Jane Gardner born a Wilson native, spent the majority of her adult life enamored by the hustle and bustle that big city life brings and moved to New York City.
A formally trained artist and one that continues to push herself and her artwork constantly, Jane has a degree in Fine Art from East Carolina University at Greenville where she cultivated a solid foundation in art. With continued independent studies in NYC, Europe, and Asia and countless trips to various art museums, Jane is always taking in everything she sees and applies what she has learned to her own art. After her return to the city of Wilson, Jane continued her studies by receiving art instruction through the Continuing Education Program at Wilson’s own Barton College and has studied with Frans van Baars.
After a fulfilling 14 years teaching and helping young students to cultivate their art in the school system she is now settling into her own personal art renaissance. The time has come and now it is Jane’s time to create! With an array of influences and inspirations, Jane finds herself inherently drawn to the painterly impressionists of of the 1880’s most specifically, Cezanne or Matisse.
Jane is one that gravitates towards inspirations brought about by nature and travel. She also relishes her time spent capturing moments of her travels through the lens of her camera. She also cherishes time spent enjoying friends and fellow artists’ photographs and artwork. Jane is one that art permeates. It is part of her and overflows, boundless by any box. She is one who wields a paintbrush to her canvas with acrylics, captures special moments with her camera, she has the ability to put a pen to paper and use words as her medium of choice, she even combines all of the above into fantastic collages and picture books. Jane has a voice. And even still at 73, she is finding and making her way.
Painting and writing give her both a voice and overwhelming sense of satisfaction. Her long-term focus has been untangling the creative process of famous artists like Matisse, British sculptor Henry Moore. Throughout Jane’s life she has been awarded and formally recognized by and through her art with accolades such as the Bronx Council of the Arts: BRIO award (Bronx Recognizes Its Own,) 1992; Blue Ribbon Children’s Book Writer, 1992; Fulbright Scholar, 2009, travel study program to Japan.
“Making art, either using words or images, gives meaning and structure to my life. Much of my art focuses on nature, landscapes, trees in particular. Taking photos captures my love of light and form, my heart’s delight and I especially enjoy taking travel shots. I revisit these photos to inspire my work, looking to capture just the essential. I use paint and write stories to tell the truth, as I see it or experience it in a fleeting moment, a concrete expression of “this is my experience today.”