All posts by Jane Hackathorn

I am an artist, audio book recorder, wife and mother. I have a loving husband, two amazing adult children, a Gizmo dog who is more like my baby than a dog, and I live in Ohio. The act of creating art, accomplishing a DIY project, or working on any task with great passion and really getting lost in it -- Makes me happy! Creative work starts with dreams that start deep within and when they surface, I have peace! My Creative life is my best life, with love of God, family and a community of friends around me. In forgetting myself with these values, I (ironically) find myself. It is a God thing, a blessing, to be able to do what I love, contributing what I feel is important and receiving so much more in return. Sharing is a blessing, for sure. My artwork is shown here as well, though most of it done in past years when I owned and operated an art gallery in my home town in RI, or when living in NC and MA. Life is good!

Why Madonna Paintings?

Why Madonna Paintings?

This one is an old one, in a private collection in NC.

I have painted Madonna And Child paintings for nine years now. I love them and love to share them. I also sell them, which is my living at the moment. I started painting during a life-changing, spiritually exhausting mid-life crisis (of sorts), from which I doubted I could recover. I had no particular faith left, after ditching all of my traditional values to “Find myself”. I was 43 at that time when I finally breathed long enough to regroup. In the end, looking back, I claim that path and know that it helped make me “me”. It also gave me a wealth of material for books and artwork.

My first Madonna painting curiously looked like me and my family (the baby looked more like my nephew than my own children but the resemblance was there, and he looks like me as well). It took me a while to realize that I was often painting myself as the baby, the child, or both; and the babies, as in life, are so wise. I’ve healed, regardless, and forgave myself for being human while I painted these unplanned beauties.20131228-011621.jpg

The images of the Blessed Mother and Child are well received for their universal and spiritual theme; however, folks often relate to the imperfect humanness they reflect of my own issues at any given time. They range in mood and intensity — and they all make great company. The conversations that they spark are amazing, too — so interesting.  All cultures have bought them, which isn’t surprising. I once had a Islamic Sufi poet write a poem to one and a tattoo-laden punk rocker teen make an appointment to tell me how one reminded him of his aunt.

By sharing my work, the dialogue begins. This site will showcase my painted images and record my daily blogs about them. I will include some background about the inspiration behind the work. There may be a video from time to time and they may not all be paintings, depending on my circumstances. I have a fondness for carving at times, creating mixed media and clay work.

Join me for the fun.

Finally in at ALTA LUNA STUDIO


After moving my business twice (once from the gallery to storage, then from storage to the new studio), there is light at the end of the tunnel. I’ll paint tomorrow, I hope.  I still need bins for paint supplies and some shelves, and need to find a few missing supplies that must be in garage (ugh), but I’m mostly done and the space looks beautiful with my paintings on the walls.

I’ve hung almost everything I have left to sell, which includes a mishmash of old and new work with the exception of a couple oldies that are huge and “Pretty Face Madonna” which is hanging at the East Bay Chamber of Commerce (Suzanne loves that one).

It’s funny, I am so picky when I set up a space.  Perfectionist is a term I despise but I know it applies to me, at least on the surface. My drawers tend not to be organized; and the trunk of my car never seems to get emptied; but if I can’t see a mess, I am absolutely at ease. It’s genetic, it’s gotta be.  If things aren’t clean and neat,  I can’t work.  Probably some latent fear of rejection…  But once things get disorganized, I can’t ever get organized again; not completely, anyway.  My desk drawers are neat today, because I cleaned them out at the storage unit yesterday; but there were all sorts of random  things filling them (expired lottery tickets, hundreds of business cards, “to do” lists that I lost,  lots of ad copy that I thought I’d save to prove to myself later that my gallery did once exist/sigh) — crazy useless paper!

I pride myself on being digital and not having a file cabinet; and, for whatever reason, I ALWAYS find lots of paper lurking in desk drawers anyway.  I put all of the necessary paper I had in BAGS instead (in case the Accountant needs them): totally crazy, cause now I have five years of bags and they get shoved into boxes, that could be replaced with one tidy file cabinet!  I think the file cabinet represents commitment or something.

I sweat profusely whenever I commit to things for a long period of time. I once literally perspired in the shower after I invited a boyfriend to meet my parents at Thanksgiving dinner, and then broke up with him a week later. I have a flight reflex when I get too close or relationships get too complicated; hence, my need to be portable and “file cabinet-free”.  I agree with what you’re thinking, that a shrink is in order; yes, it probably is. That may happen after my health insurance is reactivated. I’ll never (foolish) medicate my peculiarities though or my madonnas will all be dull girls.

Wow, I do ramble.  Tomorrow is another day, for church and then studio. Daily painting and more work to do on the 365 Madonna Nights movie this week. Hey, I’m making progress on commitment issues: lease is 12 months, I got a shared puppy with my mom, AND I got envelopes for my new church.  I am optimistic, too because if I got envelopes, I guess I am confident about making sales this year.

Time to walk my crazy and sweet dog, Zoe.


Jane aka themadonnapainter

Finally, after a long day of unpacking and arranging, I’m in!

Join me in 2014



Opening Alta Luna Gallery  was a dream in 2012 and I went for it.  In the end, I chose to close the gallery and tweak that dream to realize a new one.  It showed me that I have to take leaps sometime.  It was recently suggested to me that “If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough”. Well, mine are scary, believe me (lol). I’ll work a side job to make it a bit less so!

That is my plan, going forward: to live life larger and to follow HUGE dreams.  I have no choice but to paint this dream.  I will soon pitch a HUGE Madonna project to an international arts organization, as Global is my new goal.  That seems BIG To me…

Join my on the path in 2014. I will blog my progress throughout the year and will let you know how the plans for the project progress, too.   As always it will be “Always Extraordinary”.


Jane Ann Dever

Join me for the fun.