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Hunter & Folk interview – Lores by Bec Smith & Charlotte Swiden

So excited to be featured on Hunter & Folk this week!

“Opening at Melbourne’s No Vacancy Gallery on 15 February 2022, Lores ruminates on creative life in lockdown while expanding on the stories that connect us.

Melbourne-based artists Bec Smith and Charlotte Swiden’s collaboration unfolded through the city’s harsh lockdowns. Now in 2022, the collection of works created purposefully for the exhibition pose a reflection on this challenging time and how creativity — despite the odds — thrived.

Bec and Charlotte first found each other’s practice through social media. They discovered an alignment of creative motivations and personal values plus a shared approach and attitude to their practices.

Charlotte first reached out to Bec as designers by trade, successful artists, and mothers to young children, questioning ‘How do you do it all?’ in 2020. ‘I don’t think I had anyone around me that understood the creative pursuit and motherhood at that time, and Bec was exactly the person I was missing,’ Charlotte reveals.

‘I had admired her work for a long time. For someone who is as busy as Charlotte, she is more grounded than any person could ever be!’ Bec adds.

The result of this meeting, and all the subsequential conversations and discussions had in 2021, is reflected in Lores – a series of artworks within themes of storytelling, individual and collective narratives, and mythologies.

Inspired by Modernism and design sensibilities, both artists’ work follow a similar aesthetic focused on shape and pattern, referencing mysterious and quirky stories. However, the approach varies from minimalist and primary colours for Bec and maximalist in earthy tones and texture for Charlotte.

Read the full article here

Words Emma-Kate Wilson  |  Photography Graham Alderton

Lores Catalogue & Sales

Our catalogue for Lores is now available from No Vacancy Gallery website.
Sales open 8am Thursday Feb 10, first in best dressed!

Lores | Charlotte Swiden & Bec Smith at No Vacancy Gallery

Delighted to announce the exhibition ‘Lores’ with Bec Smith & Charlotte Swiden
at No Vacancy Gallery in Melbourne, February 14-27, 2022

What are the stories we tell our children and ourselves, and where did they come from? There are tales we have outgrown, and there are those that tell us more about ourselves than we are fully prepared to acknowledge. During times of uncertainty which narratives can we rely upon?

Charlotte focuses on generating her own stories in her work. She does this by drawing on the respect and love for our natural world, holding nostalgia for stories that were once celebrated in ceremony and ritual.

Bec’s work focuses on the dynamics between things, and has been honing in on tales of morality and ethical conundrum often found in fairytales and mythology. She uses purely form and colour to visually describe aspects of our human psyche via myth and legend across time and culture.

Opening event
6 – 8pm, Thursday February 17 2022
No Vacancy Gallery
QV Melbourne, 34-40 Jane Bell Lane

Exhibition Dates
14 – 27 February, 2022

Exhibition Sales
Catalogue will be available Monday February 7 from No Vacancy website
Sales will open at 10am on Thursday February 10 via email

Chromatic Retreat | Modern Times Group Exhibition July 2021

So excited to be part of @moderntimesau upcoming group exhibition ‘Chromatic Retreat’.
Featuring works by 17 artists, the show is opening with a real life opening night (!!) Thursday 1st of July 2021.

“The black and white palette is moody, evocative and nostalgic. Chromatic Retreat showcases the work of 16 Australian artists exploring their practice within the limits of a largely achromatic palette. 
It is fundamentally abstract. It suggests rather than describes. And it has a long history in art – for reasons that range from the conceptual, to the technical to the spiritual, artists have long experimented with the power of removing colour. Chromatic Retreat is a homage to this tradition.”

6 – 8pm, Thursday July 1

Exhibition Dates
July 1 – 13, 2021

Exhibition Sales
Sales will open at 10am on Thursday June 24 via phone and email via Modern Times

Coco Flip interview : Charlotte Swiden on Motherhood and Creativity

I’ve realised that it’s easy to be fixated on outcome, output, and deadlines, at least when you are trying to turn your creativity in to something to live from. With my painting, I’m trying to keep it in a sphere where I have room to play, fail, try new things, and not restrict myself too much by the expectations of myself or others. I’m hoping that by doing so, I’ll do better work.

This week I had the pleasure to be interviewed by my good friend Kate Stokes aka Coco Flip. Kate and I have known each other for a long time and shared many of the challenges (and fun times!) of balancing creativity, small business and parenting along the way. Besides being an incredible soulful human, Kate also happens to be one of my favourite designers. Her eye for form, timelessness and beauty is inimitable.

Of all the thing motherhood has thought me, maybe the most important lesson is how much my community of fellow mamas mean to me. So much love and respect for all of you. xx

Read Coco Flip article here

Broadsheet interview : The Melbourne Artist Painting an Imaginary Creature for a Good Cause

An in-demand designer and painter, Charlotte Swiden is sharing her art in the public space for the first time as part of a new Melbourne art trail. In partnership with The Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation, we speak to her about the lasting impact of public art and the importance of contributing to a good cause.

So wonderful to see this article about the UooUoo I painted in support of Royal Children Hospital Foundation and their 150 Anniversary art trail. Very thankful to have Broadsheet as my sponsor on this adventure.

As a little bonus I created a colouring in of the artwork in collaboration with Broadsheet, you can download at it at the end of the article.

Read Broadsheet article here


Me and UooUoo : 150 anniversary Art Trail with Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation

The RCH 150 Anniversary Art Trail is finally going live! You will find my UooUoo in the Fitzroy Gardens the 20th Jan – 21 March. 100 artists will be featured across Melbourne and Geelong. I’m so immensely proud to be part of this exhibition supporting The Royal Children’s Hospital and Foundation, helping to raise funds and change the future of paediatric healthcare in generations to come.

The sculptures were all painted during winters first lockdown restrictions. Blue Event Productions doing an incredible job keeping us all on strict painting schedules in small groups to stay covid safe. This is the warehouse where we were painting. It was an amazing space but OMG it was cold! I wore long johns, woollen socks, 3 jumpers and a beanie and I was still an icy pole every day I finished my shift. It was such an incredible experience though and I got to meet a few of the wonderful artists behind some of the UooUoo’s.

The exhibition was suppose to take place in September but due to lockdown restrictions we all get to enjoy it now instead!
To get started, download the app, study the map, put on some comfortable shoes, grab a friend and start exploring the streets of Melbourne and Geelong.

‘Talismans, Rafts, Mementos’, some of my thoughts on the Modern Times blog

“The multi-layered paintings of Charlotte Swiden speak of dreams of a far-away homeland, Malmö in Sweden, through an intricate play of shape and colour.
‘I began to visit my home town Malmö more frequently in my sleep and felt further away than ever, aching for my family and homeland. But at the same time I’ve felt a real kinship with my new country,’ explains Charlotte.”

Throughout 2020 the 57 artists used their practice to make sense of what was happening around them. Talismans, Rafts, Mementos celebrates this rich vein of creative output representing both the psychological and physical artefacts that have surfaced during this time.”

Read more:

Pictured: ‘First Frost’. Acrylic & Oil Pastel on canvas. Framed in Tasmanian Oak. [sold]

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