“Subjects traditionally regarded with cold, clinical assessment under her touch transformed into creatures of mystical allure. Monochrome charts turned into colourful composition riddled with symbolism and meaning. Her art entices the eyes, stirs up the emotions and deeply touches the spirit of the beholder. Her mastery of her medium and her method captivated me.” This was my description of my experience of Nicole’s art in my article about her earlier this year. Since then I had the privilege of having sneak previews of her work for her SOLO EXHIBITION that will be held from 30 October to 12 November 2015 at the ART LOVERS Gallery in Pretoria. I stand by my previous assessment… I am captivated. I had a chat with Nicole about her upcoming exhibition and her journey towards fulfilling her dream.
What is the theme of your exhibition?
My title for my solo exhibition is ‘A beautiful mind’ and my theme is on selective mental disorders. I am fascinated with the intricacies of the human psyche!! I would rather like to focus on the beauty of mental disorders than the devastation it may cause. By doing this I would like to create awareness on mental disorders and try to diminish stigma, which causes unnecessary segregation.
How many pieces did you prepare for this exhibition?
I prepared 14 artworks.
What mediums did you use for this collection?
All of my artworks consist of glass. It isn’t blown glass or glass fired in a kiln. It is glass in its “raw” state as I would say because it hasn’t gone through any further processes after buying it directly off the shelf. I have combined other mediums like vinyl, aluminium, perspex, digital prints, paint, ink and transparencies with the glass.
What did you learn from the experience of preparing for a solo exhibition?
I learned how to network and advertise which is both vitally important to prepare for a solo.
What was some of the unique challenges that you have faced with compiling this selection?
Well I had to do a lot of research!!! I needed to do thorough research on seven different mental disorders, of which some I knew nothing about. The other BIG challenge is financing such a big number of work of arts. I am a waitress by night and an artist by day, so having the time and money to complete 14 works is a BIG challenge in itself.
What will you do differently in the future?
Nothing, I absolutely love my collection of works and am fully satisfied with my progress and outcome.
What can art lovers expect from your collection?
They can expect to be intrigued and enlightened on a topic that is mysterious on its own. The artworks are like you have stated Micelle, colourful compositions with lots of symbolism and meaning. Artworks range from being a meter and a half high to roughly A4 size. There is diversity in my work, every single artwork is completely different to the next in content, composition and medium. You can also expect a detailed concept with each of my artworks and not just an Artist Statement due to the fact that my artworks are so diverse.
Where do you envision this collection of your artwork going from here?
Well that I can’t predict of course, but I have invited Paul Bayliss, curator of ABSA L’Atelier and Bayliss Gallery as well as In Toto Gallery, both from Johannesburg to come view my solo. So perhaps I would like to envision it to go to one of these galleries.
What comes after this exhibition?
After my solo exhibition I am going to start my own glass craft business which will become my new basic income. And instead of working as a waitress by night I am going to waitress early in the morning until 2pm at a different restaurant in a new suburb as I am moving location as well. Having my own company and waitressing in the morning will allow me more time and money to finance my Fine Art which is my ultimate passion!!! To become a full time Fine Artist is my ultimate dream, but to become a full time artist is extremely difficult and takes years to accomplish. So all of these steps are just stepping stones to becoming that which I dream of all my life!
I am personally looking forward to attending Nicole’s exhibition and to experience the unique qualities of her work.
Please visit Nicole on her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Artworks-of-Nicole-Rowe/151706931681787 to see more about her art.