OUT/ABOUT: RACHEL CASTLE ‘FLORA’
With a thriving career in the tightly held homewares market it would be easy to dismiss Rachel Castle’s new exhibition at Koskela as merely decorative. Castle produces design that speaks of a deep and nuanced understanding of art and art with a strong ‘design’ aesthetic. The latter association is not always an easy one, with detractors dismissing work produced in this way as being somehow less significant. Yet through careful craftsmanship Castle has successfully engaged this divide and presented a show that is a pure and unadulterated celebration of beauty.
Adopting painting techniques that show the influence of printmaking in her other creative channels, Rachel builds up her compositions with translucent layers. The simplified floral motifs, which feel part doodle, part Seuss-like fantasy, appear and recede into the layers with artistic precision. The spot is also expertly employed as a compositional tool to direct your eye and allow you to explore the quirky forest of flowers that result. This is all tied together with a palette that has a freshness and currency that will make this a very popular show commercially. So here we return to the art/design debate, but when it comes down to it, does it really matter? I think not. Rachel has painted a show that is easy to love and therefore where it sits on the artistic spectrum is of very little importance.
Words by: Katrina Arent
Rachel Castle ‘Flora’ at Koskela
85 Dunning Ave, Rosebery NSW 2018
Open Mon – Fri 9am – 5pm, Sat 9am – 4pm, Sun 10am – 4pm
Credits: Rachel Castle