Jane Richlovsky

Travel Brochures for a Past Future

I pilfer images from old magazines—feral children who are up to no good, beatific high-heeled homemakers, cigarette-smoking proto-hipsters, futuristic dream houses, gizmos tucked into tiny spot ads in the back pages—extract them, mix them up, put them back together into new configurations. Much like a recipe for twice-baked potatoes or some other mid-century labor-intensive foodery. These advertisements are the sacred texts of capitalism, and essential records of the history of our collective aspirations. Those have changed very little since these advertisements were concocted. We continue to lust after real estate, buy more stuff, and lovingly cradle electronic devices in the palms of our hands.

Before they come into my possession, the fabrics I paint on have already lived full lives of their own. They have also been characters in someone else’s domestic narrative, playing the roles of tablecloths, curtains, bedsheets, or slipcovers.

The characters I paint are fictional, their poses and faces accidents of a messy collision of advertising and art history, but their true origin and substance is the fabric on which I paint them. Relentlessly striped and floral surfaces anchor these people in time and space. That space is an idealized but conflicted world of nostalgic domesticity, western expansionism, and futuristic fantasy.

Artist Bio

Jane Richlovsky has been painting on patterned textiles for twenty years, scouring local thrift stores for the fabrics and the American collective unconscious for the narrative material. She was born in Cleveland, Ohio and followed the path of westward expansion to Seattle, Washington where she now works and resides.

Her paintings have been exhibited in solo and group shows throughout the United States, including the Museum of Northwest Art, Tacoma Art Museum; the Lois Lambert, JoAnne Artman, and A Shenere Velt galleries and LA Art Show in California; The Painting Center in New York City; Heineman-Myers Contemporary Art in Bethesda, MD; Art Now Miami; Art Santa Fe; Butte-Silver Bow Arts Foundation in Montana; and in Seattle at Linda Hodges, Fetherston, Atelier 31, Seattle Art Museum, and Pratt Galleries. She has been the recipient of grants from the George Sugarman Foundation, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, the King County Arts Commission (4Culture), and Artist Trust. Her work is included in the collection of the King County International Airport and in private collections around the world.