|When my family arrived in Australia in 1949 we spent
the first few months at the Bathurst Migrant Camp. Here I found my
first creek bed. Building shelters and pathways and damming the trickling
creek became part of my daily education. My interest in painting the
Australian landscape can partly be attributed to this early new found
feeling of comfort and freedom.
For the last seven years I have lived on the south-west coast of Victoria.
Now I explore the coast and hinterland near my home on foot recording
the fabric and texture of the countryside in gouache. I use the gouaches
as a reference for later oils on canvas.
Adam Dutkiewicz has described my work as "gestural abstraction”
(Adelaide Advertiser, 2002). In contrast to the spontaneity of the
gouaches I approach my oils in a painstaking way. I apply the paint
thinly at first and build the surface up slowly. My challenge is
to express in oils the essence and distinctiveness of the landscape
I have already captured in gouache. Roaming the bush and painting
are both solitary pursuits. At times one treads the paths previously
forged by explorers and earlier artists.
Juris Ceriņš, 2008