About The Artful Auni
Auni Milne is a multi-disciplinary artist in the Lanark Highlands west of Ottawa. Her studio practice includes sculpture, painting, and mixed media.
Painting and sculpting rural life and the animals living among us, around us, and inside of us.
I grew up in a family of 5 where we traveled a lot, mostly in a Volkswagen bus in which we often lived for days or weeks (and once even months) at a time. My brother and sister and I played imagination games and drew copiously.
We eventually settled in the Gatineau Park just outside Ottawa, Canada, where we were surrounded by lush vegetation in summer and deep snow in winter — and always by animals, both domestic and wild. I was animal-obsessed, drawing, painting, and sculpting them every moment I could. I even wrote short stories about them!
I have always been fascinated with the intersection between the human and the animal, as well as the dichotomy of what it means to be both. In both my sculpture work and my painting, I explore the surface beauty of the human and the non-human, and the depths beneath; the character and self that is at the heart of all we animals, and how we interact and connect with the natural world.
Each painting begins with a sense of that character, whether it is human, animal, or someone who identifies as opposite or both. I often use photographs as reference material, ones that I have taken myself, or taken by a loved one or friend. I look for specific intriguing qualities: a quirky moment, a singular atmosphere, an offbeat expression or milieu, or an engaging composition. My paintings are charged with a sense of motion; the exuberance of line, texture, colour and form, a dialogue between substance and light.
In my sculptural work, marks made with my fingers and others made with tools are combined, suggesting an exchange of varying energies and rhythms.
A theme of interconnectedness and mood are conveyed by my work which ultimately is a celebration of the mysterious forces of life that connect us to the natural world. I try to imbue every piece with a sense of the mystery of self, the enigma at the core of every individual.