Here, In My Mind is the debut exhibition of emerging artist, Amalia Keefer, and the first body of work she has created en masse. Previously, Amalia made her paintings one at a time, each one unconnected by theme or design to the one that came before. This time, all in one place, the works in this show represent an emotional reckoning for an artist on the cusp of big things.
Amalia paints from her parent’s home in Queensland on Yugambeh Country, where she is constantly inspired by coastal colours. Her bright, kaleidoscopic compositions are abstract renderings of a stray moment in her day: her cat stretching out on the bed, or a screenshot of a stranger’s apartment. She takes these everyday frames and builds on them intuitively with layers and layers of colour. Everyday moments are elevated to a vivid, energetic palette, that turn mundane instants into complex emotional scenery.
The title of each works denotes its genesis moment. Neon Flicker holds the many electric tones of a faltering tube of liquid light, while Drift, Slowly sees the shapes stretched and elongated into something like slow-motion, the lines between them blurred. Waiting for Wattle relaxes into more muted colours, mellowing into the yellows and greens of humid Queensland.
Unshackled by formal art training, Amalia’s paintings tremble with creative energy and convey an eager artistic voice ready to break through.We are so excited to be hosting her first ever show!
Congrats on your first-ever solo show Amalia! How did you find the process of bringing together ‘Here, in my mind’?
Amalia: Thank you! It’s a real thrill to be exhibiting my work independently – exhibiting full-stop, really – and I’m grateful for the experience.
The process of bringing this body of work together was quite an intense journey, both artistically and personally, and I found myself reflecting quite deeply on the ideas of self and emotional growth.
Painting is a very intimate practice for me; it’s one of the few times I’m truly alone with my thoughts. Working on so many works at once, I had to confront some thoughts that I’d avoided considering previously, but the same kinds of thoughts that most people have when they’re embarking on uncharted territory – fears of not being the version of yourself you envision. Whilst the process in itself was daunting, it afforded me the invaluable opportunity to reflect on the navigation between feeling both passionate and somewhat inadequate within the confines of something you care deeply about.
How do you begin an artwork? Do you go in with an idea or intention, or kind of play it by ear?
I begin each work with a vague idea, based on colour – specifically the way colours interact with one another when layered or put together closely on a canvas. Organic shapes are naturally formed when building up layers and exploring colour combinations.
The direction always changes as I move through the work, as it takes on a path of its own. I try to not ‘plan’, as it inevitably will end up completely different to how I envisioned.. Sometimes it comes quickly and naturally, sometimes it doesn’t, but these oscillations in time are a useful part of the process.
Who are some of your creative idols?
There are many, but particularly at this time, Hilma Af Klint; the shapes, colours and scale of her work is articulated through a sublime lens of balance that’s somehow equal parts mathematical and completely free. Miranda Skoczek has been a long time favourite of mine; her bold use of colour is what I admire most. I’m also constantly inspired by designers and artists who work with fabric; Cecilie Bahnsen and Julia Heuer are particularly clever in their explorations of form and colour.
What makes you feel inspired to paint?
Everyday moments: interactions with friends, household objects, natural surroundings. I find that I see beauty in the mundane more often than anything, more readily than specific objects or noteworthy experiences; there’s something fascinating about the quiet repetition of daily life. When I see this beauty, I feel a spark and purpose to create.
What is on the horizon for your art practice?
Continuing to explore creativity as a broader practice: painting, sculpting, and experimenting with different mediums. My next step is to find a studio space, so I can really push my work in new directions.
View ‘Here, In My Mind’ by Amalia Keefer here! All sales and enquiries to be made via firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Here, In My Mind’ by Amalia Keefer
Opening drinks on Saturday June 12th from 2pm (pending COVID restrictions)
Saturday June 12th, 10am – 4pm
Sunday June 13th, 11am-3pm
Tuesday 15th – Thursday 17th, 10am-4pm
14 Little Oxford Street