LISA LEE – In The Fast Lane
“ Every single day life unfolds before us. Some days we are able to acknowledge this passing, other days we are oblivious to another twenty-four hours simply whizzing by. Life is fast and getting faster. These recent works spotlight the blurring speed at which our world is moving.” Lisa Lee
Speed is pandemic in modern day existence. We are always in a rush – there seems no time to stop and take note of where we are and what we’re doing. “The impetuous world we inhabit is a manifestation of the pursuit to meet ever increasing demands for immediacy and improved products,” says Lee. “In my mind’s eye, it conjures images of fast moving traffic, commuters, busy schedules and deadlines.” With extraordinary finesse Lisa Lee investigates the visual and psychological implications of such accelerated motion and life ‘in the fast lane’.
Amidst all this busyness and scurrying, the boundaries that shape our identities are becoming increasingly ill-defined. Like images captured on a high-speed camera, Lee employs distortion and blurring to condense the flow of time into a single instant. She seems to play the role of a reporter – a detached observer of estranged humanity.
Both painted surface and human document, each work portrays figures hurtling towards unspecified destinations or briefly halted through circumstance and exhaustion. The individuals who populate her canvases have an aura of alienation and are curiously faceless. Zombie-like denizens bound by necessity and convention or ordinary folk deliberately inuring themselves against the city’s assaulting glare and clang? Lee explains that her paintings reflect the voluntary and involuntary, insular behaviour that people exhibit when in crowded situations.
Lee takes control of pictorial space with a remarkable confidence. The tension between speed and stasis, the abrupt changes of electrified colour, flickering coronas and subjects compressed by monochromatic expanses, or juxtaposed against streaks of simulated motion, create an immense, aesthetic potency. Hanging alongside many of the pieces, custom-made road signage with directives such as ‘slow down’, ‘no stopping’ and ‘daily grind ahead’, compound the sense of entrapment. “Installing aluminium road signs into my exhibition seemed a very appropriate way to compliment the works and add a little irony and humour,” Lee muses. “Slow Down. Embrace a little chaos in life but find contentment in stillness.”
Lisa Lee is an emerging Queensland artist working and residing on the Sunshine Coast. She graduated with a Diploma in Fine Arts, 2003 and has since gone on to complete an intensive, large-scale figurative drawing course at the National Art School, Sydney. She has been selected as a finalist in several major, national art awards including; the 60th Blake Prize, 2011; the Prometheus Visual Arts Award, 2011; SCAP 09 – Sunshine Coast Art Prize, 2009; LAUNCH Clayton Utz Scholarship, 2009; Prometheus Art Award, 2009; LAUNCH Clayton Utz Travelling Art Scholarship, 2009; the Stan and Maureen Duke Art Prize, 2008; SCAP 08- Sunshine Coast Art Prize, 2008; Churchie National Emerging Art Exhibition, 2007; Churchie National Emerging Art Exhibition, 2006; Conrad Jupiters Art Prize, 2005 and received a RADF Grant, Arts Queensland, 2005.
In the Fast Lane opens at Retrospect Galleries, Broadbeach on Friday 16th September and runs until 29th September 2011.
MEDIA CONTACT: For more information, interviews and/or photo opportunities please contact:
Lorraine Pilgrim or Sarah Crawford, Retrospect Galleries
Phone: 07 5538 8825