This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Charlotte Alldis Is Making Art To Strengthen A Sense Of Belonging

Studio Visit

When she was a child, Charlotte Alldis wrote horror tales with her brother about an evil sibling duo exacting vengeance on the world. In adolescence, she obsessed over film noir and crafted cartoonish soft toys by hand. And five years ago, while recovering from illness, she reimagined these same otherworldly characters onto canvas. This ‘healing process’ is how her thriving artistic practice continues to evolve.

With installations at music festivals and nightclubs under her belt, an upcoming workshop series and a collaboration with Kuwaii in the works, Charlotte’s star is well and truly on the rise.

16th March, 2020

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Photo – Amelia Stanwix for the Design Files.

Sasha Gattermayr
Monday 16th March 2020

‘I’m asking you for you to join me, to play with me, to laugh with me, to feel a little bit silly.’ – Charlotte Alldis

In a stroke of fate, I have known Charlotte Alldis for a long time. We went to primary and high school together, and crossed paths at uni. I bought a painting of hers two years ago, after seeing her art flourish and evolve via Instagram, and in one of my first weeks at The Design Files, our Managing Editor assigned me to this story.

In a way, my personal connection makes this harder to write. It makes the meaning of the work harder to know, somehow more slippery, as it mixes with my memories. What I do know for sure is that her twisted, freaky ladies are the last thing I see when I go to sleep and the first when I wake up. They hang beside my bed and look down on me like agnostic, artistic angels from their frame, reminiscent of the tangled complexity of the female bond and body. They are a constant source of eerie comfort and two dimensional company.

‘I’m asking for you to join me, to play with me, to laugh with me, to feel a little bit silly,’ the artist explains, and I immediately dismiss the insecurity that I can’t articulate as a clear objective through her work. Because it turns out that’s the point.

Charlotte isn’t just making art, she’s building a world. Her paintings are not about finding linear meanings and movements. Instead, her characters travel across paintings, like recurring dreams that populate a subconscious. They can be unnerving or comforting but most of all they’re a distinguished presence outside her personality. ‘Sometimes it can feel like there is a crowd with me while I paint,’ she laughs, describing the cartoonish, painted forms as facets of her own identity. ‘The characters are extensions of myself, and representations of feeling. Each character is an extension or aspect of my experiences,’ Charlotte explains, which makes her art deeply personal and subjective all at once.

It’s this experience of community that first drew Charlotte to visual art five years ago, and what sustains her evolving practice today. Her work is distinctive for its unexpected colour combinations, naive lines and crowded, impulsive compositions – all of which give credence to a sense of freedom, and uninhibited originality. It’s this flouting of formal art training and intentionality that makes her work so compelling.

Driving Charlotte’s most recent project, Making A Mess, is the shared desire for a space for communal art making. She began this as a public workshop series with two friends, with tickets opening  soon for the next quarter. ‘It’s founded on our shared interest in facilitating spaces for people to come together and explore mark-making, constructing and creative expression, all free of judgement,’ Charlotte explains. Letting others in on the therapeutic properties of playful art is her mission. ‘My art is deeply personal, but sharing it perpetuates playfulness and positivity for others.’

For Charlotte, art is about letting go of what you’re supposed to feel or think or like. It’s a rejection of a universal taste, and a turn inwards to listen to our subjectivity. It sounds spiritual and, in a way, it is. This kind of art exists as an anchor to all that feels chaotic and scrambled and overwhelming in the world, to enliven those negativities, and remind you they’re okay.

This Week

Architecture

An Elwood Bungalow That Draws From Within

A innovative extension around a circular garden creates an inward focus to this California bungalow extension by Rob Kennon Architects.

Interiors

The Timeless Update Of A 1950s Portsea Beach House

Pipkorn Kilpatrick improve the flow and functionality of this 1956 home originally designed by Robin Boyd, ensuring its legacy remains in ta...

Shopping

A Childrenswear Label That Takes Us Back To The Golden Years - WIN With Goldie + Ace!

Get ready to send the kids back to school in style with the Golden Years collection from Goldie + Ace!

Gardens

A Modernist Front Garden On Sydney’s North Shore

In an extract from his new book 'The City Gardener', Richard Unsworth shares the Mid-Century Modern garden designed by his practice, Garden
Richard Unsworth
  2 hours ago

Architecture

A Grecian-Inspired Update For A California Bungalow

Alcorn Middleton update a 1980s family home with arches, white-washed columns and a inspired by quintessential Santorini architecture.

Homes

A Cheerful Beachside Retreat

Virginia Morris' colourful 1980s Anglesea home, located just 100 steps from the beach!

News

A Lifetime Of Mim Design Projects In One Book!

‘Works’ is a tome celebrating 21 years of Miriam Fanning’s sophisticated interiors + architecture practice.
Sasha Aarons

Architecture

A Minimalist, Semi-Prefabricated Beach House

Architect Hannah Tribe of Tribe Studio developed a prototype for a partially prefabricated kit home for her own family beach house in Bundee...

Creative People

The Trailblazing Couple Behind Brisbane's New Indigenous Art Centre

Amanda Hayman and Troy Casey are the entrepreneurial couple behind Brisbane's most exciting new art gallery and retail space!
36.05

Podcast

Dinosaur Designs Co-Founder Louise Olsen On Building An Iconic Australian Brand, On TDF Talks

Lucy Feagins talks to the legendary designer and artist about building an iconic Australian design brand.

