Confluence is a set of diptychs presented in Emma Fielden’s recent solo exhibition ‘Approaching Zero’. In the accompanying essay, Australian poet Carol Jenkins describes Fielden’s new series of diptychs titled as “pour-spills, flow-mills, ink-wells or puddle-pours of Sumi ink. Each of the pair flows away and into the other, making conversations that come up to the brink, to an edge. They nudge, in a calculating way, at limits. … Sumi ink is usually diluted for calligraphy but Fielden pours and drips it straight onto the paper — a concentrate of a hundred million kanji — a constellation of characters like the beginning of the universe – that spreads into self-organizing forms, an ebb and flow of raven gloss.”
Emma Fielden’s minimalist and monochromatic sensibility is coupled with a sensitive approach to materials that culminates in studied, elegant meditations on the nature of infinity. Her work sits at the meeting point between science and poetics, taking form through installation, sculpture, drawing and performance. She stretches philosophies of infinite divisibility and coalescence across scales, alluding to the collision of galaxies through the merging of drawn lines, or visualising uncrossable divides in mathematics to consider the distance between two people.
Fielden began her art practice making contemporary jewellery with a focus on engraving and mark-making, and she has an earlier background in music. Since graduating from her studies in 2006, Fielden’s work has been regularly shown in solo and group exhibitions. Recent exhibitions include An Immeasurable Distance, The Lock-Up (2019); Between Stars Between Stones, Dominik Mersch Gallery (2018); To Have and To Hold: The Daadler Collection of Contemporary Jewellery, Art Gallery of South Australia (2018); Condo Complex, Patricia Conde Galeria Mexico City (2018); Drawing Conversations, National Art School (2016). She has received numerous awards such as the Paramor Prize Mayoral Award (2017), and has been a finalist in awards including the NSW Visual Arts Emerging Fellowship (2017), Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize (2017) and The Blake Prize (2016). In 2018, she was awarded the Art Omi Australia Committee Fellowship, selected to represent Australia at the Art Omi artists residency in upstate New York. Fielden is currently working from Parramatta Artists Studios Rydalmere, where she has been granted a two-year studio tenancy.