a l a n a  j e l i n e k
p a i n t i n g
in descending chronological order (most recent first)
europe the game played in alba la romaine
not praising, burying
capital growth
test site
europe the game
detail
shooting the natives
tourist gaze
ayers rock (uluru)
56°N 1°W
the spectators
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not praising, burying - 2012

The Rules
1. Everyday, throw-away, low-value vessels must first  be prepared with a ground (surface primer) the
colour of clay.
2. Low-value, throw-away vessels painted to appear like clay must then be decorated using the colours
used by ancient Greek potters.
3. Painted decorative elements of the vessels must be in the style of ancient Greek red-figure or black-
figure ceramics.
4. Representational elements must be translated into contemporary terms.

Performed on 2 November 2012 with the following participants or rule-interpreters:
Anna Bagnoli (sociologist)
Juliette Brown (co-founder terra incognita arts org)
Sarah Campbell (Kettle’s Yard)
Elena Cologni (artist)
David Cross (artist)
David Gill (archaeologist)
Sudeshna Guha (archaeologist)
Charles Hustwick (artist)
Alana Jelinek (artist & rule setter)
Derek Matravers (philosopher)
Christos Tsirogiannis (archaeologist)
The Premises for the artwork:

1. That the ideas presented by Vickers and Gill in Artful Crafts (1994) are largely correct, and specifically:
a. that ancient Greek ceramics were not made as
high art objects,
b. ceramicists were a low-status group and not
artists in any contemporary understanding of the term,
c. ancient Greek red-figure and
black-figure pots were skeuomorphs of metallic objects.

2. That equivalents exist in contemporary (Western) cultures of most instances of (existing) ancient Greek material culture.
There is a significant difference between a translation and an equivalent.

3. That ancient Greek ceramics depict three types of contemporary subject. There is a significant difference between a contemporary understanding of Classical cultures and a then- contemporary understanding of a lived culture.


  • black = oxidised silver
  • red = gold
  • deep red = bronze 
  • white = ivory



Neoclassicism is one type of
translation, as is any diasporic
or anachronistic reference to
the styles associated with
classical Greece.

  • Rituals
  • Facets of everyday life
  • Existing God(s), gods, beliefs
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capital growth tate modern 2009
capital growth - mayday 2009
6 site-specific interventions across London and Cambridge
6 oil paintings
(birds eye views of London Stock Exchange, Lloyds of London, London Metals Exchange, BLACCXN)
at 6 intervention sites that have shown exceptional growth in privatisation or links with private sector...

The paintings were left to fate,
to the elements,
to the police,
to security guards,
to art-lovers...

Photographer for all site-specific images - ©Kristian Buus.
creative commons licence

The 6 site-specific interventions were enacted by Alana Jelinek, Juliette Brown and, for the first three, Rachel Anderson. The day's itinerary was available on activist websites and occasionally we were met by audiences who were aware of the interventions. Most often, audiences were casual onlookers, occasionally asking questions.

Audiences could choose to have SMS text alerts to receive image-updates of each successful intervention as they occurred throughout the day.    
All paintings were signed on the back with my email address. No one emailed.
capital growth at Tate Modern 2009 07.00 Tate Modern, Bankside - near front lawn, on the eastern edge near Millenium Bridge.

Painting of London Stock Exchange boardroom
capital growth at tate modern 2009 painting in situ
birds eye view painting of london stock exchange boardroom 3x3m birds eye view oil painting of london stock exchange boardroom in studio
capital growth at ministry of defence 09.00 Ministry of Defence, Victoria Embankment.

Painting of London Metal Exchange
capital growth at ministry of defence We anticipated some police harassment. In the event of extreme police harrassment, we planned to take the painting to Rt Hon John Hutton, Secretary of State for Defence as a gift.

In the end, we were filmed by officials at MoD.
capital growth at MoDpaintin painting in situ
birds eye view london metals exchange 3x3m birds eye view oil painting of London Metals Exchange trading floor in studio
capital growth at science museum 10.00 Science Museum, Kensington Gore - in the shipping innovation part of floor two, near the BP sponsored 'Energy Exhibition'

 Painting of Lloyds of London
(original interior)
capital growth science museum 2009 painting in situ
lloyds of london painting at science museum painting in situ
birds eye view painting of lloyds of london original interior 3x3m birds eye view oil painting of Lloyds of London original interior in studio
capital growth canary wharf 2009 13.45 Canary Wharf, Westferry Road circus

Painting of London Stock Exchange computer hub
mayday intervention at canary wharf 2009 painting in situ
birds eye view painting of london stock exchange computer room 3x3m oil painting birds eye view of london stock exchange computer room in studio
capital growth at london olympic site 2009 15.30 London Olympic site, on the Greenway public access later closed

Painting of BLACCXN headquarters
capital growth at olympic site painting in situ
birds eye view of fictitious BLACCXN metacorporation 3x3m oil painting birds eye view of fictitious BLACCXN metacorporation

BLACCXN was invented
in 2006 as a fictitious transnational corporation as a way for Alana Jelinek to describe the growing impact of privatisation, trade liberalisation and deregulation
capital growth at unilever centre for bio informatics cambridge 17.45 Unilever Centre for Molecular Science Informatics Building, University of Cambridge

Painting of London Stock Exchange foyer

capital growth in cambridge 2009 painting in situ
birds eye view painting of london stock exchange foyer complete with artwork 3x3m birds eye view oil painting of london stock exchange foyer, complete with foyer artwork, The Source (2004)
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test site birds eye view of BLACCXN office in situ Victoria Tower Gardens, House of Lords, London
test site - 23 may 2007
Victoria Tower Gardens, next to Houses of Parliament, with 3x3m oil painting birds eye view of fictional BLACCXN executive offices.

