is talking to your guts ...
nothing is fixed in his paintings, nor explained. Enigmatic
entanglements of faces, hands living on their own and
. ..the Rabbit . This disturbing artefact of childhood is
fighting complacency and naivety , by imposing itself in a
world of adults who are lost in odd truths. Without a look
at each other, everyone assumes his loneliness in an abysmal universe of constellated colours.
The ochred sulphur, the warm blues, the reddish greens cannot help the human, lost in
uncertainties and multiple universes.
Jeff Roland is an inspired dissident
Nadine Servant Founder of Galerie L'Art à Part June 2010
believes that his art, which emerges
from the subconscious, should not be defined according to the
expectations of the modern art world. Instead, it is a personal
interaction between artist, canvas and viewer. A self-taught
painter, Roland's work is characterised by his use of distinctive,
tribal-like figures, a juxtaposition of opposing symbols and
flattened backgrounds. His paintings fuse aspects of the raw style
with contemporary literary and visual references.
A number of key themes can be idenfied in Roland's paintings. These include belonging (as an
artist and individual), interconnectedness and conformity. He is also fascinated by the creation
of history. The consumption of one society by another appears repeatedly in his body of works.
Roland's paintings stress that "civilization" is built on the fragments of older, arguably more
primitive societies. This is used as a psychological metaphor where civilization acts as the
rational conscious usurping the place of the more primitive subconscious thought.
The subconscious/conscious struggle depicted throughout Roland's work highlights another core
aspect of his paintings. He constantly explores dualism and the individual's attempt to define
his place within a world of opposing forces. The polarities embedded in his paintings take many
forms and include light and dark, ignorance and knowledge, the invidual and the society, and
the historical past (and its construction) and the present. His juxtaposition of primitive symbols
- such as snakes and neolithic style figures - and contemporary symbols (including pop culture
rabbits) - are a prominent example of this concern. These opposites, which affect both the
artist and viewer, signify the constant pull of the conscious and subconscious on the individual.
Jeff Roland's paintings are not limited to a dualistic world view. The artist firmly believes that
between the two most extreme points there are many universes and infinite possibilities. As
such his works record the fluid transition from one state of being to another.
Dr Melissa Westbrook Ph.D June 2010