“We often miss and overlook the aesthetic beauty and artistic possibilities in the simplest of objects that surround us….”
My work explores both sculptural and digital compositions. Sometimes both these areas are combined to create detailed studies that manipulate both organic and artificial objects. These simple found objects are derived from the mundane and everyday items that are around us everyday. The form, colour and texture of the simplest ‘egg’ or ‘aubergine’ fascinate me with their endless aesthetic possibilities and creative diversity. I strive to manipulate and reconfigure to create intricate and detailed compositions that intrigue and challenge the viewer. Mundane domestic objects juxtaposed with whimsical objects are arranged into new conceptually layered pieces. My work is concerned with how we relate to the environment, both natural and artificial. On another level these works seek to engage and capture the audience in some way. They encourage the audience to imagine, speculate, or further question the imagery presented.
They have become part of the visual language I photograph and explore.
The sculptural elements in my compositions are constructed using laser cut paper and in-filled with the webs of the common ‘Watsonia’ bulb, a leafy prolific plant often considered a weed in many parts of Australia. The bulbs are made up of numerous layers, which are carefully peeled, cleaned and treated in order to adhere them to the laser stencil. The effect is lace like and reminiscent of the timeless intricate designs of the Belgian lace makers, the only difference is that the material is completely organic. Each bulb casing is different, characterised by a varying cell structure and degrees of strength or delicacy. The melding of ‘new’ technology with traditional cutting and pasting skills is satisfying if not time consuming but allows me the freedom to explore both intricate and bold designs.
The digital or photographic images utilise unlikely combinations and communicate particular ideas and memories associated with that object. I journey through a unique sculptural language that can almost be seen as three-dimensional collages. In varying degrees, elements are transformed or simply placed together so that they retain a sense of their original function, but also take on new meanings.
The idea of chance and random possibilities is strongly influenced by the imagery developed by the Surrealists whose common theme was spontaneity and the bizarre. They are part of an ongoing search for an aesthetic understanding, through material and textural experience and cement this loose link with surrealism where forms are perhaps suggested but not spelled out. They can be reminiscent of fantasy or dream like imagery but essentially rely on the viewer to construct meaning through their own memories or experiences. We often miss and overlook the aesthetic beauty and artistic possibilities in the simplest of objects that surround us.
Q. Have you lived in South Australia for your whole life?
A. I was born in Melbourne and studied Graphic Design at Caulfield Technical
College. As a student I became fascinated with photography, a skill that has
endured to this day.
Q. Who has influenced your style, during either formal education or in your
A. In later years I trained as a secondary teacher, which motivated the
acquisition and development of current but many new skills and media. This
need for more information has influenced and subsequently given me the
knowledge to pursue my own themes in art.
Q. Is your art based on any particular themes &/or ideas?
A. My work explores both sculptural and digital compositions. Sometimes both
these areas are combined to create detailed studies that manipulate both
organic and artificial objects. These simple found objects are derived from the
mundane and everyday items that are around us everyday I strive to
manipulate and reconfigure to create intricate and detailed compositions that
intrigue and challenge the viewer. Mundane domestic objects juxtaposed with
whimsical objects are arranged into new conceptually layered pieces. My
work is concerned with how we relate to the environment, both natural and
artificial. On another level these works seek to engage and capture the
audience in some way. They encourage the audience to imagine, speculate,
or further question the imagery presented. They have become part of the
visual language I photograph and explore.
Q. Which is more important to you, the symbolic meaning of your work or the
A. The visual presentation in each composition is most important to me
because I stress the importance of allowing the viewer to construct his or her
own symbolic meaning. The final impact relies on the viewer to visually
investigate into the piece so the detail and construction of precise elements
are paramount for me.
Q. Who inspires you &/or who are your favourite artists at the moment?
A. Over the years I have been influenced by a variety of artists such as – Bill
McGuire, Bill Brandt, Iris van Herpen, Georgia O’Keefe, Arcimboldo – a
diverse and heavily précised list. Their attention to detail and preoccupation
with nature is a focus for me and continues to resonate along with the use of
light and shade and simplicity of form.
