Michael Reid Galleries met Chelsea Gustafsson in 2020 when we invited artists from across the country to introduce themselves with view of expanding our awareness of current contemporary talent. We received a diverse range of submissions but one talented artist managed to capture our attention above anyone else. The works of Melbourne based painter Chelsea Gustafsson thoroughly impressed the Michael Reid team and an online presentation of her work was swiftly arranged.
Following the success of this sell-out debut online exhibition in October 2020, we are pleased to now welcome Chelsea Gustafsson back. Recognised for her photo-realist paintings of trash-and-treasure assemblages, this is Gustafsson’s first exhibition at Murrurundi.
Gustafsson’s paintings explore objects and the accumulations of modern living within her immediate environment. Native plants, plastic flowers, disco balls, bubble wrap – they collide and levitate as assemblages of these found objects. “I’m fascinated with the seemingly mundane or ugly, there’s an unexpected beauty in what we regard as common or waste. I like to play with objects and textures that don’t necessarily sit well or naturally together. Through the process of constructing items into a sculptural form and twisting or balancing them to find their sweet spot for a composition, they begin to gel as a single form and a beauty emerges. It’s this tension of what’s seemingly pleasing yet has an underlying awkwardness that I find a kind of peacefulness in.”
View the exhibition catalogue here.