Dianne Coulter - 'Retrospective'

Wednesday 12 June - Sunday 7 July 2019


Dianne Coulter’s Retrospective is a major collection of her works spanning four decades. But the title alludes to more. There is a real sense of looking back, not just through the interests and eyes of an individual creator, but also a retro-perspective of looking back into history. The work hearkens to classical beauty, to ancient civilisations and to the timelessness of the land itself. Journeying through the galleries involves engaging with spaces that elude to a museum collection of ancient artifacts, an enclave of reverence to sacred beauty, a rogues gallery of satirical characters straight from the stage or the running of our country and the deeper spiritual hum of the great southern land which is our home. It is the place where classical beauty meets the materials of the earth.

Coulter’s work reveals a haptic pleasure in the sensual delight of touch and the manipulation of materials and textures under the hand: from the silky smooth polish of the buffed ceramic flesh to the textural clay of hair squeezed and pushed between fingertips. Lines are scratched and decoration gouged with hand tools and sand furrows march across the surface of two dimensional panels. Tactility abounds in the totemic abstract forms, the vessels and in the figurative pieces alike.

With each space there are abstract ceramic pieces and wall pieces reminding us constantly of the land, its colour and the layers of markings from the course of human history upon its ageless surface. The figurative inhabitants gesture and question the viewer into many different dialogues about how we view and treat each other and our shared home. There is a great deal to ponder about the process of looking back, looking deeper and finding the threads that bind us all together in relationship

(Excerpt from the Dianne Coulter catalogue essay by artist & writer Kerrilee Ninnis).