About Flavia Weedn

From an Interview with Flavia, Santa Barbara, 2009

I grew up in Los Angeles during the post-depression years. As a child I developed a love of color and design from my mother who was a doll maker. But it was my young uncle, Jack, who sparked my development as an artist. His great love of life led me to see the same wonder and beauty he found in the ordinary, and to share we must remember everything… i try to, it’s all so fragile and precious… the same joy he found in the writings of the great romantic poets.

As a child I disliked my name until I learned from Jack that I was named after a princess in a book. I was embarrassed that we lived in a house beside an alley, across the street from a tire factory, until I learned from Jack that it didn’t matter where we lived as long as we were a family and loved and cared for each other. I had a thousand dreams inside my heart and thought none of them had a chance, until Jack taught me that if I worked hard and believed in my dreams, I could do anything.

I remember sitting in my grandmother’s fig tree, writing and illustrating my stories, and dreaming my dreams. I knew then that Jack had taught me to see life in a different way, and that he had given me a rare gift. What I didn’t know was that he had changed my life, and that what I had learned from him would directly influence my life’s work.

As a young adult I began to paint because I loved it. I found at my first showing that a passion within me was pushing me to express my feelings through my art, and to share the philosophy I had learned from Jack. From that time on, words literally became an integral part of my paintings. My husband and I began selling my work in the early 1960s at outdoor art fairs and open art exhibits. My work was so very different and I was afraid viewers would reject my openness, but I came to realize that it actually validated what many people felt deep inside—feelings they wanted to hold on to.

For more then 50 years, my work has continued to be my passion. I believe that art is communication—a way of sharing who we are and what we feel. I believe that in this life there are no endings, only beginnings; that our lives are journeys and that we grow from our experience on these journeys. I believe we discover through every heartache how to love more and love better, and that life has hidden gifts in its hands—the greatest of which is love.

Today, as the mother of two grown children, Rick and Lisa, and grandmother to my precious granddaughters Sylvie and Stella Mae and dear grandson, Miguel, I stand proud to know that what began as my dream carries on through their lives. Jack’s legacy of love lives on.

Whether feelings are expressed on a large painting or a small greeting card, whether they are shared through technology or in a passing whisper, words can touch people. The power of care can heal and make a difference in all of our lives and in this world we live in. This is my belief, the faith I hold in the human spirit, and the hope I wish to share with you.