The Artist behind the Art

A Studio Gallery Success Story. Meet: Kerry Armstrong

New kid on the block Studio Gallery opened their doors earlier this month with a BANG! To celebrate we spoke with the inspirational gallery owner, Kerry Armstrong to find out more about her success story, desire to open a Brisbane gallery, her favourite artist at present and more. Read on…

Having a corporate background, was art always something you had an interest in, or has it been a newfound passion?

Art was always a huge passion and in particular a refuge in times of stress and heavy work periods. The positive effects on me were quite remarkable. The catalyst to go full time Artist was in the lead up to a brain tumour removal which was a defining point of self awareness and honesty. I could not have coped with that blinding fear without my artwork which led me step by step towards a new level of consciousness

Were you nervous about leaving your corporate career in pursuit of an artistic profession?
Yes absolutely! It’s terrifying to let go of everything you show externally to identify who you are for the first time. The fear I felt leading to my craniotomy actually helped me to place fear of rejection and failure where they belong in a colourful and courageous life – absolutely minimal.  Once I felt that strong ownership with regards to my work I just kept shedding skin and never looked back.

What advice would you give someone wanting to change careers later in life?
Be honest with yourself regarding your level of proficiency in your chosen pursuit, respect the time it will take to decode your approach and always think like a blank canvas! In the very beginning and very end of any journey lies the most potent insights untainted by fear and expectation.

How do you go about constantly needing fresh ideas for your work? Where do you seek inspiration?
My inspiration is internal never external or derived from visual cues. I ‘feel’ a new painting before it unfolds and I have a form of synergetic functioning where I almost taste the colour and feel a certain numeric sequencing when painting. All very hard to convey in words!

How do you choose which artists/expressionists whose work you want to exhibit in your galleries?
I’m very intuitively driven with regards to choosing artists to work with, we look to feel authentic energy along with elevated execution levels. We certainly honour the existing artists in our roster first and keep the genre lanes tight, relevant and dynamic.  Given the fact that we have four stunning large galleries in Australia now allows us to exhibit many incredible works in group shows and of course stunning solo exhibitions.  

What sparked your decision to open a QLD studio?
We have a large collector base in Queensland already so it was a matter of time and of course finding the perfect space.  Our Brisbane location at 7D Wandoo Street was well and truly worth the wait, it has exceeded my high expectations. I absolutely love going there, it always overwhelms me simply walking in.

What is your favourite piece currently in the James St gallery? (Or your home?) 
Oh dear what a question, too many to choose from, there is however a particular work from a brilliant Argentinian Artist called Cristina Ghetti called ‘Stripey’ that really belongs on our wall at home and may well make the journey south! Please don’t warn my husband.

An artist/ expressionist you are currently loving?
So, so many again but one young gun emerging star I must mention is Marion Abraham. Marion’s work could be visually interpreted as rococo style layered, representational story retelling. Her work carries the signifiers of bygone eras and old lands. Traditional power structures and gender roles are reimagined in Marion’s work, she loves the humorous, the violent and the beautiful, simply adore her work.

Favourite place in Australia to consume art? (Gallery, location, theatre)  
I absolutely love the energy and ambience of a stunning gallery space.  It should always stir up and heighten your senses to amplify the opportunity to engage intimately with artwork.

An overseas destination which inspires you?
We adore Rome and I do always wish I could paint there to really draw from the energy that only Rome has.

You’ve achieved so much over the course of your artistic career, what is your #1 creative achievement?  
Without question it’s been founding Studio Gallery with Michael.  What a mammoth ride for both of us – even I with a huge, expansive imagination could not have dreamt of the success of our Artists and the passion we hold with our team for excellence in artistic services.

Posted on

September 27, 2022