(b. 1950), Mangonui
Sylvia is a visionary artist and a visionary person. She was guided
to live at her present place by her trust in prophecies from the past
and from her sensitivity to coincidences and signs in daily events as
revelatory of layers of purpose and design in the world.
Sylvia’s paintings are direct manifestations of that sensitivity, and
the energy that some see as moving through individual lives: family
relationships, time, and place.
The colours Sylvia uses are lush; pastels meld into earth-rich
olives and deep outer-space blue. The forms are rhythmical and
squeezed into proximity with each other; there is a swelling of forms,
an unfurling, the sense of universal growth of the bush. But in the
paintings, within this primordial pumping heartbeat, there occur
specific personalities, portraits of real people that Sylvia has known
and loved, particular people inevitably being shaped by the larger
Sylvia’s technique is to apply the oil paint simply with a fine brush
in little directional strokes that allow layers of colour to build up and
model the forms as if they were being shaped from clay.