In 1965, Jennie Tomao (then known as Gina) was one of the first artists to make prints with Kenneth Tyler at his newly established custom printing shop, Gemini Ltd., in Los Angeles California. Unfortunately very little has been published about Tomao, but recently her son Charles Lynn Bragg kindly shared some memories of his mother and his father, fellow artist Charles Bragg:
Both my parents were professional artists, painters and print makers. My Mom painted with her heart and I think her best, most profound and inspiring paintings are her landscapes and trees. The majority of her paintings were sold without taking quality photos of them. Even I haven’t seen all of her work.
My parents met at New York High School of Fine Arts, a specialized school where they were both accepted on their early portfolios. They met, fell in love, eloped, married (Mom 16 and Dad 18 years old) and moved to Detroit, Michigan where my Dad had odd jobs. Two years later, I was born and then 16 months later, my sister Georgia came into the world. Then my parents decided to move to Los Angeles, California to dedicate themselves to making and teaching art. They opened a studio in Beverly Hills where they painted portraits, commissions and taught the young and old (and my Sister and I) painting.
My Dad’s career overshadowed my Mom’s, but she kept painting. He was always in the limelight and her work was in the background. Over the next several decades, they developed their craft, their styles and their message to the world. My Mother’s message was love, respect, awe and reverence for nature and people.
In her late 70s my Mom developed a surprising new look and style in her paintings. Trees were her favorite subjects and she painted dense groves of various trees on a large scale. These paintings were unlike anything she had ever done before. The large scale made a viewer feel like they could walk right into the painting.
– Charles Lynn Bragg, December 2017