Leah Thiessen

Leah Thiessen

A decade ago when Leah Thiessen relocated to Northern NSW to a bush studio perched on the water’s edge, she deepened her kindred eye. Gestural and expressive, her paintings present the river as a place of renewal and immersion. The maturity and verve of her large scale abstract paintings join a lineage of painters before her (such as Ann Thomson and Elisabeth Cummings) who created an original visual language from the broken forms and fugitive light of the landscape. Thiessen depends her vision by avoiding art trends or movements and concentrating instead on the well spring of her considerable skill and vision: “My work taps into the emotional gravity of a place, its memory, its pulse, its rawness and power. For me the paintings communicate a deep felt relationship with the earth, embodying a spirit of place and its atmosphere. The course of painting is a primal impulse to mark. It is a physical and emotional experience. I paint in an expressive and gestural way capturing the force and energy of a place. I create a visceral experience through the use of mark making and the application of paint. My paintings are process driven and it is only through the act of painting over, scraping back and drawing into, that my work is resolved.”

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