‘COLLECTIC’, this group exhibition is an exploration of the unusual and unique. Recycled, reclaimed and rebirthed this thought provoking exhibition shows you everyday items transformed into contemporary art pieces. Raphe Coombes, Kaylene Brooks, Philip Hammial & Michelle Connolly combine their quirky talents in this must see ‘collection of the eclectic.’
I am a mixed media painter and sculptor based in Sydney Australia. I am influenced by tribal and primitive artwork and would describe my work as that of an outsider artist with no formal art eduction. My work on multiple creations simultaneously using various materials. I enjoy creating quirky and fanciful human and animal characters, there is no planned story behind these creations, but I use them to trigger off new works and to keep an internal dialogue going.
I lived in North Carolina, USA for seven years (2007-2014), where I became familiar with visionary/folk art, I was inspired by its honesty raw energy and started to use found material more and more in my works. A recent series of flattened box drawings are filling my studio walls, these sometimes turn into studies for larger works.
Since 2010 I have been making figures out of a variety of found material, clay, wire, wood and paint. Inspired by the puppets made by artist Paul Klee. They have a history in their make up – stories to be told and although they stand alone they also come together in a dialogue with each other. These poor scraps are turned into rich trophies – waste not, want not.
Body of work: “Sofala”
My practice is driven by an underlying fascination with the natural world and our historical involvement, how everything evolves from one another creating an endless source of discovery. Celebrating the visual beauty of colour, creating layered images that interpret the feeling and energy of a landscape, capturing nature in an ambiguous way.
All the colours are from the landscape I visit; from the bright orange fungi growing on dead tree branches, the turquoise lichen on tree trunks and rocks, the pink fluorescent afternoon sunset, the flight trail of a fairy wren, to the imprinting of the scribbly gum moth larvae.
These paintings combine the ever-changing compositional weave and lighting of the Australian bush landscape, with a seasonal summer colour palette. In paint, I describe my journey throughout this ancient country.
For my body of work, I have focused on the stunning historical town of Sofala in Western NSW. Camping and working en plein air at Wallaby Rocks and along the Turon River, I connected to the area and its’ historical importance. When in my home studio in Portland, drawing on my memories and intimacy of this place to build on my vision.
Why I make sculpture….
I didn’t start making sculpture seriously until 1968 & then only because I had a serious accident. While trying to get down to a wrecked fishing boat on a small beach in Sausalito (California) just below the Golden Gate Bridge I fell from a thirty-five foot high cliff. The object was to remove the compass and other pieces of brass from the pilot house. But the cliff was unstable; I went down in a landslide & managed to break my leg into three pieces, dislocate an arm and rip my chest open. Lucky to be alive, I was rescued by the Coastguard who had been called by two painters working on the bridge. To make a long story short, I ended up in a body cast from chest to waist to right foot. As I was taking pain killers and was weak from the injuries I wasn’t able to write poetry (an obsessive and prolific writer) and consequently was feeling frustrated.
What to do?
One day two friends loaded me into my big Plymouth 4-door sedan and we drove out to a nearby tip. With me saying Yes or No to objects they pulled from the tip they filled the boot and, returning to my house in San Francisco, placed them on a large table in the cellar. Hobbling around on crutches, in two months I made forty pieces of sculpture. And have been making it ever since.
Body of work “RAW”
A cross discipline artist, taking inspiration from Dutch artist, Sandra de Groot and French artist Jim Skull as well as Oceanic and Tribal Arts. Kaylene is constantly striving to blur the boundaries by moving the old and mundane into the odd and contemporary with her unusual and at times uncomfortable and unnerving pieces.
In her current collection “RAW” she explores texture and form through contemporary fibre art.
In a story of sculptural mixed media fusions, and an attempt to bring the 13th century Arabian craft of Macramé, also made popular in the 60’s and 70’s, into the modern era by combining natural materials, manmade and industrial objects, as well as light and negative space.