Story submitted by AR4T Gallery:
is pleased to present Depths & Beyond, the return of Australian painter poet Karlee Mackie (a.k.a. KALM) to Southern California.
Karlee's paintings have a way of magically communicating to the dreamer inside, whether inspired from travels around the world as a surfer or her natural-born intuition that seeks beauty and positivity in everything.
"My vision for this show is bright feminine images and written words of emotions that explore the creation that comes from destruction... using emotions to fuel life. The wave you ride when such things occur.
"Lately I've been really inspired by symbols and how we're influenced by them so much; in my life I've been really working on the balance of conscious thought, and following my intuition -basically a strict but loose approach to my life - and that's been influencing my art as well."
Karlee has been in Newport Beach for the past week in preparation for Depths & Beyond, her first solo show in the US. Her artist reception, Saturday, June 30, 2012, 6-9pm, will feature a very special free musical performance by Karlee's friend, London singer-songwriter Edei!
Karlee Mackie at the AR4T Gallery, 210 N. Coast Hwy. Saturday, June 30, 6-9 p.m. Free. Show runs through July 28.
Karlee Mackie (KALM) Interview:
What are you planning for your first solo art show at AR4T?
KALM: My vision for the show this summer is bright feminine images and written words of emotions that explore the creation that comes from destruction. The show will be called Depths & Beyond. After breaking up with my boyfriend, so much is already happening and I’ve been using the emotions to fuel life. A few images that I am going to paint from the emotions are an array of the wave you ride when such things occur in life.
Is there anything else that has been inspiring your work lately?
KALM: Lately I’ve been really inspired by symbols and how we’re influenced by them so much; in my life I’ve been really working on the balance of conscious thought, and following my intuition –basically a strict but loose approach to my life — and that’s been influencing my art as well.
Even though you’re from Australia, you have a real connection with California. What do you love about it?
KALM: I always have fun in Cali and I’ve been going there since I was 18. My favorite thing to do is ride my bike around and enjoy another environment that’s super cool, fun and friendly. I love Trestles and I have some great mates there.
What made you pack up everything and move to London?
KALM: I was initially visiting London for eight months, as I was traveling to America and the Caribbean and through UK and Wales, but I just completed my two-year visa, so I’m excited to be heading back to the UK to see how long I last without the beach at my doorstep! I have a beautiful circle of friends in London and I enjoy living there. It’s a magical place and the scenery is incredible. I love the history and exploring old castles that were built in the 1300′s. In Somerset and I would often head to the Glastonbury Tor on a full moon and just take in the view — there were so many stars!! I love St. Ives down Cornwall Way – it’s stunning and has loads of galleries with incredible art! And pasties that you have to hang on to, otherwise the mega cat-sized seagulls dive bomb you [Cornish pasties are veg and meat and potato pastries with a thick crust]. I see living here as a short while, so I want to embrace it before I’m back with the sand between my toes and the salt in my hair.
What has been the biggest challenge of adjusting to life away from the beach?
KALM: I was having dreams of eating sand and rolling around in it, like those dreams you have when you’re skulling water after a big night out! (laughs) Which is pretty extreme. But the cleanse you get when you dive in the ocean, with the salt, and the sun, is like a drug for me. So it was definitely physiologically disciplining for me. My nan [her grandmother] suggested a bath with salt in it (laughs), but I’m doing a few trips away to go surfing and break it up a bit.
How did you first get into art?
KALM: I dabbled in school and loved one art teacher who definitely gave me confidence. My dad also is an insane unknown artist. Surfing has been my main obsession for years and it led to my art, which has now taken the front seat as my new obsession. I found a passion for it while on tour painting my friends’ surfboards, and then it has just flowed into doing art and having support from a good friend, Jon, and the brands I used to ride for. That led to now assisting a great Australian artist, Angus McDonald [who spotted her painting local pots on the main street in Lennox Head]. I’m on a quest of creativity and wanderlust!
Why do you think your art is so appealing to people?
KALM: I’m not sure. I just do art to trigger thought within and get little messages across. I like personal paintings, as I’m pretty sentimental and I’m constantly lost in thought. I like paintings that make you smile or get torn away from mainstream beliefs and pressures of society; getting back to a place of fantasy, fun and free thought that doesn’t go against yourself, but uplifts and empowers you.
What are you planning to do the rest of the year?
KALM: In addition to my art show in California in July I have a lot of opportunities that are still up in the air so I can’t really talk about them yet, but it’s really exciting! I have a headphone and T-shirt coming out in August with Aerial7.