The latest exciting exhibition at Traffic Jam Galleries, entitled COASTAL , showcases the works of Rebecca Pierce and Simone Read. It includes not just the obvious that the title conjures up, but the mood, freedom, optimism and spirit often associated with living by the Australian coast.
Rebecca Pierce uses mixed media including acrylic impasto , inks , resin and objet trouve’ ( found objects ) applied most enthusiastically via pallet knife, which creates at times a very thick surface texture and are often brightly coloured. Her works in this exhibition, like that of Read, focus on the Australian coast and recall days in the sun.
Still Life with Coffee (acrylic on canvas) is an explosively powerful, dazzlingly coloured heavily textured depiction of a vase of flowers with coffee spilt ( or is it a shadow? on the surface of the table underneath the vase.
The diptych 2020 Social Distancing 101 is a delightful aerial view of a beach depicting people sunbaking on the beach, but somewhat separated (or are they?). Two linked pieces , Day Dreaming : Field of Flowers and In The Moonlight are included . Look for the butterflies .There are subtle changes like a Monet series of aquatic plants , showing the difference between day and night.
‘Outback Confetti is in some ways similar to these two pieces, a riot of colourful flowers against a rocky background.
‘Lily and Lotus is set on a green background, the composition dominated by flowers and petals with a circular lotus pool included.
The diptych Measure and Frame is a highly textured volcanically red and energetic work with a vertical composition.
Another diptych Half Baked on Australia Day is an aerial view of people at the beach with objects scattered around them.
Dipped in Sunshine is another beach painting – note the umbrellas defining the correct safe area to swim in and the turbulent surf.”
Beach Towel 2-6 are abstract aerial views of a beach and people sunbaking.
Beach Square 1 and Beach Cakes 1,2,3,6 and 9 are detailed close ups of aerial views of people and items at the beach Then comes a series of vibrant cocky birds against a mustard background. Beach Bird 1-6
Another avian series is Blue 1-8 , a beautiful series of bird portraits , spot the attention to detail with all the different markings.
More bird portraits follow in the vibrant Tropical Super Chirper , Tutti Frutti Sprinter and Serenity in the Rose Garden.
There is a delightful triptych of flowers on stems pushing to the top of the composition, pale blue in colour and with lots of butterflies – Day Dreams Iced Gelato 1, 2 and 3 .
Two brightly colourful sculptures are also included , alluding to the problem of litter in the environment and climate change – Lost in the Cloud 11 and Eau de Rubbish.
And then there is a vibrant, very energetic, pair of paintings Field of Flowers : Big Sky and Daybreak 2 , vertical compositions , bright, colourful and thickly textured flowers and their green stalks.
Simone Read’s work of identifiable aerial beachscapes and sea pools documents Australia’s ever changing coast line and also links to a great sense of nostalgia- we might have stayed at that particular place in our childhood or seen the sea or coast for the first time there.
Read paints with ink, gouache and rock salts , observing from an aerial point of view .The works in this exhibition include many pieces that focus on the areas affected by the devastating bushfires that recently overwhelmed Australia .Read’s colour palette blends a building up of tiny details attempting to capture the ferocious energy and movement of the elements forming the Australian coast .There is a glorious sense of texture throughout.
In her Mornington Peninsula you can see the contrast between land and sea, feel the sand , rocks and water.
With Mona Vale Ocean Pool , which is almost abstract , there is an aerial view clearly depicting the two pools.
The coastal erosion, stormy seas and pounding waves are depicted in Hyams Beach .
Balmoral 11 is a striking vertical composition, where you can see the division between land and sea.
Magnificent textures and the curling, twisting composition of Walk With Fire explores land and water.
Catch the exhibition while you can.
Rebecca Pierce and Simone Read
‘Coastal ‘runs at the Traffic Jam Galleries 10-31 July 2020
Featured image – North Narrabeen Ocean Pool