Monthly Archives: March 2024


A couple of years ago, FLY read on one of her Australian fine arts Facebook groups about a stunning new exhibition at the Zig Zag Gallery in Kalamunda, FLY’s old home town in Western Australia. The show featured the most spectacular gumtree blossoms painted on over-sized canvases and they were jaw-droppingly beautiful. The artist was STACY GARDOLL and FLY knew she had found her “spirit artist”. When FLY went home in 2022, it was just prior to learning about the gallery otherwise a personal visit would have happened but at least FLY can share Stacy’s story and her art, which is available for international shipping should you also be wowed by the large originals or prints. Stacy kindly responded to FLY’s interview request and she shared insights into her work and her life and career inspirations….Stacy, what first motivated you to pick up a paintbrush and start creating?  I’ve been painting in different forms since high school, and it was there that I first started. As a student, I went on a week-long art camp to Rottnest (a beautiful little island off the WA coast famous for its quokkas), which was organized by the Art Gallery of Western Australia, where we rode our bikes and stopped to paint what we saw. It really changed the way I saw landscapes, and I mixed colours. It was also the first time I’d spent time with other like-minded people who loved art as much as I did! You have such a bold and distinctive style – did this come naturally or were you inspired by other artists?  The boldness probably comes from my years working as a theatre set designer and painter. It was an aspect of the designing process which I particularly enjoyed, and over time my designs took on a very painterly aesthetic.  As for the painting style itself, it evolved over time. Theatre scenery is obviously seen from a distance, under stage lighting, so painted elements need to be very textured and high-contrast in order to not look washed out or flat. This has definitely informed the way that I paint now – I much prefer high-contrast, saturated colours. This way I can paint what I see, but heighten different elements to highlight and set the botanicals apart from the background. Combined with the large scale of most of my work, it can also give a sense of drama. (below, Stacy with her Cinderella village scenery) Your botanical “portraits” are spectacular – have flowers always appealed to you as subjects for your canvases? Your landscapes are also vibrant and full of energy – which do you prefer?  At the moment, I’m loving botanicals, but I’m certainly not locked in to any genre. I used to paint botanicals in my teens, and have always loved painting and drawing. I remember painting some close-up botanicals way back then, but thinking they weren’t possibly going to lead anywhere. Funny how life turns out!

I will always love landscapes though, and still look at the world through “frames”, much like photographers must do. It’s a way of seeing which is always with you, once you learn it. I grew up in Lesmurdie back in the 60s & 70s, on the crest of a hill overlooking the city of Perth. Back then it was considered “the bush” and our ½ acre block was full of wild flowers and tall trees. Are you lucky to live surrounded by gumtrees and wild indigenous plants or do you contend with close neighbours and “artificial” gardens?  That would have been amazing growing up in such an untamed environment – I would have loved that! I grew up in Swanbourne, so was always drawn to the coast, and particularly loved being near the water. The beach still feels like “coming home” to some degree.
Where we’re living now is considered the foothills- so we really have the best of the bush at our doorstep, whilst also being close to the city when we want to be. We have a regular block, which I’m in the process of replanting with lots of Australian natives – I’m really looking forward to being able to paint WA native species from my own backyard.

Can Canadian or US art lovers purchase your work and have shipped over? (obviously purchaser would pay for shipping).  Absolutely – original paintings can be sent framed or unframed, and paper or canvas prints can easily be sent in a tube. Do you have any upcoming shows and if so, where and when?  Yes, I’m having my very own Open Studio next month, on April 28th, which is really exciting.  I participate in the Mundaring Hills Open Studios event every October, so I know what to expect, but it is really great to be having my own Open Studio event. It’s a wonderful way for visitors to view my art, and talk to me in my relaxed home environment. It’s a lovely chance to talk about the process and to show people my workspace, as well as the finished pieces.
I’m also participating in a group exhibition in September, which will be at the Moores Building, in Fremantle. There are 9 botanical and still life artists involved, including myself- and we all have thoroughly different styles and approaches. It will be called “Perfectly Still.”Stacy, thank you so much for chatting with FLY and I can assure you, FLY will be a fan for life!  Some of your work shows the giant dinosaur-like cranes in Fremantle – something FLY witnessed herself and had one of those ooo-aaah moments driving by. Love these pieces…
If you want to learn more about this talented Aussie artist, please visit Stacy’s website and follow her on Instagram.    IG: @stacygardollart


FLY is thrilled to celebrate the upcoming opening of JACKALOPE GALLERY at 1558 Queen St East, Toronto, by artists GAIL WILLIAMS and TRACY DAVIES (pictured below) this Saturday 5-9pm.When Covid struck Toronto, we lost so many indie art galleries due to enforced isolation and closures. Now, as art lovers are craving their gallery fix, Gail and Tracy bring us a brand new space located in the east end of downtown Toronto. FLY recently spoke with Gail who shared her thoughts….

