I’ve always ‘talked’ through my paintings but I didn’t know how to talk with people. Now I’m learning Auslan to talk to people. I want to talk more now, especially about my art. I’ve always loved exploring things through my senses. It’s become the basis of my art work. Like light … I’m always exploring it. It fascinates me. For a long time all of my paintings were about light. I’ve used a lot of water colours to create the look of how light glows. I poured ink on Perspex and put light strips with a controller behind the Perspex. I made some light installations that have been exhibited in lots of galleries across Australia. I’m into beading now. I’ve always got plans for beads. I thread complex colour patterns on recycled copper wire from light fittings. Some days I do bead art for most of the day. My art helped me when I was grieving for quite a few years after my brother died. I installed my art in the old jail cells in Mandurah as part of a group art exhibition because that place showed how I was feeling. He’s gone now. I never used to be able to say that until we worked on these paintings and did a lot of talking with other artists and other people.
*Photography by Neil Mulligan.