Jane Dickson

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Jane Dickson
Born (1952-05-18) May 18, 1952 (age 66)
Known forPainting, drawing
Spouse(s)Charlie Ahearn
Jane Dickson, Times Square Show, silkscreen poster, 1980.

Jane Dickson (born 1952) is an American painter. Dickson received her B.A. at Harvard University (1976) and a Studio Diploma from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (1976).

Dickson is known for her dark iconic images that examine "the constructed world, and its psychological freight, the social structuring of desire and its disruption by the uncanny".[1] Deploying unusual materials such as AstroTurf, vinyl, sandpaper, felt and carpet, which resonate with their particular subject, Dickson's paintings express her "fascination with the power of artificial light, as well as...surreal and sexually transgressive environment[s]".[2] Often depicting the spectacle in her work, her subjects include Times Square (where she lived and/or worked from 1978 to 2008), demolition derbies, carnivals, suburban homes, and highways, among others.[3] In addition to her large body of paintings, the artist organized “Messages to the Public”, a Public Art Fund series which presented monthly artists’ projects created for Spectacolor's 1 Times Square Billboard. The project ran from 1982 to 1990 and the artists presented include Keith Haring and Jenny Holzer. In her most recent contribution to Times Square, Dickson designed 67 mosaics of New Year's Eve revelers that were installed within the Port Authority 42nd Street and Times Square subway stations.[4] Commissioned by the MTA (Metropolitan Transit Authority) in 2008, the mosaics are composed of Murano glass, and as art historian Janetta Rebold Benton describes, the figures with their party hats and horns "seem able to elevate the moods of the actual people who hurry along the corridor."[5]

Dickson was associated with the artists collective Collaborative Projects, or Colab.[6]

Her work has been exhibited throughout the United States and is included in major museum collections such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), The Whitney Museum of American Art, and The Art Institute of Chicago. She received The Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant in 2013. She is married to American film director, Charlie Ahearn.


  1. ^ Kabat, Jennifer (2 September 2012). "Jane Dickson: A Walk on the Dark Side". Retrieved 14 May 2014.
  2. ^ Kussatz, Simone (April 2011). "April 2011, Art, Access & Decay: New York 1975-1985". Retrieved 14 May 2014.
  3. ^ Frizzell, Deborah (2012). Whose World is This? Jane Dickson & Charlie Ahearn (PDF). Wayne, NJ: William Paterson University Galleries.
  4. ^ Gardner, Ralph (December 9, 2013). "Artist of the Interstate Jane Dickson Has Played a Role in Times Square's Revival". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 30 April 2014.
  5. ^ Rebold Benton, Janetta and Robert DiYanni (2012). "Diversity in Contemporary Life". Arts and Culture: An Introduction to the Humanities: Combined Volume (4th ed.). Boston: Prentice Hall. pp. 598–99.
  6. ^ Jeannie Hopper, The Real Estate Show, and ABC No Rio: A History. Retrieved March 2, 2015.


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