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Joi Murugavell is a Sydney based artist, with what can be described as, a brave, bold, grand, confident and happy, contemporary body of work. She practices her art spontaneously and “on the spot” without too much prior planning. “I hardly think of the word inspiration when it comes to my art. It is more a battle to understand something or other. Lately I have come to think of art as ‘removing the proverbial carrot’. The more art I like, the further the carrot is dislodged and the more I get to know myself. [It] feels good and right, so I keep doing it.”
Colour is one of the most obvious and immediate aspects of Joi’s art. She has described her artistic fascination with colour as something quite unusual for her. Clothes, home, personal preference in colour leans towards whites, greys and muted colours but when it comes to her art, her mind takes her to the opposite direction.
Then again, perhaps what appears to be central in her work, is not so important after all. “Maybe it isn’t vital, just something my eye likes to see. Or something else that I don’t know about yet,” Joi said. And this seems to be more vital to her art, the fact that it doesn’t take itself too seriously and remains fluid and unpredictable.
Art, then again, has always been vital and central in Joi’s life. “I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t drawing or making some sort of art. I never knew it was art though, and in many ways, I wish I still didn’t know about art as art. My top priority or what I’d like from making art is to get that carrot out further and further. I feel this may be a lifelong process and I’m cool with that,”Joi states.
Sailing the Seas of Cheese, started with blue paper pinned to the wall. “First red spray paint, then yellow and finally a whole swirl of crayons and graphite,” Joi described the process. She is a firm believer in not thinking too much and the aspirations for this art work were no different. “When it was done, it reminded me of a song I loved because of its touching and clever lyrics, Sailing the Seas of Cheese by Primus. But this could have just as easily been about something else if I’d picked up a green can of spray paint or was feeling like The Beatles on the day, or even if I heard a very loud bird and got annoyed,” she continued.
Sailing The Seas Of Cheese won Joi the 2019 Art Lovers Australia New Artist Award. The colourful, joyful composition attracted praising comments from the judges, Carlene Duffy and Jodi Ferrari. “The colours are confident and unapologetic. I could envisage it in a really contemporary home that is otherwise relatively muted. It makes a fabulous statement piece,” Carlene Duffy, interior stylist and television personality said. “A confident, playful composition that captured my interest,” Jodi Ferrari from Tweed Regional Gallery continued.
Joi’s art is confident, bubbly and full of life, much like the artist herself. We look forward to following the art and career of this talented, young Sydney-sider.