SUBLIME SHOW: Emma Walker with examples of her work for her new exhibition, The Dark Sublime.
SUBLIME SHOW: Emma Walker with examples of her work for her new exhibition, The Dark Sublime. 215032002904

Beauty of sublime world depicted in paintings

A BOOK and the world around her Northern Rivers home have inspired Emma Walker's latest exhibition The Dark Sublime - on at the Lismore Regional Gallery through to Friday, September 13.

Described as an ode to the shadowed beauty and crucial relevance of forests and what lies beneath the surface, The Dark Sublime is, surprisingly, the artist's first solo exhibition at the Lismore gallery in a career that stretches back to her teens.

"I've been in group shows but yes this is my first solo show there," she said.

This is not her first exhibition all up though - far from it - with the artist holding 19-20 solo exhibitions at other locations.

Her work is featured in several major public and corporate collections and in private collections in Australia, Indonesia, The Netherlands, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and the US.

Abstracted landscapes, her artworks are multi-layered and as much about the medium of paint and the process of painting as with an experience of nature.

"They are quite complex," she said.

"I think I'm going slower, the paintings take a long time. They are carved and shaped."

She said this exhibition had probably taken about six months to prepare for.

Not only is the execution of the paintings quite complex, so is the idea behind it.

"It was initially inspired by The Overstory by Richard Power which features many different stories relating to trees in very different ways," Emma said.

In the same ways that the stories were interconnected, so were the trees themselves under the soil, she said.

It was a subject that obviously struck a nerve with the artist and led to more research and eventually the artworks themselves.

Emma said intricate and far-reaching networks of communication and exchange occur beneath our feet.

"Worlds of relationship, chatter, barter and life, hidden in the dark cavities of soil under our lawns and roads'" she said.

"Invisible to the eye, like love and fear, the interwoven ecosystems in our forests and the natural world echo the unseen connections that bind us all."

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