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TDF Collect · Fred Fowler

by Lucy Feagins, Editor
Monday 2nd March 2015

Well it’s been far too long but FINALLY we are pleased to announce we are hosting another TDF Collect exhibition very soon, and we are thrilled that our first solo show this year will feature the work of Melbourne painter Fred Fowler!

‘Another Day in Oceania’ is the name of Fred’s upcoming exhibition, which we’re opening next Thursday March 12th at our little gallery space in Brunswick.  If you’re in Melbourne, do join us! It’ll be the final show in Brunswick, before our little gallery moves to Collingwood next month.

I first stumbled across the work of Melbourne painter Fred Fowler by chance late last year. I was instantly drawn to Fred’s distinctive colour palette of muted greens, greys and blues, and the floating marine-like forms. I knew his work would be the perfect addition to our TDF Open House event in December, and we were so happy to include a few of his pieces (one of which proudly graced the cover of our event newspaper). It’s always gratifying when you guys really respond well to one of these new discoveries, and indeed you did – the few paintings we had at Open House were snapped up on day one!  It seemed only right, then, to invite Fred to join us for a solo show at TDF Collect this year.  To our great delight, he accepted.

With a background in street art, Fred completed his Masters in Contemporary Art at the VCA in 2012, and has since been practising art full time from his studio in Footscray.  We interviewed Fred late last year – do re-visit that story for a little more of Fred’s backstory!

Another Day in Oceania‘ is a body of work which has been inspired in large part by Fred’s travels around Australia and to Papua New Guinea over the last couple of years. ‘We live in such an interesting part of the world here in Oceania’ says Fred. ‘I’ve been trying to find a way to make subtle paintings about some of the cultural and political issues that we are dealing with in this country, and for the moment the landscape is allowing me to do that’ he explains.

Fred’s paintings are layered with semi-abstract floating forms which give rise to various interpretations.  Small animals and marine life seems to float across the canvases, whilst cultural symbols such as shields, weapons, buildings and flames give the paintings a broader context.

‘You know when you are looking at your house or something on Google maps, then you zoom out, and keep zooming out and it gives you this great feeling of perspective?’ explains Fred. ‘There’s just so much you can express when you pull back and get that perspective and feeling of vastness, that’s a part of what I’m trying to capture with these paintings’.

We feel very lucky to host this show with Fred, before he jets off to Korea in July for a residency at the Gimhae Clayarch Museum in Gyeongsang. There he will work with six amazing ceramic artists, which will then culminate in an exhibition at the museum. We’ll be sure to keep you in the loop with all his news!  In the meantime, if you’re in Melbourne, do join us next week for the opening of Fred’s show!

All the works in the exhibition are now pictured on the TDF Collect website and we are accepting pre-sales for the show via email.  All enquiries please email lisa@thedesignfiles.net – thankyou!

Another Day in Oceania by Fred Fowler
12th – 18th March 2015
TDF Collect
87 Albert St
Brunswick, VIC

Opening night – Thursday 12th March, from 6.00pm to 8.00pm.

TDF Collect is sponsored by Dulux, Cervezas Alhambra, Capi and All Saints Estate.  All are welcome to our opening night event on next week to view Fred’s artworks in person and share a drink with the artist!

Artist Fred Fowler in his Footscray studio.  Photo – Eve Wilson for The Design Files.


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