Elaine d'Esterre

Contemporary Visual Artist – Paintings, Mixed Media and Etchings


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Behind the Scenes at LANDforms Exhibition

Many friends behind the scenes ensured that all preparations for my LANDforms Exhibition ran smoothly. Apologies for my very average photography in this blog.

Amazing amounts of organisation: labels, “Artist Statement”, “CV” and blurbs placed on core board, the catalogue accompanied by a list of my artworks in “Public Collections” as well as the packing, transporting and then the hanging of 35 items, are thanks to Natalie Utmar and and Gavin Cross who also arranged the lighting and highlighting of the paintings and etchings.

The gallery provided input from their curator, Patricia Goldby whose suggestions about artwork placement, lighting and the finer points about presentation were invaluable. (More about this in my next blog.)

Added to everyone’s focussed efforts,  the gallery committee members were helpful and collaboration at all stages ran smoothly.

Preparations for Saturday’s Opening, October 24  from 4 – 6pm are under way. In gallery 1, guitar soloist Gavin Cross will be performing a mixture of Classical, Latin and Jazz compositions to add to our enjoyment as well as tapas, olives and nibbles and the wine sourced from the Wolseley Winery situated in the Surf Coast hinterland behind Bells Beach and Anglesea at Paraparap, as well as bubbly and mineral water.  Hopefully good music combined with wine, food, conversation and the artwork contribute an entertaining and stimulating afternoon.


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LANDforms Exhibition – not only Lake Mungo

Other significant places including Lake Mungo featured in my exhibition are found in Nitmiluk and Kakadu National Parks, the Karijini National Park and at Point Roadknight, a small promontory along The Great Ocean Road.

It is Written, 2007

It is Written 2, 2007, oil on board

Along the sides of the Katherine Gorge passages of sediment configured in ways that reminded me of ancient texts in stone.

Downward Drift, 2014

Downward Drift, 2014, intaglio and chine-colle

As oxygen entered Earth’s atmosphere it caused iron laden sediment in the ocean to rust, fall to the sea floor and over eons compress into The Banded Iron Formation found in the Pilbara. In this etching – intaglio and chine-colle I imagined the process of sedimentation.

Tidal Surge, 2010, intaglio and collage 26x16 cm print, 48x35 cm paper

Tidal Surge, 2010, intaglio and collage 26×16 cm print, 48×35 cm paper

A  mineralised root system, part of the Point Roadknight promontory, called the “Petrified Forest” resembled an ancient ruin complete with columns, portico and entablature. Now non-existent due to high winter tides, sea spray and wind.

LANDforms exhibition invitation. October 21- November 8

LANDforms exhibition invitation. October 21- November 8


LANDforms Preview (Mungo cont.)

The oil painting titled Red Earth Trajectory at Mungo 2 refers to Mungo’s pink sand, the deposition of red soil from nearby hills and erosion by wind and water. Bed of Lake Mungo and Evening at Lake Mungo are collagraphs from the same plate but with part of the displaced print moved to the left in Bed of  Lake Mungo and chine-colle and collage combined with metal leaf in Evening at Lake Mungo. Ive just noticed how Evening at Lake Mungo, 2015 resembles Igneous 1, 2004 on the invite. Basic shapes are there but slightly rearranged even though one is a large oil and the other a small collagraph. Gone around in a circle!!


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LANDforms Exhibition Preview (Mungo)

Three more from LANDforms continuing with works about Lake Mungo. Weathering and Beneath the Sand were accidents. They started as collagraphs using tissue paper and glue placed onto a zinc plate. I used the zinc plate hoping that it would be more durable than cardboard or wood but paste and Bondcrete gradually wore down after many experiments. After taking a print I like to drip gum turps and a drop of oil onto the inked remnants left on the plate and then take a ghost print. Weathering was the result consisting of small bits of gold leaf, hardly visible, that mingled with the ink, oil and turps. More luck than good management was how the liquid ingredients stayed within the print of the plate’s edge.

Beneath the Sand began as a failed viscosity print over which I incorrectly placed gold leaf which peeled of in places revealing reverse viscosity ink layering. Two layers of transparent paper allowed the main shape to print in silhouette making the shape beneath resemble a below surface rock conglomeration.

I like the nuanced and layered Bleeding Sand print, and while less happy accident it depicts the multi layered types of process that occur within the dune, Rain and wind carry silt from low red hills turning the lunette pink through seepage. Ink was combined with chine-colle and silver leaf on red paper.

I double printed the collagraph plate revealing and obscuring parts of the prints as I hoped to emphasise the vertical downward movement of water and silt.

Many images of Mungo began with a frottage taken from a landform at the site. When I return to my studio I incorporate it into a larger composition. I wondered if making the collagraph in a way that inadvertently resembled a frottage got the impetus moving as I usually put frottage into oil painting or mixed media rather than into a printmaking technique?.