Madi Young is a familiar face in the local art scene, being the owner of The Corner Store Gallery, which has shown a huge range of works by various local artists since its inception a few years ago. Besides being an artist, Madi also designs & makes gorgeous jewellery and teaches crafting workshops at her gallery. To add another feather to her hat, she is also one of the founders of The Journey Person collective, and generously offered her gallery as the venue for The Journey Person’s Handmade Market! Today we visited Madi in her home – she works in various spots in the house, surrounded by lots of awesome artworks, plants, and her handmade wares such as macrame hanging planters & wall weavings!
Run us through your range of creative endeavours.
I completed a degree in Fine Arts from the University of Newcastle in 2009 and therefore ended up on the dole, it doesn’t exactly make you employable….. I was offered a job as the Artist In Residence at a high school and worked there for four years. During this time we opened The Corner Store Gallery, that was 2 years ago now and it’s still going strong. I have a lot of time to make things while I’m working in the gallery so most of the time I’m either making jewellery to sell through my Etsy store and markets, making crochet baby blankets for all the bloody babies being born, or painting for my up-coming exhibition at the gallery in November. I have taught myself a lot of different skills so I can pass them on through workshops in the gallery such as loom weaving, macramé, watercolour, crochet etc.
At what age did you realise that you wanted to be an artist? And where did it stem from?
I never really decided to be an artist, it was just something I liked and was reasonably good at I guess. I’ve never been a very practical person…… I suppose it became a reality when I got the Artist in Residence job and then even more so when I opened the gallery.
What inspires you the most when creating your work?
It’s not very original but mostly nature, native plants in particular. My up-coming exhibition is based on native plants and their amazing natural patterns and sculptural qualities. I’m also mostly inspired by the amazing artists and designers I meet through the gallery and in particular The Journey Person collective, we have an awesome group of makers here!!!
You’ve been teaching a lot of fun workshops – what is your favourite craft/creative skill and why?
I’m currently obsessed with crochet. I’ve wanted to learn it for ages and then my mum’s friend taught me how to get started on granny squares. Once you know the basics you can kind of further your skills through books and Youtube, Youtube is the best for craft tutorials!!! I really love teaching the loom weaving workshops; it’s great to see all the totally different designs and colours everyone comes up with when they all learn the same basic skills.
Which period in art history would you like to visit and why?
Definitely NOT the Renaissance! Probably when Andy Warhol was around. Not because he’s my favourite artist or anything, it just looked like a fun time!
How has living in regional NSW shaped your works?
My new exhibition is based entirely on the fact that I live in regional NSW. I visit Erick’s family property on the mountain almost every day just to enjoy the peace and quiet and “be surrounded by nature”. The trees and plants out there are what I base most of my paintings on.
Who is/are your current favourite creative person(s)?
Definitely you guys from The Journey Person Collective! Everyone is so up-beat and driven!
We’ve all devoted our lives to creating! It’s a hard life and a very brave thing to do!
What would you be if you were not an artist?
I have no idea! That’s why I am one….