Rasa Jansone’s solo exhibition of large-format portraits of children, “Kid”, is on display in the Upper Gallery of the Mūkusala Art Salon from 8 October to 14 November.
Even if before childbirth a woman manages to attain the publicly cultivated fulfilment of happiness, after giving birth she has to undergo an inversely proportional stress, horror and fear that she might lose her dearest and that something bad will happen. The raw expression of colour and brushstroke on Rasa’s canvases invokes the existential fear of the mother. Contrary to it, the viewer is faced with the unprotected looks of the children, yearning for love and requiring uncompromising attention, pushing the participant into a familiar trap. To be a mother means to accept these bittersweet reins and to respond to the child’s every call, even if you are exhausted and unhappy.
Rasa’s oeuvre reveals an intellectual person’s protest, a rebellion against the generally accepted, socially determined, even instinct-driven order of the world which divides us by gender and pushes us into established frames. Experience shows that concessions in this division of roles are painful or impossible – either the child suffers, or the position of the woman and the professional is defeated. This moment, when she has to go for one of these choices, comes in virtually every woman’s life. And, it is not a problem for one gender only, as the mother’s / woman’s well-being affects all of us – not just the child but also the family and the entire society.
The large-format portraits of children in “Kid” continues the series of portraits of mothers exhibited at the Intro Hall of the Riga Art Space in 2014, titled “The Fog of Feeding”. The main subject in both exhibitions – the complicated relationship between mother and child – is expressively painted in the faces of the artist’s acquaintances / friends and their offspring, reminding that no one can stay indifferent on this subject.
Rasa Jansone (1975) graduated from the Department of Painting at the Art Academy of Latvia in 2002. In addition to group shows and participation in symposia, she regularly holds solo exhibitions: “The Fog of Feeding” at Intro Hall of the Riga Art Space (2014), “Grew Up” at gallery Mans’s (2013), “Everyday masculinity” at the Upper Gallery of the Mūkusala Art Salon (2012), “Rearview Mirror” at Nabaklab (2011), “Mama’s Hopes” at gallery ag7 (2007), “Creatures” at Mētra’s House (2006), “Secret Life of Snow White” at gallery ag7 (2005).
Exhibition curator: Sniedze Kāle
Press image: Rasa Jansone. Aira. 2015. Oil on canvas. 160 x 200 cm