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Otomys is delighted to introduce new works by Sydney-based Artist, Celia Gullett.

Gullett’s masterful Geometric Abstractions (Oil on Panel) are a construction and deconstruction of arrangements. In this series, Gullett explores the interplay of colour and compositions, creating a lively dialogue within and between the works. A recurring motif features within many of the works in the series – these pieces play to each other in a sympathetic vibration of sorts. Viewing or procuring the works as a pair or collection highlights the striking conversation between the shifting shapes.

Gullett’s Raga Series (Oil on Linen) examines the confluence between painting and music in the Rajput tradition of Indian culture. Within each Raga, Gullett explores colour and layering, making reference to melodic structure and spirituality in the Raga tradition. As such, each Raga seems to possess distinctive notes and energy levels. These are deeply peaceful works. The immersive quality of the Raga series is strengthened by their large scale and highly textured ‘loom state’ linen.

We visited Gullett’s Sydney studio – a large, collaborative studio space shared with five other artists – to view her works in progress, and catch up on her most recent influences.

Celia, thank you for having us at your studio! Please tell us about your recent inspirations and processes?

What propels my work is a fascination for colour and surface. I’m interested in working with colour. It has meaning. It has structure. It can be elusive, it can be emotive. But as a single entity, it’s really limitless. In terms of colour, my inspiration comes from observing. Anything can trigger a painting – an arrangement in nature, or a partnership of colours I might find in the non-natural world. Light and its effect on colour is vital to the way I observe. Surface is something that can in itself be seductive, but surface is affected by how we apply the matter, the substance of paint. The way a brush delivers paint to the surface is really the hand writing, the mark making. This mark making is such an important part of my practice, it’s a language I am constantly developing.

In both my Colour Fields and my small geometric pieces I am investigating colour and surface. The Colour Fields works are nearly always inspired by a desire to dialogue with one colour. Within this one colour there are many versions, so I tend to layer versions of, for example blue, until the work has enough depth. Generally, when the depth is right, the painting is finished.

The Geometrics are a little different, in that there are more colours. It’s about composing – balancing those colours within a motif that supports the colours. Often one colour calls for another, in a certain tone or density. In this way, I can choose between a discord or a harmony, depending on what I am trying to explore.

The panels I work on give a very different surface to the effects of paint on heavy linen. Multi layered, glazed, altered until everything sits perfectly together. I’m totally inspired by my trips to India. The Ragas have a strong connection to the culture and history, in particular the music. This led to a need to harmonise or make each colour speak to the others in each painting, creating a narrative in colour.

Please tell us about your new work? What are you exploring? Is it linked to your previous work?

My new work is a continuation what I have been doing. I’m inspired by the works of Fra Angelico, not so much in terms of their religious subjects, although I think they go way beyond the Christian beliefs and go closer to pure painting, pure spirit. The palette is limited by the pigments that were available at the time. The extraordinary use of these colours is wonderful. I find so much relevance for this use of colour in my own work, it speaks to me.


View Celia Gullett’s Online Gallery, or make a time to view the works within our Melbourne and Tetbury Gallery spaces.

Contact studio@otomys.com to make an appointment to discuss these works with an Otomsy Art Consultant in your state.

Otomys is proud to represent London-based artist, Gill Rocca, and we were thrilled to visit her London studio to view her new art works. Rocca’s contemporary oil paintings tend to stop viewers in their tracks. The powerful miniature scale of these works prompts the viewer to engage and contemplate.

One can get lost in these art works – there is a sense that each image is a screen or portal to another world; a mysterious, alluring realm, hidden in our own. Each piece is spectacularly detailed, and the fine mist that lingers in each possesses its own emotive power.

Rocca describes: “My body of work primarily revolves around the representation of imagined landscapes. Executed in oil, the works vary in scale from intimate miniatures on resin and wood to large scale paintings on canvas.

Inspired by the realism of film and photography, the paintings attempt to create a dreamlike tension between reality, memory and the imagination.

Always uninhabited, shrouded in mist or captured as night draws in, the scenes pictured suggest an unspoken, unfinished narrative. The glow of streetlights or road markings act as traces in the paintings, often disappearing into the distance to merge again into empty space.”

View Gill Rocca’s works in the Otomys Gallery – Melbourne, or email studio@otomys.com to make an appointment to discuss these works with an Otomys Art Consultant.

If Mark Roper wasn’t already on your radar, he most definitely is now. Originally hailing from the UK, Melbourne based Mark Roper isn’t just an artist, but a brilliantly versatile creative. With an extensive portfolio including food, travel, lifestyle and interior photography for both editorial and commercial projects, he is undoubtedly well regarded in his industry. However, Mark’s latest venture was one of a more personal journey.

Chronicles got talking to Mark fresh from the opening night of his new photography series ‘Arcane’.  In his limited edition debut collection of 8 Archival Lustre prints exhibited at Otomys gallery and online, Mark uses Polaroid film to explore the relationship between old and new, light and dark, chemical and digital.

Otomys: Tell us a little about your background, what did you study and what led you to where you are today?

  • Mark: I studied film and photography in the south west of the UK. I was originally going to take the path of film making but found I enjoyed the photography part of the course more, so ended up specializing in that.

Otomys: What 3 words best describe your work?

  • Mark: Moody, Layered, Mysterious

Otomys: What inspired your shift from traditional photographic work to polaroids, which forms your new ‘Arcane’ series?

  • Mark: My editorial and commercial work is all shot digitally. I love the control and precision of digital photography but missed the unpredictability of film, especially Polaroid.

Otomys: What did you love about experimenting with polaroids?

  • Mark: With Polaroid, when you peel back the film you’re never 100 percent sure what the outcome will be. The more I experimented with the structure and the chemicals in the Polaroid, the more unpredictable it became. I manipulated the chemicals found in the film with a number of different elements which produced new and interesting results.

Otomys: Can you give us a little insight into the creative process behind the ‘Arcane’ collection? Was there an intended message behind this work?

  • Mark: There’s no set message behind the work, I think they are the kind of pieces that people will connect with in different ways. I started my career shooting on film and Polaroid so I was excited to get back to my photographic roots. I’d been sitting on the idea for a while so am very excited it’s all come to fruition!

Otomys: What’s next for Mark Roper?

  • Mark: Now that Arcane is complete it’s inspired a lot more ideas. I’d like to complete a series using a mix of mediums, not just photography. Hopefully I can finish the idea by early next year.

Otomys: What would be your dream creative project?

  • Mark: My dream creative project would be to work with an interior designer and creative artworks for a hotel fitout

Otomys: Where do you currently call home?

  • Mark: I live in Caulfield, Melbourne. It’s a quiet suburb that is still close to everything with great parks and cafes.

Otomys: Can you share with us any best-kept-secret locations in a favourite neighbourhood around here?

  • Mark: There’s a great little cafe called Next Of Kin in Elsternwick which does fantastic breakfasts and coffee.

Otomys: What does a typical Saturday look like for you?

  • Mark: A typical Saturday for me, if I’m on top of all my work, involves a lie in, a couple of coffees and then spending the day with my wife Deb and kids Jack and Ella. We like to head out for lunch at our local or down to the park or the beach.