GABBY MALPAS

Gabby’s watercolours are intricate portrayals of blended cultures and beautiful objects. Locally grown fruit and flowers picked and bought near-by are rendered with a warmth and intimacy, forming a conversation between the rarefied, patterned flora that decorates the Chinese ceramics and Malaysian batik fabrics within her images.

Gabby creates many sketches of a single flower or piece of fruit, playing with multiple viewpoints. Compositions are then imagined using a mental assemblage of the images often long after the flower has shed its petals and the oranges have been eaten. Gabby regularly studies butterfly specimens and photos of birds, bringing them to life in her works. Ceramics discovered in junk shops and batik sarongs from her travels around South East Asia are the constants within this series. Gabby simplifies the patterns on these objects, often flattening them out to display a pared-down pattern. By bringing these floral and faunal representations together, Gabby captures the fleetingly beautiful alongside the traditional and enduring.

Gabby studied ceramics at Otago Polytechnic School of Fine Art from 1984-86, before travelling through South East Asia and then moving to London in the 1990s.Gabby has been working chiefly in watercolour and ink since moving to Australia in 2003. 

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