Walking into Marjorie Busseys exhibition of new paintings at The Church Gallery is like walking into a magnificent tempest. Atmospheric images in red and black surround the viewer, breathtaking in their power and beauty. Swirls of molten clouds split by lightning above mysterious oceans, or racing above mountainous topography, reveal a new and emotional aspect of the Australian landscape. Several paintings have a light grid superimposed upon their surface, referencing another language and culture that has penetrated the Australian wilderness and remote coastlines.
Marjorie recently wrote about these paintings:
Sunset Country is North of the small mallee town where I spent my formative years. When I asked a friend how far his property extended, he pointed to the horizon line and said, see that purple line way out there, well we run our cattle forty miles past that into Sunset Country. This memory is the foundation of my interest and emotional connection with the land and its sense of timelessness and spatial infinity.
Sunset country is uninhabited and unchartered;
it is also a metaphysical space for me far from human contact, a wilderness
where one can contemplate the interconnectedness of things and perhaps
gain an insight into ones perceptions. Seen as a metaphor, the wilderness
has always been historically and metaphorically, a place redolent with
journeys into consciousness, with pain and discomfort and ecstatic visions.
The mapping of experiences becomes a way of
examining our cultural differences and heritage, complete with our discriminatory
practices. It becomes instrumental in change and the valuing
of collective needs. Much of my artistic practice uses the metaphor
of maps and in particular, weather maps. There seems to be a clear analogy
between an overheating planet and global violence while the wind is
a known factor in influencing global behaviour, the peaks and valley
of the Earth represent human aspirations and self-knowledge. The unchartered
territory of the sunset country can expand the mind and the intuition
or it can be a place of discomfort and loss. Whichever is the case it
Marjorie currently lives in Queensland and her artworks can be found in several major collections, including the Art Gallery of WA, University of WA, BankWest, Artbank, and Edith Cowan University.
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