Jane Hamill—Paint Works

September 15, 2011

I’ve always painted nudes, but in 2008 while working in Estonia, I started to incorporate cycling racing jerseys on the figures I painted. During that time I painted the portrait of a Scandinavian boy who was wearing an obnoxiously bright GT racing shirt; it was the color of a high-strung yellow, and the boy’s skin was pale and delicate. This combination got my attention; it was a sincere and awkward meeting of two sides of life, one natural and the other fabricated. I find cycling jerseys to be a good example of synthetics; in their material and in their references to industry and corporate culture through logos. Branding is an international language that does not require physical communication to speak loudly. Since I painted that first portrait, I’ve been collecting racing jerseys from eBay; each branded with logos that show off highly saturated colors, and painting nudes partially clad in them. By painting this strange pairing of organic flesh and synthetic materials and references, I reflect my view of life’s balance.

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