So many indie galleries closed down due to Covid – what prompted you and Tracy to open a gallery now?  It was serendipity really – I met Tracy at a Cornwall gallery and we got talking about a collaboration and decided to look for a gallery space in Toronto. We found the right with a wonderful landlord who bought into the concept of an art gallery and work studio. My studio is actually there, too, so I have a lovely creative space in which to work.You offer wall space to other artists – how do you plan to promote their works as well as your own?  Both Tracy and I are very savvy with social media and have created an Instagram account for Jackalope and will be launching our Facebook one, too. We’re thrilled to celebrate other artists via regular postings, show announcements and a monthly newsletter.You put out a call for artists and ended up with numerous submissions – what was your curatorial process to select the artists for your first show?  We first decided upon a theme for our debut show and that was “courage” so we reviewed all the submissions to find art pieces that reflect boldness and uniqueness. We also made sure that the individual artists had active websites and social media accounts themselves to enable us all to cross-promote and support each other.

How many shows do you plan to present over the coming months?  We’re planning a period of 4 weeks for our curated shows – this enables artists to invite their family, friends and followers down to see their work hanging on our walls. We’re also presenting artist workshops and other special events as we move forward through our first year….it’s all so exciting. And we already have 500 online followers with 200 people signing up for our monthly newsletter.

GOOD LUCK to Gail and Tracy, and if you want to keep up with news from the gallery, check out the website and social media….
Instagram: @thejackalopegallery  or the artists themselves:  @gailwilliamsartist  @tracydaviesart the meantime, FLY will be buzzing around the gallery on Saturday to report on the launch. Check back with us for the big blog.


FLY RECOMMENDS…..Formerly the Lions Club Art Awards, this year, the City of Kalamunda, located in the hills overlooking the city of Perth, Western Australia, is putting together their inaugural art awards. ZigZag Gallery hosts this open exhibition showcasing artworks by established and emerging artists. The Art Awards is an exciting new opportunity to explore the many flourishing artistic practices and stories of the City of Kalamunda and Perth surrounds. Exhibition opens Saturday March 16.

Featuring works from Adrianna Wasinska-Fabian, Allison Snell, Andrew Taylor, Anne Bennett, Anne Farrell, Anne O’Leary, Ashleigh Whyte, Barbara Gell, Basil Antonas, Carrol Dunford, Cath Inman, Charlene Blumenfeld, Christine Oxberry, Clara Cook, Cole Baxter, Colin Jefferson, Colin Smith, Corinne Lorraine, Craig McKeough, David Lazaro, Dot Ulijn-Blaszczak, Emma Lashmar, Esti Nagy, Gabrielle Bruce, Geofrey Fooks, Gordon Mitchell, Ian Moss, Isabel Stuart, Janine Judge, Jessica Fisher, Jo-Anne Maire, Johanna Zeelenberg, Karen Price, Karin Hotchkin, Kathleen Szalay Mulholland, Lia Simmonds, Lurlene Murray, Marika Oost, Mary-Jane Malet, Mavis Paskulich, Merribeth Ainsworth, Merry Robertson, Michelle Fleur Knowles, Mikaela Castledine, Mike Leadabrand, Moira Court, Natasha Adamson, Neil Douglas Elliott, Neil Gray, Olaf Rosentreter, Paul Johnson, Paul Moro, Petra Smeets, Pip Milton, Renee Rose, Robyn Beardsell, Rodney Blumenfeld, Ronald J Bailey, Sandie Schroder, Shanti Gelmi, Shirley Spencer, Stephen Castledine, Steven Bentley, Sue Bass, Sue Doorey, Tammi de Rooy, Tom Hogg, Trent Budding, Una Bell, Vic Bullo, William Ferrier, Zali Morgan, and Zofia Paluszak.For more information about the Zig Zag Gallery visit – gallery thanks event sponsors @whiteroomframing and the Lions Club of Kalamunda.

The Zig Zag Gallery is located on Whadjuk Noongar Boodjar land. We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land, the Whadjuk people of the Noongar nation and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. Always was and always will be Aboriginal land.