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Jane Lee

Artist 296

Jane Lee

Experimental Painting

Beyond the Canvas

Jane Lee (born 1963) is a Singapore artist known for her innovative work in paintings. She continuously turns the traditional medium on its head, exploring new possibilities in presenting paintings as works of art unrestricted by the confines of the canvas.

She explores the very nature of the way paintings are constructed by treating the components of a painting—stretcher, canvas, and the paint itself—in new ways.

The surfaces of her paintings are highly tactile and sensuous, often dimensional enough to be considered wall-based sculptures. In some cases, Lee dispenses with canvas altogether extruding acrylic paint directly onto wooden stretchers, which results in a hollow, three-dimensional object.

She redefines paint and painting to produce dynamic and bold forms. Operating in a post-colonial Southeast Asian context, Lee re-examines the significance of Western painting practices while asserting her own culture.

Pushing the boundaries of the medium, her work echoes the breakdown of cultural barriers in the era of globalization and affirms the universality of contemporary art.

In these works the paint falls to the bottom seemingly giving in to gravity. Many of her works appear to move: they fall, unroll, hang or slide suggesting, in the process, everyday objects (a hose, a carpet, a window).

Through being persistent and patient she undertakes the processes of layering, mixing, winding, wrapping, kneading, daubing and other acts of physical transformation. Lee redefines paint and painting to produce dynamic and bold forms.

Jane Lee explains about her painting process,

“I suppose an artwork can never really be finished. If a work speaks to me, it is done. It is more emotional than intellectual. I talk to my painting a lot. It is an interactive process. Paintings are in a way alive even though they do not talk. They have certain tendencies. There is some kind of negotiation going on between the artist and the work in the process of making art.”

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