Our Guest Speaker for the KAS June 2016 Meeting was Chantal Mahoney.
Workshop Report : Thomasin Graham
Our guest artist, Chantal Mahoney, delighted us at the last general meeting with short video
presentations of her wonderful work together with a demonstration of synaesthesia.
Born in Toulouse, France, Chantal originally studied music. After coming to Australia she
completed a degree at the National Art School. For over 11 years she has worked at her studio
at Headland Park, Mosman. The studio, although a working studio, welcomes the public to look
Chantal will work on a series for a period, and then change. Initially Chantal painted people in
movement –stunning pictures of ballet, tango and flamenco dancers. She would video people
dancing, for example at a rehearsal, and then pause the video and make drawings, then little
pen and ink paintings, and subsequently oil paintings.
Following a visit by her cousin from Paris who was a performing clown, named Mme Bettina,
she created a series titled Mme Bettina. This in turn led to an interest in makeup and masks
and she produced a series of African faces made up for tribal ceremonies. This was followed
by an exploration of European use of mask – the Venetian masquerade using paint and collage.
Earlier series were all oil paintings. Then, reflecting a period of sadness in her life, she used
black and white pastel and white acrylic with black ink. Slowly the colours came back.
After being given a piano accordion she and her partner, who played the banjo, created a little
band called Sacrebleu. This led to her next series which explored stained glass windows, the
cutting of spaces, and collage and music.
Like Kandinsky and Klee before her, Chantal is very interested in the link between painting and
music. She, with others, have performed at Manly Art Gallery and other venues demonstrating
synaesthesia – where one sense evokes another. For example when hearing a certain sound
induces the visualization of a certain colour. “So you can see the music and hear the colour”.
Chantal demonstrated this for us. Painting to music she applied colour to a large disc in
response to the musical notes being played. It was a very beautiful performance.
Chantal’s advice: “Free yourself, experiment, paint what you want, have something to say,
learn what you want to say.”
As your life changes, so too will you art. Thank you Chantal for such a stimulating evening.
http://chantalmahoney.wix.com/art#! Thomasin Graham
From 2005 Professional artist, studio in Headland Park, Mosman, Sydney, Australia 2002 – 2004 Bachelor of Fine Arts (Painting), National Art School, East Sydney Colour, Light and Vision (Tutor: David Briggs), Julian Ashton Art School, Sydney 1999 – 2001 Selected studies, Waverley Woollahra Arts Centre, Bondi, Australia 1998 Moves to live and work in Sydney, Australia 1996 – 1998 Lived in Beijing, People’s Republic of China, extensive travelling in Asia 1961 Born in Toulouse, France Solo Exhibitions 2013 Masquerade Landship Gallery, Headland Park, Mosman, Australa 2012 The Circus is in Town Landship Gallery, Headland Park, Mosman, Australia 2012 The Circus is in Town, Woolpack Hotel, Redfern, Australia 2010 Colours in Black Landship Gallery, Headland Park, Mosman, Australia 2009 Flamenco Rehearsal Landship Gallery, Headland Park, Mosman, Australia 2008 Madame Bettina Landship Gallery, Headland Park, Mosman, Australia