June 3, 2016, 4 p.m.
FROM Beaumont Street, Hamilton, to King’s Road, Chelsea, a couple of Newcastle’s edgier artists are spreading their wings.
In a partly crowd funded venture, the female duo, Naomi Wild and Barbara Nanshe, will be taking their exhibition, “Under the Dreaming’, to London, and then to Berlin, following the success of their Newcastle show held in the Nanshe studio gallery in April.
“When you talk to anybody about Europe at the moment Berlin is the epicentre of artistic renaissance,”’ Ms Wild said.
“They are comparing it to the kind of emergence that was happening in the 1920’s.
“They have really had a revitalisation through arts and culture, that has brought so much to their city, and we have a relationship with that as well, even though it is on a much smaller scale.
“We had the earthquake and the mall got quite desolate and unused, and it feels like the arts has been what has reinvigorated the city centre, with Renew Newcastle.”
Through Renew, Ms Wild has established an art studio in the mall, while Ms Nanshe has been operating out of her studio gallery in Hamilton.
"Under the Dreaming" Art by Naomi Wild, Pictures by Edwina Richards The works are made up of natural fibres, dyed using plants such as the eucalypt, which are layered. Figurative images are 'drawn' using a technique called 'free-motion stitching' with a sewing machine. The layered pieces are then painted using hand-ground ochre paints. The themes of self-discovery run through the work, which is heavily influenced by Jungian symbology, and illustrates the maker's connection to the Australian landscape, its flora and fauna.
The two came together when Ms Nanshe invited Ms Wild to exhibit in her studio after seeing some of her work.
“After being focused on raising a family, it was quite a success, which far exceeded our expectations,” Ms Wild said.
Ms Nanshe had been waiting for the right artist - someone whose work had very strong themes around human response and connectivity with the community – to travel with her, and she had an option to exhibit in the Chelsea Gallery, a few blocks from Buckingham Palace.
The one-week show will be followed by a two-week show in Berlin.
Ms Wild produces pieces that explore archetypes, symbology and existential meaning in various mediums, using hand-ground ochres, eco dyes and fibre art.
Both artists have involvement in the rebuilding and enriching of their local community through art.
Ms Nanshe has founded an art space in Hamilton for local emerging and established artists to exhibit their work.
Ms Wild’s workshops focus on creative well-being and art therapy with individuals and with local organisations such as schools, Lifeline and Uniting Care.
The exhibition is supported by the Australian Cultural Fund, which helps artists by supporting their ventures via an online funding campaign with all donations tax deductible.
The campaign runs until June 17, and the Ms Nanshe and Ms Wild are hoping to raise $8000 to help with the costs of getting them and their work abroad.