiguities of Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, for they overflow with love, delight, and the full-being enchantment of a Beethoven symphony on a midsummer’s evening. These are works whose validity and force lies in the experience of the pictures themselves. They request to be participated in convulsively through the heart, and not through reason. Jada’s images of women probe the margin between art and erotica. But these are not works made for the male gaze of traditional art history. These women look back at us. They are awake, self-assured, vital, ravishing and provocative, dazzling icons that represent a potential in all women everywhere. There is no other way of grasping the genuine reality to which they refer than by allowing our world to dissolve into their world, into the vast expanse of time, extending from the far distant past before we were born and into the far distant future after we die. In doing so, we merge with something larger than ourselves, a grand and eternal unity, a hint of something infinite.

Janice Jada Griffin




Kat Topaz