BLACCXN was invented as a grossly outsize transnational corporation (a 'metacorp') in 2006 by alana jelinek in order to describe the growing impact of corporate culture and neoliberalism. This temporary site-specific intervention inspired a later series of interventions called 'capital growth' where the paintings were left to their fate in the chosen public spaces.

'test site' was placed where the imagined, new and innovative third wing of the Houses of Parliament would be built, the House of Corporations
birds eye view oil painting of BLACCXN metacorporation on site of proposed 3rd wing on Houses of Parliament, House of Corporations Other BLACCXN projects include:
  • performances by alana jelinek as BLACCXN PR guru
  • Ohm's Law, a novel : the relationship between resistance and power
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europe the game, large interactive oil painting at chateau, alba la romaine, france 2012
europe the game (2002)

54factorial permutations of Europe with 54/36factorial exclusions at any one time.
An interactive, participatory oil painting
54 birds eye view landscape paintings can fit into a frame that includes a maximum of 36 paintings.

Each painting is 60x60cm.


Rules of engagement:
1) The boundary of Europe is marked
2) Each participant chooses one painting they believe is Europe
3) Each participant places their piece of Europe inside the boundary
4) Players take turns to fill the marked territory of Europe
5) When Europe is filled, players negotiate with pieces belong in Europe and which must come out.
6) The game ends when all players agree what belongs in Europe.

europe the game 'Earth Critical', Chateau, Alba-La-Romaine, France 2011 (curated by Charles Hustwick)
europe the game at beaconsfield gallery

europe the game at beaconsfield
Beaconsfield Gallery, London, 2004
open mike session
europe the game hastings

europe the game hastings

europe the game in shopping centre europe the game in hastings shopping centre
‘Points of View’, Hastings Museum and Art Gallery
and Priory Meadow Shopping Centre, 2003 (curated by Maud Belleguic and Judith Stewart)
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detail site-specific intervention jim thompson house bangkok
detail (2005)
site-specific intervention into Jim Thomson House, Bangkok
‘Inter-weaving Cultures’, Jim Thompson House and Gallery, Bangkok, Thailand
curated by Gridthiya Gaweewong(Th), Sachiko Namba(Jp), Ann Coxon(GB)

24 oil paintings on the back of Jim Thompson™ silk 'canvases' (20x20cm) placed throughout the museum to authentic Thai life. The paintings were of everyday objects (ladders, plastic buckets, mops, park benches, the inside of madrassa) from photos taken by the local Ban Krua community. The paintings served as interventions into the authentic context.

After exhibition, the intention was to give the people who had taken the photos the paintings.

Instead, after 6 weeks on exhibition, the intervention was censored and paintings were moved to the 'neutral' space of the adjacent gallery. No documentation was allowed to be seen or refered to again in any future press. It was as if the original intervention never existed.
detail site-specific intervention jim thompson house bangkok

detail site-specific intervention jim thompson house bangkok

detail site-specific intervention jim thompson house bangkok

detail site-specific intervention jim thompson house bangkok








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shooting the natives in situ cut-out life-sized figure, farmland opposite native land, pilbara region
shooting the natives (2002)
life-sized cut-out oil painting of tourist figure
site-specific intervention left in pilbara region, western australia
farmland opposite aboriginal land
long view of shooting the natives shooting the natives in situ pilbara
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brian, life-sized cut-out figure oil painting in situ Grizedale
tourist gaze series (1999-2000)
series of 7 life-sized cut-out oil painting of tourist figures
site-specific interventions in various tourist hotspots, including Grizedale as part of 'Naturalized' exhibition (2000), the area around Ambleside and Langdale, Cumbria (2000) and for 'Rich Mix' exhibition (curated by above:below) off Brick Lane, London, E1 (1999)
mambo life-size cut-out painting of tourist figure left near youth hostel in lake district 'Mambo' oil painting life sized tourist figure left near youth hostel Lake District 2000
'colourful' life size oil painting cut out figure exotic tourist figure oil painting mystical tourist figure oil painting life size cut out
3 tourist figures, life sized cut-out oil paintings
in situ near Brick Lane, London, E1
'Rich Mix' exhibition, 1999 (curated by Above:Below)

left to right:
'colourful', 'exotic', 'mystical'
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ayers rock (uluru) floor-based oil painting at ArtSway New Forest England
ayers rock (uluru) (2000)
floor-based oil painting of tourist figures climbing uluru as seen from above
detail of ayers rock (uluru) floor based painting oil on unstretched floor-based canvas. Final version 12 x 40ft

The intention is to force the viewer to negotiate whether to walk on the canvas.

Two other, smaller versions also exist.
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56N 1W original version at ArtSway Gallery New Forest England
56°N 1°W (2000)
floor-based oil painting of 35 x 60x60cm canvases landscape as seen from above
56N 1 W arsenal gallery poznan poland 2001 ‘Fields of Vision’, Arsenal Municipal Art Gallery, Poznan, Poland
(curated by Marek Wasilew and Martin Parker)

The painting, 56N 1W, was shown, from that exhibition onwards, as x-marks the spot
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The Spectators 1999
The Spectators (1999)
oil on 3 canvases
total dimensions 7x12ft
the spectators installation view axiom Painted for 'empire and I' 2000
(curated by Alana Jelinek)
Pitshanger Manor and Gallery
Axiom Arts Centre, Cheltenham
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