I am enamoured of cards as much as I am of writing letters. And of course the two can be combined – I love sending off missives to my mates. I probably somewhat swamp them with my predilection, but my friends are a tolerant mob and hopefully I am forgiven. Out and about I keep a whether eye open for greeting cards that enchant the senses – but, dear me, they’re getting expensive these days. They are now around the seven dollar mark for many of the nature that I prefer. That price is difficult to justify when they are purchased in the number that I like to. Some of the best can be found in our local book emporiums – Fullers, Dymocks and the Hobart Book Shop. Not so long ago I was down in Salamanca, enjoying autumn sunshine, when outside the doors of the last listed store I espied arrayed a number of boxes of cards – good cards – some at three dollars a hit, others at a wonderful single dollar. I was soon into them like a moth to the flame. Since then, each time I am in that part of the world I pay the bookshop a visit and to my delight find that those boxes are regularly refilled with fresh designs – although, now with the chill winds of winter blowing, they are housed inside. Even more to my budgetary pleasure a new sign has appeared. They have been further reduced in cost. One can now choose ten beauties for the former cost of one, a mere seven bucks!
And that’s how I discovered artist Yoli Salmona. Occasionally one finds an image that particularly captures the attention and holds it. And rifling through the described boxes one Sunday morning, I found such-like from her.
The card featured a summery-clad gentleman gazing out across a yacht-splattered Sydney Harbour, from a colonnaded balcony, towards the Bridge and Opera House. On returning home I endeavoured to track down that image on-line to no avail, but I did discover a little about the card’s producer and some more of her offerings. One that intrigued, from talented Yoli, was entitled ‘Bondi on Ice’. This was mainly because it was so at odds with the usual images we get, in spades, of the iconic strand. It’s a winter scene. Instead of golden sand and a dazzlingly azure sky, we are confronted with muted pastel heavens and a shivery, silvery beach. Instead of bikinied gals and budgie-smuggled lads, we have have a line of figures clad more for the bite of winter here on my island in the southern seas. And – look closely – are there skates on their feet?
Like many of our best daubers, Ms Salmona hails form foreign shores too. In her case it’s France. Her initial training was in the field of fashion design and before the relocation to Oz, in 1986, she had plied her craft in Los Angeles and Tunisia, as well as Paris. A new country bought a change of tack as the markets for her previous oeuvre dried up with the tough economic times in the nineties. She turned to oils as her new medium and was soon garnering success. Many of her works continue to be taken up by card companies world-wide and she exhibits frequently. Yoli S has also won several prestigious awards. She teaches portraiture in Sydney and the latest string to her bow are what she terms ‘floor canvasses’ – having her product printed on rugs. So I invite you to check out what Yoli Salmona offers on-line and if you share my predisposition, you may even find her on a local card-of-quality rack at a vendors near you. I agree with her sentiment that art, such as hers ‘…can enhance the experience of everyday living through pleasure addressing our senses or a particular aesthetic, and our sense of humour.’ She did that for me one morning down at Salamanca.
A gallery of Yoli’s works = http://www.absolutearts.com/portfolios/s/salmona/