Hey Pru, we know you're lazing by the pool in Byron with the fam so thanks for joining us for a chat! How's life right now for Prudence DeMarchi?
Life is generally pretty hectic! It’s full of busy fun, toddler nudie runs, yoghurt, giggles, slobbery kisses and a bit of work squeezed in between. Having a few days break in Byron is bliss.
We know you've got an interesting background- can you share some or all of how you began to make art?
I did Fine Art and Education degrees at uni a million years ago and ended up teaching in special education. I’ve loved my teaching career but I’ve always painted on the side. Now I’m starting to switch up the balance and paint more than I teach! I used to work really messily with oils and charcoal but since having Annabelle I need to be able to wash up and go. I don’t want any chemicals with a curious bubba around. Acrylics are the way for me now!
We are very excited for your upcoming show "Between Seasons" -can you shed light on your inspiration?
‘Between Seasons’ fits my life pretty closely right now. I’m starting the transition from teaching to artist, I’m just about to have our second baby so the dynamics of our little family will change again, and my inspiration and colour themes in my work are starting to change with seasonal inspiration too.
What has been the most challenging part of preparing for a solo exhibition?
Having enough time to paint! Working part time, being quite heavily pregnant and spending quality time with my husband and daughter are all factors I try to balance. Generally I paint when my little girl has a nap or early mornings before she wakes up. I’m so excited for the exhibition I just want to paint all the time! Real life tends to get in the way sometimes.
What does your abstraction aim to communicate to the world?
We are constantly changing, balancing and transitioning from one stage to another. It’s interesting that people go through all these major changes in their life without consciously reflecting on them or the actions they take. It would be nice for people to feel that they are able to slow down, appreciate and process their decisions, but most of the time things happen and you just roll with it!
How do you silence your inner criticisms?
Oh that’s tricky. They tend to sneak in for me in the middle of the night when I’m up with Annabelle. I honestly try not to put too much pressure on myself, but I’m not very good at it. That’s why I don’t meticulously plan out paintings- I like the freedom of not knowing what they will end up like.
When do know when to walk away from a painting?
Most paintings I do go through an ‘ugly stage’ where I think I’ve ruined it and it can’t be saved. I try to just keep painting on in until I don’t hate it anymore and then my feelings change and I desperately want to keep them al!
What are you hoping people take away from your work?
Can you explain to us your connection with painting?
Painting is my happy place and it keeps me sane. It allows me to release my inner chill, my inner sass and my inner feistiness! I love being able to express my mood through colour and brushstrokes. Music plays a bit part in my painting process too. I love it. All of it.
Do you have any daily rituals?
Our days are pretty standard. We’re all early risers. My husband Grant (bless him) usually brings me a coffee in bed each morning. Then it’s either up to paint or morning cuddles with Annabelle. I used to be mad on exercise in the mornings, but our life has changed somewhat! Either way it’s a wonderful start to the day.
Any last words for aspiring artists?
I wasn’t really expecting for my paintings to sell and for people to actually want them! I was just doing what I enjoyed while I was on maternity leave. The momentum just kept growing and I still feel a bit strange about it all. I think you just need to do what makes you happy and what you’re passionate about. Other people can pick up on that energy and only good things can come from that. Oh and I have a hard time saying ‘no’. I take every opportunity and love that ‘jump with me’ feeling. My poor husband! haha.