Artist Shyama Ruffell says of her work `'my paintings are a highly decorative and patterned exploration with a semi-abstract edge. Made using layers of patterned areas, overpainted and abstracted with colours, textures and line. Leaving glimpses of the areas underneath partially showing, peeping through the undergrowth."
Shyama is attracted to tropical leaf shapes, especially Ferns, Palms and Cacti; unrefined fragments of wild land hedgerows and meadows also catch her eye. She loves how random patterns are created in verges and roundabouts, wind blown, tousled and untamed and fascinated by the light peeping through the tangled flowers, grasses and seedpods.
Shyama continues "I enjoy mixing the mediums with a light touch of very watery acrylic or ink for a whisper of colour or pattern. Occasionally some of the lines need even more weight which I'll add with a long Chinese brush which licks and flicks black ink. Oil pastels add texture too as they work in a total opposite way to the charcoals powdered presence. Thicker and rougher but they can be persuaded to smudge together just a little, if they are not pressured into it. I work on several pieces at a time working each one to a different level. In my studio I always have fresh flowers, I reference these alongside drawings and photographs. It’s a marriage of these elements that dictate the feel of the picture as it emerges."
The result in the finished works by Shyama is often reminiscent of fabric and ceramic designs, another favorite source of inspiration for the artist. Her work invites nature to come inside, adding colour and life to our environs.
Shyama will will be in the gallery at Gabriel's Wharf to meet with visitors and talk about her work on Thursday 21st February as well as on Tuesday 5th and Thursday 7th March.