Kadee Webber

Story Book Princess

March 5 - March 19 2011

Immersed within the liquid, luminous realms of the subconscious, Kadee Webber's heroines are undergoing a process of gestation. Cocooned in their silent cobalt world they drift and dream, hair and garments billowing amidst the swirling eddies and shimmering bubbles until the transformation is complete. Like the story book princesses of old they in due course surface to a new life of emotional and intuitive clarity. In the words of Walt Disney from whose characters Webber has drawn inspiration, "The magic is as wide as a smile and as narrow as a wink, loud as laughter and quiet as a tear, tall as a tale and deep as emotion. So strong it can lift the spirit. So gentle, it can touch the heart. It is the magic that begins the happily ever after".

Influenced by the drawings of Mike Peraza, Paige O'Hara, and David Garibaldi, Webber set about developing her own story book in a visual series that would portray the aspirations and interior journeys made by women since the beginning of time. "There are still strong connections to feminism in this body of work, it's something I passionately believe in", she explains. "The women in the works come from all walks of life. I love showing the beauty and the diversity of the female form and nationality. I tried to use models whose appearances were of all shapes and sizes: short and tall, skinny and healthy, black and white. The individual stories are left open to interpretation so the works may take you back to a personal beautiful memory or place where you can let go and reclaim your inner child".

The making of the Story Book Princess works was very much a cross-media exercise. Webber elaborates, "Evolving my drawings into artworks for the series was an interesting experience and a great family affair when it came to sourcing the various materials I needed for the project. I designed and sewed all the costumes using my sister as a live dressmaking torso. I have always loved sewing and it was exciting to be able to apply it to my art making". The creation of Webber's modern-day princess tales then proceeded to a photographic shoot at her local Southport swimming pool where exotically attired ‘princesses' descended into the watery depths. The resultant images were cropped with compositional factors in mind and transferred onto canvas to be modified and extended with hand-painted detailing. "Often people ask is it a photo or a painting?" muses Webber. "Well, I like to answer it's both."

Born 1989, Kadee Webber resides on the Gold Coast and is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane. At just 21 years old, she is already the recipient of a number of awards: The Ministers Art Awards 2007; the Queensland Youth Art Awards 2007; the Gold Coast Show Art Prize 2005 and 2006, and was a finalist in the Energies Exhibition, Gold Coast Art Centre and the Border Art Prize 2006. She has participated in the Ministers Art Awards' artist camp, Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane.

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