Kathy Holowko  /  Sculpture BA  /  Fine Art MA

  • Photograph by Mart Vaidla

I love sculpture, and its many dimensions. I am torn between utopia and dystopia, marveling and questioning nature and humanity. I am interested in the effects that urban life has upon our understanding of ecology. In busy, human centric environments, I search for narratives and connections that can help reconsider our world as a cyclical, and shared habitat.

In my work I have told tails of romance, searched for evidence of the evolution of beauty, camouflaged snakes into city buildings, made wild urban animals visible in public space, I’ve been on safari through a human-made wilderness, and explored piece of mind in the age of plastic. I do this on my own, and in collaboration with artists, museums, ecologists, rangers, wild life carers, scientists, industry and other humans of all scales. I believe in the power of art to help learn, to think, to meditate … and it is my way to mirror cultural environmental ideologies in the hope of building positive future visions.

I create sculptural works, installations, public art and playful projects in a variety of media. I find great beauty in making, and use the material that is right for the concept, transforming material matter in order to explore ideas, process information, and share my findings.

It has been a busy start to the year. I have delivered some large projects. Spidergoat and the Insect Electro is a large installation at the National Wool Museum and is made almost entirely from wool. It tells the unusual and true story of insect fibres, and the quests by scientists to obtain, or replicate spidersilk. Wild City was a project that involved a creative workshop series and exhibition. It explored the idea of re-wilding urban spaces and considered wild animals as relevant citizens. In collaboration with urban ecologists, and children, a mini sculptural city was transformed into a thriving green metropolis where humans and animals co-exist. Shapeshifters was the result of participating in a Tech Lab for Melbourne Knowledge Week. A collaborative event was developed with three other artists of varying disciplines. Using technology, dance and sculpture we created a digital nature with projection technology and invited children to explore the environment with body sculptures and movement. I believe it is the beginning of something good. Piece of Mind was delivered to Sculpture by The Sea, Bondi earlier this year. It was the result of artistic research centered on the material possibilities of reconstituted single-use plastic waste. This detritus of our times has become a part of the worlds ecological cycle, and through the relationships between species it has become a part of the food chain. By re-imagining plastic waste as sculptural material, I place a higher value on this existing strong, durable material, redirecting it from landfill into other forms, to reconsider its production and use.

I have recently returned from completing a Masters of Fine Art In Utrecht, Netherlands, my research topic was called Synthesis (meaning both: the creation of something by artificial means  / and a combination of entities).  I explored a somewhat bizarre example of urban co-existence with the wild animal, through the specifics of a re-wilded man-made nature reserve in the Netherlands, with the help of a ranger. This artistic and written research culminated in an exhibition at BAK, curated by Marcus Miessen.

My work has appeared at Federation Square, NGV, White Night, National Wool Museum, Sculpture by The Sea, ArtPlay, Bendigo Conservatory, Montalto, Albury Library Museum, Utrecht University Museum, and BAK gallery amongst others.