Happy New Year! To everyone who supported me, helped me hold shows, has a piece of my work in their home, has commissioned me for illustration projects or followed me over the course of 2021. It was a big year, and I couldn’t have done it without you. Thank you very much!
Wishing you a happy new year and all the best in 2022!
Though I’ve lapsed from the habit of sending New Years cards (年賀状 – Nengajou) to friends and family over the last couple of years – it used to be a yearly challenge to come up with a new design, usually following the 12 year calendar (干支 – Eto) – this year felt like a good time pick it up again and at least do the creative part. 2022 being the year of the tiger was a big motivation too.
The All Story
Incantation of the Banksia Men
Synthetic polymer and gouache on board
40 x 40cm
It’s been great to be part of the inaugural group exhibition at the new gallery and bookstore, The All Story , Newcastle NSW this month.
From the site – Southerns is an exhibition that draws our mythic past into our present day. Over 30 local and international artists have been invited to reimagine a fictional Australian character or story. While some artists celebrate the cultural impact of films such as Picnic at Hanging Rock and television shows such as Round The Twist, others reflect on changing social views with modern readings of the work of May Gibbs and other canonised authors.This show aims to entertain, provoke, and provide new ways of seeing your old favourites: from film and literature to urban legends.
My piece, Incantation of the Banksia Men is based on the antagonists from the May Gibbs classic mentioned above, and diverges from the descriptions and illustrations in the book. I took my inspiration from the very first of May Gibb’s books, which is considered a classic. What I found interesting about the infamous Banksia Men in the story was the way they were described as inherently evil. Framed as scheming kidnappers, their motives where never revealed, and I thought this was something that needed to be investigated in my painting.
Diemen Awards 2018
The opportunity to put a couple of my illustrations into Tasmania’s creative industry event – The Diemen Awards came up and I’m really pleased to announce that I made the finalists this year. It was great to catch up with some people I hadn’t seen in ages and mingle a bit with the greater creative community here in Hobart. So much talent out there working on big projects. Getting the recognition at this level was really cool too, and it’s lit a fire under my ass/arse/bottom to work a lot harder in 2019. See you next year Diemen!
Acrylic on linen
100 x 70cm
Some new things are in the works and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you soon.
So heads down for a bit. In the meantime, here’s the first painting.
For the last month of so I’ve been busy working away on some sculpture. This is my latest – The Trickster. I was inspired to make it after seeing Belgian sculptor Guillaume Geef’s Le génie du mal. My version mashes up a popular Tasmanian tourism icon with Geef’s Lucifer, and is modelled after the popular trickster in Japanese mythology the tanuki.
For more pics, stop by my instagram
I’ve been branching out – And I think everyone else is on the hunt, too.
I know Ello has been around for a while, and I had an account but just let it slide for about a year. Anyway, I’m giving it another shot, and in kind, the very nice chaps at Ello have featured me on their homepage as one of their new artists. If you follow me on Instagram already, there may not be anything new to see (as yet), but I’ll be posting just completed work over there to see how it all goes. If you feel like taking it for a test drive visit www.ello.co, and you can link up with me at my account. They are 100% behind the arts community and transparent on how your personal and private data is used (i.e. it aint sold off) which good too. If you were worried. Or cared.
In the Spirit of The Age, 8 Feb 2018
Acrylic on canvas
60 x 60cm
SEAN EDWARD WHELAN
IN THE SPIRIT OF THE AGE
Big thanks to all those that could make it out to the opening and saw the work over the course of the show. Big warm fuzzy feels. Special thanks to Blackartprojects for their logistical expertise, Neospace for their hospitality and Dormilona for their awesome wines, that almost stole the show.
Check in with www.blackartprojects.com.au for work availability.
It’s been a while since I posted to the website, but I thought it worth sharing some new work I was commissioned to do for a friend recently.
It’s great to be asked to create a piece of art for someone, for a couple of reasons – one because it’s nice to be given the opportunity, but also because it can give you an unexpected concept to work with.
This piece turned out pretty good I reckon, and my friend was happy with it too – win win.
Sutu (Stuart Campbell) is a prolific visual and comic artist who has been exploring technology in his work thematically and in the way it’s seen for some time now. His latest project – Prosthetic Reality – An Augmented Reality Art book has kicked off and is calling for backers on his Prosthetic Reality Kickstarter page. I’ve been very lucky to be included in the International 45 artist line up with some amazing people, and from the samples I have seen it’s shaping up to be something really special. If you are a collector, a fan of animation, or are interested in the new space technology is pushing art into check it out (click on the pic above)
New Wine Label Commissions
In Margaret River, Western Australia, there is an independent batch winery called Dormilona, who I’ve been working with for a while aside my normal art practice, creating illustrations for their labels.
Dormilona means ‘sleepyhead’ in Spanish, and somewhere along the lines it was decided we create a lethargic skeleton mascot to head up the brand- so he has been the feature in this mini-series of illustrations for a few years now. We have been working on a narrative, a sort of horizontally panning diorama, with lots of lush moss covered stones and trickling streams since 2013, but this year I’ve been given free reign to do something special for their limited addition amphora pot red and white, coming out early next year. See above skeleton illustration. This is just one of the two labels for wine coming on to the market in the next few weeks. If you fancy learning more, head on over to the website (link above).