Dena Ashbolt.  Artist in Residence Montsalvat.

IMG_1418s

Dena Ashbolt is Montsalvat's latest artist in residence.  She arrived there over a week ago and will be there for six weeks in all.  She is a video artist and a painter.  She intends to create a work using both mediums while she's there.

Today I had the privilege of talking with her and checking out the progress of her work in her lovely Montsalvat studio space (above).

She not only has access to the studio but also to "Sue's Tower" (below) where she can rest and write and take in the view of Lil's house and the garden. Incidentally, the tower was principally used by Sue Vanderkelen in the early days of Montsalvat. She was the daughter of a wealthy diamond merchant and came out to Montsalvat as a student of Justus Jorgensen.  The tower is now affectionately named after her.

IMG_1395s

IMG_1393s

Dena is no stranger to the experience of artist in residence.  Several years ago she and partner, Guy Lamothe, had a residency in Clifton Pugh's paint studio at Dunmoochin (Cottles Bridge). This was an expansive experience in several ways.  It brought into focus 'the creative experience' and exposed her to a whole different creative energy. She was equally drawn to the energy of Montsalvat and describes it as peaceful and focused. 

While obviously conscious of creative energies, it's the idea of perception that excites her most. In her own words,

"I'm interested in perception, all it's follies and fancies and how it trips us up. How it relates to memory. What you've seen and what you think you saw."

This interest includes a study of how we see, particularly of the eye itself, which she describes as a very clever organ.

She started learning to draw twelve years ago. In 2001 she began painting with teacher David Moore (at Montsalvat).  She has also been a regular attendant of Jenny Rogerson's weekly "Life Group".  These combined interests grew into a Masters in Fine Arts at Monash Uni in 2004. On completion of that, Dena has been investigating the idea of "Image Immersion" through a PhD.

Capturing images has been a part of her work life for many years. She previously worked as a freelance commercial director. So has extensive experience in film production. She has more recently taken her work with video into the realm of art. Her video art work stemmed from her drawing practice. Of this development she says, 

"Drawings are an interrogation of space.  Video allowed for more interrogation."

IMG_1412s

Montsalvat offers a rich array of spaces for Dena to "interrogate".  The subject of this initial drawing is the view from her studio window (see photo below).

IMG_1437s

IMG_1432s

The view from the other side of the studio(below)...  as you can see, it's a heavenly working environment.

IMG_1436s

Look out for a progress report on Dena's work next week. 

If you would like more information about Dena Ashbolt, go to her website.

If this gig looks the least bit tempting to you, go to the Montsalvat website to see what's required to make an application for their artist in residence program.

Parent Category: Arts
Facebook Image

Big, bold, brave woman!

Bold, brave woman! Susan Reddrop Sue Thomas warned me that I'd be mesmerised by Susan Reddrop's stunning aqua blue eyes. She got that right! I've never seen eyes that colour… More…

Violins, flutes and Japanese Ink painting.

David Brown... violin maker, Shakuhachi flute maker and Sumi-e painter... Yes that's right, one artist, many skills. Add an Aikido master with 6th dan to that already impressive… More…

Anthony Williams- Montsalvat's new painter in oils

Anthony Williams One of Montsalvat's new artists, Timothy Clarkson, has already delighted many Isiiad readers with his fusion of ceramics, origami and well chosen newspaper… More…

Mariella McKinley

Mariella McKinley Photograph courtesy of the artist. Just when I thought Montsalvat couldn't possibly do anything more to delight me, I met Mariella McKinley. She's been working… More…

Nillumbik Prize 2011

Nillumbik Prize 2011 Peter Wegner Man Resting 2011 Oil on canvas 153x123cm (detail) The Nillumbik Prize Exhibition opens at Montsalvat's Barn tomorrow evening at 6pm. I whipped in… More…

The Rug Maker of Mazar-e-Sharif

The Rug Maker of Mazar-e-Sharif Montsalvat is currently showing rugs and embroideries from the Middle East, courtesy of writer and carpet seller Najaf Mazari. Najaf is well known… More…

Symbols of Loss and Recovery

Symbols of Loss and Recovery I had such an adventure finding Leanne Mooney's studio last Friday. It's out on a dirt track at Christmas Hills, across a creek and through the bush.… More…

The Whistler, Matcham Skipper

The Whistler, Matcham Skipper 1922-2011 I wish I'd met Matcham Skipper. His farewell gave me a glimpse of him. Whistler, story teller, father of many. I've seen his work of… More…

Beyond the Trees

Beyond the Trees- A celebration of Thomas Lloyd Guitars. A guitar is shaped like the body of a beautiful woman. All sensuous curves and smooth 'skin'. Any wonder that they're… More…

Sue Thomas

Sue Thomas Sue enjoys nothing more than playing around with textile ideas in her tiny studio at Montsalvat. She shares the studio with her daughter Amy Skipper, grand daughter of… More…

Chris Wynne- Luthier

Chris Wynne- Luthier John Williams, virtuoso classical guitarist is playing on my ipod. It seems appropriate. Today I learned that my classical guitar guru for so many years, had… More…

Farewell Matcham

Farewell Matcham. Today is a sad day for Montsalvat. Friends and family of Matcham Skipper will gather to give him a fond farewell at 3pm today. Matcham passed away last week at… More…

Simon Baigent

Simon Baigent at Montsalvat Simon has lived and worked at Montsalvat since 1973. He is tightly woven into the fabric of the place. Staff at The Meeting Pool (Montsalvat's… More…

Michael Schlitz Winner of The Rick Amor Print Prize

Michael Schlitz- Winner of the Rick Amor Print Prize 2011 Desert Girl woodcut on kozo 76x56cm Of his winning piece, Michael says, "Desert Girl is an amalgam of two personalities I… More…

Dena's Progress

Dena's Progress You may remember Montsalvat's artist in residence Dena Ashbolt. That's her above, stepping into her studio space today. Unfortunately, last week she was unwell so… More…

Dena Ashbolt. Artist in Residence Montsalvat.

Dena Ashbolt. Artist in Residence Montsalvat. Dena Ashbolt is Montsalvat's latest artist in residence. She arrived there over a week ago and will be there for six weeks in all.… More…

Kavisha Mazzella

Kavisha Mazzella I so looked forward to this interview. When I saw that Kavisha was launching her CD 'Love and Sorrow' at Montsalvat, I was pretty excited. What fun sitting in her… More…

The Meeting Pool

The Meeting Pool I've been mildly troubled that this arts and design blog keeps wandering into the territory of food. Then I'm reminded that food and it's exquisite preparation is… More…

Chris Pittard. Red Chair Event

Chris Pittard Red Chair Event Last night was one of those cold wet Melbourne winter nights, when the most appealing thing is to snuggle up beside the fire. I did think about not… More…

Engaging Form

Engaging Form Maria Vanhees, More Than Skin-Deep ll, earthenware, press-mould and coil built, soda fired, H47 x W53 x D34cm. 2009 (detail) Feast your eyes on these examples from… More…

Copyright

THIS ENTIRE SITE © 2010-2012 ISIIAD. ALL OF THE PHOTOGRAPHS AND WRITTEN MATERIAL HEREIN, UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED, ARE COPYRIGHTED BY ISIIAD. NO PART OF THIS SITE, OR ANY OF THE CONTENT CONTAINED HEREIN, MAY BE USED OR REPRODUCED IN ANY MANNER WHATSOEVER WITHOUT EXPRESS PERMISSION OF THE COPYRIGHT HOLDER.