Matilda Davis’s works are personal constructions imbued with peculiar characters, lush darkness and latent narrative. Extending from the magical realism genre, complex psychological landscapes composed of particular lexicons come together with forms of molten fluidity.
Drawing her inspiration from a variety of sources, Davis inspired by female artists associated with surrealism – such as Leonora Carrington, Florine Stettheimer and Frida Kahlo – who share her penchant for creating personal worlds, while her colour palette at times nods to the vibrancy of Matisse and Gauguin. She has become increasingly interested in unpacking symbols, religion and spirituality and using imagery as a way of mapping out and understanding how they have shaped her world. With a background in theatre her works have a strong sense of theatrics both thematically and in how she constructs her compositions. Her works are performative, and she draws elements of this medium at different stages: a script, a draft, a rehearsal and the final act. Literature also weaves through, from fairy tales to The Secret Garden, Narnia and Enid Blyton books. Medleys of other influences from Kabuki (Japanese theatre) and stickers and miniature collectibles collections on Instagram are also present. With their fine details and personal symbology Davis’ paintings are rife for close viewing and contemplation.
Matilda grew up in Sydney and graduated form the Victorian College of Arts with a Bachelor in Fine Art in 2017.