Jane Booth

Artist Statement

I see painting as a snapshot from the open aperture through which one experiences the world. In order for the paintings to sincerely hold and transport this snapshot, the senses must be engaged, as well as emotions and memory, to use a felt sense of color and mark. Tapping into this sense, without a fixed narrative, and working in this unfettered manner, is similar to how a journal is written, creating unbound visual slices of life. The degrees of separation between inspiration and fulfillment are narrow. In these ways, yards and yards of raw canvas are filled, as color is poured and marks are made. What strays from this intense connection is as important as what hits the mark, as a way of continuing to move. In this unedited process, everything will show up; as a streaming, ongoing process. Occasionally a canvas is plucked, photographed, stretched and shown.

Foremost, the work is grounded in external as well as internal space, and to what happens within that space. My studio and home are on a ridge overlooking a large open valley of flood plain, empty of houses and lights. Storms building can be seen 20 miles away and stars come down to the horizon line. There’s native prairie, and also dense woods with mature timber and a creek. It’s in these broad spaces where I work and also am most comfortable. The literal and interior landscapes inform canvas size; canvases are sometimes monumentally scaled to reflect physical depth or breadth, while smaller canvases may describe more intimate landscapes.

The process is tactile, starting with 50 yard rolls of raw canvas, thumped to the floor, unrolled, measured and cut. Rich stains of colors are mixed-poured-pushed into the canvas while it’s on the ground. The colors initially laid down become the atmosphere and environment in which the painting lives. The canvas is tacked to a wall and opaque mark making begins a free moving, playful intuitive process. Lastly is the much longer quiet work of looking, studying, adjusting, movements stemming from deeply interior shifts, gentle and delicate, as a compass needle swings back and forth and finally slows, until the work comes into balance.

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