ONe Thousand Tears

Janet O'Neal

Loss + Grief + Healing + Regeneration

On view: September 6th - October 13th

There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.
— Washington Irving

The exhibition

According to the Japanese legend, if you can patiently fold one thousand origami cranes your wish for healing would be granted. In creating one thousand tears, the artist's wish for healing would be “Tikkum Olam” תיקון עולם…repair of the world’s heart and soul.

After the tragic experience of Janet O'Neals brother David’s untimely death and the loss of a good friendship, her question was, how, as an artist was I to create out of these tears? Through the making of the photographic series about her brother, she was able to deeply connect with his life and gain extensive understanding and compassion. She experienced a profound healing and transformation. This alchemical process became a testament to the power of art as a vehicle for evolution and healing. A new path in her creative life had unfolded.


This exhibition explores this personal journey into deep heartfelt issues of grief, loss, migration and global earth changes. Through photography, printmaking, sculpture and painting, Janet O'Neal uses archetypal symbols to examine personal, universal and historical loss + healing in hopes of providing an opening of the “heartspace” to a deeper compassion in her viewers.

Sometimes the only way to heal is to dive deeply into the well of grief, then to emerge from the chrysalis of tears, having explored the chambers of the heart and finally to be reborn, merging with the tree of life. The human heart sculpture with the tears installation is the ultimate symbol of the essence of  Janet O'Neals exhibition.

The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had no tears
— Native American Proverb

The Artist

Janet O'Neal is an award winning multimedia artist, photographer and teacher. She is best known for her colorful energetic abstracts and multimedia assemblages. Born in Raleigh North Carolina, she is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied art and obtained a degree in Administration of Criminal Justice. After working as a deputy sheriff and an assistant to the district attorney in North Carolina, she decided not to attend law school, began a career in real estate and finally launched a full time career in art in 1987. She moved to Florida and began traveling extensively through out the country participating in juried art festivals and gallery exhibitions.

Janet has studied with leading American artists through out her 33-year career including Rudy Pozzatti, Glen Bradshaw, Maxine Masterfield, Carole Barnes, Sharon Montgomery, Barbara Nechis, Carrie Brown, and Bernice Ficeck Swenson and John M. Swenson: Landmark Editions, The Guerrilla Girls, The Penland School, Santa Fe Photography Workshops, photographer Marcel Perez and photographer George DeWolfe.

Janet has worked in watercolor, printmaking, painting, ceramics, multimedia assemblage, sculpture and photography. Her desire to express new ideas and emotions is almost always accompanied by the search and exploration of new techniques and media. Her current works include digital photography and conceptual multimedia works and installations where photography is the dominant media. She has won awards in the prestigious Georgia O’Keeffe International Photography Competition, International Pollux Awards Competition and is a Julia Margaret Cameron Awards Finalist.

Her artworks are included in private collections and over 300 corporate and public collections nationwide. She currently lives and works in Santa Fe New Mexico.