Spotlight: Fiona Magee

Holly Terry

That she was beyond her years struck me early on when I first sat down with Fiona Magee.

Her ability to discuss all things extending beyond her artistic lifestyle meant our conversation delved into effortless tangents often. Reflecting on our conversation, and attempting to juggle the midst of university exams and the writing of this very piece, Fiona’s worldly confidence causes me to procrastinate heavily, scouring the web for all things exciting and colourful, resulting in a deep sense of self pity and an incredibly irritable mood.

However, this does not last more than a short while, as the study of her vibrant works readily distract me.

Fiona freely discusses her love for modern art and travel, having travelled to Europe in the recent months, while a trip to Japan is close-by on the horizon. In comparison to myself, huddled next to my extremely familiar fire, Fiona’s lifestyle seems to resonate the true excitement of a young and upcoming artistic flare.

Whatever happened to the days of the ‘starving artist’?

Having graduated from both Fine Arts and Visual Arts, Fiona specialises in fluid, contemporary artworks, predominantly experimenting with a range of mediums to create pieces which emerge with a strong sense of ‘funky’ expertise, demonstrated by her use of white ink. She masters her use of colour and pattern to create feelings of femininity, particularly using the circular perps to reflect the natural cycle of mother nature.

Working quickly, and with great expression Magee fares well in the creation of abstract pieces which are highly representative of the sublime portion of our existence, believing her works develop a visual representation of something that is tangible, yet incomplete. Although both major themes may seem perhaps incompatible, Fiona highlights that rather than meshing the two ideas together, she views them side by side, as whole and separate notions. Clearly, the two ideas interact together to create sublime and incredibly beautiful works.

Who said clashing trends are a no go? 

Magee makes it clear that having graduated, she is beginning to return to an experimentation of mediums and processes rather than an artistic style. Inevitably refined and tuned towards a brief. Without meaning to offend, she highlights the fact that fluid art is quickly becoming ‘a kitsch thing’, and to excel with such an artistic practice, a sense of originality is required with utmost importance. I feel that Fiona nails this perfectly, particularly with her perspex pieces.

The proof is in the pudding baby!

Recently, Magee’s work has been taking on a fresh style, incorporating the use of pastels and watercolours on canvas, a move far more conservative than her vivid colour pieces. I ask her what her thoughts are on the emergence of digital art, often an area which is frowned upon by a portion of fine artists. She discusses the way she hails the emergence of digital art, as it creates a platform in which causes art to be accessible, affordable and quick.

However, she asks, leaving me to ponder the question myself, ’is it crafty or is it fine art?'

To come, you may find Fiona participating in an initiative created by season 2 Bachelorette, Chantal Hryniewski, ‘Magnus Collective’. Fiona discusses this with high passion, and explains the way the initiative works to represent young, emerging artists to create a platform in which they can showcase their work. Such a fresh initiative has taken the Melbourne art scene by storm, appealing to Melbourne’s youth, an entirely new targeted demographic for the Melbourne art world. 

In the future, Fiona is looking to hold a solo show, a leap of faith in comparison to her usual participation in group exhibitions.

Holly Terry is a young lass from the 'burbs who enjoys painting and eating. You'll find her painting anything with an inch of available space, including her pet dog. When she is not cooped up at her job and favourite hobby, Davey Jones, she spends her days studying International Relations. She hopes to take on the world in future years and rewrite the entire series of Star Wars.