Latest Work by Anna Meijn
Acrylic on canvas, 30 x 40 inch / 76 x 101 cm
I went to Las Vegas to present this painting to the subject, Becky Brown, during the Women In The Wind Winter International meeting, February 13-16th 2020 in Las Vegas.
Becky Brown is the founder of the international organisation Women In The Wind. She started the first chapter in 1979 in Ohio, USA.
Women In The Wind’s purpose is:
To UNITE women motorcyclists with friends of common interest.
To PROMOTE a positive image to the public of women on motorcycles.
To HELP EDUCATE its members on motorcycle safety and maintenance.
More than 30 years ago I read an article in an American motorcycle magazine about Becky Brown and Women In The Wind. I longed to be part of such an organisation but lived on the wrong continent; this was the era before email, internet and Google!
Three years ago I discovered that there were Facebook groups for female riders and connected with some. Then I received a message from Becky Brown! We messaged to and fro and the rest is history. Since 2017 we have a Women In The Wind chapter in New Zealand: the Tui Thunder Chapter. Amazing how the internet made the world a small place and made a dream come true.
I always use song titles for my paintings and this one is no exception. This painting is the companion of my other painting ‘Sweet Thing’. Both girls had a piece of chewing gum which absolutely fascinated me. Where did that come from? We were in the middle of Zambia, dirt roads, mud and straw houses and other than that… nothing but lots of nature and wildlife.
The title refers to both the chewing gum and the scowling baby boy. He soooo didn’t want to be confined in his movements. The only African baby I have ever seen who had not quietly surrendered to his baby fate.
Acrylic on Canvas – 32 x 45 inch.
Pastel on board (framed), 18 x 24 in / 46 x 61 cm.
‘Colin Robinson’ – pastel on board – 31 x 44 cm / 12 x 17 in
Celebrating his 80th birthday. He has over 60 years of voluntary work under his belt in the Wairarapa community as a firefighter and an ambulance officer, to mention just a few.
A wonderful, fun and loyal friend to many. Hard worker. Great craftsman. Good company. I hope to get to paint his 100th birthday portrait!
Freedom Rider – September 2017 – Oil on Canvas – 30 x 40 in (76 x 102 cm)
This painting is an ode to freedom which many of us take for granted. I was inspired to paint this picture by the Buffalo Chip Freedom Ride 2017. I was a sponsor for the event and donated limited editions of three of my paintings to their charity auction benefiting wounded veterans and their families, the Special Olympics and the Motorcycle Hall of Fame.
The auction of the paintings was a huge success and generated twice their value for the good causes. The auction happened at the end of the day after listening to a great band, being amongst good people and followed by an amazing ride from Spearfish through the Black Hills to Sturgis, South Dakota.
I was over the moon to have been able to make such a substantial contribution (US$4700) and felt a strong desire to paint this immediately upon returning to my studio. I used the Badlands for the background as this is such a fascinating and utterly beautiful landscape and boy do I feel free and grateful for that freedom when I ride there!
Acrylic on Canvas – 23.5 x 47 inch.
This piece was created specifically for Sturgis Bike Week 2017’s Buffalo Chip 36th Anniversary ‘Legends Ride’.
Thundering through the hills, side by side, wind sweeping through our hair and mane, breathing hard, snorting, bellowing steamy breath, heaving bodies, muscles, steel, chrome and rubber. The waving grass lures us towards the prairie. Fleeing antelope, swirling scents, hot, cold, blue bells bordering streams on both sides, majestic pines, hill tops, formidable rock formations and passes. Free!
‘Kickstart My Heart’ – Oil – 30 x 40 inch
The day starts with the smell of dew on grass glistening in the early morning sun mixed with the smell of damp leather, oil, earth and metal warming up. The mist is slowly dissipating and the birds are joyously exclaiming their fondness for this new day.
Krrr, Krrrr, voomph, Krrrr, Krrr, vroomph, Krrr, Krrrr and then you hear the beautiful rumble of a ‘47 Chief come to life to warm your heart while warming your hands on a steaming mug of brew. What a great way to start your day!
‘Maybe’ – Oil – 30 x 40 inch
I always use song titles for my paintings. ‘Maybe’ is the theme song for the 70s series ‘Life and Times of Grizzly Adams’. Now, with this song playing in your head, look at the painting again.
