Jane Rainey – The Horizon Is Never Still
Drawing inspiration from Romanticism and traditional Japanese landscape painting, Jane Rainey’s work is never a facsimile of the world around us, but instead expresses our longing for an escape into nature, tapping into a sense of magic and the inner self. Following a visit to the Chester Beatty museum in Dublin, Rainey was enthralled by its collection of Japanese artworks, in particular the Nara Ebon painted manuscripts. Essentially a device to tell mythical or religious stories, the Nara Ebon manucripts are imaginative in composition; worlds float and fold in on one another, while clouds of gold frame the images and waves move in and out of the landscapes.
The fluidity of these images and their straddling of reality and abstraction resonated with the artist and informed her latest body of work – where waves and the horizon line viewed from the shore are recurring motifs. “In my painting, I try evoke a sense of standing at the edge of the ocean,” Rainey says. “When you first look out to the horizon line it appears static, but look more closely and you see the waves on the horizon. This is a subtle reminder of the possibility of another world, one that is perceptible but can never be reached. It is this unknown world that inspires my painting, where I strive to blend fantasy with reality and myth with observation.”