Viney’s work grows out of the experience of a 1970s childhood. He brings this experience and his own memories to develop a personally felt exploration of this time – nostalgia; of the colours, culture, fashion and design of the period; the sense of communities now lost; and the centrality of the motorcar. The 1970s were the last days of the optimistic early days of consumerism, the ‘American Dream’ was still alive, along with the idea of the socially progressive society. Jason’s work creates the space not only for fascination and play but also for the possibility of a wide-ranging exploration of nostalgia, social history, and inevitably comparisons and contrasts with the trajectories of our own contemporary societies.
Jane Lowry Back Lane West
‘All histories are heavily curated’ “My work explores ideas around the motorcar and our sense of community and shared common interest. The motorcar has become such an important commodity in our lives, and is integral to everything we do. Presenting the car in domestic interiors, works also to show how it represents our concepts of individualism. I am fascinated by the idea of creating a world in miniature, of building detailed, manipulable, imagery and exploratory environments. Particularly, the process relates to my own childhood when, free from the constraints of adult working life, I collected model cars and played endlessly with them in the garden or on the carpet im my bedroom. In the ‘grown up world’ both my dad and granddad were themselves car enthusiasts, and when visiting grandparents on holiday they always had a new and unusual looking car in the drive, gleaming and shiny.
I can recall early holidays to Cornwall when we would set off early in the morning, I would take my ‘I spy cars’ book and I would learn all the different names of the various makes and models and catalogue them. The motorcar seemed to me a thing of freedom and adventure. As an adult I missed that time playing and collecting cars so I began collecting detailed accurate models. I would pick them up look at them, open the doors and boot, look in wonder for a moment and put them back.
The work is nostalgic and romanticises the past. The colours are bold and bright reminiscent of the fashions of the period. Placing the car inside domestic interiors elevates its status – the motorcar is indeed part of the family – and the dioramas often feature the car on its own in the warm and comfortable setting of the home. The car is the star, something to be showcased. The motorcar in that ‘golden age’ was an object of desire and something to aspire to – saying something about our identity.”