As a well-respected Melbourne based artist, Mark Schaller was a founding member of Roar Studios in Melbourne; a bold group of artists united by their interests in Expressionism and Primitivism.
Schaller works fluently across a variety of art forms including sculpture, ceramics, and painting. In Victoria, the artist works from three studios; a large painting studio in Richmond, an enormous sculpture studio in Abbotsford and for bronze works, he travels to the Garage Art Foundry in Elphinstone, a space that has been casting and fabricating sculpture for artists for the past 20 years, and only a short distance from Bendigo city.
Schaller has had a long association with the Deague family, owners of the Art Series Hotel Group. He first travelled to Lake Eyre on the fabled ‘William Creek & Beyond’ tour in 2001. This project, which included fellow Art Series Hotel artist Dr John Olsen, took ten artists to the heart of Australia to paint one of the most vivid landscapes on the planet, and the location of where the idea of Art Series Hotel Group was born.
Throughout his travels, Schaller captures his experiences in rapidly executed watercolour paintings. His landscape paintings see complex scenes distilled into abstracted series of lines and shapes. In Schaller’s work, bold arrays of cubes, lines and circles convey the essence of a visual experience prepared convincingly through his highly attuned capacity for colour and form.
As a dynamic, mid-career contemporary artist, Schaller has exhibited broadly in Australia and has represented Australia in exhibitions at the Australian embassies in Singapore and in Tokyo. His work is held in key state collections at the National Gallery of Australia and the National Gallery of Victoria as well as numerous private collections.
Schaller’s work will manifest in many forms throughout The Schaller Studio, from original paintings in each room, sculptures throughout the garden and an eight meter high mosaic on the entrance wall to the hotel. Many of the works will draw inspiration from Bendigo town and the surrounding region, places Schaller visited often over his childhood.
“Bendigo is really romantic and has a fabulous history. I am looking forward to spending more of my time here, using the city and its surrounds as inspiration for the work that will feature in the rooms of the hotel. Today the city is the vibrant art centre for regional Victoria and I intend to start uncovering some of its hidden gems, highlighting the best the area has to offer as it grows into a unique destination for art lovers around the world.”