Wherefore Art?

Once Upon A Love Story…

I love a good love story. Tales of how people met, reading through other people’s letters or hearing stories of enduring passion despite time, distance or ill health. It should come as no surprise then that I too have my very own love story; but it saddened me that my own story, like so many others, was confined to sacred words on a page, which now lay hidden in a drawer. Thus began my mission to find the perfect artist to bring my tale to life.

Enter – Meredith Gaston: Artist, illustrator, kindergallery owner and general positive spirit.

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston - Photographer Prue Ruscoe

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston – Photographer Prue Ruscoe

The first thing you will learn about Meredith is the warmth she exudes. The second, if you’re lucky, is that she too is deeply romantic. Much like myself, Meredith met her partner by chance and within weeks had made the move to Germany to be with him. If I was looking for a sign that could be the perfect artist to bring a love story to life, surely this was it.

As Meredith welcomed me into her home (now the Blue Mountains, Australia), the care for her surroundings was evident. The joy with which she spoke about the history of her heritage cottage, the carefully placed watering can perched on a bench, or the wooden logs stacked by her stove (adoringly hand coloured in chalk) for a special touch.

© 2014 Kate Vista

© 2014 Kate Vista

IMG_1685

© 2014 Kate Vista

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Every little element had come from a place of love.

It is this joy that exudes from her artwork,

© 2014 Kate Vista

Artwork Meredith Gaston. Photograph Kate Vista © 2014

 

 

© 2014 Kate Vista

Artwork Meredith Gaston. Photograph Kate Vista © 2014

 

photo-2

Artwork Meredith Gaston. Photograph Kate Vista © 2014

 

fills her studio,

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston - Photographer Prue Ruscoe

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston – Photographer Prue Ruscoe

 

© 2014 Kate Vista

© 2014 Kate Vista

and inspires the pages of her best selling books (Tucked In and 101 Moments of Joy)

Although it is obvious that Meredith’s artwork comes from a heart that is very real and honest it was interesting to hear that the idea of portraying happiness as an emotion through artwork was something Meredith grappled with initially. The cliché of the brooding or struggling artist is long portrayed but so too the notion that art has to be “somber” in order to be notable.

Thankfully for the world however, Meredith has taken advice on life and art from individuals such as the acclaimed Concita Caranbano and has listened to her own heart. Collectively, this has taken her where she is today; making a very real name for herself, inspiring others with her positive affirmations, warm colours and her signature form.

For Meredith, the girl who appears throughout her artwork has been a constant.  “She’s you and she’s me” reflects Meredith. “Her face has changed but I’ve drawn her since I was 15.” As we looked over early sketches that filled  her old notebooks documenting life and travels from Meredith’s early life I was taken with how much talent was present at such a young age.

IMG_1690

Early Artwork Meredith Gaston Circa 2000. Photograph Kate Vista © 2014

IMG_1689

Early Artwork Meredith Gaston Circa 2000. Photograph Kate Vista © 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For Meredith art has always been about expression and about love. It’s not a cliché, it’s very real indeed. “Love is precious, love should be shared and inspire others” she continues. I think I had found my perfect storyteller.

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston - Photographer Prue Ruscoe

Photo courtesy of Meredith Gaston – Photographer Prue Ruscoe

 

To learn more about Meredith and view her works visit http://www.meredithgaston.com

To learn more about kindergallery, run by Meredith and her partner Kevin, visit http://kindergallery.com

 

 

 

All rights reserved © 2014 Kate Vista

 

 

 

Vivid

It’s that time of year again!!! When the city of Sydney lights up (quite literally) and children young and old come out to play.

 

The Beautiful Opera House - © Kate Vista

The Beautiful Opera House – © Kate Vista

 

Vivid Sydney is a unique annual festival of light, music, and creativity as Sydney’s prominent landmarks are transformed into canvases for incredible light installations http://www.vividsydney.com.

The beautiful Opera House

Sails of Blue © Kate Vista

I could tell you that this year’s Vivid is bigger and better than ever.

 

I could tell you that this is the first time the lighting sails of the Opera House have been done by an all-Aussie crew (check out the Spinifex Group).

