Photo: Marlène Rézenne
Galerie La Grange, Romainmôtier
(Translated from French by JLB)
Last spring, Jane Le Besque shared the gallery’s picture rails with half a dozen artists. She will be returning alone until the end of September. A waking dream. No visitor had been insensitive to the dreamlike world of the English artist who crossed the Channel a dozen years ago to settle in neighbouring France. On a black background, brightly coloured flowers were blooming. No doubt similar to those met by Alice in her wonderful country.
Birds are the messengers of her colourful pictorial language. Even as a child, she used to gather them, wounded, in the palm of her hand to breathe a second life into them. In her paintings, there are hens from her native Sussex, a goose hesitating between two vermeille apples, another gallinaceous one with yellow legs and pheasants skilfully illuminated by the artist. And even a beet bird! They evolve in a knot of thin, straight trees.
On a canvas, a woman’s face and bust, immaculately white. The beak of a bird, variegated with bright colours, touches the woman’s closed mouth, in a dialogue without words. On another canvas, trees in the shape of a club, with tentacles that seem to sow hearts in a faded sky. On a magpie horse whose head is out of frame, a young girl talks to a yellow duck resting on the horse’s rump.
An immersion in nature:
In communion with nature, Jane Le Besque is in the vegetable garden: “I am on the ground with the animals but my head is in the vegetation.” She puts down on paper what she has seen but with a poetic touch. The basis of her paintings is watercolour to which she mixes collages, oil, charcoal or chalk.
Currently, Jane is working on a book with the evocative name “Edens”, but revisited by her imagination. A poet, Jean Maison, ‘assures her collaboration. The painter has made a name for herself in cookery books that would make you want to buy a big hat. At the gallery, she exhibits two “accordion books”, where she lets her brushes and her imagination run wild. A little bookish delight for lovers of an art that one would readily describe as lyrical!
In addition, she has immortalised some of her birds on large white plates.