Artist, Jane Lillian Vance Sells Masterwork Painting

by Jane Lillian Vance

Strawberry Buddha to Join Collection in Historic Philadelphia Area Home

Jane Lillian Vance’s masterpiece painting, Strawberry Buddha, complete the journey this week from a gallery in downtown Roanoke to its new home outside Philadelphia.  The painting, valued at $40,000, was purchased by Jim Schinella and Kristin Passalacqua Schinella and will add to the grandeur of their historic home, Whitby Hall, located in Haverford, PA.

“It seems appropriate for such a painting to join the rich history of our home,” said Kristin Schinella.  “I have been a life-long admirer of Jane’s focus on building cultural bridges through her exquisite and detailed work.  It is our honor to join the historic narrative of this masterpiece.”

Vance is best known for creating paintings with brilliant colors, intricate detail, vivid iconography of Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, and the folk arts of the Subcontinent and Appalachian Blue Ridge Mountains.  Perhaps destined to be one of her most studied masterworks, the unique 48″ x 60″ oil on canvas Strawberry Buddha is painted entirely with pink tints.

“The painting occurred to me, one morning, when I saw the rare cotton-candy whitish-pink color through my bedroom skylight, and observed how quickly the pale pink clouds responded to the rising sun by turning subtle papaya and then orange,” said Vance.  “I realized, if I didn’t do something about it, I would see that early pastel pink only for a few seconds, on a few more occasions in my life.”

Strawberry Buddha will be displayed in the Schinella’s historic home outside Philadelphia.  Whitby Hall, built in 1754, was home to descendants of one of the city’s leading families and was originally located in West Philadelphia at what is now 1601 South 58th Street, at Florence Avenue. Nearby Whitby Avenue is a reminder that the house was an early local landmark. For one hundred years, this 18th-century Georgian stone home was noted as one of the finest examples of colonial architecture in America. In 1923, in an attempt to preserve the historic structure, the house was literally taken apart stone-by-stone and re-built as a private residence in Haverford, Pennsylvania.  Parts of Whitby Hall that never made the move from Philadelphia to Haverford are now at the Detroit Institute of Arts as the centerpiece of its American Decorative Arts Gallery.

For many years, Jane Lillian Vance’s highly narrative, Tibetan-focused paintings went without much public notice until internationally acclaimed art critic Suzi Gablik wrote about the her work in Satish Kumar’s Resurgence magazine, and in Images of Earth and Spirit, an English anthology of spiritual contemporary art.  Attention to her work exploded in 2010 when the documentary film, A Gift for the Village, was completed.  The award-winning film chronicled the conception, creation, completion and delivery of Vance’s painting about Amchi Tsampa Ngawang Lama, a Tibetan amchi-lama-doctor and mind-healer.  Sanctioned by the Dalai Lama, Jane Lillian Vance is the first woman and first westerner granted permission to produce such a piece.  The depth of storytelling and success of the film drew international acclaim for her paintings as well as in her role as a teacher of The Creative Process at Virginia Tech.

Having traveled extensively in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, Vance lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Her paintings are housed in private collections and museums on four continents. Widely recognized for her knowledge and understanding of Tibetan and Nepali culture, Jane is a frequent lecturer and keynote speaker on the subject.

For more information visit: or Facebook/Jane Lillian Vance, Artist

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