Using bold colours and fine detail, Australian artist Philip Shadbolt explores something deeper with his art and depiction of the human form, and his creations revolve around a mystical and spiritual connectivity to the physical body. He has been greatly inspired by the Symbolists and Art Nouveau styles and concepts, as well as by his life in India. He has a background in fine art, illustration, and graphic design, having studied at the Claremont School of Art (Western Australia) in the early 1990’s, before moving to the UK. Initially creating large scale oil paintings for private clients, he moved onto interior design artwork for hotels in London, then transitioned into the fashion world as a fabric and textiles print designer, whilst relocating to India. On returning to Australia in 2015, he resumed his love of oil painting before an exploration into digital creation beckoned.
“Stemming from the core belief that we are ancient, sublime, and ripe with the potential to do exceptional things in life, I strive to create a visual world that addresses themes of sexuality and gender as something incredible and extraordinary. This new body of art has been fashioned from digital crafting, using hundreds of photographs and images I’ve collected over many years. Textures and patterns from around the world, combined and entwined with glimpses of antique textiles, vintage botanical studies and Persian carpets, these are just a few of the many elements that make up the rich visual language I use to create the narrative for each piece of art. These otherworldly beings are envisioned and made manifest to be our own reflections; an apparition of the very best qualities in each of us, a reminder of the divinity within that is so often neglected and forgotten. To expose ourselves as resilient and vibrant beings, yet to embrace that beautiful vulnerability within us is what makes them somehow more accessible and relatable. They are in fact ethereal dreams made flesh, a vivid display of eternal love for our fragile human experience and the natural world that surrounds us.”