2022 Graduate and Artist Feature: Sky Biesse

Sky Biesse, who walked away with the P&F's Art Excellence Award for her work titled 'Don't Worry Be Happy' spent some time sharing more about herself with us recently.

Not only is Sky a talented artist but she sold her winning artwork to a billionaire art buyer who purchased one of Banksy's first artworks before he was famous. We can no doubt expect big things from Sky!

Keep an eye out for Sky's work at the Pulse Perspectives Exhibition at the Art Gallery of WA from 20 April to 20 August.

Sky's perspective on 'Don't Worry Be Happy' Oil on Canvas:
"My vision for the artwork was to capture the inner turmoil of mental illness, in particular reflecting on my own experiences with it, in hopes of creating a visual representation for those who do not fully understand the toll it takes on the human mind. The song “Don’t worry be happy” was something I remember hearing during some of the hardest moments of my life, and is something that was said to me to somehow make me feel better. I felt it was an absolute misjudgement of the depth of what I, and many others go through and simplified the complexity of the human brain. The decision to focus on figurative subject matter was drawn from my own interest in Renaissance period marble sculptures, paintings, and the artwork of Phil Hale, who captures the emotion of figures through dynamic posturing and chiaroscuro lighting, highlighting expressions of both face and body. After creating many drawn studies of the human form and hands in a variety of media on paper, I drew each of the final emotive figures on a graphic tablet. I used a 3D modelling program called ‘Magic Poser’ to aid my experimentation with multiple positions for my human forms and explored a variety of lighting, posing, and angles, to find a spatially balanced composition. From this I was able to condense, arrange and connect my drawn images to create a final reference picture. Rather than victimising those who suffer from mental illness, my aim is to raise awareness of it on an expressive level and for my artwork to fundamentally connect with all viewers, regardless of whether one suffers from mental illness or not."

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