It’s known as Adelaide’s seedy strip, but renowned naïve artist Marie Jonsson-Harrison has captured Hindley Street in a whole new light – as a colourful, eccentric streetscape – and her images are to be taken to the world on a new range of contemporary bed linen.
The naïve artwork has been reproduced on the Art’N’Bed (Our Art, Your Bed) product label by Israeli entrepreneur, Mr Lior Rapaport, who bought the copyright for bedding and March will receive royalties per set sold.
He discovered her work while browsing the Museum of Modern Art on Facebook where he found one of her paintings someone had posted there.
“He really liked it and he went from there to my website to see “who is this artist?’,’’ recalls Ms Jonsson-Harrison.
Ms Jonsson-Harrison’s Hindley Street naïve art is one of three images in the range. It will be launched in New York on June 16/17, following its successful launching at Passover in Israel in April. The range will be launched in Japan and the United Kingdom later this year.
The exciting quilt features all the one-time familiar icons of Hindley Street –Jules Bar, Downtown Leisure Centre, Flash Coffee Gelateria and Jerusalem Restaurant in a splash of vibrant street life. Crazy Horse nightclub is depicted alongside Goodwill Stores. And the instantly recogniseable eclectic imagery is jammed with a multi-cultural crowd of people.
Swedish-born Marie Jonsson-Harrison, a former international model, said she wanted to capture the excitement and “naughtiness’’ of Hindley Street that she remembered from her youth.
“He wrote me an email and he said he was interested in featuring the Hindley Street artwork.
Her Hindley Street artworks were originally displayed at Greenhill Galleries.
Why Hindley Street?
“When I was a teenager we would “crack a Hindley’ where you would go in the car and cruise down looking at what was happening. The whole scene was so much fun, with the tourists and the cruisers hanging out of cars.’’
Mr Rapoport has also commissioned Marie to capture the city of San Francisco for Art”N”Bed quilts and pillowcases.
Marie began painting in the naïve style 25 years ago when she had asked her brother, a sculptor, to decorate her newborn daughter’s nursery.
But when he was too busy with his sculptures, she decided to decorate the wall herself. “It was such fun, I continued painting,’’ she said.
Adelaide art dealer, Jim Elder “discovered’’ Marie soon afterwards and she has been painting professionally since.
However, Marie’s career has hit the international stage once she launched her website and offers to show her work flowed in.
A UK publishing company, wiuth 1200 outlets in the UK, has commissioned her to do a poster of the London Olympics to capture the city of London and its icons. These limited edition Giclee artworks will be available through some of the outlets during the Olympics.
The same company has also commissioned her to do an iconic artwork on Paris and has chosen five of her previous works for limited edition Giclee prints to be marketed around the world.
Marie has an established clientele in Japan through gallery exhibitions and from her website, she has made inroads into the European naïve art scene. IN May her works were written up in a French magazine, Artension Magazine France…
She also was featured in January in Normandy France in the Henri Rousseau exhibition in L’abbaye de Montivilliers on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of his death.
This month her artwork will be also featured in the by invitation only Naive Festival, Katowice Poland.
Former president of the Hindley Street Traders’ Association and one-time owner of Downtown Leisure Centre Frank, Sebastyan, denies Hindley Street was ever the haunt of prostitutes and pimps.
“It never was a street of prostitutes,’’ said Mr Sebastyan, who scotches its notoriety. “There may be the occasional prostitute, but it is not a pickup street.”
He says Hindley Street has struggled with an unfair reputation for years.
“It has always been describe ed as the entertainment street of Adelaide… Today it is largely a street of entertainment, night clubs, bars and coffee shops.’’
For further information, contact Marie Jonsson-Harrison on n 0438 508 659 or 83873386.