Image: 2020, Sharon Monagle, In The Pause, acrylic on canvas, 61 x 61cm.
Visual artist, Sharon Monagle, and poet Rose Lucas, collaborate in this new exhibition which reflects on their personal and shared experiences of 2020. These conversations, across words and paint, touch on the terrible fires of Summer 2019-2020; the uncertainty of the autumn isolation; the short reprieve of winter; the lockdown of late winter into spring; and the tentative emergence and transitions of late spring into summer. While 2020 in Melbourne was certainly challenging, this artistic collaboration also points to ways in which crisis can also lead to enrichment and reconnection.
A key theme that emerged for both Sharon and Rose is the importance of the local and the idea of ‘place.’ This visual and poetic figuring of ‘place’ – which includes the familiar landscapes of family and community, suburban streets, gardens and homes - is imagined as something that can shelter and sustain us far beyond physical enduring.
Sharon Monagle is an abstract expressionist and figurative artist who works predominantly with acrylic paint. She has exhibited in group and solo shows throughout Melbourne.
Rose Lucas is a published poet and academic at Victoria University. Her first book Even in the Dark (UWAP 2013) won the Mary Gilmore Award.