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In the next few posts, Jake and I would like to share a little but more about our creative process, and our backround in the arts. Whilst we work together now and share many overlapping artistic ideas and goals, we both come from very different backgrounds within the arts in terms of skillets and conceptual ideas. This first post will be written by Aimee, and will centre around my background in the Arts, and a few words about what inspires me as an artist.

My interest in Art began when I was in high school, where I experimented with painting, drawing and collage. At first I was most interested in portraiture, spending hours sketching from photographs of faces I found in magazines. Later I became interested in abstraction, specifically the work of Jackson Pollock. My paintings became more energetic, textured and chaotic in some ways, utilising a variety of mediums and colours to create imagery that evoked the energy I felt while creating them.

When I began studying art at university, my work began to progress conceptually, and I became eager to tell my own story through my art. I became interested in the work of other autobiographical artists like Tracy Emin, and I specifically wanted to explore the social perceptions of gender and feminism. My work also progressed from the 2D realm to becoming 3D, and I often incorporated video and sound elements into my sculptural work. Whilst I loved the new aesthetic possibilities making sculptural work opened up, I struggled with a lack of fundamental craftsmenship skills I needed in order to realise the artworks I was visualising.

After university, it took me a while to find my feet and figure out what kind of art I wanted to make, and I often felt like I had forgotten the driving reason ‘why’ I made art. I decided to go back to the basics in order to re inspire myself, and fell in love with abstract painting again. In 2017 I had my first solo show exhibiting only paintings, and continued down this tangent for a few years after. It wasn’t until we moved to Western Australia in 2018 and we started Old Coast Studio, that I began working in the 3D medium again.

Metalwork isn’t something I had much background with previously, and its Jake who taught me all the skills I have learned over the past year. Ironically, making 3D work again has shifted my painting style into something that combines all of my previous experimental phases of art; portraiture, feminism, abstraction; however with a new found interest in incorporating the elements of nature and the landscape that surrounds me, probably because it is such a defining element of our current home.

If I had to sum up the themes behind my work in one word, it would be ‘identity’, this is what I am both trying to express through my art, as well as make sense of through the making of art.

‘Three Figures and the Magpie’, 2020, Aimee Rytenskild, Mixed Media on Canvas, 120cm x 100cm
‘Mother’, 2020, Aimee Rytenskild, Mixed Media on Canvas, 120cm x 100cm
‘Figures II’, 2018, Aimee Rytenskild, Mixed Media on Canvas, 120cm x 150cm
‘Stoke’, 2017, Aimee Rytenskild, mixed media on Canvas, 120cm x 100cm.

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