how little needs to be said to know nothing

Melinda_Blair_Paterson_BSA_exhibition_2018_2
how little needs to be said to know nothing – exhibition @byronschoolofart – 13 to 25 April 2018

My current exhibition opened last Friday 13th April at the Byron School of Art, Project Space, Mullumbimby. For those that may be wondering where this is, Mullum (as we locals call it) is located in the Byron Shire (Byron Bay area), Northern NSW, Australia. It’s a beautiful little country town with a thriving arts community. The Byron School of Art, or BSA, is a welcome addition to the community and is growing in popularity as it offers year-long courses, short classes and exhibition opportunities encouraging artists to experiment with their ideas. I was fortunate to be selected to exhibit this year with this large body of work on paper I’ve been quietly creating for nearly two years.

Entitled ‘how little needs to be said to know nothing’ this exhibition explores an inquiry into the direct experience of form (the body, thoughts and emotions) and formlessness (silence, stillness and spaciousness) through my daily contemplations and meditations.

With a keen interest to understand the human experience of consciousness I wanted to take the simplicity of a piece of paper, showing up with a brush in hand, and surrender to whatever the moment created. I wanted to just paint and paint and paint and see what would be there at the end of a hundred paintings. So far I’ve painted 70 works, most of which have not been edited, or gone over, but rather completed in one or two sittings, put to the side, moving onto the next. In this way I felt I was better able to stop the mind from jumping in with conceptual ideas of what ‘should’ be on the page, or allowing overt self-criticism.

As the months rolled by I began to see themes emerge. One of them being “how little can I express onto the paper for it to still engage and meet me in some way?” In this way the title ‘how little needs to be said to know nothing’ can be read as a question or a statement.  Reviewing the paintings, I realised the exhibition feels like a visual journal, where what started as painterly expression, using the metaphor of a vessel for form, has quietly fallen away.  The paint has became thinner, the subject has receded, leaving just spaciousness on the paper. In today’s busy digital disruption lifestyle, I like the simplicity of that.

The exhibition continues until 25th April and can be viewed Monday to Saturday 10am to 2pm at the BSA Project Space, 112 Dalley Street, Mullumbimby. I will be there most days to share the experience and would enjoy your feedback should you be able to pop in and say hello.

For more information www.byronschoolofart.com/bsa-project-space-calendar/

Some more pieces from the exhibition:

Melinda Blair Paterson artist
untitled #6 – melinda blair paterson – mixed media – 290gsm paper – 2016

The above piece was in the initial part of this series that used the shape of a vessel to depict the human experience of form.

Melinda Blair Paterson artist
untitled #21 – melinda blair paterson – mixed media – 290gsm paper – 2017

The above piece shows the language or asemic writing I love to express. It is a language that has no meaning and yet brings a palpable experience of energy through my body when it is written.

Melinda Blair Paterson artist
untitled #45 – melinda blair paterson – mixed media – 290gsm paper – 2017

The above piece is an example of the later part of this series where spaciousness became the main expression and simplicity of colour was applied in thin washes of paint.

 

 

art and awareness

sahaja peace (detail)  100x100cms  acrylic on canvas  2014  melinda blair paterson
sahaja peace (detail)     100x100cms     acrylic on canvas     2014     melinda blair paterson

I’m an artist living in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales, Australia and am passionate about awareness or consciousness and expressing this through art.

I  started my artistic career over 10 years ago with a spontaneous awakening after my mother passed away in 2002. I spent the first five years painting intuitively without any formal training, but somewhere along the way I got the idea I needed to go to art school so that I could say I was ‘a real artist’.

After three years of training and a lot of frustration I finished with some wonderful technical skills but felt completely devoid of what had been an innate intuitive joyful expression in my life. It took me another three years to stop listening to the critical conceptual voices in my head that were very much of the contemporary art world speak I’d learnt in art school.

Now I’m happy to say I am standing as an artist that paints and creates from that space that has no name and is beyond the conceptual mind. I call it ‘consciousnessism’.

I was recently asked to feature my work on a artisan’s blog called ‘the awakened eye’. This blog features artists that express their work from a nondual perspective. It was such a liberating experience. I finally felt I was able to talk about my art without having to dumb it down for the contemporary conceptual art world. I was able to speak about my art in a way that is about consciousness.

This is what I plan to bring to this blog. To share my art, creativity and nondual awareness that prompts a deep desire to express this in a form of beauty that is an offering and invitation to life.

Mx