Photograph by Louisa Clayton
Kevina-Jo Smith Biography
Kevina-Jo Smith resides in the Blue Mountains, a place which sustains and inspires her. Her work is concerned with exploring environments and cultural climates, through both exhibited works and the lived process behind those pieces.
Smith’s intricately detailed, tactile aesthetic emerges from her approach to her art as a craft. Using discarded and up-cycled materials, she employs a complex system of rules that formalise coincidence, maintaining a space for chaos within the works, in line with the contradiction of order and chaos that exists within the natural world. She conceives of this as a kind of emergence based on pre-determined factors: a self-organisation of the works as opposed to a more traditional, controlled composition.
Each piece is intricate, delicate and time consuming to create: a heavy practical span of hand-knitting, knotting, weaving, painting and collage. It is an act of endurance and, with her care and labour, these works grow. This process serves as a tribute to the natural world and a ritual protecting against its destruction. Many of her works depict landscapes, while some operate as installations or multi-media artworks interrogating the dynamics of landscapes. In other works, she isolates particular moments, or movements of humans or objects. In all of these, Smith deploys abstraction as a means of resisting capitalist logics. She connects the material world with the imagined; the public with the private; universal with subjective; global with local. Smith weaves an intensely personal visual language as a means of addressing social and political issues in an intimate, vulnerable manner.
Kevina-Jo Smith works and exhibits regularly in Sydney, the Blue Mountains and Melbourne.
25 Jan 2016
i-D talk to Kevina about blending fashion design and large-scale installation art, against the backdrop of the Blue Mountains.
photography by Louisa Clayton