I was born in Melbourne Australia in 1968 and as a family we moved from place to place like modern day gypsies. Maybe it was this early experience of packing up and moving on that initially inspired the wondrous sense of movement and rhythm that I strive to achieve in my artwork today? As a young child I had become aware that my feelings could be evoked through the lyrical assemblage of words, enchanted by simply sighting their rhythmic structure on a page (poetry). In a painting or sculpture, I find it is this same sense of rhythmic, undulating movement and poetic configuration of line, form and colour from which a sense of liveliness is perceived that intrigues me most. In 2016 I completed my Masters of Contemporary Art at the Victorian College of the Arts, The University of Melbourne. An experience which provided an academic opportunity to step away from the studio and critically analyse my current work.
Through intuitively based artworks that include paintings and wheel thrown ceramics, I strive to evoke a sense of pause within a visually perceived momentum in order to explore life’s delicate balance, its vulnerable fragility and sublime impermanence. It has become clear to me that I have an insatiable curiosity for how life works and I find myself on a solitary quest, questioning my own existence within the whole and total sum of this experience. The studio is my temple, a sacred place of contemplation and as I physically work and move around in the space I gain a more acute sense of rhythm which I postulate is my own personal connection to this existential experience of life. Over the years the natural environment has had a significant influence on my work. I have expanded the scale of it in direct response to the overwhelming sensation experienced whilst taking in, absorbing, and trying to comprehend the ‘bigger picture’ in order to find my own place within it.
Nature is inherently rhythmic, like the blood that courses through our veins it has a tempo. I wonder if it is an external or an internal rhythm that I have become more aware of in the process and surmise a connection between the two. It is this sense of rhythmic, undulating movement and poetic configuration of line, form and colour from which a sense of ‘liveliness’ is perceived. Organic patterns of random occurrence intrigue me – textures, shapes and colours that intertwine, connect and communicate with each other. The implication of life and the labour of time verifying my presence amongst them. The work evokes visual tension and varying sensations are inspired under the influence of one’s own perception and imagination.
Feeling my way through the creative process and working without a preconceived idea invites the exciting element of unpredictability. This approach presents a kaleidoscope of unforeseen possibilities that are pushed, pulled and played with along the way, inspiring ideas and concepts to develop within the process. It seems the medium is inconsequential, whether it be painting or ceramics that I make a start with. I push, pull and place various materials without having any preconception of the overall end result. This is how I make an initial connection to the raw materials. I throw the paint, I throw the clay – there is an organic randomness that exhibits a purpose and order in the final product where a variety of elements seem naturally brought together and poetic compositions act as one exuberant and cohesive form of self-expression. I trust that by following intuition I tap into my own sense of truth.
I came to find Abstract Expressionism and Action Painting many years ago whilst completing a Diploma of Art in Ceramics – I would drip and pour glazes freely onto the dry surface of clay for varying effects. I took this a step further during a Diploma of Transpersonal Art Therapy where I used similar techniques to express and impress myself upon the canvas. It wasn’t until I heard spectators referring to Jackson Pollock that I became aware of his work and the synergy between our processes. Whilst exhibiting in New York in 2009, I took the opportunity to view Pollock’s work first hand at MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art, and took a coach trip to the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center at Long Island to walk across the paint spattered floorboards of this acclaimed artist’s studio… it was a deeply memorable experience and I was fascinated to learn that he too had experienced moving from place to place as a child.
Today I am settled in Crossover Victoria, approximately 1 hour from Melbourne. A regional area where Pilgrim Creek Studios are surrounded by rolling green hillsides, content cows, happy alpacas and a diversity of wildlife that comes and goes. I am fortunate to have numerous creative projects and exhibitions to consistently work toward as I contemplate life, further research and the evolution of my own artistic practice.