We have to award all points to Bec Juniper not only for having a successful first solo show but for her ability to stand in her own light as an artist. Sure, if you search hard enough with a pre-set disposition, you may find a hint here or there of her father's influence, but it's due more to genetic coding then artistic appropriation. Bec's style is her own, not Robert's. Now that we've got that out of the way ...
Juniper's work displays her personal interpretations and impressions of suburbia; both the residential sprawl that fills the sub spaces between city and industrial area and the outlying burbs pressing hard against the rural sector. Although it's home to most of us, we tend to overlook the best and worst of it so the artist takes us with her as she drives around busy suburbs. Then she brings us home, through the garden and indoors via bright compositions suggestive of still life subjects.
Bec employs a dual perspective in the landscapes that allow different interpretations of the image. For example, when viewing the colourful squares of Coogee Hills Real Estate, we are either looking down on new houses spreading, cheek by jowl, over the brown earth and reaching out to the sea, or watching colourful blocks march up the side of a large industrial chimney and on to oblivion. Then, with a mental shift of perspective, we see a mosaic of thoughts.
Suburbs are plotted in Day After Day and Network that show aerial views of roads carving up the land. Here straight lines draw rectilinear patterns across textured surfaces composed of layers of mottled earth hues. And Form in Landscape creates a visual and emotional contrast between figure and field as the broad line of bitumen black folds its way through bright colour. Meanwhile Drift seems to encapsulate the lighter side of suburban living as it brings to mind balloons, clouds, seed pods, telephone wires and other things that float in the air over our roofs.
Juniper does not forget the women who inhabit suburban 'boxes on the hillside that are all made out of ticky tacky'. Figure in the Landscape is a potent image of an standing figure, which is suggested by, rather then constructed of, small squares drawn in a mosaic-like clusters. Also forceful, in a more intuitive then physical sense, is Ancient Thoughts a simple image that imparts a strong sense of womanhood.
Bec Juniper reveals she is a fine artist and we look forward to seeing
more of her unique and energetic style in the future.
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