The Sails Alight! © Kate Vista

The Sails Alight! © Kate Vista

 

Or I could tell you that there are 17 large-format projectors used to light the Opera House for Vivid Sydney, with the theme being based around “Play”.

You Imagine What You Desire  © Kate Vista

You Imagine What You Desire © Kate Vista

 

Really though, like all art, Vivid is about expression and enjoyment.  So get down to the foreshore or explore the laneways of The Rocks and enjoy what is on offer.

I Heart Vivid © Kate Vista

I Heart Vivid © Kate Vista

 

 

All Rights Reserved © Kate Vista 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” – Mark Twain

I’m not accustomed to meeting people and then, within an hour, being naked from the waist up. There is a certain level of vulnerability that comes with that kind intimacy. Yet I knew the opportunity to stand for Emma Hack, the internationally acclaimed artist, was one I was not going to pass on.

Dwelling Facade - Lisbon  © Emma Hack

Dwelling Facade – Lisbon
© Emma Hack

I’ve been captivated by Emma’s works since my first encounter and I know the initial feeling of being drawn to intricate patterns, bold colours or subtle curves is then heightened to sheer joy and fascination upon making the discovery of a human form, an animal or both carefully camouflaged within a piece.

Fans © Emma Hack

Fans © Emma Hack

 

Like all ‘sensible’ individuals, I chose to ignore the advice of Emma and proceeded to diet for six weeks prior to the day of creation. This, when coupled with a severe bout of bronchitis, laryngitis, low blood pressure and the flutter of butterflies in my stomach, resulted in my fainting within 15 minutes of arrival. Needless to say I was mortified as I lay on the floor topless, my leggings half way down my thighs while the women I was shamelessly trying to impress fetched me water, pasta and a pillow of sorts.

We were off to a slow start…

Thankfully, the first things you will notice about Emma though are her presence, her patience (her works can take up to 23 hours to create) and her ability to make you feel at ease. As she continued to reassure me that it ‘happened all the time’ and shield me from the nosy eyes of Adelaide’s passers by on King William Rd, I was desperately hoping the reality of the day I was experiencing, would catch up with the vision for the day I had so confidently pictured in my head.

 

Studio  © Kate Cameron

Studio © Kate Vista

 

After sufficient carb loading and armed with Powerade and chewing gum we soon established a routine and the transformation began.  And what a transformation it was. For the better part of a day, Emma carefully, yet swiftly, recreated the lines of the Florence Broadhurst ‘Tropical Floral’ print. (Learn more about Florence Broadhurst at http://www.florencebroadhurst.com.au or check out some more of her designs at http://www.signatureprints.com.au)

The creation of the artwork happened in stages and each stage brought with it key points and vivid memories. Notable mentions have to go to having a flesh coloured g-string glued to me, the last point of being able to sit, or bend my abdomen, for fear of smudging the design; or the experience of having the inside of my nostrils painted (which is a highly unique, yet bizarrely pleasant sensation) so as to avoid hints of pink during the photography stage.

The end of a long day's work © Kate Vista

The end of a long day’s work © Kate Vista

As Emma continually moved back and forth between the camera and myself I tried to remain motionless when required, as the slightest movement could ruin the image. But for the most part we were able to speak freely about her new collection, travel, love and music and before I knew it the reality of the day I was experiencing had begun to exceed the reality of the day I had envisaged.

The transformation was complete. I was part of the optical illusion, the magic, the world of art and most surprisingly was feeling a powerful sexiness that came with being totally incognito.

 

The Finished Work - Tropical Floral © Emma Hack

The Finished Work – Tropical Floral
© Emma Hack

 

If you want to learn more about Emma you can do the following

Peruse her website http://www.emmahackartist.com.au,

See her work in  Gotye’s ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UVNT4wvIGY&list=PLB33D5D049C5DD552

Visit her pop up gallery April 19th – June 15th 2014

124 King William Road, Hyde Park Adelaide.

Hydrangea Cradled Owl  © Emma Hack

Hydrangea Cradled Owl
© Emma Hack

 

 

All rights reserved © 2014 Kate Vista