VENUE: 107 Redfern
The inspiration for my art exhibition is sourced from an illustrated children’s set of encyclopedia's called Knowledge. These volumes were published by Purnell & Sons Ltd in the 1960’s and the books amazing illustrator was Alessandro Fedini.
Children’s encyclopaedias hold a special place in many peoples hearts. I have fond memories of trawling through the A - Z volumes looking for information for school projects, marvelling at the intricately detailed pictures and copying the illustrations. It was the beginning of my illustrator apprenticeship. I was immediately transported to another fascinating time in history. It was a great way to learn about the world around us, in the comfort of your own home if you were lucky enough to have parents who bought the volumes, or visiting the local library to research school projects.
These volumes were originally distributed as monthly magazines with a special binder for each volume. I was lucky enough to find this series in book form, bound in gold and burgundy, at a thrift shop where most of these books eventually end their days after the Internet became the custodian of knowledge.
So I decided, in honour of the book of knowledge - the encyclopaedia and the extraordinary illustrator’s skill, to ‘cut and paste’ many of the images I found on the pages of the volumes into a large collage.
However as I was cutting out the images I dropped one. It landed face down on one of my black vinyl chairs. The reverse of the image was just as fascinating as the front especially on a black background. It was then that I decided to create an art installation. The other side of the image became a metaphor for celebrating the hidden side or 'behind the scenes' of publishing large tomes. Celebrating the art and research, the work and the time, what we do not see or consider in the creation of large illustrated books.
I have painted 60 artworks onto small black wooden panels to be displayed in a tiled format.
About the Artist
Robbi Wymer lives in Woronora NSW, working as a visual artist and a registered art therapist.