Larissa Blake has been exposed to art from an early age by her mother artist Loretta Blake. Her work is vibrant, spontaneous with large planes of pure, unadulterated colour. Largely self taught Larissa is a highly sought after tutor and we are so lucky to be able to have her in our Summer Quartet exhibition at Red Hill Gallery, Brisbane during the month of December.
Larissa Blake is a gifted colourist; her work references the domestic and feminine domains in a celebratory context, using an exuberant, joyful, uplifting colour palette.
AC: Larissa, could you describe your art to our readers. LB: My images are deconstructed so that I can be expressive with my mark making, and it’s all about colour.
AC: Has a career in art always been in the pipeline or did you have other aspirations growing up? LB: I’ve always wanted to be an artist, though I didn’t start painting till my late 20’s. I did a degree in Marketing , but was disappointed it wasn’t as creative as I’d hoped. I was studying Herbalism with the intention of becoming a naturopath but dropped out to pursue my painting.
AC: You have quite a distinctive, raw and spontaneous style which radiates energy, have you always painted this way or did you experiment a lot before deciding this was you? LB: It has been a 14 year process of experimenting and pushing myself to be more gestural. It takes a lot of practice to make bold expressive marks.
AC: The upcoming exhibition has scenes from your travels abroad and at home. What inspires you to paint a particular scene? LB: It’s normally aesthetic for me; I’m simply drawn to something visually and or emotionally.
AC: You tutor quite regularly, do you find this rewarding? If so, in what way? LB: I love teaching, it’s so rewarding when students grasp a concept and produce something out of their comfort zone. The likeminded company is also inspiring; painting can be a lonely gig.
AC: Where have you travelled around the world and what country and city/town/suburb is your favourite place? LB: Europe, India, China, Morocco , lots of Asian countries but my absolute favourite city at the moment is New York City. We stayed in Soho in this awesome hotel called the Mondrian . The painting love in NYC is from the Mondrian’s nightclub (not that I went clubbing - I was pregnant!)
AC: What sort of music do you listen to while you paint? LB: Anything but classical, I’m a pop and rock’n' roll girl. I just turn the radio on for company and I’m a big fan of radio national.