Time and Tide

Geoffrey Wake

Time and Tide is a solo exhibition of paintings by Geoffrey Wake, marking the longevity of his practice at PS Art Space. Wake has been based at PS for around 30 years, longer than any other artist, and last held a solo exhibition in the space some 10 years ago.

Wake’s Fremantle studio habitat informs his work. Over time he has observed the ebb and flow of the harbour city and the comings and goings of many artists. “There is a constantly changing hub of artists from all over the world – French, Swiss, Scottish, all over.. I enjoy the sense of the arts community at PS and we all have something to offer to each other.” Inspired by Fremantle Harbour, the surrounding infrastructure and the movement of life within its perimeters, Wake’s paintings have an aerial viewpoint influenced by Australian artists such as Robert Juniper, John Olsen and Fred Williams.

Wake describes his paintings as abstract impressionism combining real world elements with a high degree of abstraction. As well as traditional rectangular canvases, he sometimes uses irregular shapes.

He says ideas never come to him pre-formed but instead come intuitively from a combination of worldly experience and studio creation. He is endlessly fascinated by paint qualities and textures.

“From my studio in Pakenham Street I cycle around the harbour taking in observations. I immerse myself in all sorts of patterns and atmospheres. The movement of ferries and ships, the wind and just the changing nature of the seasons are all taken in as material for use in the studio,” he says.

“It is important for me to constantly stretch myself, take risks and live as an artist who puts together the imagined and the real.”

Geoffrey Wake is a leading Western Australian artist who has made a significant contribution to the local and national arts scene. Born in Perth in 1944, Wake completed a Diploma in Painting at Perth Technical College in 1965. During his early career, he held three individual exhibitions at the iconic Skinner Galleries (1971, 73 and 75). He also won a prestigious six-month residency at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, awarded by the Power Institute. He has held 14 solo exhibitions, 10 shared exhibitions and has participated in 30 group shows in Perth and the eastern states. He held a previous solo exhibition at PS Art Space in 2013. He has worked as a TAFE lecturer and founded a business running art tours locally and overseas.

Wake’s work is represented in collections including the Art Gallery of Western Australia, University of Western Australia, Curtin University, City of Fremantle, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority, Skinner Collection, Horn Collection, Carnegie Collection, and many other institutional and private
collections locally and interstate.
He has won a number of prizes and awards – in 2007 he was awarded the Mandjar Corporate Art Award and was a category winner in the Cossack Art Prize in the same year. There have been numerous major corporate commissions – Barclays Bank, National Bank, BHP, Woodside Offshore Petroleum, Qantas, Multiplex, Coles, Myer and the Duxton Hotel.
Wake’s body of work follows a trajectory that has evolved from abstract impressionist paintings rooted in nature and the Australian bush during his early career through to an increasingly abstract approach to painting and assemblage in recent years, often inspired by the shapes, textures and colours around his port city studio.

Wake has been an active member of PS in Fremantle since 1994

Exhibition opens on Friday 22 March from 6.30pm and run til 7 April. Open to the public Tue-Sun from 10 to 4.