There is no doubting the drawing abilities of Katka Adams. The dedicated application of her chosen medium of pastels onto the paper is there for all to see. Evidenced in each work is the skilful building up of lines, tones and colours that mark her as an expert draughtsman. However the true beauty of Katka’s work lies in the rich subject matter and evocative subtexts arranged into compositions that challenge our perceptions and assumptions.
The animals or anthropomorphic objects in Katka’s work playfully invite the viewer to engage with their stories. Stories that read as the simple joy of a domestic space can transform into complex realisations about the way humanity interacts with other species. Each reading is valid and the work has the ability to reveal itself over time, going at the pace of the viewer.
At the heart of Wild Interiors is the separation of our domestic spaces from the natural world outside. It taps into the popular trend of incorporating faux nature into our domestic life summed up by the work titles which are drawn from the names of commercial paint colours designed to evoke the natural world. A tame version of true wildness that can be controlled and understood in terms of home front comfort. A kangaroo who enjoys a spot of television or a monkey swinging from a chandelier suggest the absurdity of this falsehood.
The potent underlining message of the work is made all the more accessible through the highly desirable execution of the drawings. Wild Interiors is a body of work where meaning is served on a velvet cushion enticing us into Katka’s imagination and empathy for all living creatures.
National Gallery of Australia
Family Program Coordinator
Learning and Access