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Talking w/ Artist & Style Maven, Erin Flannery

Monday, November 8, 2010 · 5 Comments

Many of you probably saw Erin Flannery’s gorgeous paintings as they made their way through the blogosphere (e.g. Greedy Girl, Design For Mankind and Desire to Inspire). And it only takes one good look at Erin’s work for it to burn a permanent impression into your brain (in a good way!) – that’s how distinctive and awesome this fashion-obsessed Aussie’s work is!

Flannery mostly paints on canvas but occasionally switches it up and paints directly on found objects (see above and below). I LOVE the juxtaposition of clean, white against natural, worn materials, which adds depth to the theme of minimalist black and white perfection.

Curious to learn more about this emerging artist and style maven? Read on.

How would you describe your work?

Black and white on raw linen canvases with fine lines, bold stencils and loads of fashiony goodness!

Do you make art full-time? If not, what else do you do?

At the moment I am painting full time but I always have about 5 or 6 other smaller projects running at once to keep things exciting! I am currently renovating my house, today I’m patching holes, painting doors and prepping for wallpaper, I love it! I also hope to have a few more arty projects up and running in the new year involving smaller printed works and some very fun sculpture.

Most figures in your paintings are only partially-finished (faces, torsos, limbs) and yet their clothing is fully-illustrated. Why focus on fashion?

To be totally honest, I only just noticed that when I read the question! Most of the girls in my recent pictures are only half dressed for some strange reason but earlier work has a lot more clothing. I usually focus on things like shoes, leggings and bags and leave the rest quite simple. Again it’s not a conscious decision, that’s just how it works out! I love fashion and I love watching people follow it just as much. As for the non-clothing-bits, I guess it has a lot to do with the female form, I like to have a bit of that showing through. That’s why I don’t draw men, they have no shape. Sorry guys!

I see a lot of silhouettes and mirror images in your work; these are great visual tools but do they have further significance?

Not particularly. I really love reflecting images; it’s amazing how much the simple process of flipping an image can change a picture on a wall. The silhouettes come from my stencil cutting days when I first started painting on canvases, I still use the same technique with hand cut stencils and aerosol just in very different ways now!

Does your black and white aesthetic extend into your personal style and space?

Understatement of the century! I have live in a little two-storey box with shiny white floors, white walls and the odd black wall, including a little black bathroom. I’m a neat freak, fairly minimal with odd bursts of clutter…I basically live inside one of my canvases!!

Erin recreated her tres populaire studio mise-en-scene (above) for her show at Anthea Polson (below). So clever!

How do you think the art world will be different in the next 5-10 years?

Oooh a tricky one! The Internet plays such a huge role in art life now. Blogging, exposure, trends, networking… especially for someone like me living out of town in the country and BAM, I’m talking to someone in New York! I think that will only get bigger. It’s also a fairly dangerous place for art; I see a lot of people copying each other, that’s a bit sad. 5 Years shouldn’t make too much difference; in 10 years we’ll probably be downloading a digital artwork to our digital wall while we feed our digital dogs.

Any tips for new art buyers?

Support emerging artists and value the price of original art ‘v’ any old mass produced print.

Tags: People

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Cat Rocketship // Nov 8, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    Really beautiful paintings, and I love the backs. My favorite part of some of the art I own is the back. 🙂

  • 2 Fi // Nov 9, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Apart from enjoying the artwork, I’m loving the idea of painting on found objects, particularly these sturdy wooden serving platters.

  • 3 Kate // Nov 9, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    Oh, yay! I’m glad you both like the wooden paintings… I love them and their back sides but wasn’t sure if it was too left of center. : )

  • 4 ladiga // Nov 23, 2010 at 10:32 pm

    Really nice !

  • 5 duermevela // Nov 25, 2010 at 6:14 am

    Oh, she is a great artist. I like the way she paint. Lovely.

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