International. Contemporary. Art.
The Miami Art Expo participant JOANNA BLAIR, MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA
ABOUT YOU / ARTIST/GALLERY STATEMENT:
Painting with a sensitivity that captures a moment in time, its atmosphere, energy, movement and mood using a range of techniques and use of colour – a self confessed maverick who is self taught – Joanna allows the work to take its own course through her imagination. With a preference for strong colour and thick paint, resulting in astonishing finishes that is garnishing an international audience.
WHAT DRIVES YOU?
An inner desire to paint beautiful pictures. I love the feeling of being alone and creating something that gives me pleasure to look at. I also enjoy the ups and downs of painting. Sometimes it can be a roller coaster – you start, all seems to be going well, then you get a bit stuck, or it’s not turning out how you hoped. Now you start to consider relegating it to the recycling bin, at worst questioning whether you really do have any talent! Then inspiration and fresh eyes strike, and off you go again, now it’s working, now it’s looking good, now it’s garnering compliments, your confidence returns and with any luck, the piece is finished and you’re on to the next artistic adventure!
WHAT IS YOUR DEFINITION OF ART:
Art is such a subjective field of endeavour! Personally, for me, I love paintings (whether they are abstract or not) that evoke a feeling of joy, happiness, peacefulness or an ‘all is well with the world’ sense when you view them. Paintings that have movement or that transport you into them, where you can imagine yourself walking through the painting or being part of the scene also really appeal to me as well. For example my painting titled “Sunshiny Day” depicts that first warm spring day after winter has passed, where the air is subtly fragrant with the bloom of wild flowers, there is a gentle warm breeze blowing as you’re walking through the field of flowers, arousing a feeling of being relaxed and carefree with the warmth of the sun on your back.
HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH ARTIST’S BLOCK?
I like to have between 3 to 6 paintings on the go at any one time. If I start to struggle with a particular painting, I turn it around against the wall so I can’t see it, and won’t look at it at all for at least a week (or longer). I’ll then continue on with one of the other paintings I have underway (or indeed just start a new one!). When I do look at the rogue painting again, now I have fresh eyes and find that I can usually see what needs to be done to it, I can get back on the horse, so to speak, and keep going.
WHERE DO I GET MY INSPIRATION FROM / TECHNIQUES I USE TO CREATE MY ARTWORKS:
I’ve got a folder entitled “Art Ideas” on my computer as well as on Pinterest – this is invaluable to me as I have all sorts of pictures saved that inspire me and fire my imagination. Often I’ll start a painting using something out of my folder, or board, and within a short time, the painting just seems to take on a life of its own, where I let go of the original picture that inspired me and let the painting take its own course; it kind of then becomes an intuitive thing! Sometimes I’ll do something on the canvas and look at it, not believing that I really did it!! My actual physical technique of painting is fairly straight forward – I love oils, it’s my favourite medium, I love the glossiness of the paint and the rich finish it gives. I usually paint with brushes, and I do favour using my palette knife quite a lot to build up thick layers of colour. The palette knife also allows me to get a marbled finish too. My best time to create seems to be late at night. I find this is when I can relax my mind down and no one is around to disturb me. I have collected a long playlist of songs that when I hear them make me feel energised, like I want to dance! I put my music on and off I go with the brushes!
I KNOW MY ARTWORK IS FINISHED WHEN…..
This is a bit tricky, I stop once I feel there isn’t anything more I could add to the painting to improve it; or alternatively to add anything more will actually start to detract from the work. However – I have been sorely tempted on the odd occasion when I’ve looked at a long finished work and thought “I should just add a bit of this or that to it”. Once it’s framed and under glass, that’s usually a good deterrent!
BEST EXHIBITION EVER PARTICIPATED IN?
Being included in the 2015 London Biennale. I was thrilled to be a part of this, my work was really well placed – right next to Van Roy (who is the son of Salvador Dali) and Alita Andre (who had recently painted in front of thousands of people in Times Square).
FACEBOOK: Joanna Blair