Q. Describe the ideal environment for your creative process.
A. The biggest problem for the artist is time and maintaining a balance in the
pursuit of the creative process. Practising as an artist is challenging not only
because one requires solitary time to produce but there is also a need for
interchange of ideas and stimulus through other artists and their work. This is
because the artist is supposed to be creating whatever their creative direction
leads them to do apart from the other demands of exposing their work to the
Q. How has media (traditional or social) influenced your art?
A. Electronic media plays an important role in providing aesthetic material and
the ability to research and expand knowledge and skills. It not only acts as a
support but provides one with stimulus and challenge to see beyond the
studio space. We are all influenced by the environment around us and should
not be closed from new ideas, trends and challenges presented to us in as
many formats as possible.
Q. How would you describe the visual arts scene in South Australia?
A. The visual arts scene in South Australia is vibrant and diverse and gives
artists and art goers a plethora of themes, ideas and social stimulus. Many
experiment and push the limits of their form but the result is stimulating and
Q. What does a typical day at work look like for you as an artist?
A. The focus on a routine I believe is essential and I try to conduct my working
days as a conventional ‘job’. Depending on demands, a mix of activities
during the week is important for an artist to remain simulated and questioning.
Prizes and Exhibitions
2016 ‘Flight of Fancy’ Group Exhibition, Art Images, Norwood
2016 Winner, Brighton Sculpture Exhibition, Indoor section
2016 Judge, Port Lincoln Art Prize, Nautilus Art Centre
2015 Commission for Mr & G Mrs Chillman. sculpture
2015 Christmas Collection Exhibition, Art Images, Norwood
2015 ‘A Natural Story’ City Library, Adelaide
2015 ‘Magnified’ 12 YEARS OF THE WATERHOUSE NATURAL SCIENCE ART PRIZE
National Archives of Australia, Canberra
‘Flight of Fancy’ featured in all media and advertising
2015 Loreto Spring Art Show, Adelaide
2015 ‘A Natural Story’ SALA Solo Exhibition, Edinburgh Hotel
2015 Finalist, Salvador, Lumen Art Prize, ongoing International Exhibitions
2015 Retrospective 12 YEARS OF THE WATERHOUSE NATURAL SCIENCE ART PRIZE
Museum of South Australia, Adelaide
‘Flight of Fancy’ featured in all media and advertising
2015 Finalist, Lethbridge Small Scale Art Award, Brisbane
2015 Finalist, Emma Hack Art Prize, Adelaide
2015 Finalist, Toorak Village Sculpture Prize, Melbourne
2014 Peoples Choice Award, Loreto Spring Art Show, Adelaide
2013 Overall Winner, THE WATERHOUSE NATURAL SCIENCE ART PRIZE, South Australian Museum
2012 Finalist, THE WATERHOUSE NATURAL SCIENCE ART PRIZE, South Australian Museum
2010-14 Tutor in Arts Education, University of South Australia
1993-10 Full time secondary teaching, Art Coordinator
1983-92 Freelance designer, part time teacher, Adelaide
1972 Diploma of Secondary Teaching, Fine Arts, Torrens College of Advanced Education
1970 Diploma of Art and Design, Caulfield Institute of Technology
1950 Born, Melbourne, Victoria
Peoples Choice Award, THE WATERHOUSE NATURAL SCIENCE ART PRIZE, South Australian Museum
Textile Fibre Forum, Issue No115, Sep 15, 2014
The Art of Found Objects, Embellish Magazine No 18, June 15, 2014
Creating Sculptural Artwork, Embellish Magazine No 20, February 15, 2015
The Art of Judith Brown, Embellish Magazine No 25, June 15, 2015
‘Best of Editions’, Art Edit Magazine, February 10, 2016