‘Through my work I strive to invoke reflection on the aesthetics of overindulgence, opulence and decadence in our natural world… even in decaying life and creepy-crawly insects, beauty can be found.’
Building a career from my art was always the plan – life just got busy and time slipped away. Then in 2001 a serious fall from a horse reminded me that everything can be lost in an instant.
I was managing 45 head of alpaca on an alpaca stud farm and working with problem horses as a specialist trainer. Out riding one afternoon along a rural road, two dogs attacked the horse – leading to the girth breaking and me hitting the ground still in the saddle. My fingers became twisted in reins as the horse bolted home. After losing sight of him I looked down at my mangled fingers.
Arriving at the nearest hospital three hours later, an x-ray revealed multiple broken fingers – one of the bones on my drawing hand had diagonally split and was almost shattered. The emergency doctor let me know he assumed I didn’t use my hands for any particular skill and they’d just patch me up. “I do actually.” was my response. That was the moment I knew I had to take my art seriously – before it was taken away from me.
After finding the best hand surgeon available, a long rehabilitation process began.
Athe age of 10, Patrick Christie dipped a nibbed pen into an inkwell for the very first time. The years that followed filled with travel and much life experience – all the while refining his craft – evolving into his now recognisable style. Breathing new life into a centuries old tradition of ink on paper Christie adds thinly veiled quirks, an edge of humour and a splash of colour – giving the genre a contemporary twist.
His dedication to strive for precision and exquisite detail is astonishing. Remarkably all drawn without copying from an arrangement – the artwork flows through the pen to the paper directly from Christie’s imagination. ‘Once I get into “flow” my sense of time slips away. It’s like an external force has control of my hand’ says Christie.
On closer inspection more details emerge from a piece that can take 200 or more hours to complete. Patrons enjoy searching for one of Christie’s visual signature touches: at least one insect forms part of the composition in all his drawings; often there’s many – laying down a challenge to discover them all.