Stephanie Mew (2)

Stephaniestudiop1_s

I've come across a great publication, "Creative Spaces.  21 Years of Nillumbik Artists Open Studios."  If you can get your hands on a copy before you see the studios, it would be a great bit of research.  There's a piece by Elizabeth Vercoe.  I've quoted her before, in Leanne Mooney's post.  Elizabeth is a local painter, but also a very accomplished writer. Here's some more of her written offerings,

"To look at a list of Nillumbiks artistic alumni, you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd stumbled upon a who's who of Victoria's vibrant arts heritage.  Walter Withers, Clara Southern, Albert Tucker, Arthur Boyd, Penleigh Boyd, Danila Vassilieff, Max Meldrum, Clifton Pugh, to name but a few..." Pg. 9 "Creative Spaces".

As I travel around studios and research artists currently working in the area, I wonder what it is about Nillumbik that fosters such talent. Maybe Stephanie Mew has the answer.  She enjoys living on what she calls the urban fringe, somewhere with the bush on one side and the city on the other.  Access to the beauty of the Australian bush while being able to enjoy the energy of the city.  There's definitely energy in her work. Her need to create art permeates every corner of her life. She encourages it with her three children and practices it daily in her studio. At first she was reluctant to have me visit her studio, concerned that there wasn't enough work for me to see there.  She needn't have worried.  We spent several hours there together, unravelling a long roll of baking paper to reveal "Smoke", opening up drawers storing copious drawings and paintings done on family holidays and in faraway places like Florence (see the Ponte Vecchio below) and pulling out finished canvases stacked up against the wall.  What a treasure trove.

Stephanie is very articulate about her work and the process by which she arrives at a finished piece.  She loves having an opportunity to talk with visitors during the Open Studios.  I feel pretty confident, that like me, they go away enriched by the experience. 

Stephaniep4_s

Stephaniepdetail6_s

(Detail)

Stephaniepainting2_s

Stephaniepdetail2_s

(Detail) Stencils are used here, again bridging the divide between art and craft.

Stephaniepdetail4_s

 (Detail) 

Stephaniep6_s

Stephaniepdetail3_s

(Detail)

Stephaniepdetail5_s

(Detail)

I've mentioned Stephanie's earlier training in sculpture before.  These sculptures (below) hang in her studio, reminding her of 3D forms and influencing her painting. Some of them are a bit macabre and gruesome (to use Stephanie's word).  As such, they're an important part of her creative history.

Stephaniesculpture1_s

Stephaniesculpture2_s

Stephaniesculpture3_s

Stephaniesculpture4_s

Stephaniesculpture5_s

Stephaniesculpture6_s

This is called "Smoke" (below). Stephanie painted it after losing a very dear friend in the Black Saturday bush fires. She loved the idea of using a domestic product like baking paper.  The whole work is many meters long.  It would be best displayed from the bottom to the top of a wall, with the 'smoke', billowing along the ceiling (as smoke would).  It's quite stunning and had me rethink the many ways we could display 2D art within a space.

Stephaniesmoke8_s

Stephaniesmoke1_

Stephaniesmoke2_s

Stephaniesmoke3_s

Visitors to her studio are invited to flick through sketch books and explore drawers of sketches and drawings.  Lots of surprises emerge, like, the Ponte Vecchio (below) done on a trip to Florence in 1997.

Stephaniepontdevecchio_s

As a mother of young children, Stephanie has delighted in sketching them.  There are sketch books full of them, plus single drawings within these drawers (below).

Stephaniedrawer_s

Stephanie is interested in exploring pure abstraction in the future.  I can't wait to see where that takes her work.

Nillumbik Artists Open Studios website

STOP PRESS!  A selection of Stephanie's work is also on show at the Stonehouse Gallery on the main drag in Warrandyte, until 30th April.