Interiors

An Elevated Take On Old Meets New

A 1950s Brisbane house meets a new addition by designers Wrightson Stewart and architect Barbara Bailey, connected by a transparent breezewa...
2.37

Interiors

YSG Studio Brings 'Afternoon Delight' To This Dreamy Kitchen Design for Laminex

We take a closer look at YSG Studio's stunning new collaboration with Laminex!

Shopping

The New Ceramics Studio Built On Centuries Of Inherited Knowledge

The debut collection from new ceramics studio House Editions by Claudia Lau brings porcelain bowls, plates and vases in experimental glazes

On The Market

A Perfectly Preserved Mid-Century Marvel On The Banks Of The Yarra Is On The Market

This architecturally-designed house was built in the 60s and has barely changed since it was last sold in 1968. Did someone say dream home?
Sasha Gattermayr
  10 hours ago

Interiors

A Curvaceous + Calm Edwardian Home Renovation

Working within the exisiting footprint, CJH Studio transformed this Melbourne home with smart planning and minimalist interiors.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Studio Visit

Charlotte Alldis Is Making Art To Strengthen A Sense Of Belonging

Unexpected colour combos and kooky characters crowd the canvas of this Melbourne-based painter!
Sasha Gattermayr

Studio Visit

Julia Trybala's Paintings Are About The Politics Of Taking Up Space

The Melbourne-based artist creates paintings of the female form, with an intimacy and energy that is hard to look away from.
Sasha Gattermayr

Studio Visit

Entering 'The Pavilion Of Dreams' With Heath Wae

The Mullumbimby-based artist formerly known as Heath Newman brings us up to speed on some major life changes and his latest exhibition.

This Week

Architecture

A Grecian-Inspired Update For A California Bungalow

Alcorn Middleton update a 1980s family home with arches, white-washed columns and a inspired by quintessential Santorini architecture.

News

A Lifetime Of Mim Design Projects In One Book!

‘Works’ is a tome celebrating 21 years of Miriam Fanning’s sophisticated interiors + architecture practice.
Sasha Aarons

Interiors

A Curvaceous + Calm Edwardian Home Renovation

Working within the exisiting footprint, CJH Studio transformed this Melbourne home with smart planning and minimalist interiors.

Creative People

The Trailblazing Couple Behind Brisbane's New Indigenous Art Centre

Amanda Hayman and Troy Casey are the entrepreneurial couple behind Brisbane's most exciting new art gallery and retail space!

Architecture

An Elwood Bungalow That Draws From Within

A innovative extension around a circular garden creates an inward focus to this California bungalow extension by Rob Kennon Architects.

Homes

A Cheerful Beachside Retreat

Virginia Morris' colourful 1980s Anglesea home, located just 100 steps from the beach!
36.05

Podcast

Dinosaur Designs Co-Founder Louise Olsen On Building An Iconic Australian Brand, On TDF Talks

Lucy Feagins talks to the legendary designer and artist about building an iconic Australian design brand.
2.37

Interiors

YSG Studio Brings 'Afternoon Delight' To This Dreamy Kitchen Design for Laminex

We take a closer look at YSG Studio's stunning new collaboration with Laminex!

Gardens

A Modernist Front Garden On Sydney’s North Shore

In an extract from his new book 'The City Gardener', Richard Unsworth shares the Mid-Century Modern garden designed by his practice, Garden
Richard Unsworth
  2 hours ago

Interiors

An Elevated Take On Old Meets New

A 1950s Brisbane house meets a new addition by designers Wrightson Stewart and architect Barbara Bailey, connected by a transparent breezewa...

Architecture

A Minimalist, Semi-Prefabricated Beach House

Architect Hannah Tribe of Tribe Studio developed a prototype for a partially prefabricated kit home for her own family beach house in Bundee...

On The Market

A Perfectly Preserved Mid-Century Marvel On The Banks Of The Yarra Is On The Market

This architecturally-designed house was built in the 60s and has barely changed since it was last sold in 1968. Did someone say dream home?
Sasha Gattermayr
  10 hours ago

Shopping

A Childrenswear Label That Takes Us Back To The Golden Years - WIN With Goldie + Ace!

Get ready to send the kids back to school in style with the Golden Years collection from Goldie + Ace!

Interiors

The Timeless Update Of A 1950s Portsea Beach House

Pipkorn Kilpatrick improve the flow and functionality of this 1956 home originally designed by Robin Boyd, ensuring its legacy remains in ta...

Shopping

The New Ceramics Studio Built On Centuries Of Inherited Knowledge

The debut collection from new ceramics studio House Editions by Claudia Lau brings porcelain bowls, plates and vases in experimental glazes

Similar Stories

Studio Visit

Charlotte Alldis Is Making Art To Strengthen A Sense Of Belonging

Unexpected colour combos and kooky characters crowd the canvas of this Melbourne-based painter!
Sasha Gattermayr

Studio Visit

Julia Trybala's Paintings Are About The Politics Of Taking Up Space

The Melbourne-based artist creates paintings of the female form, with an intimacy that is hard to look away from.
Sasha Gattermayr

Studio Visit

Entering 'The Pavilion Of Dreams' With Heath Wae

The Mullumbimby-based artist formerly known as Heath Newman brings us up to speed on some major life changes and his latest exhibition.

The Design Files acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.