Thursday, 14 March 2013

Jane Hill: Pots in Place

Jane Hill Paper forms; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
Jane Hill Paper forms; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
In 2011 I wrote a series of essays about Sandra Brownlee, her work, and how she dedicated a decade to creative growth and renewal. Brownlee stepped away from actively weaving and started creating tactile notebooks. Ten years later she returned to the loom, refreshed and inspired. Jane Hill has done a similar thing. I've known Jane for more than a dozen years and own some of her spare black-and-white pottery on which she has built her reputation. About five years ago we found ourselves taking a few Jody Joseph collage classes at the Dundas Valley School of Art. Jane has an enviable sense of design, especially in her trademark black-and-white. Jody teaches at a school in Italy, so four years ago Jane went for the first time and there began a metamorphosis. In her artist statement Jane explains "In Italy, prodded by painters around me, I began painting in oil in the landscape but was constantly drawn back to my studio, a dimly lit first floor room in an ancient stone building. There, instead of painting, I began experimenting by making 3 dimensional forms out of paper. Many of the forms reflected my love of old functional objects." In Italy, Jane discovered the work of Giorgio Morandi, an Italian painter best known for his spare still-life paintings of bottles and other vessels in a subtle colour palette.
Jane Hill Pots in Place; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
One thing lead to another, and soon Morandi's influence and Jane's growing collection of paper vessels in her Italy studio lead her to begin painting their representations and the spaces between them on canvas. Painting the paper vessels then led Jane to create their likenesses in porcelain. It's clear that Jane's fans love her new direction because the show was awash in red dots.
Jane Hill Red Rim painting with Pots on Shelf;Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
The paper forms, with their raw potential, drew me in, as did the two (sold) porcelain vessels in the image above and below.

Jane Hill Pots on Shelf; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013

Jane's paintings are subtle. In the following images are three paintings that snuck up on me with their muted colours.
Jane Hill White Shadow I; Photo credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013

 Jane Hill White Shadow II; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
 Jane Hill Oil Can; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
Jane's new direction is an inspiration for all artists with long careers who seek to refresh their work and dip their toes into new waters.
 Jane Hill porcelain vessels; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
 Jane Hill porcelain vessels; Photo Credit: Karen Thiessen, 2013
Pots in Place is on until March 24, 2013 at the Carnegie Gallery, Dundas, Ontario.


Valerie Knapp said...

Loved seeing this Karen! Thanks for posting.

india flint said...

these wanderings between media are marvellous. i particularly like the way the porcelain pieces express the "paperiness" of the initial constructions