Femme Fatale

Annabel Cator’s @moralantics debut art series, Femme Fatale, alongside a mixture of live music and DJ performances will bring together music, art, and light to form a space of exploration this Saturday May 7 in Newrybar on the NSW North Coast.

Daniel Pantoja’s 3D light installations will go beyond the music and art to create moments that will be remembered.

Explore any of these mediums, or simply enjoy the playground of synaesthesia.
There will be welcome drinks from our sponsors with BYOB bar thereafter. Please bring a keepcup/glass to help minimise waste!

All ticket and bar proceeds from the evening will go towards supporting local artists in the wake of the floods in Northern Rivers. Buy Femme Fatale tickets here

This event will take place on land whom the traditional custodians are the tribes of Bundjalung Nation. We would like to pay respects to ancestors both past, present and future.

We interviewed Annabel to find out more about this exciting artist and her show Femme Fatale.

Annabel CantorAnnabel Cator @moralantics – Femme Fatale

Hi Annabel
How do you define the Femme Fatale – is it an exhibition, a performance or an experience?
Femme Fatale is an immersive experience. I want to redefine the way we experience art. In a traditional sense, it is an exhibition but I hope to provide a portal to something more meaningful. I want people to walk away with more than the art – with memories from a glimpse into a new medium.

What is the inspiration and motivation behind Femme Fatale?
Femme Fatale originally allowed me explore the darker parts of who I am, particularly in relation to my sexual identity and the male gaze. Inherently, a lot of my internal musings are a product of western culture. I was realising that as a woman, many of us try to carve our self-worth from an outdated and oppressive social framework, like dipping your bucket into a pit of snakes.

I existed in a state of fear because of this. My self-worth stemmed from this dark hole created by western culture. And this fear blocks us from accessing deep love for ourselves and for others.

Using my art to connect with women and my community has helped me to break down the toxic constructs imposed by Western culture. It has allowed me to love myself, to love others, and move into an abundant space and new framework. Femme Fatale continues to evolve and deepen over time.

How long have you been working on this show and what has been your process to conceptualise the art?

Oooh… This is a hard one. I have only recently properly stepped into art in the past year and a half. I didn’t have the confidence prior to that to let go of the traditional career path I thought was ‘right’.

They say we either make decisions out of fear or out of love. A lot of my decisions prior to art were made in fear. Fear versus love. Scarcity versus abundance. Paddling the two can be challenging.

The whole experience has been a vision that I’ve had for many years (genuinely a big part of my dreamscape), which has changed and morphed every time every time I’m living somewhere new. But the art series came to life when I started confronting the internal monologue about two years ago now. We’ve all been there, and they are sometimes the hardest conversations we have.

Who is involved in this Femme Fatale show with you?
Wow… some unbelievable people – both in talent and heart.

Daniel Pantoja is the insane genius in charge of the 3D light projections. The combination of his mind, creativity, and kindness is a rare thing and I cannot wait for you to see his work.

Mahdi Manar is the tech guru who is making it all happen from behind the scenes. Speaking to him is like touching base with the inner workings of Yoda and Alan Turing. Iain Mathieson i.e. ‘light wizard’ is the genius behind the lighting. A space is created through light (and power!), without him we’d be lost.

Dylan Leacey has been my main arm in this whole process, not only will he be the fuel to the event as the primo bartender but his behind-the-scenes work has given the whole event legs.

Becca Miskin is the queen of this all, she’s provided the land and is the backbone to the whole event.

Jess Ashby is a surreal florist and will be curating the floral designs – she is providing the final touch which will breathe life and warmth into the space.

Cai Leplaw and Portia Sarris are the brilliant photographers who have helped me curate content over many months. They both inspire me so much each and every day, and if you haven’t already, please check out their work.

The sponsors, Channel Void are the masterminds behind the content and how the evenings will be captured. Feels Botanical will be providing the beautiful cocktail blends. Easthill Estate are kindly responsible for the delicate wines, and Young Henry’s are bringing us the sustenance – the beer and cider.

Do you have days when you struggle to find your artistic voice and if so what do you do to re-invigorate yourself and your art?
Ooh yeahhh… this is the main point of contention of any artist’s career. I can spend hours sitting and staring at a painting (putting down some mental paint). It can also test my patience beyond anything. I had never painted a horse before. Safe to say I painted and repainted that horse excess of 10 times. I am surprised there aren’t tiny little stab holes in the canvas. But learning to breathe through these moments goes a long way.

