Otherworldliness is an exhibition of recent works by Poatina based artist Pamela Horsley that follows on from work recently hung in the 2019 John Glover and Bay of Fires (BOFA) Art Prizes. Monotype prints, distinct from other printmaking techniques in that they produce only one unique image, play an integral part in this exhibition. In the largest works Horsley has worked in the time honoured manner of applying paint directly onto the printing plate before transferring the image to paper on a manually operated press. The collaged monotype prints in the remaining works have been painstaking hand printed, mostly from sawn logs. The four large painterly mono prints, Sanctuary # 1, 2, 3, and Enchanted Forest are from the same series as shown in the Glover and BOFA prizes. The nudes inspired by a summer’s day spent in the idyllic creek setting of a near-by farm. The women entwined in the bushland and immersed in the creek are symbolic of the dynamic relationship between the land and the people that inhabit it that continues to inspire and inform Horsley’s life and practice.
Born and raised in the shadow of the Victorian Grampians, Pamela Horsley was schooled in love and appreciation of the bush. She has lived much of her life in Africa and Papua New Guinea. In 2014, Horsley, a self-confessed ‘late bloomer’, accepted a residency at Poatina Artist Colony on retiring from midwifery and nursing. All of these life experiences influence her work.
Since taking up life in Tasmania, Horsley is fulfilling her dream and has had six solo exhibitions and been in numerous group shows. She has been a finalist in multiple major prizes including in the John Sulman, Glover and Bay of Fires Art’s Prize and is currently studying for a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours at the University of Tasmania.
Living on the Great Western Tiers Horsley has immediate access to her muse, the beautiful Tasmanian bushland. There she constantly finds herself in awe of the wilderness and her work bears witness to the passion and life she draws from her environment. While bush walking her senses feast on her surrounds, the aroma of the vegetation, the randomness of the sights, encounters with wildlife, the extraordinary sounds of birds and the cool breeze or sun on her face.
The resilient lives led by first nation peoples are also never far from Horsley’s mind and she recalls others who followed, trekking through the wilderness or eking out a living in an often inhospitable environment. Her work is invested with a sense of both absence and presence and feelings that there is more there than meets the eye.