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Artist Dawn Barnett Featured at the GoodBean for November

GoodBean Coffee Co.

GoodBean Coffee Co.

GoodBean Coffee Co. in Jacksonville is proud to present artist Dawn Barnett as November’s featured artist.

GoodBean art curator Hannah West would love to say she discovered Dawn’s fiercely individual work, but it was Dawn’s cousin, Jacksonville resident Shelly Staten, who found Hannah when reading SOAR’s Art Event calendar in the Jacksonville Review. The cousins have always been close, and Shelly believes deeply in Dawn and her art, so she has taken on the representation of her cousin’s work.


Dawn In Studio

Artist Dawn Barnett paints in her studio



"Integrity", 15 x 15 oil on wood by Dawn Barnett

Profoundly deaf, this artist reminds us that when one is missing one sense, others are magnified to bridge the gap of understanding of the world around them. Though the textures and innovative rendering of the human form Dawn creates demonstrate the amazing ability of the senses to compensate for each other, it’s more than just her observant eyes and sensitive hands at work – her intuitive sense, sharpened by earnest spiritual seeking through the direct experience of many cultures, has forged a unique way of interpreting human relationships and an equally unique approach to expressing her observations in creative form. One can see various deaf communication signs incorporated into most of Dawn’s designs, and if you’re one who understands sign language, you’ll find a message in each one.


Ms. Barnett tells us a little about herself and her work, which showcases the beauty of sign language as a visual form of art:

My artistic expression in ceramics and oil has allowed years of personal growth to blossom. I grew up in Beverly Hills with my father Jackie Barnett, Jimmy Durante’s music producer and comedian writer, and my mother Jo Morrow, an actress who made several movies and appeared on television. My parents’ professional lives allowed me to experience the musical and media aspects of Hollywood’s mainstream. I experienced chaos in my life as I struggled to free my spirituality as a deaf individual in an environment where others could hear and enjoy my parents’ music and arts.


I shave and carve deeply, reminding myself of the chaos in the work-a-day world. By carving I am able to remove the negative, allowing the positive to come forth. Working through the difficulties of communicating exactly what is meant, a realization appears: It is not just the Deaf who have this challenge, and Art is revealed as the universal communicator.


"The Book of Life", 15 x 15 oil on wood by Dawn Barnett

The deaf communication sign for “I Love You” is incorporated in most of my creations, as well as the use of ‘holes’, representing the inherent need we all have to fill our hearts, minds and spirits within the surroundings of life. Whimsical movement, earthy colors and mystic overtones combined to create the themes behind my art. The influence of the Far East, Asian, Egyptian, Zuni, Greek and Aztec cultures flow within my designs. The paradox evokes emotions which accentuate the recycling harmonic flow of life. This of course, is always depicted from my profoundly deaf perspective.


"Tibetan", 15 x 15 oil on wood by Dawn Barnett

Shelly tells us that Dawn, currently based in Florida, is a longtime world traveler with many friends and rarely in one place long enough to let the moss grow. A prolific artist who hasn’t had time to do a lot of marketing herself, the 34 works on display are only a portion of Dawn’s available work. Her website is a treasure trove of information about the artist and galleries of her art, but it has not yet been updated with Shelly’s contact information, so we ask that you direct any inquiries about her work to Hannah at [email protected] or visit Dawn’s new listing at the Southern Oregon Artists Resource to find links to her site as well as Shelly’s local contact information. We are very fortunate to have access to Dawn’s highly expressive, hand-carved creations and thank Shelly for the opportunity to exhibit it here this month.


We have seen Dawn’s art on the walls of Shelly’s home and can tell you it’s an interior decorator’s dream! Her warm color schemes, various textures carved in beautiful woods and abstract humans in an original, yet anciently ethnic form will be a welcome addition to any art collection and will enhance virtually any decor scheme.  We’re glad to present another conversation-starting show and hope you will take time to thoroughly enjoy Dawn’s work through the coming month, giving a purchase of this very collectible work your serious consideration. And as always, we welcome your comments.

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