Jan GaskaArtist, Technician
I am an English born artist of Polish descent. I finished my Fine Art degree in 1997 at Surrey Institute of Art & Design, specializing in printmaking. I went on to do a Masters in Printmaking & Illustration in 2000 at (then) Bucks Chilterns University (now called Bucks New University), finishing in 2003. In 2004 I started a 2 year printmaking residency at South Hill Park Arts Centre in Bracknell. I taught adult printmaking classes & kids’ workshops, as well special needs. My end of residency exhibition (‘Collective Nature’) was my first major solo exhibition at the Bracknell Gallery SHP. After my residency I worked as a gallery technician for South Hill Park, giving me the opportunity to work with different artists and gain an insight in their diverse practices, also giving me an understanding of myself as an artist & my place within the contemporary visual arts. I am currently a gallery technician for the New Ashgate Gallery. I am initially a printmaker working in etching, engraving, and relief printing, but have turned to painting in recent years. My work is figurative, realist in nature. I’m moved to create images that draw on social commentary taken from the fleeting glimpses of life that is constantly on the move around me. I record people in passing as a snapshot of the moment before it changes. I wish my work to invoke a story personal to viewer suggested through an open ended narrative. I use digitally manipulated photography as a starting point & as a reference. I am attracted to psychological characteristics within a photograph, of figures & how they relate with their environment, which sometimes seems to echo, enhance or contrast their inner states, & give a fixed sense of time & place. My recent paintings are of a more personal nature & depicting my family & snapshots of childhood. My work is informed by the likes of Edward Hopper, Carel Weight, Andrew Wyeth, Kathe Kollwitz, Goya & Hogarth to name a few.