But hitting the refresh button means chopping and changing for me. If I work too long or get stuck on one painting, I start creating new content. That means mind-mapping, looking at new locations, mapping out photography content, and meeting with people who can bring the vision to life. From photograph to painting, the whole process can take months and requires many people.

How would you define your tone and message?
Abundance, abundance, abundance. If we can access that part of ourselves which is the deep lovin’, abundant state that many of might access on alternative sources or through alternative means, in our everyday lives then that would be pretty unreal. Unshackle our personal lens from fear, drive our decisions and energy from a different source.

What are some of your other artistic mediums and what do you love about each?
Oil is my main medium, I would love to learn more about light projections and sculpture work. But my main focus is creating space and bringing together the people who can make this vision happen. I love creating environments where people connect, create, and are in that relaxed state where they can act from a space of love.

What do you want people to experience from this show?
I want people to step into that state. To feel connected to the art, to the music, to one another. I want the experience of art to not be confined within four white walls and cheap champagne. To move beyond that ‘spectator’ mode we hide behind under bright lights, and simply enjoy the space and the art. I want people to walk away with what I call ‘golden memories’. The tiny sparks that light up our past.

What do you want people to take home in your art?
Understanding what it means to be moved by love as opposed to fear. To have the courage to step out of a scarcity mindset and see what happens. What happens to our relationships with those around us, to our work, to our way of being.

Femme Fatale

Where do you find home in your heart?
Nature. When I am connected to something as infinite and abundant as nature, I feel most at home – wherever I am in the world. It is a deeply humbling experience.

What inspires you on a daily basis?
Honestly, the excitement of learning. Of learning from those around me, from learning from mishaps and random events that happen. When I am open and curious, I find myself almost laughing at the things I learn in a day. Knowing this, inspires me to keep exploring, to keep moving, to keep evolving.

How important is community and friendship to you in creating your art into the various mediums?
My art would not exist without my community and my friends. It’s that simple. I owe everything to my community and those around me.

Does music play an important role in your inspiration or do you prefer silence?
Yes… I practice music in my own time and it helps my brain to move and evolve in a different way. It’s all about exploring new neural pathways and music runs parallel to my art.

I know you have a strong Femme Fatale support group in the northern rivers can you tell me about your crew please?
I live and work with some epic humans. Karlee Mackie has been an unreal mentor and helped me to step into my art career. I continue to learn so much from her mind and spirit.

Portia Sarris… Not only does she inspire me with her insane talent but she is the ‘resilient empath’ which defines my work. Someone who is so unbelievably strong with incredible sensitivity and heart. I would not be where I am without her.

Working and creating with Cai LePlaw is out of this world. His mind is a beautiful labyrinth of creativity and spark. No corner turn or path taken is ever dull.

Everyone at Noname Studios and the boys at Postcard – they have been the A-team and principle support throughout this whole process.

Alex Thom at Thom Gallery has given me so much inspiration and help over the months. I feel grateful to watch him work and his space in action.

Caitlin O’Reilly at Gallery 3 has given me great confidence and support in getting my work off the ground. I have worked with some remarkable women over the months.

Vanessa Valladares left me in complete awe after watching her ride a horse through water with complete grace. She has been a beautiful connection and inspiration to have in the Northern Rivers. 

Do you have a breath out mantra to start your day?
I walk every morning. I try to observe silence and allow myself muse in my own way. I’m not strict or guided in what I do but I just try to access this feeling of peace and allow any points of tension in my mind and body to subside.

What is your message to the universe today?
Be open and malleable. Allow things to come and go, and for emotions to move through you. Be curious about everything that comes across your path, and love everything that does so.

Curiosity is a stepping stone into an abundant mindset. It dissolves fear. Be curious.

I read somewhere that relationships are measured not in time but lessons learned. I think this speaks true for both our relationships and our experiences in life.

_ _ 

Femme Fatale this Saturday May 7 is presented by Channel Void, Young Henrys, East Hill Estate and Feels Botanical. Tickets available here

Femme Fatale 

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