Bearspace is pleased to present ‘Up a Hill Backwards’ a solo exhibition of new works by Jane Ward.
Working primarily in digital print, Ward’s pieces are a result of a tireless reworking of images. A two-part process, the works are first broken down and collaged digitally to create images of imaginary, fragmentary and transient land and cityscapes. In part two of the process, once the images have been printed the ink is dissolved and manipulated by hand, leaving traces of earlier forms and injecting the works with a sense of memory and the passage of time. These cityscapes, villages, rural and industrial settings are both familiar and disturbing as they allude to the cycles of destruction and regeneration witnessed in our everyday surroundings.
Although a digital process is partly adopted, there is a protection of the unique, the organic and the physical, a world away from the relentless reproduction of the digital realm; The final reworked landscapes representing an enthralling clash between real and imagined worlds.
In ‘Southerly’ one of Ward’s most recent works presented here, a cliff face rises like a tidal wave, the work moves, all jagged edges and dystopian vision with a hint of sci-fi, as if the memory of some earth shattering event or premonition of one to come.
Ward’s most recent residency has led to both conceptual and material developments within her work. In a reconsideration of the microcosmic, Ward explores the landscape holistically by adopting a 3-pronged approach: ‘the how’. ‘the what’ and ‘the where’. For Ward, these landscapes are all encompassing experiences whose possibilities cannot be exhausted. It is this infinite questioning and insatiable thirst that has physically manifested itself to become such a recognisable feature of Ward’s works: “An island of vertiginous walks, steep terraced farms and gardens, habitation growing from shore way up hillsides disappearing into the sky, looking down on waterfalls and mountains…roads winding way up above the clouds and then tumbling back down the other side twisting down to another shore…Via Rapida system literally cutting through the island offering tantalising, fragmenting glimpses of this fascinating landscape before plunging the driver into semi darkness tunnelling beneath the land…watching the city diminish while silently gliding uphill by cable car to gardens of fantastically lush flora: Up a Hill Backwards” Jane Ward, 2013 on her recent residency in Funchal, Madeira.
Jane Ward graduated from the Royal College of Art, MA Printmaking course in 2007. Jane’s work has most recently appeared in exhibitions including ‘At The Edges’, Angus Hughes Gallery (2013), ‘Images of the City’ Printroom London (2012) and at Art Fairs including Christie’s Multiplied 2012 and London Art Fair 2013 (Bearspace). Jane frequently undertakes residencies both in the UK and aboard which have a huge impact on the development of her practice. Recent residencies include: Pedra Sina Residency, Funchal, Madeira (2013) and Jane was the artist in residence at No.72 John St. Kilkenny, Ireland (2012). Her work has also featured in Artfutures (2002), Celeste Art Prize (2007) Bloomberg New Contemporaries (2008) and she has been awarded the Terrence Conran Foundation Award and the Tim Mara Prize. Jane currently lives and works in London.
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