Creative People

Eliza Gosse’s Paintings Capture The Nostalgia Of Retro Architecture

Sydney-based artist Eliza Gosse has always loved architecture. In fact, she actually briefly studied architecture (for a year) before undertaking a Fine Arts degree at the National Art School.

It turned out that while designing wasn’t her thing, painting retro houses and architecture definitely was. She’s been creating her nostalgic renditions of mid-century, Modernist and imagined homes ever since she finished her studies in 2019.

With a new exhibition on the horizon, she’s given us a peek inside her Woolloomooloo studio!

Christina Karras

Artist Eliza Gosse inside her Sydney studio. Photo – Charlie Ford

Her studio space is called Ninety Three Bourke Street, is light-filled orange terrace, which she shares with five artists. Photo – Charlie Ford

Eliza’s process behind her latest works started with looking through magazines and design books from the 1970s and 1980s. Photo – Charlie Ford

‘I [then] collage various objects, window views and architectural elements from multiple images and create a small drawing on paper,’ Eliza says. Photo – Charlie Ford

A look at her wall of inspirations! Photo – Charlie Ford

Before starting her large pieces, she creates paints a number of small drawing in gouache to create her ‘studies’. Photo – Charlie Ford


‘Typically, I will do about 20 studies for a show and then select my 6 favourites. To create the large works, I use a projector to project my small drawings onto the canvas and trace in pencil. From there I build up layers of paint in both acrylic and oil paint,’ Eliza says. Photo – Charlie Ford

‘Grapefruit, Burnt Toast And Raspberry Jam’ by Eliza Gosse.

‘Eucalyptus and Gum-nuts collected from an afternoon walk’ by Eliza Gosse.

‘Out Searching For Feathers And Shells‘ by Eliza Gosse.

Christina Karras
8th of March 2023

There’s a magical attention to detail within Eliza Gosse’s architectural paintings.

She expertly captures the light-filled interiors and magical Modernist facades of homes inspired by designs of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s with a dreamy pastel palette that makes you want to leap right into them. All the while maintaining a beautiful ‘flatness’ about her work.

‘I’ve always admired painters that flatten things, my heroes being; Roy Lichtenstein (for his interior paintings), David Hockney, Alex Katz, Patrick Caulfield, Howard Arckley,’ Eliza says.

‘I love when flat shapes sit side by side and our eyes process a recognisable image. For me this was always how I would paint.’

The Sydney-based artist chalks her appreciation of buildings and design down to her year of studying architecture at university in 2013. ‘Designing wasn’t for me, however the love for it has remained,’ Eliza adds. She even wound up married to an architect!

Instead, she decided to study fine art at the National Art School, where she started exploring architecture in her painting practice.

‘They began as houses I had seen; I would photograph houses on walks around Sydney,’ Eliza explains. ‘Now they are an amalgamation of elements taken from my photographs, magazines, books, the Internet or just invented. I think as I have become more comfortable in my subject matter invention is more possible.’

Ever since she graduated, she’s been running a studio in Woolloomooloo with Kris Andrew Small, which she shares along with five different artists. It’s a flurry of creativity, much like Eliza’s own workspace where you’ll find walls filled with inspiration and – at the moment – a collection of large works that will soon be on show at Edwina Corlette Gallery in Brisbane.

‘For my current series ‘All My Friends Have White Walls and Beige Carpet’, I began looking through magazines and design books from the 1970s and 1980s,’ Eliza says.

The body of work features large paintings of spaces inspired by these retro homes and interiors, as Eliza plays ‘the role of home decorator with a flare for fun walls, floors and everything in-between’.

See ‘All My Friends Have White Walls and Beige Carpet’ by Eliza Gosse at Edwina Corlette Gallery from April 12 until May 2.

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