Her muse is 20th century Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo and painter, Jazmin Sasky’s folk art inspired clothing and bejeweled fingers recall Kahlo’s distinctive fashion. Sasky paints in the style of the Primitives; brilliantly detailed and textured with colourful flourishes. The eyes, truly the windows of the soul, are hugely expressive. Her narratives of multicultural women and children are always joyful because they are often wish fulfillments rather than portraits of their real lives.
On Thursday, February 12th to Sunday, February 15th, the YWCA of Metro Vancouver presents Home Is Love: An Art Show by Jazmin Sasky, at the Westside Grand in support of YWCA Cause We Care House.
“ Cause We Care House is a new housing community that will provide 21 units of safe, affordable long-term housing for low-income single mothers and their children in the Strathcona and downtown Eastside community,” explains Sasky who enjoys partnering with charitable causes. “But I wanted my paintings to resonate directly with the mothers so I wrote a confidential questionnaire asking them ‘what is most important to you in your life? ‘ I was also able to meet with many of the mothers and YWCA staff directly.”
The answers Sasky received were not surprising: ‘Safety for me and my children; self-worth, a loving and caring home and respect.’
Sasky then set to work interpreting their stories on large canvases, many depicting women inside homes holding up pointed roofs symbolizing that survival is every mother’s responsibility to protect their children. “In Peru, artists create retablos which are charmingly intricate folk art tableaus that reflect everyday life in three-dimensional little boxes. The doors and windows open up and the roof is always pointed to the stars,” she explains.
Sasky’s I Say –No More is a touching portrait of a mother holding her child closely and with her other outstretched palm signifying an emphatic – stop -enough! “In my conversation with this mother, she had left an abusive relationship and was now calmer and more confident than she had ever been before,” says Sasky.
The pointed roof is cleverly painted like a Scrabble board with tiles spelling the answers to Sasky’s question: “What values are important for you to pass on to your children?”
Earning her degree in graphic design and illustration in her native Buenos Aires, Sasky and her family immigrated to Israel and then to Vancouver in 2004.
Drawing inspiration from the styles of Henri Matisse, Gustav Klimt and her love for decorative textiles, Sasky began painting full-time in 2007. She works in vibrant acrylics and dry pastels, adding glitter, metal leaves and her signature flower in the hair of each of her subjects.
Her versatility and passion for painting and storytelling has translated into the children’s book, What Grandma Built and creating personalized custom wall decor for children’s bedrooms and in hospital maternity and children’s wings.
Mentor, wife, mother to three children and staunch proponent of issues affecting all women, Sasky has a personal mandate to “give back to the community.”
She donates 25% of the proceeds for the sale of each painting directly back to the charity.
In July 2015 she will be involved in another one -woman show entitled, Women Helping Women, at designer, Tamara Catz Boutique in the popular town of Paia, on Maui, Hawaii.
Proceeds will go to a local women’s shelter.
Home is Love at the Westside Grand, Thursday, Feb. 12 Opening Night Reception with Jazmin Sasky: 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 pm, (604) 895-5826
Open Gallery Viewing: February 12 to 15th. Jazmin Sasky in attendance 10:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
Top image: ‘Picnic In Our Community Garden’ by Jazmin Sasky (mixed media on canvas.)