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‘Ephemera’ at MiCK

Maintaining artist Nicholas Blowers signature fascination with highly detailed representations of the natural world, his latest collection consists of intricate paintings of insects and plants examined with powerful microscopes.

One of the leading artists to emerge in Australia, Nicholas Blowers has had considerable success over a short period of time. After sell out exhibitions in 2006 and 2007 at Dickerson Galleries in Sydney and Melbourne, the English-born artist moved to Hobart where the remarkable flora and fauna has greatly inspired him. Blowers’ work celebrates meticulous observation of his environment – through intense examination of the landscape and the life that it supports, Blowers attempts to reconstruct the micro-environments and lives in incredible detail. The result is a unique interpretation, which allows the artist to showcase his highly refined skills as a painter. 

Nicholas’ recent series of paintings relate to the world of insects. Blowers has used electron microscopes and macro photography to capture detailed images of insects found in his studio. In some paintings there are groupings of insects derived from the electron microscope plates. In other pictures the focus is on a solitary insect. The over-arching theme in his work is collapse and decay. 

Nicholas sees the subjects as portraits with his main focus being how to capture the singularity of decay or the particular nature of an insect’s design within this unknown landscape. Although the artist has always had a great interest in botanical illustration, his interest in depicting this hidden world is not to create a scientifically useful image. It is to present to the viewer a subject in terms of its potential to explore his aesthetic concerns with mark making. This pathway allows the observer to feel an emotional attachment with the painting and the subject.

Nicholas Blowers has twice won the Paddington Art Prize (NSW 2007, 2009); has been a finalist in the prestigious Doug Moran Portrait Prize (NSW) with a portrait of Charles Blackman; a finalist in the Blake Prize; has been short-listed and highly commended for the Waterhouse Natural History Art Prize twice; has won The Kings School Art Prize and is a five-time finalist in the Glover Art Prize (TAS).

Ephemera runs from 30 October to 2 December at MiCK.