Karen Woodbury Gallery

4 Albert Street Richmond VIC 3121

26 November - 19 December 2009


Kate Rohde’s exhibition Crystalised is largely inspired by a three-month residency in 2008 as a creator-in residence at Tokyo Wonder Site in Japan. Decorative woodcarvings of Zen and Shinto shrines in Kamakura and Nikko were particularly influential. Much of the work is produced from materials sourced during Kate’s stay in Japan. Kate collected a number of books by traditional Japanese genre painters which have assisted in her unique re-imagining of natural history.

Kate is well known for her intricately detailed and opulent resin vitrines. These vitrines have been inspired by her travels to the Baroque inspired Chateau de Versailles, France. Such recreations of old-fashioned museum dioramas and archival displays encased by glass or Perspex, are made from common synthetic materials such as: epoxy resin, expanded foam, faux fur, glitter, silicon, papier-mache, plasticine, polystyrene and faux jewels.

Kate’s imaginative and fanciful sculptures fuse the symbolism of museological documentation with a Rococo and Baroque aesthetic. Within these vitrines are artificial representations of the natural. Here the use of inventive materials conveys an unusual beauty. Rohde invites you to enter a realm of fantasy, motivating contemporary discussions regarding ecology, extinction, taxidermy and preservation.