15 February - 5 March 2007
about the exhibition
Sydney sculptor Denese Oates has been exhibiting in Australia and overseas since 1979. The artist initially painted acrylic portraits, followed by handmade paper masks and torsos in relief, which incorporated natural objects. Later figurative metal sculptures utilised recycled steel, then copper, and evolved to marine inspired themes. Her organic, flowing forms remind us of the energy of nature and the fragility of the life forms within it. As Denese explains, ”The works in the current show have drawn inspiration from nature. Patterns in the networks of veins in vascular systems of plants and human anatomy provide inspiration for a series of works using copper wire. Many of the forms are abstract, although some invoke vessels or life forms. The natural patina of aged copper is used to make collages recalling fossils and the landscape.” Working in different scales and formats, Denese maintains a consistent aesthetic vocabulary that speaks of the energy that is central to the fertility and growth of the natural world, both within the earth and beneath the ocean. The copper is manipulated with a sensibility that instils an animistic quality within the organic forms and a delicate sensuality of shape and line that negates the physical solidity of the work.
Based in Sydney, Denese Oates was born in Orange, NSW and has travelled. She studied at the Alexander Mackie College of Advanced Education in Sydney (now College of Fine Art, UNSW) and has exhibited widely across Australia and internationally. Denese is represented in the collections of the Parliament House Art Collection, University of NSW, Artbank, Wollongong City Art Gallery and Christchurch City Collection, NZ.