Janne Kearney: Eye Candy

Midsumma 2024 FLG Janne Kearney Cherry POP 2022 (detail) oil on canvas 30cm x 30cmA broad spectrum of colourful images offering a message of personal empowerment and sexual autonomy, Janne Kearney presents the exhibition, Eye Candy at the Flinders Lane Gallery, as part of the 2024 Midsumma Festival.

In Eye Candy, Kearney positions her subjects against backgrounds of densely interlocking and overlapping shapes, in a spectrum of bold colour. Her subjects display an overt and playful sexuality, suggestively licking lolly pops and returning the viewers’ gaze unabashed.

By portraying her subjects as anything but passive, Kearney subverts the patriarchal male gaze by returning it assuredly back at the viewer. In doing so she creates a space in her art where all forms of sexual and gender orientation are not just accepted but celebrated.

Kearney has exhibited widely and has an impressive award history. Most recently Kearney has been announced as the winner of the inaugural National Capital Art Prize (2021), a finalist in the Portia Geach Memorial Award (2021, 2020, 2018), Kennedy Prize (2021), National Capital Art Prize (2022, 2021), the winner of the Lethbridge 20000 Art Award (2020), and a finalist in the Lethbridge 20000 Art Award (2022), the Shirley Hannan National Portrait Award (2020), the Lester Prize (2020) and the Clayton UTZ Art Award (2019, 2018, 2017, 2016).

In 2018 she was selected as a finalist in the Stanthorpe Art Prize, the Black Swan Portrait Prize and one of seven winners of the American Fashion Week San Diago Annual ARC Salon Awards. She has twice been awarded the Corangamarah Small Scale Art Prize (2017 & 2016) and in 2017 her artwork 86 (Rhyming Slang for Worth Nix) was featured on the cover of the BP Portrait Award exhibition catalogue at London’s National Portrait Gallery.

Kearney has exhibited works in the London Portrait Gallery, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, The Sunderland Museum England, Royal Albert Museum and Art Gallery Exeter, Arte dall’ Turin Italy, Salmagundi Club New York, Lux Art Institute San Diego, Sotheby’s Los Angeles, and the Museu Europeu d’Art Modern in Barcelona.

Janne Kearney: Eye Candy
Flinders Lane Gallery – The Nicholas Building, Level 1 – 37 Swanston Street, Melbourne
Exhibition continues to 10 February 2024
Free entry

For more information, visit: www.flg.com.au or www.midsumma.org.au for details.

Image: Janne Kearney, Cherry POP, 2022 (detail), oil on canvas, 30cm x 30cm – courtesy of the artist and Flinders Lane Gallery