Fern Street Gallery

Fern Street Gallery – The South Coast Destination for Art Lovers, reopened on Friday 5th June 2020. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays 10am-4pm. They have also created a beautiful video from the gallery (credit to Resident Artist, Jon Harris Photography), feel free to share it far and wide:

Who’s in the Window?

This fortnight the new display in the gallery window is by Resident Artist Vanessa Anderson.

Meet Resident Artist Vanessa Anderson

Having been born in South Africa and immigrating to Australia 20 years ago, Vanessa’s artworks draw on a personal history of experiences and imagery that are inspired and informed by both these countries, their distinctive landscapes and creatures. Her unique blend of symbolic imagery, still-life and surreal landscapes are significantly influenced by what she sees and feels in the world, striving to create a unique, authentic voice.

“When I start a piece I never quite know what I want to say but then a visual conversation begins and it evolves into a fantastic, quirky dialogue of beauty, fragility, loss and hope. This gives me joy. When this conversation resonates with someone else, the viewer, I am truely grateful. Presently I am creating a series of works on paper. Small and intimate, they have been the perfect medium to work with during recent social distancing restrictions and best support my internal processes and reflections of Isolation and COVID19. It is evident that I am repeatedly drawn to landscapes and creatures, particularly the South Coast because they are a fantastic colourful metaphoric language and when used in an unusual context they create a meaningful dialogue for the soul.”

Vanessa Anderson

Artworks by Vanessa Anderson

“Ring a Ring o’ Roses” by Vanessa Anderson
Acrylic and Ink on Paper
46.5cm x 61.5cm (Framed)

When talk of a worldwide pandemic first started circulating in the media and there was widespread panic toilet paper buying, this work surfaced. I work with children and one of the nursery rhymes we sing is Ring-a-ring o’ roses. I have always been fascinated by nursery rhymes and how dark they can actually be. Sung to a bright tune they touch on societies dangers, suffering and loss; they can be a cheerful warning system that is passed on from generation to generation. Amazingly here it was, a nursery rhyme sung into reality “A-tishoo, A-tishoo we all fall down”.  Similarly, my artwork explores the prospects of a plague in an equally dark, beautiful and serene manner.

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“I Know I’ll Be Stronger” by Vanessa Anderson
Acrylic and Ink on Paper
47.5xcm x 61.5cm (Framed)

This is essentially a picture of freedom and hope; a belief that the dark ultimately leads to the light and the fish that was once confined is literally set free. This is a recurring theme for me and although I am playing on current events such as the ending of
isolation and a plague (depicted by flies); this work really speaks to a wider theme of liberation after suffering.

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“Easter 2020” by Vanessa Anderson
Acrylic and Ink on Paper 
63cm x 50cm (Framed)

This work was literally born out of the restrictions imposed during the Easter long weekend. I was based in Newtown at the time and prevented from travelling to Kiama or spending time on Sydney beaches; there was nothing about 2020 that had been normal so far and I had time on my hands. In my desire to mark this unprecedented event, perhaps a once in a lifetime pandemic, and its
worldwide repercussions, Easter 2020 came to life.

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Want to see more artworks by Vanessa Anderson?


Current Exhibition

FErn Street Gallery follow all required Covid-19 Government guidelines for galleries – please don’t let that stop you from supporting us. Please sign in when you visit (details only for the  Health Authorities to track Covid-19 cases in case of outbreaks. Your details will be kept safe, not shared and will be destroyed after 28 days). Please keep at least 1.5m apart from other people at all times. Please use the hand sanitiser provided, before and after artwork purchases. Thank you for keeping our artists, community and yourself safe.

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