Abstract brushstrokes

Lydia Miller in her home studio in Mayfield.
Lydia Miller in her home studio in Mayfield.

FOR artist Lydia Miller painting is all about colour. 

Miller was born in the Ukraine and spent her early childhood in post-war Germany. She immigrated to Australia in the 1950s. 

In childhood she “vividly remembers most of her early years by herself, drawing on scraps of paper, book covers and walls with whatever she could get her hands on”.

The abstract expressionist painters are a major influence in Miller’s work.

“German expressionists I like. I have an affinity for that,” Miller said.  

“I think it’s the colour, the use of colour and emotional, gestural.

“When I first saw it at a German expressionist exhibition I was moved to tears.”

Miller relocated to Newcastle, from Sydney with her partner two years ago, where she has discovered a plethora of shops with interesting objects. Many of which have become the subjects of her still life work. 

“I have been picking up unusual objects. I have become a real hoarder,” she said. “I just love it, they inspire me.

“I am within walking distance of the Coliseum (Mayfield) and the second hand shops here have wonderful treasures.

“I can’t help myself and I keep buying them.”

She works in portraiture, still-life, landscapes and seascapes.

“I am now working in a more abstracted form,” Miller said. “If I see something that inspires me, I will paint it.

“It’s all kind of in my head and I enjoy the freedom of not having to look at an image.”

Miller uses music as part of her painting practise.

“I just let myself go with the music and get into that intuitive space” she said. 

“Make a few marks with my favourite brush. 

“In any planning I do, I might think about the colour but even that can change if it’s not working.”

Miller will hold her first Newcastle solo exhibition  next month at Gallery 139.

Mindscapes will feature an array of abstract landscape, seascape paintings. 

The exhibition runs from March 1-11, with the opening on March 3, between 2-4pm.