These paintings were created as a way to journal this landscape that finds itself caught somewhere between the mundane and the beatified
Diaries are a funny thing.
After a time they begin to map the shape of a person, with turn of phrase and spelling mistakes taking the place of misplaced hairs or a distinctive gait.
And it is within this mapping of weather patterns, ducks, and an endless tangle of weeds in the garden, that you find you have begun to conjure up the shape of a person, a landscape, woven so tightly with story it becomes difficult to separate truth from romanticised fiction.
The raucous see-saw call of the black cockatoos as they fly overhead mixing with the staccato shouts of the guinea fowl, the joy as green begins poking through the dreary mud of winter, the peace of lying in the shade of an overgrown veggie patch that has been left to go to seed, all these little moments that are difficult to capture and express.
These paintings were created as a way to journal this landscape that finds itself caught somewhere between the mundane and the beatified, in the hope of describing the small paradise hidden within the familiar details of the everyday.
Nicola Gower Wallis, December 2021
Nicola Gower Wallis’ paintings recast the habitual as the exceptional, and the familiar as the fantastic. Her vibrant narrative works are based in small stories, be they folkloric passed down by generations, her daily musings or her nightly dreams; they carry the magic of the unverifiable, the rumoured and the imagined. One is reminded of the centuries of illustrative embellishment captured in miniature by the master painters of India. Much like these painters incorporated the tropes of stylised European backgrounds and exquisite Persian patterning into luminous depictions of their multi-faceted lore, Gower Wallis embellishes her memories with the floral tessellations of the Millefleur tapestries of the early Renaissance. She is inquisitive of every detail.