Amanda Schunker is an eclectic cultural mix of Chinese/Anglo/Indian heritage. Over the years she has quietly worked away to make a claim on her identity, always taking refuge in nature, wherever that may be in the world. It is through this process of deconstruction of the familiar and cultural conditioning that she has developed her own dialogue of abstract responses to her natural environment.
Amanda graduated from RMIT with a BA in Textile Design, working under the influence of revered artists such as David Band and Yvonne Audette. Whilst this held her in good stead as a textile designer and product manager for leading industry brands, she continually returned to creating a more meaningful practice through her art. Today, as full time artist, it is evident that her accomplished knowledge of colour and mark-making still draws on the textile skills inherent in her. Her multi-disciplinary approach carves a distinctive tone in her work.
“It is the intimacy of the human response that I seek to express throughout my work,” says Amanda. “The first marks must come directly from the source. I fluctuate between the internal and external dialogue of myself and the subject, often using non traditional materials.”
She reiterates this sense of immediacy through her teaching and practice of life drawing – a fundamental drafting skill she has always enjoyed. It is with both of these disciplines stimulating one another that she is propelled forward, and given momentum. Her traditional methods are constantly being challenged – to think laterally and on a more visceral level – building up a patinae of perspectives, complexities and personal experiences. This is the driving force that keeps her in search for that inner sanctum, for that pleasure in one’s language.
Amanda Schunker lives and works in bayside Melbourne.