31 May 2015 - 12 July 2015
With the exhibition UNDONE, Janice McNab presents paintings from her series The Ice Cream Paintings and D.I.Y. (Do It Yourself). McNab uses the trope of the ‘figurine’ to create oil paintings that are suggestive of figures, but actually images of melting ice cream or bits and pieces of domestic detritus. This drift between the figure and the still life, between subjects and objects, allows McNab – as a woman artist – to advance images suggestive of lived inner world experience at the same time as remarking on the insistence of our popular visual culture to infantilize women’s experience and objectify their corporeality.
The playful child-like forms sit in tension with McNab’s classical painting techniques and the historical painterly references that shadow many of her paintings, embedded within the seductive ice cream and haphazard models.The flowing ambiguities that run through this body of work allow the artist to explore what theorist Barbara Creed calls the monstrously-feminine, the image codes of women’s bodily experience in the world that are not part of the ‘acceptable models of femininity’. As McNab explains: “My figurines are haphazardly brought together from temporary and domestic materials, very often ice cream. They are painted in their dissolution, their melting away or falling apart. Through changes in scale and focus, my hope is to ‘accelerate’ some of the more difficult cultural readings attached to our imperfect bodies, to the stuff of our domestic lives, and to the importance of play in forming lives; and to move these readings into another affective register through the act of painting. My figurines are dripping, scarred, falling apart, bear diamonds made of Sellotape, and bodies emptied of eggs.”
Janice McNab lives and works in Amsterdam. In 2014 she began practice-based PhD research at the University of Amsterdam, on a personal experience of ageing and historical representations of this within fine art. She studied fine art at both Edinburgh College of Art and Glasgow School of Art (MFA 1997), and currently teaches at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam; The Royal Academy, The Hague, and Piet Zwart Research Institute, Rotterdam. She has exhibited internationally, including at Museum Essl, Vienna; Prague Biennale; Kunsthaus Baselland, Basel; De Vleeshal, Middelburg; BAK, Basis voor Actuele Kunst, Utrecht; Tramway, Glasgow; Diehl, Berlin, and with doggerfisher, Edinburgh.
Art Salon – Tuesday 2 June 19.00 – 21.00 hrs
Janice McNab in conversation with Dr Miriam van Rijsingen [UvA], art historian interested in new materialism, embodiment, and representational theory; and Dr Sher Doruff [Gerrit Rietveld Academie] specialist in artistic research.
Art Dinner – Sunday 7 June 18.00 – 21.30 hrs
Mirjam Westen, curator at Museum Arnhem, contemporary art critic and editor, in conversation with Janice Mcnab. rsvp firstname.lastname@example.org