Scanning the selected artists for the imminent London Biennale next month I noted with particular interest the Australian artist, Joanna Blair.
This multi-faceted artist paints with an intensity and passion that envelopes the viewer with such magnetism. Few artists share her diverse skills and ability to communicate so much on a canvas, particularly extremes of energy and mood. Take, for example, her portrait entitled; ‘Quiet Contemplation’ (right), a man seated on the ground, cup in one hand, cigarette in another, in which the artist immediately captures the contemplative atmosphere within a rural context, with an impressionistic technique of capturing the varying textures of vegetation, clothing, smoke, open sky and a general ruggedness of the subject and the location.
Juxtapose this with; ‘Madame Oiseau on her way to the Lido’ (left) and here you have pure urban femininity, something slightly racy denoted by the fiery palette and use of contrast; an entirely different subject and atmosphere. Still young, Blair is one to watch and deserves to go far.