‘Smokin’ – Acrylic – 19.5 x 23.5 inch
I think this painting speaks for itself. I love the colours, the contrast, the attitude, the solidarity, the togetherness. It is such a great statement of whatever statement you want it to be. It rocks!
‘Gail’ – pastel on board, 22 x 30 cm / 9 x 12 in.
On film set in Queenstown late 80’s.
‘Feelin’ Alright’ – Oil – 14 x 20 inch
My paintings tell a story and I am always looking for the ones that say more than a thousand words. Just like this one and if I had to explain you wouldn’t understand.
‘Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon’ – Pastel – 18 x 24 inch
‘Arrived’ – Oil – 29.5 x 35 inch
The end of the day is nearing the twilight hour. He arrives in a cloud of dust at the campsite and hears people laughing in the distance, the popping of a beer can being opened, murmured voices followed by raucous laughter and cheering, the crackle and waves of heat from a bonfire, the rumble and revving of several big twin engines, the smell of roasting meat, exhaust fumes, beer, perfume, burning wood, grass and damp soil mingled with snippets of rock music. “Home”, he thinks and sighs with contentment.
‘Raised On Rock’ – Acrylic – 23.5 x 31 inch
During rallies and shows you come across very interesting proclamations of a variety of ideas. Great ones and not so great ones and ones that require acid to burn the image off your retinas. This is one of the great ones and I wholeheartedly share the rock sentiment.
‘Fairies Wear Boots’ – 30 x 30 inch
‘Hold On Loosely’ – Oil – 30 x 30 inch
I wanted to paint this couple riding down the road for quite some time but could not find the right background. I secretly have a nickname for the painting (her), feel free to guess. I started painting it on a smaller canvas but that didn’t feel right, so that canvas became another painting.
Then in 2016 I rode back by myself from Sturgis, South Dakota to Grand Junction, Colorado. The Rockies are infamous for their sudden and fierce thunderstorms. I had kept a close eye on the weather channel and knew that I had to try to dodge several
storms that day. And here I was, in the middle of Wyoming, 180 miles from anything, nowhere to stop or shelter and I see five thunderstorms developing around me.
Ok. Start with dodging number 1. Check. Number 2. Got a little wet, all good. Number 3, got a nice skin and teeth polishing sandblast but dodged the rain, tick in box. Now onto 4 and 5. Mile after mile the clouds got darker and darker, resembling giant black cotton balls and the pile got bigger and bigger ahead and on the right of me. Number 3 stayed with me on my left, getting bigger and darker too but didn’t appear to contain imminent thunder and lightning so I ignored it. I could not see where the road was going but it seemed to be going straight ahead into the blackest cotton balls that could start throwing lightning bolts at any time now.
All of a sudden there was a huge dip in the road and the road made a 90 degree curve to the left through the rock formations. Relief flooded me. I hauled ass the whole time and made it. Thunder and lightning splitting the dark sky behind me.
I arrived at the nearest petrol station with a nearly empty gas tank and instantly the rain came bucketing down like the end of the world was near. “Hah! Got ya!” I smirked. As I had been staring at this scenery for a good two hours it felt like the absolutely perfect background for this painting once I arrived back into my warm, dry and safe studio.
‘Sharp Dressed Man’ – Acrylic – 16 x 24 inch
‘Roll Me Away’ – Acrylic – 23.5 x 35.5 inch
This painting is about our farewell to the most amazing, clever, enigmatic rebel ever. Gary built this coffin sidecar so it could be towed as well. The idea was that he could take it anywhere and just crash in it if he had had a couple too many beers without having to worry about accommodation or drink driving. Awesome.
He took it on a long road trip, had too many beers, crashed in it… and then it started to rain. The thing wasn’t mentioned again for a month or 4 or 5 and I thought it had died a premature death. Next minute Gary has started a free community service: anyone who wants to be buried by the mayor can be carried out in style in the coffin bike. He was actually quite busy with that!
Then the time came that he wanted to move on from his role as rebel biker mayor of a small Wairarapa town and the service became less popular. Then came the day we all feared… we took him to the pub for the last time and gave him one for the road. We buried him the next day in his coffin sidecar.
Gary McPhee, we salute you. You so could not be missed. Actually, not a day goes by that I don’t miss you so very much my friend.