Ten for Ten | 2019 | Series One with Barbara Licha

Barbara Licha is a New South Wales artist who lives in Sydney. Her work Gold Coast CBD Sunny One Day Perfect the Next. As humans, we are connected to each other, but also to the places we inhabit. Our cities are admired, as are their development and their atmosphere. I wish to bring to the attention of visitors to the beach, the visual beauty of the Gold Coast, high rise buildings, bridges, underground life, and the inhabitants of these spaces.

Writer Haley Smith spoke with Barbara about what inspires her art practice, how she balances working multiple projects and creating art from the heart.


Can you tell me one thing about your artwork that will make people stop and stare?

I hope to surprise and put viewers’ imagination beyond what they see. By walking around the work the observer will experience interaction between the figures overlapping lines and indicating a dialogue taking place within the space.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?

I like to observe what is happening around me. The human body and behaviour has fascinated me for many years. Travel and contact with other cultures has been a big inspiration for me. Also, movies, television, radio, books, music and everyday news always reveals something new to think about.

What motivates you to create your art?

Dialogue between me and my creation in studio, dialogue between finished work and individual viewers.

Do you experience self-doubt or fear when it comes to creating art and how do you overcome it?

I am very positive when starting the work but self-doubt and fear come later, when pushing boundaries. Some decisions can be affected and on the contrary it makes me stronger to search for new way to accomplish the work. Fear and self-doubt is part of creativity. We are often in a passage stage. It is not always easy, but it is definitely a time of creation that advances us somehow.

How long has it taken you to complete your SWELL Sculpture this year?

To finalise the sculpture GC CBD Sunny One Day Perfect The Next it takes about one year, but it was not only the sculpture I worked on that year. I actually always work with on different projects at the same time. In the studio I work on both small and big works of art and it gives me good distance to look at the work I do.

Can you tell me what impression you want your art piece to have on the public?

I hope people looking at my work think of human coexistence in the world, cities, villages, houses. They can see power of being together to construct but also respect individuality.

At what point in the day do you find you are the most creative and productive?

For me the best time in the studio is late afternoon. But I can continue working very late into the night.

Are there any installations from other artists that you are excited to see this year?

This year I had the possibility to visit gigantic sculpture Gibbs Farm in New Zealand, but unfortunately could not go over there. I will definitely consider that in the future.  It must be an unbelievable feeling to stand in front of a 20 meter tall sculpture. At the moment I am looking forward to seeing the installations and sculptures at Swell Festival.

Would you rather create art with your opposite hand or have a really annoying high-pitched noise play every time you try to do work?

It will definitely have to be using my left hand rather than a constant high-pitched noise.

If you could only use one material to make art for the rest of your life, what would you use?

I can easy say wire. II took wire with me many times when I was going interstate or overseas. Always I am taking the wire with me, and small tools to cut and work with over there.


Haley Smith is an emerging writer and creative from the Gold Coast. She has had an active blog for over ten years where she shares her short stories, poetry and travelling adventures. She has founded a podcast; Atomic Sunflowers. Here she shares stories about creative living beyond fear, mental health and balancing the creative mind.

Follow her on Instagram @haleylaurensmith or her blog www.haleylaurensmith.com

Ruth Della