Subconscious Landscapes at Twenty Twenty Six Gallery, Sydney, 11th-30th October 2022.

See all the artworks here. Read below for Exhibition Description by Dr. Jessica Priebe

Gitte Backhausen, Must Be Dreaming, 2022, acrylic on canvas, 183 x 213 cm. Photo courtesy of the artist. (SOLD)

In her latest series Subconscious Landscapes, Danish-born artist Gitte Backhausen explores the artistic potential of the subconscious mind and the freedom associated with working just below the point of focal awareness. What developed is a deeply personal series of paintings that represent the undiscovered parts of inner life expressed through a visual language that is strongly connected to nature. For Backhausen, it is in the intersection between spontaneity and contemplation that the subconscious abstract landscape begins to emerge and with it, new realities are created.

Nature has long been a dominant theme in Backhausen’s practice. When she first arrived in Australia in 2005, she was struck by the raw natural beauty of the landscape. Since moving to the South Coast of NSW, Backhausen has immersed herself in nature, drawing inspiration from intricate designs and playful motifs found in the landscape, as well as thinking about how nature relates to our human experience of loss, deterioration and the invigoration of renewal. With a background in psychology and graphic design, the nature-inspired elements in her work are often a metaphor for the psychological landscapes of the mind, constantly observing and questioning our relationship with ourselves, each other and the world we live in.

This recent body of work continues to focus on themes of psychology and nature both as a subject and as an emblem for Backhausen’s artistic process in the studio. Influenced by the dreamlike landscapes of the Surrealists, along with the painterly abstractions of artists such as Cy Twombly and Elizabeth Cummings, this curated arrangement of artworks embraces the spirit of transformation, along with the beauty and disquiet of nature and the mind. Throughout the series her bold and assertive brushwork harnesses the spontaneity of subconscious mark making. Colours, twisting forms and expansive compositions radiate with the energy of unique arboreal-inspired ecosystems and provide the spectator with an opportunity for both contemplation and adventure into new lands.

by Dr. Jessica Priebe, Art Historian.

See all artworks in this body of work here.

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Opening speech by Dr. Jessica Priebe, Art Historian.