We want to share with you some of the art that Pam England has made. Perhaps it will inspire you to create your own work, or spark a new idea or connection related to the childbearing year. Read below to see and read about one of her recent paintings.
Many of her original paintings are for sale, and she also offers prints of selected works. Pam also accepts commissions, particularly for unique personal birth mandalas and labyrinths (both in clay and paintings). To inquire about purchasing her art, please look at our online store, or email our office (serious inquiries only, please).
Mexican Labyrinth of Birth
by Pam England
2012, acrylic paint on masonite
(see larger image at the bottom of this page)
Mexican Labyrinth of Birth was inspired by a story my friend, Alberto, told me. Two of his tias (aunties) are parteras (midwives) in Oaxaca, Mexico. One day he told me that in Mexico, women who give birth are called warriors. "The midwives tell a pregnant woman that when she is in labor she will have to go to the underworld where spirits hold all the unborn babies … She will have to find her baby, do battle in labor with the spirit to free her baby and bring him or her "home"—bring her baby back and into to the world, to the family who is waiting. Only she can do this." This description ignited my imagination and inspired this painting.
Here are descriptions of some of the images and symbols in my painting:
Gold line with dips and drips represents waves of contractions in labor. Typically in books or graphs, the contraction pattern is shown as "hills" (like an electronic fetal monitor print-out). But when I was in labor, my inner-experience was better represented by dips—as each contraction took me down, deep down within myself, into a vast expanse that felt like an immersion into infinite love.
Two Hunter-Guardians (on the upper right): one is in the upper world, the other in the underworld.
Diving Mother (in the upper left) and Swimming-out-of-the-underworld Mother in the middle. These figures represent a favorite pain-coping practice I teach, called "Diving for Your Baby," which represents the mother’s eager and fierce willingness to do the work, to battle, to do whatever it takes to bring her baby home.
Seven spirits in the underworld: six are holding babies of every color. In numerology, Seven represents hardship, determination, and initiation. The seventh spirit, having lost her battle with the victorious mother, is exhausted (right of center)!
The ladder is a favorite motif of mine. It connects the upper and lower worlds, the conscious and unconscious; it allows for movement (with effort) between the two worlds.
The llama, Four Elders (on the left above the llama), and Fire Keeper showed up—on their own; they were in the initial under-painting, I merely embellished them and brought them out.
The beads embedded in the labyrinth came to me in a dream. The dream showed me how to lay them in, and what colors they should be; and that the pathway was illuminated with gold.
I hope this image will take you on inner-journeys. Thank you for supporting my work.
To purchase an archival art print, go to our online store.
This work, as well as all of Pam England's art and other images on this website, is copyright protected and MAY NOT be reproduced IN ANY FORM, without PRIOR WRITTEN PERMISSION.