21 June – 2 July 2023
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Saint Cloche warmly welcomes back Carissa Karamarko, an Australian artist based in Melbourne to reveal, Giocare; an Italian word meaning ‘to play’. This show is another element of Carissa’s artistic journey that has been a fragment of a whole continuous exploration and evolution, driven by an unyielding desire to capture the intangible aspects of human experience.
Recently, Carissa has embarked on a transformative shift from traditional still-life painting to a more abstract style, where energy and flow take center stage as the primary subjects.
In this evolving artistic path, she has found liberation from the constraints of representing physical objects with exacting precision. Instead, her focus has shifted towards encapsulating the essence of a feeling, a memory, or a fleeting moment. Energy, with its boundless capacity for movement and transformation, has become the lifeblood of her work. Through a harmonious interplay of colour, texture and form, she seeks to evoke a sense of visceral connection, transcending the boundaries of the visual realm.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Carissa Karamarko is an Australian artist based in Melbourne, whose career is defined by relentless exploration and evolution. With an unwavering passion to capture the intangible aspects of the human experience, Carissa has recently embarked on a transformative shift from traditional still life painting to an energetic abstract style. Energy, flow, and an intuitive approach to colour take centre stage as the primary subjects in her work, exemplifying her commitment to push boundaries.
Carissa has found liberation from the confines of representing physical objects with meticulous precision. Instead, her focus has transitioned towards encapsulating the essence of emotions, memories, and fleeting moments. Through a harmonious interplay of vibrant colours, textures, and captivating marks, Carissa’s work elicits a profound and visceral connection, transcending the boundaries of the visual realm.
Carissa is represented by Saint Cloche in Sydney and Modern Times in Melbourne and has remained a consistent fixture in numerous art prizes including the Geelong Contemporary Art Award, Muswellbrook Art Prize, and the Mosman Art Award across her career thus far.
Some of my most cherished childhood memories transport me to the bustling dining room of my Bubi & Didi’s home, where friends gathered around a round table, engrossed in a lively game of šusta. Standing on my tiptoes, I eagerly peered over the table, captivated by the infectious atmosphere of laughter, camaraderie, and spirited competition.
Similarly on the maternal side of my family, there were afternoons under the shade of my Nonna & Nonno’s mango tree, following a hearty family lunch. The warm air was filled with the melodious sound of cards being shuffled and the exchanges between uncles and cousins engaged in a game of Briscola.
As I grew older, the faces around the table changed, and yet, the essence of those cherished games remained steadfast. No longer a mere observer, I became an active participant, guided by my parents who skillfully imparted the rules and strategies of these games through the telling of legendary family tales. These card games held a unique power, unlocking the doors to ancestral stories and fostering a profound connection to my heritage.
Today, I find myself turning to these timeless games as catalysts for connection with my loved ones and friends. Like delicate cultural threads, they intertwine my relationships, enabling me to share the significance of a particular move or strategy or to depict the enigmatic personalities of those unfamiliar to new acquaintances.
This show delves into the rich tapestry of these cultural connections and explores the integral role that game playing has played throughout history. It is an exploration of how games have served as bridges across generations, cultures, and time itself.
In addition to the paintings, the hand-carved framing in this show is a deliberate artistic choice – an opportunity to expand the visual and conceptual boundaries of the work. Each frame has ceramic embellishments carefully crafted to resonate with the essence of the painting it holds, bridging the gap between artwork and viewer.
At the center of the exhibition stands a table, beckoning the viewer to engage in a card game. This centerpiece serves as a catalyst for connection, providing a dedicated space where participants can interact with their game opponents and, consequently, delve into the subject matter on a profound level. The table becomes a symbolic bridge, uniting individuals through the universal language of card games.
Card games have served as intimate vessels, (the echo of each shuffle, the gentle flick of a card, and the strategic deliberation), carrying within them the stories, experiences, and essence of familial bonds shared heritage and wisdom of our ancestors, connecting us to our roots and preserving our cultural identity.