Enter Madeline Young. The room is immediately imbued with a vibrant and winsome energy. This energy definitely builds upon the excitement of the day because I am to take a, behind the scenes tour of her creative space. It is in this same moment I congratulate her because this time marks the four-year epilogue as Artist in Residence for Kinross Wolaroi School.
Effortlessly situated a pebble’s throw from the Summer and Autumn Street location of the gallery, the cozy shed-come-studio is where the magic happens. Madeline is the Gallery Director of The Corner Store Gallery (TCSG) and it is here that I am greeted by Erick, her other half (who you may have seen providing all that is moreish at previous TCSG openings) alongside Jetty and Dotti, their ebony-coloured canine companions who too, bound to greet me. The welcoming trio soon exit for their afternoon outing.
Looking around, visually the inspiration that adorns the studio walls is an ample expression of Madeline’s vision. Needle, thread and a little shuffle about on the studio tables - we find ourselves with tea in hand, then begin and end conversation about our many uproarious happenings and what it means to be a ‘creative’.
This is Madeline’s third solo show since 2009 and in her own space, the exhibition is a celebration of what was, is and will always be an emotionally charged and post-physical undertaking. Her practice stems from a degree majoring in printmaking and photography and partiality to the medium of paint. She emits an artistic flair, propelled by a cultivation of design and the breaking down of imagery to its most vivid essentials.
This body of work she has produced for Noise comes complete with editioned prints. Her print series culminates high-impact screen prints as well as bold, metal-plate etchings combined with chine collé and detailed hand stitch. When describing Madeline’s artistic process in a few words (one who has experienced it firsthand) – to whom some may call edgy – is but a dynamically charged to-ing and fro-oing of paper add water, ink on plate, to run off then rumination.
Each piece embodies eclectically pictorial abstracts, hot off the press and ever ready to deliver the goods. Her humble habitation has been storing these scintillating labours of love, and are, count - the sixth and final exhibition to be presented within walls of TCSG for 2014. The prints are in their final stages of being framed and thus hallmarks her unremitting professional experience to date.
I ask Madi (as she is fondly known) about Noise and what we can expect. Her answers should give us some insight before opening night!
KY :: What direction would you like the gallery to be heading in the next 5 years? (I hope you can fortune tell Madi?)
MY :: I just want it to be always interesting and varied. It’s not all about your ‘qualifications’ as long as it [the works] interests me. It’s going to be different. It’s going to be filled with ‘tidy’ [no hastle] workshops, craft parties, hen’s nights.... I love a party!
KY:: Who would you say has been the most influential to have led you on this creative path?
MY :: Does it have to be a person? Um… I don’t know, I think if I didn’t get the job at Kinross I would have been somewhere completely different now. I was on government money; doing odd jobs here and there, and there wasn’t much money in this ‘artist career’. When I got it [the position at Kinross] I got back into it, you know. Family has obviously been very supportive about it all. They never didn’t believe [in me] and all the friends and loyal attendees that come to the gallery.
KY :: Ok cool… so you’ve had some really talented artists come through TCSG up until this point. What can we expect in the line-up of exhibitions for 2015?
MY :: It’s going to be varied again. 6 local artists and 2 non local, lots of different art forms and mediums, ages, groups and styles… some experienced artists and some new to the art world. One is a chef and she paints for fun. There’s a couple of young, exciting people representing Orange. Some strange mediums… glass blowing is involved, who’d ever think you’d see glass blowing in the art gallery? (laughs in between) Then there will be an artist that paints on walls and does really crude things… Yeah.
KY :: Wow! and finally, do you have any words of advice that you would like to pass onto fellow artists and the like-minded?
MY :: Just don’t be too precious about ‘it’ [mid sentence, she begins to rattle around in the pantry - ‘is Woystershire sauce weird with Asian stuff?’ she asks twice, whilst Erick begins cooking in the background….] I think if you’re doing the work you have to have faith in yourself. Everybody had more faith in me than I did, and everyone else’s faith and reassurance helped that [the Gallery / being a creative] along. I saw this drive in my dad. He’s a f#@!ng hard worker and Erick of course, people love him. He’s so great, he’s a great chef…he makes good things. Is that enough for you?
KY :: Thank you so much for your time Madi. We all look ever so forward to celebrating alongside and giving you the big noise.
Words and photos by Kieth Yap - Friend, Visual Artist and Art Teacher.