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Isolated Artist

By Adrian Doyle

Published: April 23rd 2020

So, what is isolation like for an artist?

It has been boring with no parties and openings and all the social events that fill the creative Melbourne calendar cancelled.

This has been hard for artists, for as socially awkward as artists are, they are social creatures, and thrive on all the wine that openings have to offer. But with the drinks packed away and the awkward conversation put on hold, what is an artist to do?

An artist’s life can be isolating at the best of times, between our weird personalities, our odd hours and our obsessive interest in our own art, we often find ourselves isolated and locked in the studio for hours.

When street art spilled through Melbourne in the early 2000s it changed the way artists interacted. It created a community of like-minded creatives working together for the cause of urban art.

Street art changed the idea of the isolated artist, locked away for hours in some warehouse occasionally seeing each other in the stairwell.

Street artists came together creating a large community that nurtured, collaborated and mentored. Street artists were initially very open, collaborative and sharing.

Over the years this changed. As street art became such a huge community, it became harder to know everyone and the intimacy of the scene changed.

One of the things about isolation and this virus is how it will affect artists in the future.

Images of cities empty, pop-up hospitals, people in PPE suits, masks and lines of bodies will influence artists by changing the icons and imagery that we are used too. This will have a profound effect on the art that is produced in the future. I have an exhibition coming up later in the year and its will be called Suburban Isolation.

It will only be in retrospect that we will truly understand the impact that the unprecedented times have on artists and the art that they create.

See the full exhibition under Exhibitions and Installation Works


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