Spectacles of Sentiment

Jane Grocott

See it On Campus: Level 2

Visitor Info

Award Recipient

Mary Plumb Blade Award – Honourable Mention

Routine Romance
47.5 x 58″, oil on canvas, 2023

Recently, I have been exploring painting as a process of romanticizing mundane objects and moments of my daily life and abstracting them into spectacles of sentiment. I am especially interested in the dual definitions of the words “romance” and “spectacle”; a romantic is described as someone who is sentimental, but also naive and idealistic, while a spectacle is an exhibition or phenomenon but also a lens to see through.

There is a link between the tendency to romanticize and the process of abstraction in painting. I am looking at both as human conditions, as creative endeavours we indulge in to make sense of ourselves and find ease in our circumstances. When we romanticize we create narratives that describe something as better than it is and by abstracting in my work, I am freeing the subject of its reference to the real world. In both cases, a transformation occurs, one that makes more from what already is. I think this relates to the ways we look at uncertainty, forming reason when there is no tangible explanation and assigning significance to coincidence. 

The spectacle is the result of these processes; exhibiting and encouraging alternate ways of seeing the subject in its altered state. Spectacles of Sentiment is an ongoing venture into making sense of my life. Through abstracting my reality into gestures of paint, I am creating illusions of my direct experiences, perceiving small events and poeticizing them into spectacles of their own. 

52 x 59″, oil on canvas, 2022

Omens for Prey
32 x 50″, oil on canvas, 2023

60 x 72″, oil on canvas, 2023

53 x 55″, oil on canvas, 2023

48 x 59″, oil on canvas, 2022

Sensitive Farmers
60 x 72″, oil on canvas, 2022

Women Without Men
50 x 55″, oil on canvas, 2023

Tears over Tea
36 x 46″, oil on canvas, 2022

In Blue
30 x 30″, oil on canvas, 2022

Jane Grocott

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Jane Grocott is an emerging visual artist practicing on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples, the Musqueam, Squamish, and Sel̓íl̓witulh Nations. Her painting inquiry is driven by procedures of determining how many gestures are needed to activate a painting and what sorts of relationships are cultivated between different applications of paint.

Grocott paints from a collection of her own impromptu cellphone photos, images found on social media and a mix of contemporary painting references. These images act as foundations from which abstraction emerges as she determines when to represent or misrepresent the elements of the image.

A key part of her practice centres around embracing complexity and exploring the tension of in-betweens; between figuration and abstraction, control versus abandon, and presence of form over absence. Her practice is sustained by the endless task of absorbing the constant flow of visual information and discovering new ways of translating it through paint.

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