It is the last week of Olivia Parsonage's first solo exhibition in Gallery 139. The exhibition ending on Sunday 27 August.
For this exhibition, Olivia made a suite of 19 small scale fabric illustrations and 3 soft sculptures. All made from scraps of materials the artists has collected and been given over the past decades including pieces of her family clothing and fabric samples from a closing upholstery company. Olivia first started making these kind of works in 2011, when she had her first solo exhibition at PODspace gallery (then located in TPI House which is now sadly demolished). She has since gone onto exhibit these works at John Hunter Hospital and in Sydney as part of the 2014 Emerging Artist Craft Award.
Trained initially as a Natural History Illustrator, Olivia initially sketches out her ideas in thumb nail size and then translates that picture into a fully detailed and colour machine embroidered art piece. She has a keen eye for detail and obsessive attention to form, line and colour. Each work has an embedded narrative - whether it's based on the horrible feeling of having pins and needles in your hands as in the work titled Pins and Needles or the jovial nature of motherhood in Trolley, which depicts a mother pushing her 3 children in an oversized 'trolley'. Olivia has a unique sense of humour, sometimes dark and menacing other times quirky and poking fun at our everyday existence.
Her works are colourful and make people smile and laugh. It has been a joy to watch people as they walk around the gallery losing themselves in the artworks. I encourage you to visit before Sunday. We are open Thursday - Saturday 11am - 4pm and Sunday 11am - 2pm.
Congratulations Olivia, welcome to the Gallery 139 family. We look forward to what you create for us to exhibit in May 2018.
~ Ahn Wells