Ashby is a Queenslander who worked as a teacher, then teacher
librarian for the Queensland Education Department until December
1991, when she moved to the Blue Mountains in New South Wales to pursue
a full time career in art, after studying painting through the
Queensland College of Art.
This commitment has meant the development of her painting and drawing, through subject matter that integrates native flora and landscape.
Portraiture and still life are also important subjects in her
A constant inspiration is the hidden landscape of the bush, where pockets of native flora exist in the most inhospitable places, unexpected and often hidden amongst wind scoured and fungus
encrusted rocks, cracks
in massive boulders on top of rugged mountains, in crevices on sheer
rock faces, in the saltiest and driest sand or desert landscapes. Here,
seeds dropped by winds, birds or animals, have taken root and thrived.
There is revealed a perfect tiny garden, that glows with unexpected colour and exquisite delicacy.
Jan's Passion for these infinitely variable patterns is shared
with the viewer through her very personal artistic approach. She
has adapted this imagery to the three dimensional forms of ceramics,
and is now working with fine silver clay to set her ceramic designs as
jewellery. The magic colours of dichroic glass have also been included
in the range of Jan's work.
Jan's ceramic works use a variety of shapes, and she creates highly decorative
pieces where layers of glazing create subtlety, richness and depth.
Regular working trips, camping in the outback, inspire and inform
her work, which is resolved in her studios in Blackheath.
work is available in Sydney through the Mosman Regional Art Gallery, in
the Blue Mountains through the Royal Botanic Gardens, Mt Tomah, and at
Waragil Studios Fine Art Gallery, Blackheath.