Jane Skinner is a most interesting, highly unusual, and very amusing artist member of the Skylark collective showing at Skylark Galleries in London.
‘Most interesting’ because the subject-matter of her art is all about interesting people. She is inspired by Art, Advertising, Cinema, Theatre and Fashion and likes to recreate her personal icons. She features Sindy Dolls and Action Men in her work to comment on contemporary culture.
‘Highly unusual’ because Jane’s people are described using an unusual visual language. Jane applies her fashion skills to the creation of her images, sewing all the garments featured from her large collection of fabric remnants. She then photographs the clothed doll in a setting with a message.
And ‘very amusing’ speaks for it-self. She uses the Sindy Dolls and Action Men in her work to comment on contemporary culture in a humorous and idiosyncratic way. They make you laugh and they make you think.
Here is an example.
Jane studied Fashion and Textile Design at Plymouth College of Art and then worked as a Designer/Pattern Cutter in the fashion industry for several years.
She subsequently became interested in Photography and took courses in Photojournalism, Photomontage and Documentary Photography.
As a freelance Photographer she specialised in News, Features and Portraiture. Her work was published in numerous magazines and newspapers.
She says that her favourite artists are Goya, Walter Sickert, Cindy Sherman, and Suzanne Heintz.
Francisco Goya died nearly 200 years ago, but is known as the last of the old masters and first of the moderns. You can probably see that the idiosyncratic and subversive perspective in Jane’s work might be inspired by the satire in Goya’s art.
Walter Sickert who died in 1942 is known as a commentator and critic of the then conventional painting of ‘vacuous nude images’. He developed a documentary realism that shocked his complacent contemporaries.
Cindy Sherman, Suzanne Heintz, and Jane, are three more contemporary artists who use a combination of photography, fashion, and childhood visual memory to make their art. All three make art that commentates on modern life.
Maybe this is why Jane uses the Sindy Doll and Action Man to talk to her followers.
Sindy marketing claims the doll to be ‘the free, swinging girl that every little girl longs to be. Every genuine Sindy outfit is a child’s dream come true. Each one is designed for today’s fashionable young women by today’s leading women designers’. Action Man has been hailed as the ‘toy of the decade’ and ‘a movable fighting man’. Jane’s ironic use of these iconic toys says so much.
Jane clothes her dolls, sets up and takes the photographs, and then produces cards and convenient print editions for her collectors. Her fans agree that her subversive, irreverent take on contemporary culture, makes great collectable art.
When not working Jane enjoys playing tennis, rock and roll, jive, and growing organic fruit and vegetables in her garden. Wow!