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Canberra Today 24°/26° | Tuesday, November 30, 2021 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Like several painters rolled into one

Kerry McInnis, “Dark Rocks.” Mixed Media on Paper 2021

Art / “Terraform” Kerry McInnis. Nancy Sever Gallery, Civic, to December 5. Reviewed by ROB KENNEDY

KERRY McInnis seems to be several painters rolled into one. The works and ideas currently on show in her exhibition at the Nancy Sever Gallery subtly prove this.

In the 17 artworks on display, it looks and feels like each one has a different colour palette. While the subject matter is similar, land, river and seascapes, each one has a unique style. All but one was painted in 2021.

The 2019 artwork titled “The Gorge Cliff”, is again another colour and style to the rest of the paintings. More abstract and from a light to a dark palette, places this piece in a unique perspective. It is threatening and comforting at the same time.

This Bungendore-based artist travels around the country to capture her subjects and influences. While a semi-finalist in the 2021 Doug Moran National Portrait Prize with a painting of Hugh Mackay, few of these landscapes contain people. But there is one of the artist herself in “River Painter”.

The Australian landscape can be quite mystical. This is seen throughout almost every artwork on display. In “Rock Meditation”, the rocks sit before the sea as the grey horizon disappears into the foaming waters. Its statement diffused in time and place. The shapes and presence of rocks capture McInnis’ attention, and the viewers.

In “Rock City”, boulders look like a place of comfort. Their solidity forms the structure of past, present and future times; like they are stuck in her memory. In “Monolith #4, the giant white surface of the rock immediately draws the eye’s attention. Without this rock, little subject matter might exist. The same goes for “Monolith #1, 2 and 3”.

Using oil and oil sticks on canvas, McInnis captures the textures of rocks realistically and beautifully. The high levels of craft and dedication that has gone into every artwork are clearly present and affecting. Each one has its own story and something individual to share.

Like the Australian landscape itself, there is so much to explore and experience in the transcendent works in this exhibition.

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Helen Musa

Helen Musa

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