Janette Cervin’s painting practice has always reflected a deep and ongoing love for all things floral. Janette enjoyed a unique childhood immersed in nature every day. Cervin’s parents family business was centered around a flourishing flower nursery and the distinction between home and the nursery was a moving feast of colour, shapes and textures. In response to such a profusion of stimuli it was only natural that Janette was attracted to a creative path with a focus on floral imagery. Painting was Janette’s chosen medium beginning with a successful career in craft and decorative painting techniques. This formed the context for the artist’s commitment to a formal art/academic education as an adult student.
She successfully completed a diploma in visual communication, bachelor of design (majoring in painting) and a Masters Degree Flowers in a Contemporary Painting Practice completed in 2013 at Unitec.
Cervin’s layered flora and fauna paintings are created on large-scale industrial aluminized surfaces. She is interested in the juxtaposition between the hard metal surfaces and the way in which the paint can be manipulated allowing images to slip and slide effortlessly, connecting and layering flora and fauna together.
These works celebrate a collaboration of the traditionally feminine domestic space and a more ambitious contemporary approach to painting.
An illusion of depth is created by the combination of traditional painting conventions and applications of thick layers of glossy resin. This process is repeated to accentuate a three dimensional space. Some areas are also intentionally sanded back, resulting in some flower details being suspended throughout the painting at varying depths from the surface. This ghostly hint of flowers amongst the gooey glazed layers alludes to the pentamento effect achieved by the old masters.
Galleries & Shows
Janette continues to produce work from her Warkworth studio and currently exhibits at numerous galleries, including:
Gallery 33 in Wanaka New Zealand
Parnell 1 Gallery in Rawene New Zealand
The Vivian Gallery in Matakana New Zealand.
Process and Concepts
Janettes work is very process driven, with aesthetic decisions being made during the making process as opposed to following preconcieved ideas. She paints on often large scale sheets of ACM (Aluminised composite material) and creates multiple layers in her paintings by the applications of resin. This helps to draw the viewer into and around the work.
Janette has also likened the use of resin in her paintings to the act of preservation, like ancient butterflies preserved in amber or the various specimens preserved in jars at museums. Images of both native and introduced flora and fauna are being preserved and memorialised in a moment in time, captured within the layers of resin. Look closely and you may see the extinct Moa or Huia within the depths of the work. Given the world we live in now, you never now what will survive over centuries to come. The result being Janette’s transluent, painterly, fantastical and surreal world that weaves past and present in a contemporary take on the traditional still life genre.
Although the flora and fauna subject matter may be viewed as feminine, the process isn’t – it involves gutsy power tools and construction materials and grunty oversized brushes. Layers of paint and resin are built up on pieces of ACM. She can partially remove the first few layers of paint with an industrial sander, leaving ghostly imprints, which when finished, impart a 3D and pentimento effect to the works. A high gloss layer of resin is then applied before the next level, or layer of painting can begin again and on some works the paints sits atop the final thick application of resin.
These paintings celebrate the vitality and beauty of our clean green New Zealand landscape, whilst also drawing attention to the fragility and transience of such beauty in our contemporary world.
Private commissions play an important role in my art practice. I enjoy the creative stimulation and challenge of meeting heart and mind with the imagination and needs of an individual, family or corporate client. This mindful engagement can be a source of direct inspiration for my ongoing explorations. Please contact me if you are interested in discussing a commissioned piece.
Janette’s work has received critical acclaim both in New Zealand and internationally.
2014 Glaister Ennor Graduate Art Awards
Blended Families – Peoples Choice Award
2013 27thTrusts Art & Sculpture Awards
1stPrize – The Pianist
2013 New Zealand Painting and Printmaking Award
Hydrangeas – Peoples Choice Award
2012 Molly Morpeth Canaday Art Awards
Merit Award – Thou art to me As a flower to bee
2012 New Zealand Painting and Printmaking Award
Hydrangea and Puawhananga – Peoples Choice Award
2012 Waitakere Trust Art Awards
Merit Award – Pre PC
2011 Waitakere trust Art Awards
Merit Still Life – Ode to the Wests