It is a welcome advance in the approach of aspiring artists to see them presenting small scale works for the buying public’s consumption. Kats Botten and Coppock have taken successfully this somewhat unique, even courageous approach in two separate exhibitions that opened earlier in the month.
Katherine Botten’s one night only twenty one exhibition at the Clothes Line Saga, Rundle St, featured around 25 photo montages, most no more than 10cm x 5cm. Each possessed two, three and even four panels montaged together to give different perspectives of the same subject matter but which viewed from any distance skilfully present a pleasant amalgam of colours, form and intrigue.
The motifs are as varied as her approaches to the presentations – from the usual detritus of teenage and student life to rocky seascapes, paper coke glasses, Malboro cigarettes and an ugly dog. Some of the panels are close focuses of the other, some are upside down and others seem unrelated. However, they succeed in making you want to come back for more. Though, one needed to be quick as many found their way out the door to happy acquirers.
Highlights (and examples of the breadth of work) were one featuring Barbie Doll suitcases and Pipe Dreams (pictured).
Katherine Coppock’s works are at The Reading Room (Hindley St) til 30th December and it is joint exhibition with Sandine de Araujo, Kat’s entitled Les Petities Morts and Sandine’s It Started With A Punch In The Face.
The narrative for Coppock’s works starts off with the Nietzsche quote ‘It is intoxicating for the sufferer to look away from his suffering and forget himself.’ Not exactly a cheery premise, though that doesn’t prevent there being plenty to enjoy in these small scale works but the associated text helps greatly in putting them all into a context.
Coppock presents forty pieces mostly acrylics on canvas but with no shortage of mixed media, ink and chalk adopted as well. The dual series of Purge and Binge (three in each) depict that suffering and highlight that however on the money Nietzsche may be, for the viewer it is all very ugly – vomiting, crying, cocktails, other forms of booze and drugs.
Maybe Partying Will Help 2 is a delight, a dressed skeletal figure below festive balloons. The Logical Response seems to pay some homage to Munch’s Scream and Some of them want to use you, featuring a bare breasted and bashed diminished and desperate figure, packs a punch even at 8cm x 4cm.
While both artists display images about their relatively young lives, the people and objects around them, whether pretty or not, both Kats take us on a journey beyond what may otherwise be well trodden territory, drawing us in intrigued and causing us to be moved by what we see. Yet, standing back they have offered up objects that look great, don’t take up the living room wall and are affordable for supporters as well as those impressed outright with their different but most promising talents.
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