Hope and Transformation: Gooseberry Hill artists finds hope

Artist Libby Baker presents a selection of work from the exhibition Hope and Transformation.
Artist Libby Baker presents a selection of work from the exhibition Hope and Transformation.

GOOSEBERRY Hill artist Libby Baker shares the journey of developing her largest-ever artwork over seven years in a new exhibition titled Hope and Transformation.

Baker said the work evolved without conscious thought, with images appearing and disappearing under layers of paint until the original canvas grew into a 26.5 kg artwork resembling a stone sculpture.

“It (the work) comes through me rather than from me,” she said.

Along with framed canvas and fine prints, Baker will present an audiovisual record of the 94 images showing the development of the story beneath her original artwork.

Baker began work on the canvas in 2010 after completing a series of fine art ‘Chakra Tree’ paintings featured in a self-published book, Revealing Hidden Emotions.

She said the process was similar to her experience when painting the Chakra trees, with images revealing stories in layers of paint.

“Different coloured images of beings, planets and symbols came and went,” she said. “I believed the work was finished, would hang it and start painting on the canvas again.

“There were times when I was overwhelmed with joy at images that miraculously appeared and suffered enormous loss and regret when I was drawn back to keep painting and lost the image.

“At one stage I hacked into the canvas of ‘stone’ with a hammer and chisel, revealing layers of gold leaf and mixed media in remarkable patterns and colours.”

Baker said she gave up trying to convince herself the work would ever be completed, and put it back on an easel where it remains today.

“I felt that I was being given a story to tell by painting from the heart, which also involved overcoming feelings of self doubt, fear and stepping out of conditioned norms.”

She said reaction to the work from artists, healers and friends encouraged her to share the journey through an exhibition at Kidogo Arthouse from June 15 to 28.

“When viewed, I would like to leave the story behind the images open to the individual’s interpretation,” she said.

Baker returned to painting after a 20-year career in health and safety management followed an earlier role as a qualified nurse.

She has published two books based on her art and works from her home studio. Visit www.libbyenergyart.com for more.

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