Artist Kerrie Warren – The Chaos Girl

I am delighted to interview Visual Artist Kerrie Warren, a passionate Abstract Expressionist painter and advocate for the Visual Arts. She co-ordinated a cultural art exchange to China (2007 – 2008) with a show called “Wild Dogs From Down Under” The show was so successful she won a regional arts award.

Kerrie Lives in Crossover a minor  but scenic dot on the landscape north east of Warragul in Victoria, amidst green rolling hills not far from native forest, high up from the Latrobe Valley, a fine country environment for an artist. Kerrie has a website (www.kerriewarren.com.au) and is represented by a range of galleries in australia and also in Singapore.

Here is a link to a video of her working, makes for very interesting viewing.

Most artists have an “Artists Statement” Kerrie, what’s yours?
“For me, it is like writing poetry.  As words begin to sing their own song when placed down in such a way on a page, so do the paints, the inks, the mediums…  the process itself begins to take over and at some point I become completely submerged in it all.

It is a dance with colour and texture… the canvas on the floor… no up or down…. and I move around in an energetic fashion: – dribbling, splattering and squeezing the paint in colours guided by my instinct in the moment.

It is a joyful torment for me as the painting won’t let me go until it is finished. It demands my full attention until a climax is reached, the point where it resonates on its own and I am released from the process… “

So, what or who inspires your art?
Nature inspires me, Jackson Pollock inspires me, galleries and art supply stores inspire me, inspiration is everywhere!

I take it that Pollock is your favourite Artist, are there any others that come to mind?
Yes, Rothko, Leonie Ryan, Peter Biram, Steve Gray, and Ursula Theinert.

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Kerrie, how did you get into art?
I’ve always been that way inclined, always loved drawing and writing poetry but it wasn’t until I was 25 that I enrolled to study art full-time and embrace it as a ‘career’.

Many artists struggle to support their “Art Habit” how about you?
At this stage, my work supports itself and sometimes treats me to a journey overseas.  My understanding husband and a company that I am a director of supports our Day to day physical existence.  Though very soon I do hope to be ‘the best investment’!

Have you had any “big breaks” in your career?
I feel like they happen quite frequently, I generally feel like something wonderful is just around the corner and often it is.

What can you tell us about your connection to your subject matter, way of working, concepts etc?
My aim is to remove ‘thought’ from the process itself and allow other doors to ‘open’.  That’s the concept behind my work. This is very important for me to achieve ‘sensation’ and  ‘the experience’ which is expressed through gestural movements, gravity and paint, captured on canvas and offered as a form of communication to others.

where-theres-smoke-09-ac-1

All artists seem to have struggles, tell us about any you have had.
These happen quite regularly too!  Mainly financial struggles.  As my ideas grow, so do the expenses that are attached to them.  Inside the studio I feel rich, timeless and in harmony with the universe….  Outside the studio I can sometimes feel financially poor, challenged by time and not so harmonic with my environment.  Best to stay in there as much as possible!

What sort of depth or meaning is there behind the work you do?
I work to the rhythm of life; I follow instincts and am content to drown in the depths of it all.  I don’t question it, I just paint.

warrnambool

Do you hope the viewer will “get” what you are trying to communicate or do you feel compelled to spell it out to them?
I watch some viewers search for a hidden ‘meaning’ when there is not one.  I don’t mind whether they get it or not.  My work is either loved or loathed and I like the fact that it stimulates such strong emotions in others.

Was art a “thing” that was encouraged in your family?
Being a ‘good drawer’ was encouraged, but not Art as a Career choice.  It was never discussed in that manner so I had to discover that for myself.

snow-garden-2010

Has being involved in the arts proven to be a millstone or a point of elation?
Both!  Mostly elation of course or I would of ceased this as a profession a long time ago.  It is a ‘torment’ at times as it has such a strong hold on me but then I like that too…

So what would happen if you stopped doing art right now would you miss it?
A part of me would die.

outfoxing-2010

Do you have a challenge knowing when a work is finished?
I can feel ‘tormented’ leading up to the climax sometimes, but it clearly resonates to me when I need to put my brushes down.

Can you give us a descriptive approach to your current works?
Patterns in Chaos.  As I work with instinct and energy, I can see that my work clearly relates to Quantum Physics.  Particles and Molecules moving in unpredictable bursts, sometimes in pattern like waves….  I’m fascinated by this, the fact that what appears to be a solid object is not.  Whilst watching a TV documentary program one night, I viewed a slide of molecular activity and I was surprised to see how much it looked like one of my paintings!

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Tell us about getting caught in a creative “slump” and how you got out of it?
Thank goodness this doesn’t happen that often and only when I have asthma or a cold and my ‘energy’ to paint is running low.  To get out of it I need to take better care of myself, relax and flick through art books!  When my personal energy returns, so does the need to paint!

How would you describe your creative process?
After building the stretcher, whitewashing and preparing the canvas, I already feel that I have a relationship with it.  I require uninterrupted time to paint.  I become a hermit and don’t answer my phone.  I like to have a clear mind and an open heart and let myself go, allowing instincts to push and pull me…  there is a point where it takes over and I become a witness.

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Tell us about your studio environment?
It’s cozy, the size of a double garage and well fitted out.  I love being in there.  I store my finished works in the house so that I have as much ‘space’ around me as possible!

Do you have a connectedness to other art forms?
I love ceramics and sculpture….  I have a soft spot as I studied ceramics initially for 4 years.  I love the’ tactile’ and bring this into my paintings.

