However, Ms. Rawkins uses striking colour balance and juxtaposition to cleverly achieve a detached and contemplative tone. As a result, these animals acquire a symbolic grace that elevates them outside of mere illustrations. Excised from their natural environment they develop a quiet yet sophisticated abstraction.
In turn, Ms. Rawkins forces us to confront the relationship between animal and the environment and our place in between. Do we confront this animal imagery as it is or as one that is disappearing and being hunted? More importantly, we're left to wonder if these animals will one day occupy our memories in the same way that children's books so often evoke the nostalgia of our distant childhoods.
Iain Dawson Gallery in Paddington, New South Wales. Although, she will have a solo exhibition at the Flinders Lane Gallery in Melbourne beginning March 15th of this year.
Shubert Contemporary Art Galleries in Main Beach, Queensland. However, with one click you'll notice very quickly that most of her artwork is already sold out. This is hardly surprising. I just hope her new solo show in Melbourne will have similar types of works available for sale.
If you would like more information about this artist there are two essays available directly from her website, www.karleerawkins.com. As well, there is a short interview from fellow blogger Natalie Walton on Daily Imprint, a fantastic blog with a variety of great interviews of creative types around the world. All images used here are courtesy of the Karlee Rawkins website, Schubert Contemporary Art Galleries and Iain Dawson Gallery as well as Flinders Lane Gallery.
|A Few Pearls, 2010|
On a final note, I decided to use a quotation from the artist (it can be found on the Flinders Lane Gallery website) because I think it captures so perfectly the essence of her work and especially this last one: 'I use animal imagery in my work as a metaphor for human emotions and experiences. The animals are distorted and flattened, often combining with pattern to create intentionally ambiguous compositions. I aim to emphasize the vulnerability and awkwardness of my subject and challenge a viewers recognition and sense of association." Well done, Ms. Rawkins.