Meeting Inanna

Inanna is an artist, art workshop facilitator in Canada: she exhibits internationally; she also consolidates her learning of expressive arts and trauma-informed sensorimotor art therapy approach into her own unique art process---Somatic Intuitive Arts---an art process for self-exploration:  which not only taps into our deep self-expression of colours, images---unconscious mind's language, but also taps into the "felt sense" in our body, which can help participants to trust the art process more and work through any resistance in their art process and life.
From 2007-2010, Inanna pioneered in Beijing as China's very first school social worker. She helped rural migrant children and their families to use arts to find their voices and become seen and heard by mainstream society. Her work was ground-breaking and very well documented in both HK and China.
It is "courage" that takes an artist to feel deep emotions; it is "safety" that takes an artist to feel and express even deeper.
Inanna Jiang

--M.A. in Social Work
--B.A. in Journalism
Professional  Training in Expressive Art Facilitation:
--Certificate of “Healing Trauma with Guided Drawing”, Institute for Sensorimotor Art Therapy
--"Soul Collage" Facilitator
--Intuitive painting training with Aviva Gold, Chris zydel.
--Shadow work: "Feeding Your Demons" with Lama Tsultrim Allione
International Solo and Group exhibitions:
--Exhibiting artist and keynote speaker in “Art Vancouver”—West Canada’s world class international Art Fair. (2023)
--“Gabriola Island Thanksgiving Studio Tour” exhibiting artist.(2021)
--“A Year Of Passion” Solo Intuitive Painting exhibition on gabriola island, B.C. Canada (2019.12)
--“The Day of the Dead” Group Exhibition with other gabriola artists on grief (2017)
--“Healing Your Grieving Heart” Solo “Soul Collage”Exhibition in Hong Kong at Jocaky Club Creative Arts Center (2017)



A Daring Journey---Finding My Own Voices By Birthing Images

I didn't think I had anything to do with creativity in my childhood and young adult years: my daddy said nobody ever did any drawings, paintings or made any art in my whole family's history--"It is not in our genes". I was taught to be nice, to be respectful, to be kind. I excelled in my academic pursuit and worked as a social worker to help people to find their own voices and potentials. But, where are my own voices? The very unique voices of my own.......The demands of a helping profession drained me quickly and the grief of losing my mother threw me into a place where words failed to reach......I felt I was like a pressure cooker which can blast at any time, but I had no idea what was cooking inside ......

Creativity is the life force---it attracts us, lures us, surprises us, and challenges us, knocking on our hearts' door unexpectedly.

I saw a brochure of a "Mandala" workshop one day. My eyes were glued onto the colours. I irrationally jumped in. Yes, irrationally: I could not believe I was sitting in an art workshop! For my very first Mandala, I kept asking the teacher: which colour to use next? With his guidance on every step, I "worked" really hard, and finished my very first mandala---This was the first color that entered my life!!! But I felt unsatisfied immediately----I heard a little voice: Can I have tiny bit more freedom? I experimented in a tiny area on my next mandala: just a tiny bit free movement of my brushes, without asking the teacher how I should move it, just let it move----till today, 9 years have passed, I never forget that excitement, that joy and yes---that ALIVENESS! The taste of freedom made me feel alive!

Freedom is something that deserves my life-long pursuit.

I was unsatisfied again: I didn't want to sit there and "work" on a painting: I want to create freely---it is so scary--to be free is our deepest desire, but it can be the thing that we fear the most. I packed a small suitcase and left my cozy home, flew 10000 miles from hk to Esalen in California: I started my intuitive painting learning process. No rules, no techniques, just me, my heart, my brush, and my canvas, the majestic sound of pacific ocean waves on cliff and the fresh strong smell of fir.......

It is not about "being nice", it is about being authentic. Let the process take you. Stay with the discomfort, and connect with body's sensation in the moment. Let the brush lead you. With not-knowing attitude, explore the unknown. Don't be afraid of the monstrous images, trust the creativity energy: it is benevolent. The only way to go through it is to feel it.

Intuitive painting plus soul collage training and Tibetan Buddhist Lama Tsutrim Allione's training on shadow work-- "Feeding Your Demons with Arts" opened up a whole new world for me: the mouthless girl, the bloody murderous knives, the frozen tears, the lost soul sister in the bottom of an ocean, the lilac passion, the loyal girl who sacrifices, the "drowning" overwhelming moment, the fiery passionate lily, the bud with the illuminating sun shining from her root, the double faced figure with anguish pain and enormous fears at the same time........I find my own voices by birthing images! I am amazed by the richness of this internal landscape. When I listen to these internal figures, or mysterious beings, when I set free the oppressed or suppressed by honoring them with images and words, when I commit myself to stay with everything that arises through my body in the moment, patience and compassion grow every day, I carved my own life path with each stroke on the canvas......image by image......

Creativity is soul retrieval. It is not about creating a perfect piece of work to please somebody, it is the internal liberating process, it celebrates you as an individual who has the whole universe inside... Longing to be whole is seeded in every human being's soul, by birthing images with absolute freedom, we piece together our sacred LIFE MANDALA......From the woman who had a blasting pressure cooker inside, who was told "creativity is not in your genes", who was waiting for teacher's step-by-step guidance to "work" on a mandala to today: I birth images with absolute freedom, piecing together my one-of-a-kind sacred LIFE MANDALA......

Yes, eventually, we are not creating a piece of artwork, we are creating our unique life path.

This is my life story, what about yours? Have you ever been told : creativity has nothing to do with you; you are not talented enough to create; creativity cannot find a good job for you; creativity needs special skills....I have been there. We can start from here!