Artist Profile – Ping Carlyon

ARTIST PROFILE – PING CARLYON

 Where do you live/work? Where is your studio?

My studio is basically my kid’s toy room in Calliope. 

What have you entered in this year’s Rio Tinto Martin Hanson Memorial Art Awards?

I kept my style, like the ribbon style, but I did a very emotional painting. I wasn’t going to enter this year, my entire year’s schedule is based on the Martin Hanson award and I was spending way too much time on it, you know, I thought “Oh I really need to keep my house clean,” or focus on my real job.

But my sister divorced this year which really upset me at the beginning, and I had to read a lot of psychology books to get me over that. During that process, I had this idea about a painting, and I really wanted to do it. So that is what my entry this year is about.

Tell us a little about it:

It’s called “A Mixed Blessing” it’s about both sides of the coin, even my sister’s divorce had some good things about it. Marriage can have some bad things about it.

It’s about how all the choices in our lives have good and bad sides – mixed combinations – so that’s what my painting is about.

It’s about the balance between the good and the bad things.

What inspires you to create art?

I’ve been doing art since kindergarten. I just keep painting and painting. My mother always sent me to art classes and then I went to university and got an art education, so ever since then, I’ve been painting.

Then I stopped for a good seven years because I had my family and my children. I thought I would never get back to it.

Then the Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership approached me with an idea for a storybook; without that, I don’t know if I ever would have picked up a paintbrush again.

Why do you think Art Awards like the Martin Hanson are important?

I won last year, that’s another reason why I was thinking I shouldn’t enter anymore. I won the People’s Choice and First Prize in the second category (works on paper, for her painting Good Morning Gladstone)

I do believe painting is an emotional expression for the artist. It’s expression and it’s therapy, but life gets so busy and people stop doing art.

Like I did. I got busy and I stopped altogether. The Martin Hanson awards are a good reason to paint. And it’s a really good community, you connect with the other artists, there’s the judge’s floor talk and everything, it’s very inspiring.

Even if I wasn’t entering anything I would still go because it’s so inspirational. Even if you don’t paint it’s very inspirational!

You can see Ping’s work “A Mixed Blessing”, along with the works of hundreds of other local artists, during the Rio Tinto Martin Hanson Memorial Art Awards Exhibition at the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery and Museum, open from 10 am Monday to Saturday. The exhibition runs until December 7.