Notes from a New York Travel Diary
An ambiguous figure in fur and shades totters towards us, armed with shopping bags. A diner assistant in latex gloves awaits her order, set against her blackboard bill-of-fare. A man and a woman turn from each other in profile, framed by train windows, as Lorimer Street slips by. These new images from Jane Simcock mine the bounty that is Manhattan.
“They are not intended as portraits of specific people,” explains Simcock, “but, rather, as observations on the alienation and anonymity of people who inhabit large cities, their eccentricities, and the masquerades they assume in their daily fight for survival. They are an examination of the human condition.” These new images from Jane Simcock were conceived on a trip to New York in the winter of 2009. Some have evolved from quick sketches, made on the run. Others are the product of a mere, fleeting memory, a chance subway encounter somewhere between Lorimer and 42nd Streets, a glimpse in a Soho crowd or a Chelsea gallery. Others, still, are composites of several ideas, drawn from different places and times. “During the course of their gestation, however," says Simcock, "despite their meagre resource material, they have steadily grown to assume a life of their own.” In this show Simcock presents us with the clues, but in many ways these Manhattanites are a blank canvas, awaiting the imprint of any number of biographical narratives.
Jane Simcock has a BA in Art History and English and a Pg Dip in painting. She has also attended courses at the Julian Ashton Art School in Sydney. She has had solo shows at the McPherson Gallery in 2004 and 2009 and has participated in various group shows.