Paints In The Dark
Upon reflection of various projects throughout the decades, an apparent thread is explored in relation to Judy's fascination with her heritage. Her related comments and art are collected below.

In 2005, I participated in the National Geographic’s Genome Project that used DNA to re-examine migratory routes.

As of 2018, one-million participants in over 140 countries have participated in the Genographic Project.

The Wind Is At My Back (Self Portrait). Oil & acrylic on wood.

Self portrait painting by Judy Jashinsky
The Genome Project notified me that I am related to Otzi the Ice Man. His body was discovered in 1991, preserved in an Alpine glacier. Otzi lived 5,200 years ago and died surrounded by objects fundamental to his life. His cape reminded me of Native American huts.
I did these paintings shortly after the “Iceman” was discovered, before being notified that I was related to him.
Ötzi was found in the Ötzal Alps on the border between Austria and Italy. He is believed to have been murdered. The circumstances of his death and those of his life are the subject of much investigation and speculation. He is Europe's oldest known natural human mummy.
Iceman (front + back). 80 x 32 in. Oil on wood.
Iceman's Cape, Quiver & Arrows & Ax. 80 x 36 in. Oil on wood.

I discovered that I was Ashkenozim - Jewish communities in Germany and France during the Middle Ages. This was my father’s tribe. His parents from Prussia immigrated to the United States in the early 20th century with the aid of Pentecostal missionaries. They traded their religion/culture for freedom. Ironically, I married a Jewish man in 1973.

The Guardian

Painting by artist Judy Jashinsky

'Many Trails' is the Stockbridge-Muncee symbol. It is a symbol of hope, strength and endurance of the Mohican people. It speaks of the many trails taken from Northeast America to Wisconsin. Much-He-Con-Nuck (The People From Where The Waters Are Never Still) is now their reservation.

The painting contains the Medicine Animals of the Tribe layered on top of the symbol - Wild Turkey: Give-Away, Turtle: Mother Earth, Bear: Introspection, Wolf: Teacher.
The Village painted in the center is made up of Wigwams made of bent saplings, covered with hides and bark.

Stockbridge-Munsee Shield

Stockbridge-Muncee symbol, Mohican artwork by artist Judy Jashinsky
Native American painting by artist Judy Jashinsky
Tousey family portrait, artwork by Judy Jashinsky
Native American painting by artist Judy Jashinsky
In 2019, I became a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee tribe. My mother was a tribal elder as was her father. My mother’s generation is dwindling and it is my generation’s turn to carry the torch. The family name is on the honor wall at the National Museum of Native Americans. It is an honor I have long awaited.

This painting was done shortly after the opening of the National Museum of Native Americans in Washington DC. Judy is a founding member and joined the many tribes that met in Washington to celebrate the opening.

First Americans on Parade. 2004. 37 x 41 in. Mixed media on wood.
Tousey family portrait, painting by Judy Jashinsky
When I was a child in rural Wisconsin, my family would often make trips to visit my maternal grandparents on the Indian reservation. The family portrait is based on a photograph taken on one of those trips. It was a great adventure. We packed food and water in case we had to stop while my father cut a tree that had fallen in the road. My brothers and I would drag the limbs away. These trips made me think about what made me an “Indian.”
Tousey Family Portrait. 1991. 96 x 96 in. Oil on wood.
Hannah Chicks, drawing by artist Judy Jashinsky
Hannah Chicks, painting by artist Judy Jashinsky
There was a photo of my Great Grandmother hanging prominently in the dining room of the farm house. I recall saying to my mother, "she doesn’t look like an Indian." The people who lived on the reservation didn’t look like the ones on TV and in movies.
The grayscale drawing is a replication of a photo of Hannah that hung in the farmhouse on the reservation. Judy painted the second re-creation based on "what she might have worn had she not been educated by missionaries who took her traditions away."
The "Many Trails" symbol is referenced on the necklace Chicks wears in the re-creation painting. (Judy is also pictured wearing a necklace with the symbol in Self Portrait)
Great Grandmother: Hannah Chicks
'Paints in the Dark' is my Indian name. It was given to me by a fellow painter, who studied for many years with a Lakota Medicine Man. The name originated when I invited her to my studio to see a new painting of water at night. My blinds were closed because the light was too intense and turned on a 40 watt light. She was shocked. Shortly after that she gave me the name 'Paints in the Dark'. I was honored.
Judy is a founding member of Take Me To The River, an international art group formed shortly after 9/11. Reenactment was created for Take Me To The River's first exhibition in Cairo, Egypt. The theme was to connect the Potomac river of Washington and the Nile. This painting depicts an imagined ceremony of blessings and gratitude toward the river and Mother Earth for the abundance they provide.
Reenactment. 2001. 66 x 120 in. Pastel on paper.