In the lead up to Nillumbik Artists Open Studios, we caught up with Sandra and dug a little deeper into her stylistic approach. We also discovered artistic influences that may have shaped her as the artist she is today.
How would you describe your style of painting?
The closest description I can find is the term “automatism” which refers to a technique of subconscious drawing in which the artist’s unconscious mind takes control.
When you are painting, do you give personalities and names to your characters?
The personalities are already there in the canvas that I tease out with charcoal to discover the situation and the relationship between them. I only give them names if needed for the title.
Have you always loved abstract portraiture ?
Yes. Modigliani and Picasso were my favourite artists when I was young.
What inspires you?
Actually discovering what each canvas reveals after I have applied random colours with my pallet knife. I never have to wait for an idea or subject – my paintings work best when my mind is totally open.
Is there any medium or form you would like to experiment with?
Yes, figure sculpture. I studied sculpture at art school but mainly worked in film, performance and installation.
What do you love about being in AOS?
The opportunity to open my studio to the public and get feedback from visitors. Also to participate in our joint exhibitions before the Open Studio weekends so that people can plan which studios to visit each time. The program also gives me the incentive I need to finish my paintings and tidy my studio!
What was the last exhibition you visited?
The John Olsen exhibition at the Ian Potter gallery in Federation Square. I was bowled over by the size and beauty of the works and the overall effect in those huge spaces.
Any particular artists work you admire?
Generally, the German Expressionists.
What can visitors expect to see in your gallery/ studio that wasn’t there in November?
Many more paintings
Any studio recommendations in Zone C or other?
Favourite coffee shop in Hurstbridge
Bridge to Eden – just at the bottom of my street.
Other Nearby studios in ZONE C include:
- Jacquie Campbell– Hurstbridge
- Simon Cross– Hurstbridge
- Stephanie Davies- Hurstbridge
- Mel Rayski-Mati- Hurstbridge
- Judy Trembath- Cottles Bridge
- Bruce McKay– St Andrews
Link to Sandi’s studio and location details: http://artistsopenstudios.com.au/artist/sandra-nicolaides/