Over the past few months I have been working on a series of artworks that have been inspired by the patterns of certain clay bricks. This began last February when I noticed a wall of unique looking bricks in the cabin we stayed in at Avoca Beach near Gosford in NSW, on our way down the eastern Australian coast, heading back home to Tasmania after an extended holiday in Far North Queensland.
After I returned home and settled back into my art, I became very interested in these bricks and started to look elsewhere for other examples. I did, at a brick factory at Longford, about a 20 minute drive from where I live.
Since then I have produced 8 paintings on this theme. But with all research and idea development, there comes a time when a change is needed if one wants to continue the theme without ‘rubber-stamping’, that is, producing the same type of paintings over and over again. The answer? Get out and look around. I did, and this is what happened.
Recently we went for a trip to Oatlands in Tasmania’s southern Midlands. This is a small town with a strong convict past and there are many dry stone walls and a wonderful collection of large sandstone blocks. The walls can wait, but the sandstone blocks have really caught my eye. I see a ‘landscape’ in each block and in the coming months I aim to ‘extract’ some. Oatlands has a ‘raw’ climate being very cold in Winter and ‘cool’ for most of the remainder of the year except for a warm Summer period. The landscape is often bare, because (believe it or not) the annual rainfall is relatively low. The area is favoured by sheep farmers and the resulting landscape is mainly grass plains with the odd pocket of trees here and there. Many of the hills are rather bare and many look rather striking. I aim to reflect these conditions in my forthcoming landscape paintings. I will post some examples over the coming weeks.
You can see examples of this area in a series of pastels that I completed last year. Please visit my website: http://www.artkleko.com Galleries – Pastel
Tomorrow I am heading to Cairns for 7 nights. During my time there I will be judging the annual Cairns Art Society Exhibition and Val and I will re-visit some of our favourite places in and around Cairns.