Week 18: Juli Cady Ryan


The Music

“All Takes Time” (4:44 mins) © Helen Davey
(for 4 voices, grand-father clock percussion: chimes, cog wheels, pendulm, chains, glass doors)


The Art

“Time Stealer” by Juli Cady Ryan

12″ x 12″ acrylic on stretched canvas, Sold.
Prints are available here  Juli’s website & Facebook 

"Time Stealer" by Juli Cady Ryan, 12" x 12", acrylic on streched canvas

“Time Stealer” by Juli Cady Ryan, 12″ x 12″, acrylic on streched canvas


Artist Notes

Juli Cady Ryan

This painting was actually inspired by my daughter, Ashley, who has a mental illness called Borderline Personality Disorder. Her illness caused her to shut out her family for a few years. She even moved out. Now that she’s better, I look back and realize all the time we lost with her and the things she missed out on with our family. It made me feel that that time had been stolen from us all. 

The emotion for this painting is loss. Loss of precious time with my daughter that I can never get back. Sadness that she had to go through what she did. Also joy that things are different today and that she is back home and a big part of our family again. In the beginning, my intention for my art was just to be bright and happy. But as time went on, I realized I had a story to tell. One of pain, yes, but also one of hope. 

My Music

"Possum" in the studio

“Possum” in the studio

Essentially I wanted to create a patchwork with layers of meaning that touched on the themes of time, loss and hope. But I wanted the patchwork pieces to be a little frayed – not neat and tidy. I was touched by the Juli’s story, particularly by her enduring sense of hope.
“Possum” the cat (currently here on a holiday) was enthusiastic to contribute to this piece on behalf of her feline counterpart in Juli’s painting. I asked Possum if she could provide some cat-speak around the topics of comfort and hope. She was happy to oblige and managed it all in the first take. She’s been starring at the fish ever since…

I’d love to hear what you hear/see in these artworks via the comments section below; Please feel free to share this around to anyone interested in art & music via the little icons.

Thank you for making & taking the time, to spend time here, in your own time (well, for the time being anyway), and giving my and Juli’s work the time of day.

Prime Time greetings to you,

PS. is it time to feed the fish?


10 comments to Week 18: Juli Cady Ryan

  • Silvia

    Thank you, Helen, for the three night shifts (and I do hope you will be able to catch up with sleep!!). Your interpretation is fantastic, including clock and cat and it is absolutely worth while spending some time listening to it! Love it! Herzgruss. Silvia

  • Helen

    Oh Silvia, kind of you to wish me well in my slumbers…. Thanks indeed for taking the time to listen and for your feedback. Great to hear this one resonates with you.

  • Kinda hip, your rhythmic Grandfather. How wonderful that you had that recording to work with. You very much succeeded with the patchwork, layering of sound here, and it fits the painting perfectly. I love having the explanation/story of both the painting and the music. It all makes so much sense and means so much more with those, so thanks for including. This one truly is catchy; I listened twice in a row.

    (Possum is a trooper, and seems to like your fish!)

    • Helen

      Bronle, thanks for this – it was an enchanting time (excuse the punn) recording the grand father clock in a 200+ year old Swiss farmhouse. I’d just finished a tour and was pretty exhausted. the time out was timely (sorry I’ll stop – but it’s true). I feel like the patchworking was important in a messy sort of way – cause life isn’t neat and tidy, there’s often frayed edges here and there, and I’m hoping my attempts honour Juli’s work and inspirations.
      Possum is indeed a reliable little mate – and a snugglepot!

  • Anya

    Hi Helen!

    Ivan, Yingqi, Stefan and I are having a great time listening to your timeless piece in a different time zone – time to see and hear you in real time.


    • Helen

      Hello Anya!

      I must have timed out and missed your timely comment!

      I’m feeling honoured that you call this piece timeless!! Thank you VERY much. Please accept my appologies for a belated reply from my timezone… (which you can see – by the time shown on this page’s clock face).

  • You did a marvelous job Helen, in capturing the mood of this painting…elements of both sadness and hope. The clocks and the cat add a certain charm to it all. Wonderful!

    • Helen

      Hey Juli – I’m so glad you hear both moods in the music – thanks to you for the inspiration and for being part of project 52!

  • What a treat to find you again, listen to your sound paintings while viewing the art.
    I love the way your music connects to the painting’s idea of loss and time and also feels so healing. The music seems to flow up the path through the painting, has a timeless presence, ebbing and flowing. The cymbals in the middlle remind me to notice the beauty on the path in the present even or especially during pain as it brings healing. Your ending to the piece is exquisite- I don’t dare try to describe it!

  • Hey Susan,

    Gratifying to know my music captures the themes for you. I love your notion of the musical pathway and particularly your comment about savouring the joys of being in the present. And…. as for the ending… there is something so endearingly comforting about Possum’s contribution. Thanks so much for dropping by.

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