Kayleigh Heydon - Strength and Resilience

Creativity has been the buzz word around the regeneration of our neighbourhood over the last 20 years. Brunswick East continues to be a strong drawcard for creative people. 

A relatively recent newcomer to our block is Kayleigh Heydon, you've most likely seen her working as a picture-framer with the team at Frames Readymade.

Kayleigh brings a strong aesthetic she developed at The Manchester School of Art where she graduated in 2014.

Since arriving in Melbourne, she's travelled widely absorbing herself in Victoria's landscape, drawing from the diversity of nature in the bush and along the coastlines. in fact, she seems to have covered more of Australia than most of us born here manage!

Alasdair: Tell us a little about your background?

Kayleigh: After graduating from Manchester school of art in 2014 I moved to Melbourne. I worked casually so I could free up as much time as possible to push myself into the new landscape, getting lost in the bold and elegant flora and fauna. 

A: I would describe your work is clean, simple and elegantly balanced, how would you describe it?

K: My work has strong influences from the post-war era, around the time of the Bauhaus school and when first wave feminism was really coming into light. I think it was a really exciting time for artists as there was so much change and retaliation to traditional artistic practices and methods. I am endlessly inspired by Jean Arp, his sculptures, poems, paintings (just everything) and Noguchi’s playground designs.

A: Where do you turn for inspiration?

K: I’m drawn to the purity of form in architecture and industrial design, furniture and light, more so than other paintings and artworks. I also find that moving around and being outdoors is beneficial for me. Music inspires me, I'm always listening to something from somewhere and probably louder than acceptable. Recently it’s been Senegal 70, which is amazing, but an old favourite is the Giles Peterson London boiler room set, it just really puts me in a good mood. I’m not sure if you can sing along with a sax, but I do!

A: How has your work evolved since you've moved to Melbourne?

K: My style has evolved quite organically, there's a discourse between each body of work, you can really see how I ended up here, which I really like. I reintroduced mono printing and spontaneous line movement back into my practice recently and I think that’s probably the only sidestep, but I love doing them, it really breaks up the days. I do mono-printing to refocus myself if I get stuck or distracted.

A: What theme/themes are you dealing with in the work you're showing at The Boroughs?

K: It’s about women and anyone who identifies as a woman and the strength and resilience in us. It's celebration of our experiences and recognition of what is still to be achieved. The bold, harsh and strong lines, soft curves and silhouettes reveal the way we are not one, but a balance of all these things. I see all of the pieces as a question and answer sequence, the shapes moving around one another, taking on different attitudes and coming across challenges and harbouring experience. The shapes are all solely taken from lines and movement occurring in everyday life, from the shape of the bed head to the shadow cast on the table from my mug.





Kayleigh is showing at The Boroughs from Wednesday, November 1st to 14th.