Emma-Kate Dowdell is a scholar and artist based between Brussels, Belgium and Perth, Australia. She completed her PhD at the Edith Cowan University, Perth, where she taught photography for 7 years before moving to Belgium. Her practice-based thesis ‘Picturing Irony’ examines how irony as a literary trope contributes to the understanding of documentary photography. Dowdell’s practice spans photography, sculpture and various forms of printing technics and focuses on how irony is used as a strategy to oscillate between rupture and regeneration. She is a member of the Australian-based artist collective The Patti Smiths and works in Belgium as a still photographer and mother.
Recently Emma collaborated with performance artist Yasmina Reggad, and dancer-choreographer Trajal Harrell. Emma Dowdell is passionate about stories old and new, collects pre-historic objects, and runs Artificialia, a series of conferences that use food as an entry point for understanding art, history and collecting.
Colour Porn Series
My husband's grandma did colour. She was a monochrome painter. Her artistic interrogation involved looking at old Masters, analysing their colour and trying to reproduce it: in the tint, the depth of the pigment, the age, the way the light hits the colour... She represented Belgium at the Venice Biennale the year I was born. My work similarly uses colour but involves none of that deep thought. I have no deep thought left. Life is boring. I’m not in Perth. I'm in lockdown. Again. Quarantine. Again. Kids home. Again. It’s not scary. It's just boring. It's so boring that I can't quite remember why it was more interesting before. All there is to do is colour porn and paper amazons.