Artists challenge us with their vision. They'd never slap something together that just looks pretty. Katie Blundell is no exception. With her deep interest in the human condition combined with a generous dose of humour, her paintings have a lot to declare.
Her upcoming exhibition, ‘Urban Jungle’, a follow up from her successful Idioms Countryside 2016 show, continues to explore the shared experience of being human through idioms, which are a group of words that say one thing and mean another.
The urban dictionary describes the term ‘Urban Jungle’ as streets, alleys, railway systems and inner-city neighbourhoods, a metropolis characterized by densely packed residential buildings, businesses and a decaying industrial sector. Blundell takes this as a cue to poke a finger at herself and society, of what we may have lost by building monstrosities, and becoming alienated from each other. She wants us to consider what it means to retain our connections. Blundell has used animals as models, this has enabled her to distance herself from the human issues reflected upon in the idiom as well as bringing in a lighter side.
It may be unusual for a piece of art to fill the soul with a youthful excitement, yet Katie Blundell seems to have mastered the craft. Examples of phrases in her collection include the words “Ahead of the pack” which is accompanied by a cheetah or “pouring money down the drain”.
Influenced by Abstract Expressionism the work contains gestural expression and abstraction. “I start with an idea, then work spontaneously in response to each Artwork through the creative process, never knowing what the Artwork will look like until it is finished”, explains Blundell. She has used a range of medium from drawings, prints, to paintings large and small with techniques to suit. The result is a collection of questions and thoughts.
It's her insights and perspectives, in the here and now, and how she articulates them using contemporary idioms and mediums, that is most exciting about her current work.
Blundell has a Masters of Fine Art from Elam and 20 years of Art making experience to draw from. Years as a Senior Teacher of Art at Diocesan School, provided a platform for her natural tendency towards experimentation; pushing boundaries of her knowledge, skill and equipment – resulting in new and revolutionary ideas.
Railway Street Gallery owner Fiona Cable describes Blundell as “a force of nature who dispenses her treatment of witty humour and double meanings by drawing on deeply personal experiences that viewers can relate to but not always verbalise or admit. She warns visitors to expect to be surprised and delighted when you attend Katie’s upcoming exhibition.”
Exhibition runs 6 - 21 July 2018