Second Life

Reception: Saturday 30 April 2011 @7pm Finding inspiration in cast off or undervalued objects, Kingston-based artist Jane Derby transforms them and grants them a second life. Wrestling with the limitations of lowly, everyday materials, such as empty soup cans one would usually put in the recycling, Derby pushes their physical properties to the point of transcendence.

See photos of exhibition here

Artist’s Statement

I am one of many contemporary artists who are finding inspiration in cast off and undervalued objects, granting them a kind of second life. The artist wrestles with the limitations of these everyday materials, pushing their natural abilities to a point of transcendence, ideally, turning “dross into gold.” Meaning is created in the tension between the familiar and its recontextualization in unfamiliar ways. The surface textures of the natural world fascinate me, and, for the same reason, I am attracted to the physical properties of the discarded objects I select. Previously I have worked with lath and found objects, imbedding these in plaster. My current series reflects my experimentation with the cans found in kitchen cupboards. The beauty of these, hidden under their commercial wrappers, has always appealed to me, and this work is an attempt to push the natural aesthetics of the object into new territories. On a personal level, I find an equivalence between the ridges of the tin cans and their light reflecting properties, and the textural surfaces of the land around Kingston. My aim is to translate this visual pleasure into my reliefs. Jane Derby