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Ewan McLeod

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Ewan McLeod

I have always wanted to be able to paint like this. The built up textures and the brush stokes which somehow add up to an image. There is so much movement here, and calm. Absolutely love this artist! Thank you Decanted for posting this!


Sitting in River /

Above White Island / 

Up and Down / 

Descending Snow and Rocks /

Dinghy below Icefall /

Rip /

Sitting on Dinghy below Rough Sea /

Seated Figure below Rock Pillar /

Walking Towards Thunderhead /

Sitting with Penguins /

Passing (iceberg) /

Lookout (Icebergs) / 

Painting in Alice Springs /

Self Portrait (Blue Centre) /

Two in Boat (one standing) /

Pushing Pram Uphill/study /

Painter against Griselda / 

Bathing Figure in Profile /

Creeping study

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Emma Walker

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Selected images from The Dawn Language,
Tweed River Gallery, 2010

This work has been one of my all time favourites since I first set eyes on it. And I have no idea why. There is just something about it, the colours, the darkness, the dreamlike cloudiness, I don’t know. I love it.

The odd thing is, when I researched the artist, Emma Walker, her work is nothing like this. I love her other stuff too, but it holds little similarity to this.

Walk The Line
Oil on linen

I love the chunkiness of this, overlaid with the finer lines it seems almost sculptural. There are colours I would never choose and a haphazard brushstroke which I will never have the dedication to master, but I find it absolutely mesmerising.

Selected images from Finding Form,
Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

“Her work explores the connections between landscape, memory and the subconscious”

Emma Walker is currently based on the NSW North Coast, but she started as a Sydney girl and has moved outward from there, exhibiting solo around Australia and in many group exhibitions both within Australia and internationally.

from Outliving The Night, 2008

As a child, Emma Walker managed to scoop Brett Whitely as a mentor and spent many hours in his Sydney studio, how can a person not become Australia’s favourite contemporary artist with that behind you? But her work is all her own, she brings so much depth to her painting, her skill is not to be doubted. And as a bonus here are some artists books she has done!

On the Wing
Paper, timber, ink, paint


Craig Parnaby

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Girl II
Description: oil on linen

I recently visited my local gallery to view the ‘Border Art Prize’. So much bamf. However, there are some amazing local artists in my area, Craig Parnaby is one. The style is not one I generally like, but this guy brings something to the simplicity which is more than charming and endearing. Maybe it’s because I see these people everyday and he captures them perfectly, these characters all frequent my local beach.

I take my dogs to a beach almost identical to this,

I dodge these people when I’m trying to find a park,

and this is totally me at the beach.

The images are all so amazingly serene. The way a beach should be. Even when it is filled with people. The colours are, somehow, very Australian, the warmth perhaps, and the poses of the people too, are somehow Australian. I’m not sure what makes a person look more Australian than not, maybe the casual way we wander around in swimmers? Craig Parnaby lives on the North Coast of NSW, Australia and has been exhibiting around the country for 15 years. According to his bio, his shows are often sold out and he has a waiting list. Oh, I dream of having a waiting list! His 20 years living in Bondi obviously left a permanent imprint, but I can see less of the city aspect and more of the holiday mode ie. the North Coast.

With Dad
oil on linen
70 x 60 cm

There is an element of timelessness to all of his works. There is no particular fashion to the swimwear or the hairstyles to denote a particular era and the activities are the same whether you are from the generation before me or after me. The painting ‘With Dad’ could be me and my dad, him and his dad, my kids and their dad. There is a common ground for everyone who looks at the picture.

I have no idea whether this talented and skillful man actually won any awards at the show, but judges are fickle so that doesn’t necessarily mean anything anyway. But I was drawn back to his painting several times, so it’s a win for me. And I would definitely put all of these on my wall, if I had enough wall.


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A truly international artist, G.R.Iranna has exhibited worldwide in both solo and group exhibitions. A mixed media artist, his work encompasses painting, video and sculpture. He is one of India’s most impressive and prolific contemporary artists with works selling all over the world.  Born in  Sindgi, Bijapur, Karnataka G.R. Iranna now lives and works in New Delhi.

Unlike some of the artists I find, G.R Iranna has a wealth of information available. Not only about him but his philosophies relating to his work. I will not recap everything I have found, but it is well worth a visit to his site to investigate more of his art and ideas.

This piece in particular, speaks to me. I didn’t look too hard to find G.R. Iranna’s break down of this one. It seems personal, I feel for the donkey, I understand her. It is political, spiritual and personal all at the same time.

In his works Iranna makes references to Nazi soldiers, footballers, depicts the dispossession of men due to 20th century genocides and imperialism.”

What did I learn today?

I learnt about the ‘Gurukul’ (a system of education where the student resides with the teacher). Our artist of the day spent part of his youth in such a situation. Why do we not have this concept? There is a similar system in Japan but seems to have been disposed of elsewhere. If this level of skill is the outcome, then we should definitely look at reinstating it.

While I like all of G.R. Iranna’s paintings, they have an element of serenity which I find quite beautiful, I find his sculpture absolutely riveting.

