Jamie Brunson’s paintings are two-dimensional distillations of her sensory experiences during meditation. A long-time practitioner of Kundalini meditation, Brunson transforms the color and energy flow from her practice into color and line. She uses various hues as the visual code to set the tone, or atmosphere of each work. Her rendition of linear elements suggests vibration, intensity, and direction of energetic movement.
Brunson’s Rise, creates the impression of levitating right off the wall. Placed upon a color field of calming blue, meandering lines of varying blue shades move the eye upward as the viewer explores the painting. Brunson creates a visual energetic field, where one can participate in what she herself might experience during meditation—sitting peacefully, with energy rising in serpentine fashion, up the spine.
A painting like Matrix combines hues of deep red and teal blue. The red represents strength of emotion, while blue is the cool calm of intellect as well as serenity. Blue and red represent the two poles of the electromagnetic spectrum of visible light. At the low end is blue; the high end is red. By combining these two colors in one painting, Brunson communicates the interconnectedness of all beings.
Jamie Brunson grew up in the visual environment of 1950s and 60s Modernism. The influence of Modernist color palette and biomorphic form is apparent in her works. Paintings like Galisteo and Generator combine not only Brunson’s meditative line and color field; they also incorporate Modernist green and floral elements.
Brunson relocated to Santa Fe from the San Francisco Bay Area a few years ago. Since moving to Northern New Mexico, her works have taken on subtle references to the landscape and environment. Beyond, Galisteo, and Charcoal Sky all feature an element seldom seen in Brunson’s pre-New Mexico works—the horizontal line that divides these paintings into quasi-distinct areas. A sense of heaven and earth presents itself through the visual association with the horizon line. Brunson expresses other references to the land and environment through saturated color, rhythmic intervals, geometric divisions, and tactile surface treatment. Ultimately, each painting evokes internal and external landscapes and shifting atmospheres. As with other great New Mexico artists such as Agnes Martin and Georgia O’Keeffe, when one first sees a Brunson painting without having experienced New Mexico in person, a viewer might fall in love with a work purely due to its multi-valent visual affect. However, for those who know the sublime beauty of New Mexico’s land and sky, the landscape is everpresent in Brunson’s newest paintings.
Jamie Brunson’s paintings are included in numerous public collections, including the San Jose Museum of Art, Embassy of the United States of America, Doha, Qatar; Crocker Art Museum, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Figge Museum of Art, di Rosa Preserve, and Nevada Museum of Art. Neiman Marcus, Dolce Hayes Mansion, and the Peninsula Hotel, New York, NY; have commissioned works by Brunson, as well. Her paintings have been reviewed in multitudes of art publications, including The New York Times, Art in America, Artweek, San Francisco Chronicle, Denver Post, and Town and Country.
Jamie Brunson writes of her paintings, “For me, they’re exercises to stay present in the unfolding moment, apprehending the world through unmediated senses.”
Tonya Turner Carroll
Santa Fe, New Mexico