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Gillie and Marc Schattner
Search terms: painting, drawing, acrylic, watercolour, charcoal, portrait, figurative, nature
About the Artists
Husband and wife Marc and Gillie Schattner are international award winning artists and Archibald Prize Finalists. Gillie, born in London in 1965 and Marc born in Melbourne in 1961 have been painting together for the last 15 years and have exhibited their art all over the world. Most of their artwork appears as diptychs. They work collaboratively on the same art piece combining their talent to arrive at a single vision. Every aspect of the art piece has both their minds and hands on it, reflecting their individual passions and influences in life.
Marc Schattner studied Graphic Design at Swinburne, Melbourne. Gillie Schattner is a self-taught artist. They have had solo exhibitions in Sydney, New York, Singapore, Hong Kong and Belgium.
Australian Art is going through an exciting state of flux. Experts will tell you that the creative scene has been driven for the past ten years by male artists - in particular, angry male artists - expressing themselves through violent and painful images designed to agitate, disturb and upset the viewer. Tastes, however, are now changing. In reaction to these testosterone fuelled, aggressive images, a gentler, more refined creative expression is gaining popularity. Art is taking on a romantic sensibility, with a focus on portraiture and the celebration of every day objects. Images are softer, and execution techniques more restrained. More female artists are coming into prominence too. But Art is not a single entity, a tamed beast that behaves predictably and consistently. The Contemporary Art scene is the sum of all prominent artists output and there are those who don't fit the mold. Gillie and Marc Schattner are a prime example. Finalists for the Archibald portraiture prize in 2006, Gillie and Marc's work forms a bridge between the aggressive male dominated Art of the past decade and the current gentler, female-driven movement. Their subjects are a celebration of the commonplace - pets, furniture, portraits - reminiscent of the Pop movement which characterized the art scene of the 1960s. At that time, reaction to the Vietnam War and its far reaching socio-economic and political effects played a significant factor in shaping the creative climate, with artists wanting to remind us that every day life should be appreciated. Arguably, similar forces are at play today.
Unlike Andy Warhol's highly-refined images, however, Gillie and Marc's work takes a raw approach in expressing images, incongruous with current trends. Working (and living) together with cohesive, symbiotic energy, Gillie and Marc are most well known for their diptyches - two images placed side-by-side to create an emotional reaction which is greater than the sum of its two separate parts. As Gillie puts it "there is no image that hasn't been seen - but by juxtaposing different icons together, an interesting, dynamic narrative is created in the viewers mind".
Gillie and Marc's current work of drawings paintings and sculptures, using imagery of domestic dogs next to chairs and sofas, exemplifies the philosophy eloquently. Marc explains "a domestic dog is a symbol of loyalty, comfort and companionship. The sofa is symbolic of modern comfort and domestic bliss. So placing iconic images of the two side by side creates an even greater sense of ease and contentment. And keeping the treatment raw stops the composite from being saccharine. Were all disturbed by the violence in the world today. Of course, it was bound to impact on Art, but people don't want it there anymore. They want to feel safe, content, validated. Gillie and I strive to capture the essence of those positive feelings through figurative imagery".
2007 - "Modern Addiction", Libby Edwards,
Selected Group Exhibitions
2007 - Mosman Art Prize Finalist, Mosman Art
Awards and Publications
2006 - ARCHIBALD PRIZE FINALIST, Art Gallery of
New South Wales (Portrait of John Konrads and Black Dog)
Zacs PB (Hodder Headline),
Black Dog Institute, Prince of Wales Hospital,
Hilton Hotel, Singapore
THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH, Marc and Gillie Schattner
Exhibition, 25 June 2006