A Medium is an individual held to be a channel of communication between the earthly world and a world of spirits. In art, medium refers to a mode of artistic expression or communication. For Australian artist Lucy Hardie, whose elaborate drawings explore spirituality and duality of nature, they are one and the same. Hardie is the great granddaughter of a Medium. A story that has been passed down is that her grandmother once walked into a séance and saw a person levitating. Inspired by her own history and personal experience, Hardie then combines symbols of life after death and awakening to capture that which connects us.
Hardie is sometimes compared to artists like Vania Zouravliov and Aubrey Beardsley, who also emphasize the grotesque, the decadent, and the erotic. She also cites the otherworldy imagery of Matthias Grünewald, Ilya Repin and the illustrations by H. J. Ford and Ivan Bilibin as creative influences. Her illustrations utilize light and dark layers of fine lines sometimes mixed with gold leaf that enhances the strange divinity of her subjects. She believes every person has two sides, a black and white, represented in her monochromatic palette. “I seek for my work to facilitate in the viewer a deeper experience of Life’s infinite beauty and mystery, to help others remember our already free and interconnected nature,” she shares at her website. By mixing different fairytales, religious themes, and classic romanticism with modern realism, Hardie communicates the collected human experience.