Oscillations Art: Rachael Bartram
Number six in our series featuring the visual artists who contributed to Jus Like Music & Apple Juice Break present: Oscillations is with the young and talented Australian artist Rachael Bartram. Don’t forget to go back and check the first five parts with Remi/Rough, Nadia Lavard, Magda Kaggwa, Joe Baker and Warren Handley, respectively. Plus, remember to get your FREE download of Oscillations Part 1 & 2 via the Jus Like Music Records Bandcamp page!
Jus Like Music: Who are you, where are you from and what do you do?
Rachael Bartram: My name is Rachael Bartram and I was born on the Gold Coast in 1988. My mum is third or forth generation Australian, but my dad emigrated with his family from his home in Yorkshire in the UK to Brisbane in 1965 or 1966, I believe. From a young age, I loved drawing and would move through different phases changing mediums, tools and subjects. Texta Zooms were big in the primary years, then when I started taking art classes after school I became interested in the variable characteristics of graphite, conti pastels and watercolour pencils. By the time I was studying at the Queensland College of Art in 2007, I had developed a penchant for making silhouette paper cut-outs from black paper, which in turn led to the “Making Of” spatial installations, small scale 2D works and stop-motion animated sequences in my final year of study. At the moment I am finishing off my last elective class in my honours degree and have been entering shows and exhibitions seriously for roughly a year. The emerging art scenes on the both the Gold Coast and Brisbane are diversifying more and more each year and are quite distinct from those prevalent in, for instance, Sydney or Melbourne. Over the next few years I intend to focus a lot of my energy on writing my own projects, proposals and gaining a sturdy reputation as a working artist on both the Gold Coast and in Brisbane.
JLM: Why is it that you do you do what you do?
RB: Well, it can be something that is hard to put the finger on, but I think the interest in art partly derives from the gene pool. But it’s perhaps more the obsessive/intuitive factor. At a young age, picking up a pencil or texta pen was second nature and I didn’t even feel the brain ticking over, it was just an activity or intuitive habit I was driven to do every day.
JLM: Tell us what’s new in your world?
RB: 2010 has been a busy year thus far, my partner Waz and I both exhibited our work in the Brisbane Emerging Art Festival (organised by Vegas Spray) in January, and in April had our work printed on large sheets of vinyl and installed at Brisbane’s King George Square precinct as part of Youth Week. Since then I’ve been working on a series of 2D works focused on the themes and visual connotations associated with ‘hair’, for the aptly titled “Hair-Jacked” exhibition, to be kicking off in August at the Retrospect Galleries in Byron Bay.
JLM: Where do you hope to go with your art?
RB: I would like to push my art practice as far as it can go and maintain a level of integrity when it comes to making creative decisions. One thing I learnt from my university lecturers was to be ambitious and “work big”. Additionally, the documentation of practical experiments, images and concepts on a regular basis would be one of the ways I would keep my ideas “on their toes”, so to speak. Ultimately, my aim is to be a multi-disciplined, full time, studio based artist… with a slick espresso machine at hand.
JLM: How about music? What music are you into?
RB: Quite a few different bits; Blackalicious, Bonobo, Air, Sarah Blasko, Beck, Thievery Corporation, Bat for Lashes, Bjork, Cut Chemist, Split Enz, DJ Shadow, Katalyst, The Go-Betweens, Dappled Cities, Belle & Sebastian, Fleet Foxes, El Perro Del Mar, Mos Def, Santogold, Massive Attack, Lamb, Mr Scruff, Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Muse, Royksopp, The Shins, Aretha Franklin, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Blue King Brown, Thes One, Zero 7 and a wee bit of Jamiroquai.
JLM: Lastly, can you tell me about the track you’ve chosen to include with this article?
RB: I have chosen Planet New Year by Australian songbird Sarah Blasko. Exquisite song writing and storytelling at its finest.