Some artists are more “at home” isolated in their creative process, while others revel in being part of a group to bounce “ideas off” how about you?
I’m definitely a hermit when I work! and people know not to stand in my way when I get started.

From your early beginnings at art school to now, how have things altered for you?
It has been a constant evolution for me.  One step has clearly led to the other and I can see from an objective point of view that I am working hard for each achievement  and earning each step as I go along…. there is still a long way to go…

So finally Kerrie, is making art all it was “cracked up to be”?
Oh yeah and it’s so much more!

Do you have questions for the Artist? Go to the comments section at the bottom of this post and ask away.

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Compiled and edited by Steve Gray © 2009+

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Comments

16 Responses to “Artist Kerrie Warren – The Chaos Girl”

  1. Ursula Theinert on September 25th, 2008 10:35 am

    Congratulations Steve on a wonderful site and interview. Kerrie you are an amazing person and artist and you have blown me away with your comment that I have inspired you! Thank you for this great compliment, and you will never know how many people you touch and inspire with your kind words, positive energy and sweet nature. You deserve every success and New York is definitely going to fall in love with you and your powerful work.

    Werner and I need to start saving for the trip to USA and the exhibition opening!!!

    Lots of Love
    Ursula xx

  2. Paul Petch on September 25th, 2008 11:20 am

    Hey 🙂

    I just received news from Kerrie that her wonderful work will be exhibited in New York! How exciting!

    Visitors will not be disappointed with the energy that Kerrie’s work exhibits.

    Well done Kerrie and enjoy.

    Paul
    x

  3. karenwt on September 25th, 2008 1:24 pm

    go girfriend!!

  4. Judy Bishop on September 25th, 2008 6:01 pm

    Wonderful news Kerrie and congratulations on achieving a dream!
    Your ideas are inspiring and the ‘chaos in colour’ very deserving of recognition.
    Maybe we will soon see your works here in the foyers of Dubai hotels???
    Cheers

    Judy

  5. Kerrie Warren on September 26th, 2008 9:14 am

    Thank you my dear friends and colleagues.

    Our journies are linked and interwoven, creating a wonderful environment where we learn from each other, we are inspired by each other and our energy bounces back and forth.

    ‘Art’ has brought us all together, we find understanding, resonance and strength within ‘our tribe’.

    Love Kerrie

  6. jo ferguson on September 26th, 2008 9:12 pm

    hi kerrie, you probably dont know me, however i have been in recent contact with your mum in regards to possibly using your art work when working on interior projects. And i have come very close to purchasing an ‘original’ of yours at a few exhibitions. Love the vibrancy of your work. good luck in new york- when is the exhibition- i am there mid jan 2009 and would love it to be then???
    regards and best wishes
    jo ferguson red55 housing design and concepts

  7. Kerrie Warren on September 27th, 2008 11:52 am

    Dear Jo,

    It is lovely to hear from you. Mum (judi) has spoken about you too! It is wonderful that you enjoy my work and its vibrancy. Agora Gallery are my representative in New York but the actual exhibition will take place in May 2009! They may ask for work to be sent earlier than this if their clients are making enquiries about it. I am exhibiting ‘Patterns in Chaos’ at Libby Edwards Galleries at Jinks Creek Winery in Tonimbuk from the 28th September to the 26th of October. I hope to meet you soon! Regards, Kerrie

  8. Stefan Maguran on October 1st, 2008 7:10 am

    There is something in me that loves the freedom I see in your work.
    Good luck!

  9. Artist Kerrie Warren - Powered by Paul James Design » Blog Archive » Newspaper Articles & Publications 1998 - 2008 on October 1st, 2008 4:31 pm
  10. Kerrie Warren : ArtStuff on November 24th, 2008 9:57 am

    […] read more of the interview with Kerrie click here… November 23, 2008 | Filed Under […]

  11. Kerries video - make art! : Art Re-Source on February 26th, 2009 1:40 pm

    […] Warren was interviewed here way back in the early days, she just sent me a video to show people what her process is all about. […]

  12. Aussie in New York Gallery : Art Re-Source on May 19th, 2009 10:53 am

    […] Kerrie Warren’s work can be seen in New York at the Agora Gallery, Chelsea, June 2 to 23 2009, in the lead up to the Regionalis Exhibition in September. Her first foray into the New York art scene should be a great one, Well done Kerrie. Her interview on Art Re-Source can be seen here. […]

  13. Karen Shirley on May 19th, 2009 7:39 pm

    Hi, Kerrie

    Do you know of the work of Tasmanian artist, Kerry Gregan, who died of cancer only a year or so ago at too early an age. She was married to Keith Looby, but was also inspired by Jackson Pollock. Google Bett Gallery, Hobart to see her work..great energy in your work!

    Karen Shirley

  14. Warren gets New York Magazine kudos : Art Re-Source on July 21st, 2009 9:06 pm

    […] month, but great news none the less! New York Magazine Gallery and Studio published this article on Kerrie Warren’s Exhibition and works… Well Kerry you must be very pleased to get these great comments, […]

  15. Kara Biso on October 12th, 2009 9:08 am

    Your site is awesome, I like to read your posts, This one on Kerrie is so good! regards Kara.

  16. April Pressler on February 21st, 2010 4:17 pm

    Keith Looby was actually married for a while in the 1980s to Kerrie Gregan, not Kerrie Warren, as is shown on Google through link to this website..