Local artist Courtenay McCue has created a vibrant new mural for HOTA, Home of the Arts for their Duchamp Wall Commission.
Her artwork, The Queen of the Cross, is inspired by Carlotta; a Gold Coast icon, fearless cabaret dancer and LGBTQ activist.
The Queen of the Cross is a tribute to a woman who has inspired countless people through the decades of her ground-breaking career, dedicated to further inspire strength and collectivity in the community.
Courtenay situates vintage or historic imagery in a contemporary reference, here cleverly transforming a doorway into a dressing room, under the guise of a magazine cover. The composition emulates an issue of Life magazine while offering a chronicle of Carlotta’s life. Rife with symbols and references, including Courtenay’s trademark CRT, it celebrates Carlotta.
Executed in Courtenay’s signature style of layered street art treatments, including stencils, pastes ups, and hand-written messages, this mural is her biggest work to date, and her first-time using wall vinyl.
Based on the Gold Coast, Courtenay (also known by her trademark CRT – derived from her nickname Court) draws inspiration from the graffiti of Melbourne lanes, the iconography of medieval religious art, the urban beach culture of the Gold Coast and the energy of her birth place Sydney, she pushes boundaries and breaks the rules.
Known for her high-volume output of bright, contemporary works, her painting practice is heavily influenced by popular music, street culture, urban aesthetics, underground zines, pin-up girls, pop and graffiti art. Connecting the contemporary world with bygone eras, with heavy references to the 70s and 80s she weaves song lyrics, advertisements, motifs and icons onto multi-layered and coloured surfaces
Her trademark CRT is not simply her artist signature but an ever-present symbol within the visual language of her work.
Courtenay’s profile as a Gold Coast emerging artist has been established with a solo show at S.O.F.A Gallery in Currumbin and a mural for the Level Up Gallery in Coolangatta in 2018.
Courtenay will also host a workshop for kids at HOTA – ArtLab: Stencil Stars on 9 March. Young artists will create a layered artwork using spray paint and stencils under her direction.
The Duchamp Wall
HOTA, Home of the Arts are always looking for opportunities for local artists. Their latest commission, affectionately known as the Duchamp Wall Commission (yes, it’s on a wall near a male toilet) provides a blank canvas for local artists to create site-specific, temporary artwork and to extend their own practice.
The Duchamp Wall is a nod to Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968); a multi-media artist associated with Cubism, conceptual art, and Dada. He challenged the conventions of art making and famously declared a porcelain urinal as an artwork.
The previous Duchamp Wall Commission at HOTA was by local artist Libby Harward.
You can see The Queen of the Cross at HOTA, Home of the Arts until July 2019.
This article was originally published on HOTA, Home of the Arts as New commission for local artist Courtenay McCue.