October 3, 2011
Taj Alexander grew up surrounded by nature in a small town on the East Coast of Tasmania. His parents had an incredible record collection and both music and nature continue to be major influences in all disciplines of Taj’s work. At 18 years of age he moved to Melbourne to study Visual Communication at Monash University. In the seven years since arriving Taj has established himself as a well-respected and sought after freelance designer and artist. At just 24 years of age his intense work ethic and innovation bring an eclectic yet polished vision to his projects.
Taj’s current style has come from his roots as a graffiti artist painting with the AWOL Crew (A Way Of Life). AWOL is a collective of urban artists recognized for their progressive styles. The diversity within the crew has supported Taj’s unique style and creative freedom. His current work reflects a conscious and intuitive arrangement of ‘fluid geometry’ which has rapidly evolved in the lead up to Swoop & Melodie, his first solo exhibition.
“ What I value in music is its transient nature, the way it grows on you or challenges you, pleasing and inspiring one day, melancholic and evocative the next. I would like people to experience my work in this way. My intention is to communicate with people and celebrate their individual interpretation of the work.” – Taj
Swoop & Melodie is a visual exploration of sound and movement that creates an intriguing illusion. A metaphor for human expression and relationships, the work illustrates the interdependent nature of things. With aesthetic balance and harmony the work explores this view through conversations between form, texture, colour and context. The intersecting geometry and multi-dimensional perspectives create a state of flux within the work.
An aesthetic that Taj describes as a ‘graphic tapestry’ his style can be best described as a contemporary blend of graffiti art, graphic design and abstract impressionism. The varied patterns in the work are inspired by his observation of architecture, textiles and repetition in nature. Geometric timber offcuts from a neighboring kaleidoscope factory provided a foundation and fascination for Taj as a child. Continuing to value unique Tasmanian timber his high standard of craftsmanship extends to his selection and construction of Blackwood frames.
Swoop & Melodie appeals to people’s intrinsic relationship to birds. The birds are a vessel for communicating Taj’s ideas and philosophy. Their simplistic beauty, purposeful nature, freedom and melodious expression demonstrate values which people aspire to in all aspects of life. Taj presents the birds in such a way that their existence within the work is clear to some and hidden to others. In this way he introduces the importance of our individual perception.
The use of washers present within this collection are a playful response to working in a mechanical environment. Taj’s interest in engineered objects is not with their intended function mechanically. Removing them from the commonplace he has accentuated their innate beauty as forms, moving from the ordinary to the extraordinary.
“Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with its many chords. The artist is the hand that, by touching this or that key, sets the soul vibrating automatically.” – Wassily Kandinsky
The Exhibition opens at RTIST Gallery to the general public on Friday the 7th of October at 6PM. RTIST Gallery is located at 29 St Edmonds Rd, Prahran.