Utopia - An Artshow by Lee Wilson

Picture a view from a hill, a beautiful woman is sprawled the tiles, another is half in the pool, half out leaning upon the ledge. Look further afield to an empty horseshoe shaped bay, perfect lines of six foot waves are breaking off either point, your pick of a left or a right, at present all are going unridden. There’s a bowl of perfectly ripe tropical fruit at your feet. The whole composition is vying for your attention. You’re spoilt for choice. The picture is a painting. One man’s idea of what ‘Utopia’ might look like.

That man is Lee Wilson and the picture described above is just one from more than a dozen where he exorcises what’s on his mind through paint on canvas.

Lee grew up in Bali and Australia, and through his formative years, ascended to a position at the pointy end in the surf community. The fickle mistress is surf, and not one you can reliably bank on, either for finance or for continuous support consequently Lee turned to the one thing that had never left his side, Art.

Today the brush and pencil, together with his family, are the quiver he builds his life around. He still surfs a lot, though art has always been there for him, since he was a child it has been his constant companion, a way to express himself, to have the conversation he wants to have when no one is there to have it with, or just the urgent outlet when taken by the need to vent.

With friendship tendrils that spread deep into the local humanity, it’s no surprise a lot of them came out to the Deus Gallery for the opening night. They came to say g’day, they came to support their friend and most importantly, they came to have a peek at this his most recent body of works, which he’s had under wraps for months. It was a who’s who in the Gu, and a damn sight more than a handful of people from further afield that turned out to sup on free flow of Henris Ginger Beer, Island Brewing Pilsner, & Two Islands Wines, catch up with all their buddies while dipping their eyeballs into Lee’s alluring vistas. We had one of those art shows that poured from the gallery into the backyard onto tables strewn about as people tolerated the heavy humidity with conversations awash with laughter.

When asked what Utopia meant to him, Lee Wilson had this to say…

“My mind has been entranced in a plethora of dreams, both nocturnal and diurnal. During my waking hours, I find myself indulging in whimsical musings, where I witness and experience the beauty of nature unfold before me. As I am lost in the moment, I contemplate the artistry behind the scene and wonder, ‘How would I capture this on canvas?’. My fascination with nature has heightened, as I observe the intricate dance between humans and the environment. My thoughts are consumed by the hues and shades that adorn my surroundings, and my passion for arranging them in a harmonious composition. I strive to unravel the code that unlocks the key to my reverie, to immortalize the essence of my dreams on the canvas, to share with the world.”

“For me, utopia does not lie in unrealistic expectations of reality. Instead, it manifests as an ideal, a moment of respite from the mundane world we inhabit. I envision the perfect waves, continuously breaking in a rhythmic dance under a perfectly blue sky. To be in the right place, at the right time, doing precisely what we desire, is the epitome of utopia. Whether lived or imagined, utopia reminds us of the splendour that life can offer, a brief respite from reality that rejuvenates the soul.”

Lee Wilson’s Utopia will be gracing the walls of the Deus Gallery in Canggu until April 23. If you are in town, it’s a hell of a must see.

Massive thanks to Island Brewing Beer, Henri's Ginger Beer & Two Island Wines for supporting the opening event.

Here is a link to Lee Wilson’s Instagram!