Publications + Catalogues

Saints in Paint

A meditation by Vanilla Beer

Paperback – 17 May 2021
By Vanilla Beer (Author)

Where do ideas come from? What creates what, why, for whom, with what intent? Most catholic saints are only known by their posthumously painted portraits, recognised as made under divine inspiration to define the saint. The nuns that taught me as a child used this inspiration as one of the proofs of the existence of god. At my local art museum in Carcassonne there are three small portraits of saints. They are St Anthony, by Giovanni Riolla, an 18th century painter from Naples: Saint Peter weeping in repentance, by Juseppe Ribera (1591-1652): and a self-portrait as John the Baptist, by Henri Jean-Guillaume Martin (1860 – 1945) Here spanning three centuries we find one straight saint (didn’t say which St Anthony nor were there clues in the picture), one saint in action (crying) and one saint as the artist pretending to be a saint. By what authority did the artists make these bold pronouncements? I limited myself chiefly to saints who did not get canonised officially by the Catholic Church but were chosen by popular acclaim, pre-congregation (around 1070) Reading until I found one that appealed to me, that spoke to me, that communicated in some way, I would paint them. So, the question underlying the Saints series is one of attribution. And after all, I still have no answers.

Stafford Beer

The Father of Management Cybernetics

Big Data Analysis including Cybernetic Glossary
Paperback – Large Print, 8 July 2019
Beer Paperback – 17 May 2021
By Vanilla Beer (Author),  Allenna Leonard (Author)

Stafford Beer worked in industry and his analytical methods grew out of his experiences there. In an attempt to explain his Viable System Model (the VSM) and other ideas the authors have described the route by which he arrived at his solutions. This was Staffords preferred teaching method, contextualizing his thinking.There is nothing theoretical about his solutions – they are all grounded in practice. Their successful application caused him to be invited to work for Salvador Allende in Chile and for many other companies and governments. His insistence that hierarchical models will fail the people whom they are supposed to serve is axiomatic to his thinking.Vanilla Beer is an artist and Staffords daughter : Dr Allenna Leonard is a practicing cybernetician and Staffords life partner.

Vanilla Beer Modern Mythmaker

Prenez, Mangez et Vivez

For seven years, I painted the food I planned to eat each day. The text was added as I learnt french in my adopted country and was an attempt to mirror my emotions on that day. During that time I worked on other projects but I did at least one food painting most days- therefore there are in excess of 2 thousand of these pictures, never duplicated and always complex enough to interest me.  

Drawn by the Light of Burning Bridges (2015)

Catalogue of drawings, reflections on art, notes on techniques.