As gory or gratuitous as you may find this, it is still an amazing artwork. So simple and yet so compelling. There is a set of these, all of which I love. I don’t know if I would keep one on the kitchen counter, maybe the guest bedroom?

I strongly advise a visit to the website and if there is ever an exhibition near you, it’s a must see.


My Problem With Lowbrow Art

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Lowbrow, or lowbrow art,[1] describes an underground visual art movement that arose in the Los Angeles, California, area in the late 1970s. It is a populist art movement with its cultural roots in underground comix, punk music, and hot-rod cultures of the street. It is also often known by the name pop surrealism. Lowbrow art often has a sense of humor – sometimes the humor is gleeful, sometimes impish, and sometimes it is a sarcastic comment.[2]

Audrey Kawasaki
graphite and colored pencil on hand cut paper 12″x12″
Thinkspace Gallery “In the Wake of Dreams”

I have a list of artists on my wall, artists who inspire me, who’s work I find invigorating or memorable. Most of these artists are from the ‘Lowbrow’ section of the art community. Artists who are not taken seriously, who’s work is somehow not considered to be ‘high’ art. Artists who have the skill, the imagination, the sales and the brilliance and yet somehow lack the kudos. I don’t get it. Never have. It’s no shark in formaldehyde, but then, maybe that’s the problem.

Seonna Hong
Alone With You Mixed
Media on Wood, 60″ x 48″

Maybe the simplicity of ‘lowbrow’ art makes it too easy too understand. It’s a beautiful picture of a woman with a bird, or a scene from a zoo or a rabbit or a cartoon tiger. Nothing as ‘in depth’ as neon lights spelling out obtuse ideas. Why does our art have to be important or ground breaking or political? Why can it not be simple, entertaining and beautiful?

Tim Biskup
Cel-Vinyl Acrylic On Watercolor Paper3″ x 2.5″

Maybe it’s accessibility. A ‘serious’ artist would never stoop to adorn a shirt or screensaver with their art. The entire ‘lowbrow’ movement, however, found itself in exactly this manner. Magazines, skateboard decks, comics and album covers were/are the staple diet.

Mark Ryden
Oil on Canvas,
Painting Size: 10″ x 14″

What is the difference between this and Andy Warhol? Yayoi Kusama? Salvador Dali? Roy Lichtenstein? Is it simply that the ‘style’ has been done before? If an artist were to start painting the Holy trinity with cherubs and Rubenesque women, would they be considered ‘lowbrow’? Are landscapes ‘lowbrow’? What of tribal art?

James Jean
Graphite & Digital, 11 x 15″,

William Morris made wallpaper ‘Art’. Marcel Duchamp made a urinal ‘Art’. The Bauhaus movement made furniture ‘Art’. Marina Abramovic made sitting still ‘Art’.  Why can’t a comic book be art? I do understand that there is a line that should maybe be drawn somewhere. Maybe. But do you draw it above the mass prints from IKEA or below? What about kitsch? Those repulsive ‘crying clown’paintings? Macrame? Scrimshaw? I think that if Mark Rothko is ‘Art’, then so is Hentai. If Piero Manzoni’s shit is ‘Art’, then so is the mass print t’shirt I just bought from a chain store. The next time someone calls my art ‘lowbrow’ I might just punch them.

Gary Baseman
Signed and numbered 5-color silkscreen print. Edition of 300. Measures 12.5″ x 12.5″.

James Jean –

Gary Baseman -

Mark Ryden –

Tim Biskup –

Seonna Hong –

Audrey Kawasaki –

I Wayan Sudarsana Yansen

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From Ungasan, Bali, Indonesia, I Wayan Sudarsana Yansen uses colour and form in a sumptuous abstraction of nature and philosophy.

Using oil on canvas, he utilizes his media to create a seemingly effortless pattern of detail and ambiguity. I love the way you can look at these works for hours, still finding something new with every glance. The black and whites with a splash of colour have to be my favorite.



As is the case so often with artists from the Asia/Pacific region, finding details about I Wayan Sudarsana Yansen is quite difficult.

I will definitely be keeping an eye out for future work and one day, when I am a millionaire, I will have one of these on my wall

Stephen Homewood

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‘I don’t want to shed my skin’

Stephen Homewood is a contemporary artist from Mackay in Queensland. He uses many mediums and paints with his fingers.

I first found Stephen Homewood‘s work on an ‘Outsider Art’ website. On his own website, there is no mention of this, which I appreciate. We are not the groups we affiliate with, nor the titles we are given.

I look to ‘Outsider Art’ because I find that it is the most open and raw art there is. Damien Hirst might be the bees knees, but to be frank and earnest, his work bores the shit out of me.

Australian Landscape

Stephen Homewood’s work is figurative in the main. His treatment of the subjects can appear tortured and disfigured. But a second look shows more, the lack of gravity. Semi erotic figures are bent backwards, hands clawed, eyes watering. This work lacks the social constraints and consumerist necessities of a shark in formaldehyde. There is so much freedom in Stephen‘s art, it is both beautiful and confronting.

I  love this work, particularly the pieces which are strong on the ink. The unforgiving black and white appeals to me.

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