noctuidae (2020)

Oil on linen

76cm x 61 cm


This work came from my thinking about figuration and abstraction in art and nature. How some of the best paintings seem to be the blotches of colour on an autumn leaf, the patterns in a cross section of marble, or in this case the design on the back of a moth's wings. I have this feeling about the world that everything exists in two separate but linked realms: one is the physical plane of matter, in which a moth is simply an organism of the insect family, evolved for survival; the other is the psychological realm, which is just as real and present as the former, in which the moth is a symbol, the patterns of its wings are images of eyes and strange landscapes, the way it flies for the moon but gets lost among the streetlights is a work of poetry. The content of the painting also relates to an ongoing interest in the psychological tool of rorschach tests, in which ink is blotted between a folded page to create an abstract mirrored image. The tests were originally used in psychiatric settings in order to elucidate unconscious influences in a patient's interpretation of reality. What appears as an opening flower to one may be a demonic figure to another. This same bending and blurring of the real with the fantastical follows us through each passing vision of the day, and manifests most profoundly during the symbolic apparitions of our dreams at night. Night time, the time of the unconscious, when the moth gently taps at your window as you reach to switch off the light.

Victoria Stolz

  • Victoria Stolz (born Perth 1997) is an Australian painter currently living and working in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales. Victoria received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours from the Victorian College of the Arts in 2019, where she was a recipient of the Rosemary Ricker award and the Valerie Albiston painting scholarship. Her work has been included in numerous shows including “The Drawing Is Just Not There” at Westspace, 2018, “Nuages” at Frances Keevil Gallery, 2019, and “Artist’s Artists” at Caves, 2020; as well as being featured in Art+Australia magazine (issue 7). Victoria’s intimate painting practice presents windows into subtle psychological states, manifestations of worlds between asleep and awake.

  • Instagram: @victoria.stolz