This new series of paintings have been developed by Jayne Anita Smith over the last few years. Her work uses the female figure as an agent to consider women's sacred relationship with nature and the negative impact that a patriarchal society is having on both.
Smith is a figurative artist whose paintings are born from automatic drawings produced on an intimate scale in oil paint. Smith uses these first, primitive marks, as a pathway to connect to the subconscious, to her internal voices. From these first raw brushstrokes, the tentative forms of a female figure start to emerge and claim their presence.
Building on these initial drawings, Smith then applies multiple collage layers using sections of previous works, to disrupt and fragment the subject. The figures become congested by the subsequent constructed layers, the core (the spirit) is partially concealed. These collage studies are the basis of Smith's large scale paintings. An intense colour palette builds on these foundations creating a heightened drama and a synthetic reality which reflects the underlying chaos and misalignment of post-modern existence.
Smith draws some of her influences from Renaissance religious art, as a symbol for the spiritual, they are also refer to the patriarchal power of the church. Other interests include feminist and popular literature and culture.
Smith's processes are informed by an investigation into the conflict between the spiritual and physical, in a society where the contemporary focus is very much on materiality and where the eternal pursuit of the sublime is often lost.