ARTIST: Tarisse King
TITLE: Water
LANGUAGE/REGION: Katherine, NT
YEAR: 2018
DIMENSIONS: 900mm x 600mm
MEDIUM: synthetic polymer paints on canvas
DTA CATALOGUE: #7912

Tarisse King was born in Adelaide, South Australia on the 4th September 1986. She is the older sister to fellow artist, Sarrita King and daughter to the late highly regarded artist, William King Jungala (1966 – 2007).

Tarisse inherits her Australian Aboriginality from her father who was part of the Gurindji tribe from the Northern Territory. The Gurindji tribe came to public attention during the 1960s and 1970s when members employed by the Wave Hill cattle station led a landmark case which became the first successful land rights claim in Australia. Like her forefathers, Tarisse is an assertive individual who is determined to communicate the inseparable connection she and her ancestors have with the Australian land.

Tarisse spent the majority of her youth in Darwin, a unique city in northern Australia that is subject to extreme weather conditions; from torrential rain and cyclones in the Wet Season to oppressive and immobilising heat in the Dry Season. This climatic impact is seen in her artwork but it was also the road trips she travelled between Darwin, Katherine and Adelaide, where her father resided, that she reflects on most in her paintings. The journey of 3027 kilometers, right through the heart of Australia, reveals extreme expanses of varying landscapes and provided Tarisse with the isolation and time to develop a unique perception of the land which can be seen in her paintings such as Pink Salts and My Country – Tracks and Rivers.

Moving to Adelaide at the age of 16, it was her involvement with her father’s art that led Tarisse to experiment with her own designs and techniques, resulting in a definable style of her own. Drawing on the Central and Western Desert Aboriginal dotting style of painting the land topographically, Tarisse captures a complex and varied soul of the land.

In homage to her father, her adaptation of Earth Images defines Australia as if looking from outer space back to land; the viewer is given a heightened feeling of drifting above the earth. Then, in her series, My Country Tarisse composes 40,000 year old Aboriginal iconography of song lines, dots and circles to create a bold and contemporary aesthetic and provides yet another more detailed perspective on the landscape. Finally, Pink Salts, lowers the viewer back down the earth and immerses one in the surreal and luminous pink sunsets over the great salt lakes in the centre of Australia. In all of Tarisse’s artworks, she contemporises the ancient and allows the present day viewer an accessible moment to consider the past.

Tarisse now lives in New Zealand and paints in a her home studio while looking after children.

The Artwork:

TITLE: Water

Tarisse paints a Water series which captures the movement and shimmer of the water as seen from above through her varied tonal use of blues and whites. She paints aquatic peaks and troughs employing a condensation of dots to create the peaks and a sparseness of dots to reveal the black canvas below and represent the deep black waters and the shadows lurking underneath. They form such an optical effect the canvas appears to move and it is difficult to find a single focus point for long.

Tarisse understands the life-giving properties water provides and feels this element in particular connects her to her father. The depth of water and the rejuvenating qualities it offers can be felt luring the viewer to her paintings.

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