Stacey McCall, Autumn

“At the beginning of Autumn 2020 we moved our family of seven to Toolamba, a small town in the Goulburn Valley north of Melbourne, where my husband and I have been growing walnuts for the past 20 years. It was harvest time, so it was all hands on, but when harvest was done I had those beautiful Autumn days to paint. We were amongst those lucky people who had somewhere to go out of the city, three months together as a family.

There is something about that Autumn light, filtered through the mist of pollen from the plane trees that are dotted around the farm, coming in through the window of my little studio, changing the way I saw objects, changing the way that I paint.

Referencing initial drawings done quickly in charcoal and watercolour, objects becoming more distorted, more emotive perhaps. I started to feel comfortable to leave things unsaid, more confident with descriptive gestural brushstrokes. The underpainting becoming more important, followed by translucent layers of colour, allowing the glow of burnt sienna to come through.

This body of work reflects that time I spent on the farm, long days painting, time to play and experiment, trusting intuition…I’ve always loved Autumn the most.”

After completing a Fine Art degree in Gold and Silversmithing at RMIT, Stacey spent the next twelve years designing and making bespoke jewellery, eventually opening a small store and workshop in Melbourne’s inner-city suburb of Kensington. Following the birth of daughter number three, Stacey’s practice was homeward bound, and after daughter number five, her creativity was nurtured by knitting, drawing, writing and painting.

Now that her daughters are in their teens and beyond, Stacey’s garden studio provides the perfect space to grow her art practice.

Autumn runs until June 6. To see the full listing click here.

Install images by Carli Wilson Photography.