Born in Katikati in 1949, Tony Lane has made a career from his painting for over 30 years, had more than 100 exhibitions, and had his works shown and bought internationally. Lane has studied under Don Binney, Gretchen Albrecht and Colin McCahon, to name but a few. In a 2015 National Business Review, John Daly-Peoples posed, “Tony Lane could be one of the great icon painters of his age.”
Lane’s painting appears grounded in the 14th century and earlier, although builds on the abstract artists of the 20th century such as Anselm Kiefer. Lane uses metal elements that as a link to the distressed frescos and paintings of old European and Byzantine churches where elements of the architecture or traces of previous paintings show through the more recent paintings. Lane investigates ideas his predecessors worked with: pictorial space, spatial light, perspective and symbolism. He employs symbols to hint at narratives and connections to the older art forms while dealing with contemporary thinking.
It should be noted that Lane does not make religious paintings, rather, he deals with how artists use images and symbols. This exploration aims to interpret the spiritual, metaphysical and psychological assertions implied in paintings. Lane combines past images with contemporary abstraction in a world of science and mysticism. Of his process he says, “You can't just illustrate the idea … you have to let the painting grow organically, by itself".