Rae’s deeply considered works demonstrate paintings capacity to reconfigure vision for the viewer providing us with a sensate experience that feels utterly crucial in a visual world saturated by the deluge of visual information untethered to meaning.
The Still Life paintings appear to be quiet meditations on composition, form and stillness, though over time they reveal themselves to be complex visual essays on the physicality and contingency of vision and the precariousness of conception and understanding.
It is the manner in which Rae’s paintings redirect vision from the purely ocular, co-opting an accumulated awareness of what it means to see and to feel.The notion “seeing is believing” depends on placing faith in the veracity of vision. That vision is so relentlessly assailed in contemporary life poses challenges to our faith in its role and obligation to give co-ordinates by which we might find our way.
In a world damaged by “alternative facts” the very best painting offers the opportunity to reestablish the ability, indeed the necessity, to discriminate visually and conceptually. Restoring trust, if not in the image itself, in a shared vision, is fundamental to our ability to make sense of the world.
Jude Rae was twice been the winner of the Portia Geach Memorial Award and in 2016 was the recipient of the Bvlgari Art Award at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. Her paintings are held in museum collections throughout Australasia including the National Gallery of Australia, National Portrait Gallery, The Art Gallery of New South Wales, Auckland Art Gallery Toi O Tamaki, Te Papa Tongarewa and in private collections around the world.