We stumbled across Jessica's' work recently whilst scrolling through Facebook. We came across a flyer for her next exhibition and saw a portrait of DVNT team rider John Bones as the centre piece. The painting was uncannily realistic but with a unique twist - from that moment were hooked. We asked Jes to take five minutes out of her hectic schedule to answer a few questions so we could get to know her a bit better.
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is (Jes)sica Gehle and I do whatever makes me happy. And painting happens to make me extremely happy!
What does a typical day involve?
It involves waking up at an ungodly hour in the morning to make my way to Mater Hospital 4 days a week for Social Work. Any free time is spent most with my boyfriend, my friends or with a paint brush and lots and lots of food.
What is your worst habit?
Being a ciggie butt brain.
Jessica Gehle - Pigs for Breakfast
Today! Haha! I watched a powerful heart-wrenching short video on the life of a foster kid. Human rights is something I am strongly passionate about so this type of thing easily gets to me.
What do you fear most?
Toads. I just died writing that down.
What word best describes you?
Jessica Gehle - Scumbag Cheaters
What is something that you are embarrassed to admit you love?
Spam (canned ham) hahaha.
When did you realise you had a flair for your current skill?
Ever since I was young I dreamed of being an artist and constantly painted, although over the years it had come to a stop. Only recently have I gotten back into painting and realized I loved it just as much as I did all those years ago. It’s not so much realizing I have a flair essentially, but enjoying it to an extent that I want to share it openly.
Who makes you laugh?
So much makes me laugh. I realized I am always laughing, but hey, it’s the best medicine.
How does your career as a social worker influence your artwork?
I want to push myself further as an artist, and be a Social Worker who can express contemporary concerns and social issues through my paintings.
If you had not pursued your current career what do you think you would be doing?
If I was not so scared about the security of a career in dancing, I would absolutely, definitely love to be a dancer as an occupation.
Who is you’re your favourite band/musical artist?
I love and appreciate a large range of music and could not state a particular artist or group, although my main genre will always be straight underground old-school hip-hop.
What is your favourite movie?
There is no one favourite movie, but I’ll have to go with ‘Kids’ directed by Larry Clark. It’s an American drama from 1995, extremely controversial now banned in Australia. It’s based on teenagers in New York who are heavy into sex and substance abuse during the era of HIV in the mid 90’s. I appreciate the realism of the scenes and the rawness all together. It’s messed up but refreshingly different.
What is the best lie you ever told?
I don’t think I have ever told any good lies. I am probably the worst liar in the world. If I try, you’ll know.
Jessica Gehle - Walking Thin
What are three things that people do not know about you?
1. I’ve danced for majority of my life, mainly in hiphop groups but I really enjoy contemporary.
2. I have hoodlum tattooed on my foot (haha).
3. I love creative writing and I write poems.
Do you have a secret skill/party trick?
I can roll my stomach like a never ending wave without moving my body.
If you could give on piece of advice to someone possibly wanting to do what you do, what would that be?
Just go and do it because it’s what you love. Art is subjective and what you make it, so do not be apprehensive due to other artists around you which can commonly happen. You can never please everyone. You are you.
When did you first hear about DVNT?
I have been aware of DVNT for a long time through mutual friends! It has been great monitoring the progress from where it somewhat started and where it is now!