Jane Beaird’s “Quiet Creature” makes a loud statement.
As a child, Dallas-born Jane Beaird was always told that she was “quiet.”
“Many people equate ‘quiet’ with ‘weak’ or ‘stupid,’ which always frustrated me growing up,” Beaird says. “But being the ‘quiet’ girl has allowed me to absorb external energies and process them into something visual. It’s made me reflective, sensitive, and in-tune with the rest of the world.”
It was from this experience that her artist ego, “Quiet Creature,” was born. (Side note: The multi-talented Beaird has also body doubled for Anne Hathaway in the film “The Intern.”) Many of Beaird’s works are instantly recognizable thanks to one distinct feature—the strategic placement of flowers.
“I started using flowers around April 2015 as a kind of ‘what if I did this?’ sort of thing,” she says of her hallmark. “I wasn’t thinking about intent or concept, but simply gave in to a natural impulse. The more I researched flowers and flower symbolism, the more I figured out the ‘why’ component of my work.”
The use and symbolism of flowers during the Victorian age particularly spoke to Beaird. Due to strict social decorum and etiquette, it was inappropriate to express specific sentiments verbally. Flowers morphed into a form of communication—and a way for a man to reveal his feelings without the written word. This is something Beaird feels is still applicable to modern day relationships.
“So much is often left unsaid between two people in a relationship—so I started painting couples with flowers covering their two main forms of communication: the eyes and mouth. I like the idea of removing the ability to communicate and analyzing what’s left. The painting in a sense, becomes a message to decode; figuring out what’s going on between two people.”
What started out as a playful element has now evolved into a very symbolic component of her work—all depending on what flowers are illustrated.
“I’m working on a painting right now of two lovers surrounded by marigolds, a flower used in Dia de Los Muertos to guide the dead to the living,” Beaird says. “I think it’s interesting to place flowers with rich symbolism in an unexpected, contemporary context.”