Inspirations: Brett Whiteley Studio

My love of creativity knows few bounds. I feel enriched by everything from art to music to literature to interior design and style ... I've been slowly sharing the books I've read this year and thought it was about time to share some of my favourite inspiring individuals in other areas. In particular those linked to art and design. I particularly adore those that seem to embody creativity in all aspects of their life, found in their philosophies, their work, their homes...those with similarly favourite bands and inspirations as my own. 

It seems apt to start with an Australian-based artist, having taken the opportunity to take a wander through his studio one sunny Saturday morning with a friend. Brunch at The Book Kitchen folded into our entering the studio and gallery space of none other than Brett Whiteley. Whiteley died in 1992 but his studio, thanks to the Art Gallery of NSW, is available to visit from Friday-Sunday. There is a schedule of changing exhibitions throughout the space, and his gallery remains open upstairs kept similarly to how he left it. It's a unique opportunity and one I thoroughly recommend to anyone visiting Sydney. 

Whiteley was an Australian icon and his stint at the Chelsea Hotel in New York also linked him to other famous artists of his time such as Andy Warhol. He was winner or the Archibald prize on two occasions, as well as other significant prizes, and was admired for his avant-garde style. We were lucky enough to catch the tail end of the 'Tributes' exhibition. A selection of works that paid tribute to some of Whiteley's friends and influences in portrait form, from Van Gogh to Bob Dylan. I was particularly drawn to the Rimbaud pages and took pleasure in noting his tribute to Patti Smith (I love how all these artists and influences link up in my findings!). The space upstairs had so many little details to look at - photographs, quotes scribbled on the wall, interview recordings, sketchbooks... I find Whiteley's work influencing my own in his collage style particularly. His inclusion of words and mixed media is something my own work leans towards. 

The one issue of discussing this incredible space is the fact that you are not allowed to photograph it... while I can share some stock images of his work here, I guess you'll just have to visit the studio for yourself! And have a good old Google of Whiteley's work. 

Find the studio at 2 Raper Street, Surry Hills, Sydney
Open 10am-4pm, Friday-Sunday

Images via Brett Whiteley Studio Facebook