In conversation with Kerry Armstrong
What has been your experience as an artist? When did you start creating?
I started in earnest ten years ago in response to having a brain tumour. Painting was my stress relief, my place to feel something in myself that I hadn’t experienced before and yet at the same time it felt like I had done it for lifetimes. I pushed hard for growth in that time and found my whole life opened up to a new dimension. It's proof to me that some things in life call you and in the process of trusting yourself incredibly exciting things can and will happen. It’s been an unbelievable ride of self discovery, an antidote to fear and misgivings and a freedom I could never have imagined existed in my previous life.
In your mind, how do art and fashion marry up?
I have always seen and known the obvious links and bridges between the art world and the world of fashion.
Both hold and drive human currency, communication and stimulate the senses.
What was it like working with the team at MANNING CARTELL as artist in residence?
So incredibly easy and organic. I felt a strong synergy from the initial conversation with Cheryl and the team – it was truly like we knew one another very well already and I feel the collection provides a beautifully rounded account of our work together.
I’m very honoured and proud of this collaboration.
Why is collaborating with an Australian fashion brand important to you?
Australian fashion is such an important global voice for us to proudly project. I believe our talent shines exceptionally brightly and again feel so privileged to be part of it.
How did you translate your work to suit a body rather than a canvas?
It was never my intention to paint in a different way, I set out to mirror the energy generated between the brand and my own painting narrative. I absolutely trusted MANNING CARTELL to translate from canvas to body form and I’m so thrilled with the results.
What medium do you usually work with?
I’m primarily an oil painter. In short, oil painting suits my narrative as it oxidises (dries) in a way that to me is akin to the human body, we wake up each day with millions of new cells and we’re never the same physically from one day to the next. I adore the lush textures and extreme luxury of oil paints, there is no other medium to match the beauty and grandeur.