Monday, 15 January 2018

Visitors to Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah (CASM) will step inside a real artists' studio in January and the start of February, with the art gallery taking a fresh approach into an open work studio.

CASM has transformed from an exhibition space into an open artists' studio environment for the annual Open Studio Collective, a collaboration between five local artists.

Artists Joshua Brew, Alana Grant, Ashley Hay, Noela O'Keefe and Lisa Payton will be showcasing their works at the studio from now until Thursday, February 1, where visitors are able to wander through the open studio spaces, chat to the artists and watch new artworks being created.

The Open Studio Collective includes an artist-run soiree on Friday, January 12 at 6pm, and an artists' talk on Thursday, February 1 from 6-7.30pm, both at CASM.

Joshua Brew's fine art practice incorporates the exploration of healthy forms of emotional expression for young males. Having lived in Mandurah all his life, Joshua has witnessed the mental, emotional and spiritual health needs of young men and boys through his time as a leader at Eastlake Church and his full-time teaching role.

“As an emerging young male artist, my work aims to explore how young men learn to acknowledge the challenges the world throws at them and how we tackle these issues,” Brew said.

Ceramic sculptor Alana Grant was recently named the 2018 CASM Artist in Residence. Her works are influenced by the internal and external landscape of society, and are often represented by symbolistic, mythical or fantasy sculptures.

“For the most part, my work is an avenue to explore the cultural constructs and ideologies that exist within society, as these inform and influence the health of the individual, the collective community and the ecosystem they occupy,” Grant said.

Capturing 'story' and 'place' is the essence of Ashley Hay's work. She approaches visual imagery with a spiritual ethos, intuitively responding to her surroundings. Hay hopes to communicate a sense of peace, beauty and rest that can be found in nature.

“I intend my artwork to be a celebration of nature and an expression of my felt, spiritual response to the elements of fire, earth and water, that will hopefully evoke an appreciation in the viewer of the pictorial representation of a sense of place,” Hay explained.

Noela O'Keefe has used many different mediums during her artistic journey, including pastels and oil paints.

“My art has developed organically through my life, as have I,” O'Keefe said. “I love working with oils. I interpret what I see rather than paint what I see. I love that each painting I finish has its own character and has taught me something. I am certainly an artist in the making and I truly hope that never, ever changes.”

Lisa Payton is well-known in Mandurah for her passion of vibrant colours and the use of flowing mediums to describe the natural landscape. With an artwork practice ranging from resin artworks to Powertex sculptures, Payton explores many techniques to create her layered artworks.

“My artworks are a conduit to connect people with the environment. Through the abstract bird's eye view, people often recognise a place they have been throughout Australia. It is through the recognition of the land that I am able to deliver a positive environmental message, one of respect and responsibility towards the earth we live in,” Payton said.

For more information about the Open Studio Collective, the soiree and the artists' talk go to or

CASM gallery hours are Wednesday to Sunday from 10am to 4pm.