It happened something like this, a post came up on a social media feed, Ello if you really must know, a posting from Kim Leutwyler, an artist I came across recently, a painter who’s work I rather like, a “visual artist and lover of life” from Sydney, Australia. The posting that caught an eye came with a link to a Soundcloud broadcast, and so prompted by the visual, the link was clicked on and the infectious broadcast was left running (and re-running) in the background while paint was being thrown around here in an East London bunker on the other side of the planet. The joy of friends sharing, he joy of a painting alive with colour and people creating together, people just doing things and being creative and active and alive and you get the feeling they really will make that second painting in twenty years. So here’s the soundcloud, here’s a link or two and well, enjoy it, this is the pleasure of painting…. (SW)
Myf Warhurst uncovers the story of the relationship between artist and sitter from the 2015 Archibald Prize finalists. She spoke to artist Kim Leutwyler and her subject, Ollie Henderson, an activist, designer and one of Australia’s top models.
Image: Kim Leutwyler ‘Start the riot’ (detail), Archibald Prize 2015 finalist © the artist.
“Kim Leutwyler is an American-born artist who ex-patriated to Sydney, Australia in 2012. She works in a variety of media including painting, installation, ceramics, printmedia and drawing. Kim holds concurrent bachelor degrees in Studio and Art History from Arizona State University, and additionally graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a Painting and Drawing degree.
Kim’s current work takes its form in paintings dealing with images of beauty, gender and Queer-identity. She has come to focus on painting as a medium because of its primarily masculine history in the western art canon. By entering into the modernist painting field Kim hopes to destabilize gender borders just as LGBTQ artists have been doing since the 70’s and earlier. Her artwork has been exhibited in multiple galleries throughout the United States and Australia, and she is part of a permanent collection at both the Naestved Cultural Center in Denmark, and the Brooklyn Art Library in New York. Her painting ‘Start the Riot’ is currently on display at the Art Gallery of New South Wales as part of the 2015 Archibald Prize Finalist Exhibition”.
So who is the subject of Kim’s painting Ollie Henderson and what is House of Riot? What are they talking about, zines? Activism? Whatever it is, their infectious enthusiasm and positive attitude is something clearly worth plugging in to….
“House of Riot is an extended art project fueled by political frustration. It began at Australian Fashion Week 2014 when founder Ollie Henderson hand painted 100 t-shirts with positive messages that focused on equality, openness, care for the environment, unity and freedom. These were distributed to both members of the industry and the public in a bid to start productive conversations about social change in Australia… Further reading.
House of Riot on Facebook….