7×13 | 2021 | Series 1 | Rae Saheli

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Rae Saheli profile pic

Rae Saheli profile pic

Rae Saheli QLD


What was the inspiration behind the piece that is a part of the SWELL Sculpture Festival 2021?

My inspiration came from Tallebudgera Creek and beach. Watching the waves create patterns in the sand.

Do you follow a process or plan for each new piece or do you ‘wing it’?

I do ‘wing it’ (I call it experimenting) but I do plan what materials I may use and if any preparation is needed before shooting at them.

Would you describe your artistic journey as a slow burn or a wild ride?

My artistic journey has been a slow burn at times, juggling family and work. Over the last 3 years its been a wild ride with exhibiting in Brisbane, Gold Coast and Melbourne and producing a large body of work.

Can you tell us a little bit more about how you became the artist that you are today?

With great mentors and support I have been able to explore my creative identity which has allowed me to create a unique body of artwork.

Describe your ideal environment where your creative juices flow?

At the gun club, walks along the beach and my studio.

Is there an artist or body of work that you would consider your muse?

This is a hard question… using a 12-gauge shot gun to create art, I haven’t really come across another artist that uses something similar. I do find inspiration in Lindy Lee and Cornelia Parker for their amazing sculptural pieces, the use of light and shadows.

If you had to choose 3 words to describe your artistic style, what would they be?

EXPLOSIVE, unique, dynamic.

Beyond SWELL 2021, is there a forthcoming project you are most excited about?

I’m already planning my next proposal for SWELL 2022.

What does exhibiting in SWELL 2021 mean to you?

Opportunity to exhibit my work on a larger scale to a wider community. To show the community that beauty can come from the most unusual art making tools, like a 12-gauge shot gun.

Is there anything you do to continue developing as an artist? Would you describe yourself as self-taught or formally educated in your practice?

Pushing the boundaries and never getting too precious with my art making. I love experimenting – it’s about the process that excites me the most. I have some formal education (traditional painting and printmaking) but the artwork I create now has been self-taught and a lot of experimentation.

If you were to go on a holiday, would you venture to the ocean or the mountains?


Gourmet restaurant or home-cooked meal?

Home cooked meals, if I don’t have to cook it.

How would you describe your taste in music?

Mixed 70’s and 80’s depends on my mood.

The Author

Courtney Stephens is an emerging creative event producer based in Tweed Heads. After a successful career as a Practice Manager, her passion for the creative arts industry has led her to study a Bachelor of Business in Convention and Event Management. She hopes to balance her love for the arts, culture and nature with her strengths in communication and management to create community based events.

Follow her on Instagram @courtneystephens