Parent Category: Arts
Facebook Image

Birrarung Alchemy

Birrarung Alchemy There’s a howling wind today. Just now a big branch came loose from its trunk mooring and thundered onto the roof, threatening the structure of the house and by… More…

Jeanette Dyke

Jeanette Dyke Photograph courtesy of Jeanette Dyke© Rarely do I find a silversmith, whose work is as exquisite as Jeanette Dykes. The travelling salt and pepper shaker (above) is… More…

Out'n'about

Out'n'about Today I've been out and about around my hood. This morning I drove through Warrandyte's early morning fog to get to the Baldessin Studio (Baldessin Press) at St… More…

The Caladenia Rosella Orchid

The Caladenia Rosella Orchid One of the really lovely things to happen since beginning Isiiad has been the making of connections at Dunmoochin. It's meant, life drawing sessions,… More…

First Train to Allwood

First Train to Allwood "The first train to Allwood [now Hurstbridge] arrived on June 25th 1912 and we're going to yarnbomb a fence to celebrate". So say the organisers of this… More…

Deborah Halpern- Angel maker

Deborah Halpern- Angel Maker Deborah Halpern's 'Angel' now stands by the Yarra River at Birrarung Mar, next to the Ian Potter Gallery. I'm old enough to remember her first home,… More…

Emmy Mavroidis

Emmy Mavroidis and Aldo Bilotta Emmy Mavroidis' work was shortlisted for this years Nillumbik Prize. It's a big brave drawing of a 'moving' figure. She loves the figure and has… More…

Ekphrasis Awards-2

Ekphrasis Awards Simon Icarus BAIGENT Caviar Spoon 1995 gold, ebony, mother of pearl, diamond, ruby 0.5cm x 5.5cm x 2.0cm ©Simon Icarus Baigent (Photo by Silvi Glattauer)… More…

Birrarung House-The Studio

Birrarung House-The Studio I’ve been to one or two studios over the last twelve months. My inner studio 'voyeur' has taken great delight in seeing artists in their creative… More…

Bountiful Birrarung Dinner

Bountiful Birrarung Dinner Now I’m in love with the Eltham Library. I sit in the section that stores house and cooking magazines in glass cabinets…reminding me of how clever we… More…

Margaret Summerton

Margaret Summerton Phew...what a woman...energetic, smart as paint, extremely personable and an artist too. Five minutes with Margaret Summerton and I understood why she is the… More…

Material Things

Material Things ©Libby Schrieber Apple Picking Saints, silk cut linoleum print There's a little number that's been tucked away at the back of my wardrobe for what seems like a… More…

So when do you throw the flowers out?

I can't tell you how much I love a house full of flowers. Parrot tulips and peonies are perennial favorites. As a result, I've got a lifetime's collection of vases and vessels. I… More…

Work in Progress

Work in Progress I'm working on a doozy of a blog today. I visited the studio of Ona Henderson and Syd Tunn yesterday. It's one of those blogs where the difficulty has been in… More…

Birrarung House Life Drawing

Birrarung House Life Drawing Photograph courtesy of Kerry Cross © Yesterday... picture this. Balmy spring day in the bush. Birdsong. A table laden with an enormous wedge of Prima… More…

The Essence of Nerina

The Essence of Nerina Nerina Lascelles exhibition "Seizui- Essence" opened at Montsalvat at the beginning of this month. In excess of one hundred people enjoyed Montsalvat's… More…

Nillumbik Ekphrasis Poetry Awards-2

Nillumbik Ekphrasis Poetry Award Camilla TADICH©, 6.23am Kangaroo Ground 2009, oil on canvas, 94.5cm. x 125cm. framed. "Ekphrasis is a genre of poetry that explores works of art… More…

Stop Press

STOP PRESS! Arts Talks 2011 This information has been distributed by the Arts, Local Government and Climate Change Forum Tuesday 3 May, 10am -12.00 noon followed by morning… More…

Hugh McSpedden

Tripping the Light Fantastic with Hugh McSpedden Well not tripping exactly or even dancing for that matter, but "light fantastic", without a doubt. The exterior of St Andrews Hall… More…

Fulling

"Fulling" I'm back home now. Yesterday I was working on my deck and kept looking over in the direction of Birrarung, wistfully wondering if the frogs were missing me as much as I… 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.