Anthea Boden is a Tasmanian based artist based with a professional career spanning over three decades. Described as a semi-abstract painter, Boden’s work reflects an individual and close connection to her immediate environment. Through paint, Boden explores the conflicting aspects of the Tasmanian landscape and its psyche, creating an assemblage of ideas through colour, form and spatial organisation.
“In this recent body of work, I have continued my personal depiction of the Tasmanian environment, the island that I call home. Subject matter explores the landscape, seascapes, cityscapes and still life. Artworks reinterpret these environs, using paint to depict my personal perceptions and intuitive understanding. Through the relationship of colour, form and space, my paintings become internal ‘maps’ that depict the world as I perceive it.
In recent years, I have met and befriended both asylum seekers and settled refugees. I have been moved to honour their stories and to pay homage to those who have lost their lives due to illness, murder or suicide, as well as all the others who have suffered while in offshore detention. As such, for this exhibition I have returned to figurative representations to make personal statement in regard to Australia’s border policy and other social issues. These works are aesthetically influenced by Greek and Russian orthodox icons, as well as the Mummy Portraits of the Fayum Valley dating back to Roman Egypt.
I hope this exhibition draws attention to issues surrounding offshore detention and the refugees who have been processed on Nauru, Christmas and Manus islands, being one of the most controversial chapters in the history of border policy in Australia.
Globally, there are now over seventy-five million displaced persons and twenty-six million refugees, almost half of which are children.”