Artist’s Statement

I divide my work between the disciplines of both painting and sculpture, however painting is my big love and the trunk of the tree where most of my time is spent.  Sculpture is a branch of that tree.

For me chiaroscuro, spontaneity and poetry are the elements that I aim for when I am painting and drawing.  If I have a label it is that of the contemplative painter and I look for the light, mood and atmosphere of the subject. I work in the tonal method and in landscape I favour atmospheric, poetic and late afternoon and crepuscular subjects.  Figures are a favourite source of inspiration and are usually painted in contemplative poses. Lately I have been adding a companion animal.  On many occasions this is my pig Liberty and sometimes my cat Chandra. The message with Liberty is to bring awareness about speciesism.  Liberty serves as a model for all animals who are treated cruelly as simply a commodity for humans.  Plein air and working directly from the model are great sources of joy. My eventual aim is for what George Inness, the great American landscape painter described as ‘seeing the truth beyond the reality!’  My paintings have been described as contemplative, introspective, lyrical and with a sense of a ‘mysterious elsewhere’!  So perhaps on a few occasions I have managed to touch on that ‘truth beyond the reality.

Sometimes I use small plein air paintings as studies for the purpose of creating larger paintings, which are worked up in the studio.  But of course the small paintings are works that also stand on their own. Recently I have been doing some paintings from my life drawings.  This is new to me and I am finding it very exciting.

Travel is an important part of my art practice. I draw upon inspiration that comes from absorbing different cultures, peoples and landscape. I also love the rocky, grassy woodlands of North Central Victoria where I live. I spend a lot of time soaking up this environment and I gain much pleasure working from it.

My mixed media and ceramic sculpture is mostly symbolic and mythical. They feature the feminine, animals and nature.  I like to use found wood and items from second hand shops and garage sales. Story telling has always been an important feature in these sculptures. Working with clay brings about a total feeling of Grace. I love the way that the clay seems to have it’s own intelligence. It tends to grow into something of it’s own accord before it is fired and purged in the heat of the kiln. I try to let the clay talk and take the lead. I feel very connected to the spiritual through this experience and the sense of alchemy at work.