Kerri Wright, Artist & Designer

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We first met Kerri though our friends and partners Alpha Box & Dice, and quickly fell in love with her work. The tradition and passion she brings to her prints makes them bold, evocative and completely enthralling. It's a real treat to get an insight into her practice. Thanks so much Kerri!   

What do you?

I’m a print based visual artist, freelance designer and occasionally run workshops for kids who want to learn how to screenprint or make books.

Do you  have a maxim that you live and work by?

I’m gunna say it, just stick to your guns. If I’m not being as true to myself as I can, my work and my life will suffer. As long as you do you, you’re good.

What are the three milestones that have led you to where you stand?

* Tooth and Nail studios in Adelaide were my stomping grounds straight after art school, this is where it really all began to make sense for me.

* Moving to Sydney for two years to study Graphic Design was a HUGE deal. I learnt loads about myself and my practice and definitely wouldn’t be where I am today without that whole experience. Also being a ‘mature aged student’ was kinda neat.

* Teaching kids art!

What projects do you have in the pipeline?

I’m quietly wittling away at some large woodblocks for a solo show I’ve been yapping on about for years but haven’t gotten around to actually locking down, but I’m really excited to start putting all these drawn out print projects together in one big space.

What is your dream project?

I am into book arts in a big way. I’d love to design and illustrate a series of curated classic novels one day. hey that rhymes!

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What is one facet of your field that you want to see change?

I’d really just like to get paid without all the guilt tripping and bargaining that comes with it occasionally. And the “But you’ll have great exposure” bit has gotten a bit old now.

What are you listening to, reading, watching of late, that is inspiring or entertaining you?

I’m currently reading ‘the Novel of the Future’, by Anais Nin, which is a relieving and inspiring read when you’ve got a creative block.

What do you want to be asked about that no one ever asks you?

Do you have anymore notable printmaking quotes from Hugo you’d like to share?Yes, oh god yes. 

How can we find out more about your work?

You can find my work on Instagram while my website is being (slowly) constructed.

Who would you most like to answer these questions next?

Kirby Manning (ADL)
Farrin Foster (ADL)
Bohie Palecek (ADL)

Image by Dave Court for Yewth Mag

Image by Dave Court for Yewth Mag

What places are important to you?

Adelaide will always be home, it’s where I feel most comfortable. But my ‘best self’ I found while travelling solo, I could fully give in to everything I wanted to do or feel, straight up. It’s okay to spend 4 hours at the Fabric Workshop Museum when you’re alone, hell it’s okay to go back the next day if you want (I did). Get lost, get scared, get inspired. I learnt more about myself travelling alone than I ever could staying at home, comfortable.

What is the best advice you’ve been given, or wish you had been told sooner?

It might be cliché but the criticism you’re gunna get, and you’re gunna get it, will sting you for a bit but you’ll get over it and grow.

When you get told “your work wont fit in with the art world” get angry, but get over it. It’s not worth your energy to take criticism personally or hold a grudge, paranoia is gunna get the best of you if you do, and that’s no good. 

Can you share a creative experience that you have found defining?

When I read The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo I don’t think I had ever been prouder to be a printmaker than the moment I read the following:

“…It was the servant of the dim sanctuary scared and dazzled by the light that streamed from Gutenberg’s press. It was the pulpit and the manuscript. The spoken word and the written word qualing before the printed word-something. Of the stupefaction of the sparrow at beholding the heavenly host spread their six million wings…The terror of the besieged soldier gazing at the steel battering-ram and saying to himself ‘the citadel must fall’ it signified that one great power was to supplant another great power.

It meant, the printing press will destroy the Church”

Oh man, it still gives me shivers.

What’s something surprising about you, that we might not know?

I can eat five bowls of spaghetti consecutively no worries, and still have room for whatever post dinner snack you’ve got going. My parents can vouch.

Do you have a supportive female network in your field? Was it always this way?

Always, and it keeps growing as I explore new ways of creating. I’m lucky enough to have some really fierce, strong women on my ‘team’ that inspire me and give me confidence to push myself further in the field. 

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