Jane Burton | Ivy
02.09.09 to 26.09.09
Jane Burton’s exhibition, Ivy comprises a series of photographs captured in black and white. The final prints are rendered with a sepia, peach-champagne tone, with many displaying a mottled hand-coloured effect in faded pastels of pink and green. These works hope to suggest an era past, perhaps Victorian. The imagery is evocative of old picture postcards from Europe and old photographs from the pages of family albums.
Central to the series is an image of a house covered with ivy. Depicted as dark and malevolent, the house is ‘haunted’ by the traces and stains of family history, habitation, and the buried secrets of all that occurred within.
Anonymous female figures are seen in garden settings where the foliage is rampant and encroaching and the shadows deep. There is an air of enchantment perceived with unspecified darker edge. The figures are innocent and playful. The viewer is asked to question if the and girls aware of the camera capturing their activity? Are the poses staged or caught spontaneously. In another photograph, a dilapidated male statue stands broken and armless, the texture of stone worn, and bruised with dark lichen and moss.
In the interior photographs, several nudes are depicted in the style of 19th century French daguerreotype photographs. These vignetted images display women against wall-papered backdrops with theatrical props reminiscent of earlier works by Burton such as the series The other side (2003). Posed suggestively for the camera and the viewer’s gaze, the subjects themselves are faceless, their own gaze and features hidden behind dark hair. The surface and texture of these particular works suggests the patina of decay and the damage and wear of time.
Jane has recently participated in several important group exhibitions including: Trace Elements (2008), Tokyo Opera City Gallery, Tokyo; neo-goth: back in black (2008), The University of Queensland Art Museum, Brisbane; National Photographic Portrait Prize (2007), National Portrait Gallery, Canberra and Light Sensitive: Contemporary Australian Photography from the Loti Smorgon Fund, National Gallery of Victoria (2006).
Her work is in major public collections such as the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart; Newcastle Region Art Gallery; Monash University, Melbourne; Artbank; Australia Post and Monash Gallery of Art.