John Rainey b. 1985


John Rainey's artistic practice is partly influenced by our move to the virtual world; by our second selves presented on online platforms. There is a detectable preoccupation with things being not as they seem, and a co-option of familiar forms (often with classical reference) into a matrix of illusion, disruption and stress. Materials are coaxed into behaving or appearing in ways that disrupt our expectations: porcelain masquerades as silicone, silicone as porcelain, and forms that we recognize as decorative and static mutate and sprout bodily appendages. His sculptural works hint at the plasticity of digital culture and its ability to challenge the natural order of things – alien, yet remaining familiar enough to unsettle.


Since graduating from the Royal College of Art, London in 2012, John Rainey (b. 1985) has undertaken residencies at the British School at Rome, Rome and Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm. His work has been exhibited in solo exhibitions at Naughton Gallery, Belfast, Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast, and Marsden Woo Gallery Project Space, London. Selected group exhibitions include EVA International – Ireland’s Biennal, Limerick, the Ceramics Biennal, Stoke-on-Trent, Fondation Bernardaud, Limoges, Hunt Museum, Limerick, Oonagh Young Gallery, Dublin, and COLLECT, Saatchi Gallery, London. His work is included in public collections including the UK Government Art Collection and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Collection.