Wendy Kelly is a Melbourne artist working within the process based non-objective / non-figurative abstract genre in painting, works on and with paper and artist’s books.
Kelly’s work is the result of long term development and research, the aim of which is to create a reflective and calm intrigue within an active visual experience. With her paintings, she uses light as a tool, as against its usual artistic role of being the subject. It is intended that the works are changeable as the viewer moves or the light changes, also that they have the quality of being ‘slow to enter' and have the ability to reward the experience of reviewing or re-engaging. Kelly’s unique state artist’s books continue her interest in non-narrative communication, the conversation coming from the relationship that occurs between the images. Book pages also form a subject matter for her works, not in a readable form, but torn or veiled with paint or rice paper,
A deeply underlying influence has been the landscape of the remote areas of Australia; its silence, the experience of light and the depth of the shadows, the colour nuances, order and disorder and the endless possibilities. By way of contrast, Kelly lives in the city, which highlight the differences of the landscapes and intensifies the extremes of the experiences.
The works are made in series, and with two distinct processes, the first being the building of the geometric structure, and the second the painting or manipulation of the constructed surface. Mathematics, control and discipline are involved in the first stage of the work, whereas the second stage, the application of colour in multiple layers of glazes or collage, requires a very different mindset, somewhat akin to the experience of the city as against that of the outback.
Kelly’s methods and processes incorporate a variety of materials which creates a fine complex geometric interpretation within an almost monochrome aesthetic. The use of common thread as a unique mark making tool to create complex lineal rhythms has been an important part of these non-figurative geometric works. It is a tool which can be either left imbedded in paint or removed selectively from the surface, and can be used to reflect light, to tear collaged paper, or create a fine lineal emphasis within a soft edge elusive abstraction. She finds the opportunity of endless development and interpretation is ever intriguing.