Skye Jamieson is a an Australian artist, based in Canberra. She graduated from the ANU School of Art in 2017. Skye's work is available at TWFAx2, our interactive pop-up located in the Brisbane Quarter, part of the W Hotel, on 300 George Street.
Anyssa Chorvat: Let's start out broadly... What's happening in the studio? What are you currently working on?
Skye Jamieson: I'm currently continuing on paintings and exploring layering, which is something I've really been enjoying this past year. Right this moment, I'm working on smaller drawings and enjoying the freedom within those dimensions.
I've also been doing a lot of painting over and scrubbing off, which is fun! Through this process of creating abundance and excess, and subsequently removing it, I've found myself increasingly interested in constructing surfaces out of metals and harder surfaces.
(From L to R) Pick Up Something By a Stand and Some Tables (2018), A Clear Plastic Wrapper Next to Some Grass, (2018), Blue Tape (2018)
AC: Was the shift to smaller drawings a conscious choice or just a natural progression?
SJ: Yeah, I think the shift to drawings was both conscious and subconscious, if possible! I’ve been travelling quite a bit over the last 6 weeks and as a result, I have been more confined to books and notepads. There is so much privacy and intimacy with a book, I’ve really been relishing it.
AC: And how would you describe your creative process?
SJ: My creative process ... hmmm, what a funny thing. I do indeed have one, logically, although an accidental one at that. I tend to work on multiple pieces at once, moving from print to painting on canvas, collaging and drawing. Lately, I've been working on some small sculptures which I've found to be a really informative element to my practise. An invaluable aspect of my creative process is to spend time with the work, between moments, and really understand the object for what it is and have communion with it - although there are times when I need to let go of my need to understand. Movement is also an element to my process, moving with the work as I'm painting. I think that is why I enjoy working on many things at once, I feel that allows quietness.
AC: I definitely see the movement in your work, and the quietness - your brushstrokes invoke a sense of breath. It’s interesting you mention the movement, it brings to mind Yves Klein’s Anthropometry performance, as well as an excerpt from Maggie Nelson's literary masterpiece, 'Bluets' - "The instructions printed on the blue junk’s wrapper: Wrap Blue in cloth. Stir while squeezing the Blue in the last rinsing water. Dip articles separately for a short time; keep them moving. I liked these instructions. I like blues that keep moving." Both feel fitting to your practise, and recent stint of travel. I'm curious... why blue? It's the most popular colour in the world, but what does it mean for you?
SJ: Bluets! Ahh I am in awe. Blue is funny. I think it appears once and it doesn’t go away. I began noticing blue more and more in my environment, and then in my mind. Collecting and picking up foreign things in my environment, like litter, was a way of interacting with nature - a lot of it seems to be consistently blue. So I guess I find it funny that blue has sprung into my life, through the vast reproductions of it in an urban environment.
As an aside, I miss the ocean immensely. And so, look for it everywhere.
This quote by Yves Klein particularly resonates with me:
Blue has no dimensions; it is beyond dimensions, whereas the other colours are not... All colours arouse specific associative ideas... while blue suggests at most the sea and sky, and they, after all, are in actual, visible nature what is most abstract.
AC: A human bowerbird of sorts! I hear you on missing the ocean (Skye and I have both lived on the Gold Coast at some stage in our life). You've recently moved back to Canberra. How does the materiality of your works relate to your physical location? You commonly use raw linen, pigment, and clear adhesives such as rabbit skin glue, oil, and resins. How do you explore this interaction between the natural and man-made (which is an interesting term because at the core, humans are natural, yet we create these artificial and synthetic artefacts)?
SJ: The materiality of my works are heavily influenced by Canberra and urban living as an extension. Canberra is a sort of cement paradise. I love the visual language it provides in its hard lines and open paths. Water and nature seem to move around it freely yet awkwardly. Through using thin layers and clear adhesives, like you mentioned, I aim to mimic this landscape. I think it emanates the soft display that concrete provides - clear lines and boundaries overlapped by water, rubbish, and walking.
AC: I think it's only fitting that we're showing your work at TWFAx2 in the W Brisbane, situated on the Brisbane River that snakes its way through the city, the epitome of urban development and the man-made.
SJ: Yeah, I definitely agree. It's exciting to be in an urban space that is both a permanent and transient location - the building remains yet the hotel guests come and go.