Arcadia This exhibition of paintings seeks to re-imagine the idea of Arcadia in the Australian landscape. Arcadia is a term derived from the Ancient Greek conception of paradise or place of rustic beauty. The phrase, ‘Et in Arcadia Ego’, roughly translates as meaning – Even in Arcadia, there am I. However, even in paradise, behind the beautiful and the inspiring can be tragedy or the deeply unsettling. This notion befits the vast and isolating beauty of the Australian landscape that has beguiled and transfixed many to dream and explore its shores and plains. The paintings make direct reference to narratives that focus on the notion of being ‘lost’ either to a place or by misadventure. Peter Weir’s adaptation of Picnic at Hanging Rock and The Audrey’s song, Little Molly, have been the basis for many of the paintings and influenced the direction of the series. Both references have a psychological connection to landscape and conjure imagery of people ‘lost’, whether in a physical or emotional sense, in a place of beauty within the Australian Landscape. The River, which features strongly in this series, can both intrigue and transfix in its transience and in turn, it is this pull that has led the river to be the setting for many narratives. Peta Dzubiel 2015
Across Time and Place
This solo exhibition stems from a Bundanon Trust Artists’ residency during the entire month of November last year. The paintings focus on the property, its vastness, beauty and skies that seek to envelop one in its weather. In addition to the landscapes, figurative paintings that feature artefacts and the memory and absence of people assist the development of potential narratives. Internal and external figure/field relationships are a means by which I can express the psychological and metaphysical aspects of ‘Landscape’.
My current painting practice explores the tradition of landscape with a focus on the temporal; the idea that places remember their past whilst always being at the mercy of human intervention and other forces of change.
My paintings work with elements of pictorial ambiguity and mystery to explore these themes, perhaps evoking a bygone era, but remaining contemporary through the use of a variety of materials, processes and the deployment of discontinuous space.
Peta Dzubiel, 2013