Natalie Savage

Many of your still life paintings are scenes of tables filled with mouth-watering food (and good drinks). It is almost as if one can consume your painting. What is the decision behind painting edible items? What kind of impact do you hope your art has on its viewers?

There was never really a decision to paint food, it was more just an inevitable thing as I’m basically food obsessed. I definitely grew up in a family that discussed what we’d have for dinner while we ate lunch. I find meals such a fun subject to paint--beyond the obvious vibrant colours and shapes of food--I love imagining up sunny sprawling lunches or fancy little evening nibbly drinks. I hope the impact it has on viewers is to bring a pop of playfulness to items we consume everyday.

Speaking of food and drinks, do you have any particular favorites (and do you also cook)? And do they feature heavily in your work? You feature specific items like a Perelló olive can and Kikkoman soy sauce bottles; are these products current personal favorites or ingredients that you grew up on?

I love to cook. Probably would say it’s my favourite thing to do (closely followed by painting). I read cookbooks in bed like novels.

Yes, I definitely chuck in all my favourites into the paintings: prawns, mussels, fish; basically any seafood being a biggie. It is very difficult not to paint the things you love the most!

Food is a universal language that is able to transcend boundaries and create special connections between unlikely people. As your work features it so heavily, have you ever had a viewer or buyer remark that his/her favorite dish was featured in your painting? If so, how did it make you feel to be able to have this connection?

Yes, absolutely. I think food is a powerful thing in that way. We all have our favourites and we all have our own memories and sentiments attached to certain foods/drinks/dishes. And so it’s lovely to hear when people reach out to me to say how much they connected with a painting as it reminded them of happy times.

Equally as important as the subjects in your paintings are the robust and bold colors that coat your canvases. It’s hard for a viewer’s eyes to wander elsewhere from your work because the pigments are so rich and captivating. How does the use of strong color play a crucial role in your artworks and practice in general?

I’m completely drawn to colour! I have tried to experiment with toning it down in the past and use a more neutral palette. I just wanted to see how the works would look in this way, but somehow every time the painting is finished there’s big slabs of bright pinks, neon orange, or deep blues. It’s almost as if I can’t help it. The bolder, the better for me--and not just in my paintings, I also drag this colour palette along to interiors and what I wear!

Still life, in the hierarchy of artistic genres, has a long history of being devalued and seen as ‘less important’ compared to other subjects such as historic or landscape paintings. However, you paint still lives of various sizes, even creating canvases as large as 160 x 220 cm. What does it mean to create such large still lives and what do you think is the importance of this genre?

I guess I find the valuing of certain artistic genres above others to be a bit silly. I’m a big believer that things shouldn’t be taken so seriously. Not to say art isn’t important, it very much is. But, if one finds joy in something then that should be enough. And it’s great to be playful with it as well.

I think there’s something quite fun about having a massive canvas with just a plate of fish on it or an oversized popping champagne--just because why not?

Last great media (show/movie/book/music)?

Show: I’m so late to it but I just started watching the French show Call My Agent!, it’s so fun.

Movie: Saltburn, a mad, fab film. It’s completely intoxicating, and I also loved the 2006 aesthetic.

Book: Currently reading Nora Ephron’s I Feel Bad About My Neck and am just loving every page. Also recently devoured the audiobook for Capote’s Women-- it’s like Real Housewives of New York but in the 50s.

Music: I basically flip flop between Sade and the BeeGees. I should probably listen to some new music haha.

Click Here ︎ to see Natalie’s work.
Natalie’s Instagram: @nataliesavageart

Interview by Tiffany Kang.

Court Tree Collective was established in 2013 by a group of artists and creatives with the primary purpose of representing and supporting the work of emerging and established contemporary artists. Since its opening Court Tree Collective has been a staple to south Brooklyn’s emerging art scene and in a short time has exhibited a number of important exhibitions. In addition they have curated a number of exhibitions at satellite locations throughout the states and abroad.

We are a family-run art gallery specializing in emerging artists to offer a unique and intimate experience for art enthusiasts. Court Tree Collective showcases outsider art, which often defies traditional artistic conventions, alongside works by up-and-coming artists to add depth and diversity to the gallery's offerings. Visitors can expect to encounter raw, authentic expressions of creativity that challenge perceptions and ignite curiosity. By nurturing rising talent and championing unconventional voices, the gallery plays a vital role in fostering a vibrant and inclusive art community.

Our gallery is curated by artists for artists, which fosters a dynamic and supportive environment where creative visionaries can thrive. With firsthand understanding of the artistic process, the curators can showcase works that resonate deeply with both artists and audiences. This curated space celebrates diversity, innovation, and experimentation; it provides a platform for emerging and established artists to connect, collaborate, and showcase their talents. By upholding a community-driven approach to curation, the gallery becomes a vibrant hub for inspiration, dialogue, and artistic exchange.︎



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