'Soft Continuum' is a body of works by Sylvie Kettle that paints the merging of souls with a utopian vision. Existing within a liminal space, where the distinction between being & setting is subtle and multi-layered, Kettle explores the overlap of the artistic process and life itself, finding herself in an undulating journey of creation and resolution.
Learn more about this body of works, what was behind the collection and Sylvie’s creative process in our recent interview.
Tell us about your latest body of works ‘Soft Continuum’. What was behind the collection?
Soft Continuum is all about a space of no separation. I’m always coming back to a perspective of concepts landing along a continuum rather than in dualities. How can I gain perspective on nature's tendencies and see the inherent interrelation of all things rather than being seduced by simplistic conclusions? But I also don't want to dilute the art with explanations! I would encourage anyone to sit with art and observe how it makes you feel, like we do when listening to music. Allow it to direct you, to take you on your own journey.
The Northern Rivers community has suffered terribly recently with the floods and you've chosen 'Slipstream Companion' Art Print to help raise funds for the conservation NFP ‘Byron Rangers’. How are they helping the community and what drew you to this NFP?
Byron Rangers have played a powerful role in the Northern Rivers culture over the past few years, particularly in the realm of sustainability and human flourishing. It's a safe space for local community & accountability to our motherland - so it was no surprise they've been instrumental in coordinating disaster relief in this time. Deano and his vision make me truly proud to have grown up in this incredibly special community. I’m literally sitting writing this whilst the Northern Rivers goes under for a second time. It's heartbreaking, and we need unity, awareness, support and resources now more than ever. The funds received will move towards sustaining volunteers in the cleanup, food & resource, housing displaced community, transport, helping injured animals and more.
Follow the link here for donations and more information.
Can you share a little about your art journey and how it has evolved to where you are today?
I've painted since I was a little girl and was so obsessed with hyper realistic botanicals for a long time. Eventually it felt like a science and I had to find another form of expression & artistic language. That's when I started going to life drawing; throwing paint around on large canvas’ and truly moving into an embodiment of the feminine in art and self. I’m very blessed to paint full time for the past few years, and dedicate myself wholly to a life of artistry.
The past couple of years have been challenging for many. How have you or your art business evolved during this time?
I feel these past couple of years were an incredible opportunity to up-level in so many ways. It's been like a full portal, a reckoning of sorts. I began by asking “how can I fully show up in truth?”, and for me that is through creating - creator-ship is about as pure as it gets. When I’m painting I’m reconnecting to source. For me it’s like breathing. Art-making is my place of nourishment.
My art has exploded from the sheer amount of time I’ve been able to invest in the muse. Usually I would be traveling on & off every few months, so this focused time has brought a lot of discipline and direction to my place in the art world.
What can you share about your creative process and how you go about starting a new body of works?
I don't think too much about it. I just show up in anticipation of the art flowing through me. Concepts come later; it's like I look at the art after and am somehow surprised by what has revealed itself because nothing is ever intended except purity from me. I love just absolutely bathing in the experience of painting. That’s what it’s all about for me. You may not see me for weeks when I’m creating a collection, it's as if I’m in character for the duration and don't want to come out ahah. It's an altered state of reality for me - this is where diving into the subtleties really shows itself. There's a whole world in simple task & movement.
What inspires your creative process?
Subtleties, human form, vessels, the natural world, philosophy, big love feelings, the Beatles, dreams, light forms, play.
What’s next for you?
I’m calling in a move to Europe very soon. Renting a beautiful mediterranean studio to live, play and paint. This would be nice. I’m envisioning Spain, France, or regional Italy; learning a new language, painting to my hearts content & creating for international exhibitions. Maybe a residency is on the cards if I find something that resonates.
View the exhibition online or visit us at the Fenton & Fenton Gallery, 489 High Street, Prahran, open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am - 4pm.