Carolyn Cardinet








      Visual Artist







French-born Carolyn Cardinet is an Australia based visual artist. 
She holds a Post Graduate Masters of Fine Art from RMIT University, Melbourne and a Bachelor of Fine Art (Painting) from the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne University.










She has featured in solo and group exhibitions. Her work has been shown at Melbourne, Sydney, Delhi and Dubai art fairs, and is held in International and Australian private collections.







Last year Carolyn’s installations were exhibited at the Toyota and at Artland Sculpture exhibitions. Small paintings were displayed in her solo show at First Site and unseen portraits were revealed in a group show at Chapman & Bailey galleries in Melbourne.







Carolyn was also invited to exhibit her large painted artworks throughout the French Consulate in Melbourne in 2012-2013.







This year, new bodies of experimental works with recycled objects were presented at The Library Art Space and at The St Kilda Town Hall gallery.

Carolyn Cardinet established the Victoria University Visual Art Alumni in 2008 and consolidates the ‘Connect’ biennale exhibitions at Level 17 Artspace at Victoria University. Carolyn is a visual art lecturer, committee member for the visual art Alumni and an ambassador of Victoria University.










‘Rubbish art with a twist’

Melbourne Review

12.16PM  21-3-2013

Elizabeth Anile



IMAGES SUPPLIED- ‘Regurgitate’ 2013 – video Installation by Carolyn Cardinet




Work by Janita Ryan

Work by Janita Ryan




The shoreline between Albert Park and St Kilda is a treasure trove for artists Carolyn Cardinet and Janita Ryan.


What started as a simple fascination with the amount of debris washed up on the sand, quickly turned into the inspiration and building blocks of the pair’s next project, aptly titled Regurgitate.


“We started walking the beach for exercise and instead of finding seashells, we started finding objects that were sticking out of the sand. It started with one piece, and hundreds later my backyard is quite full of junk,” says Cardinet, laughing.

Among the flotsam and jetsam: a Barbie shoe, toothbrushes, a construction hat and garden hose, these being just a few of the eclectic items.


“We forget to look at our environment and we forget to look and just stop and look at what we’re doing. That’s the message I got just walking along the beach, to see what we over consume. We don’t reuse. We throw out.”


Admittedly, slanting the exhibition with an environmental focus wasn’t the duo’s intention, but as Cardinet and Ryan delved further into their exploration into what reusing old, discarded and unwanted objects means contextually, the angle was inescapable.


“It started with simply: ‘Oh I could just make something’. Then all of a sudden it became a whole new meaning,” says Cardinet.


She and Ryan became friends 12 years ago when they were studying at Victoria University, their paths intertwining once again when they undertook their Bachelors at the Victorian College of the Arts.


French-born Cardinet can’t imagine living anywhere but metres from the beach with her husband and two children in Albert Park. Her intrinsic connection with the water is shared with Ryan, who is just up the road in St Kilda.




Carolyn Cardinet- Installation 2013




“I’m Parisian so the ocean wasn’t close to me. But now, wherever I live, I live close to the sea.”


Perhaps Cardinet’s affinity with the bay stems from her isolation from the water for the first half of her life. But regardless of the reason, it’s clear her connection with the beach propels her desire to help make a better world for posterity.


The topic is weaved throughout the exhibition, which is structured to cater for almost every sense.


Viewers can interact with the art by sitting in a chair to view the film installation and listen to the sounds of the ocean, all the while surrounded by rubbish.


The prospect of sitting among rubbish might deter the squirmish, but Cardinet says the replication is a vital aspect of the exhibition.


“Just like if you were under the sea,” Cardinet explains. “You can’t swim properly and the coral is made of plastic rubbish.”


Cardinet is responsible for the installations, sculptures and interactive side of the display. Meanwhile Ryan has painted a series of pieces to complement the message Cardinet’s work is conveying.


While the approach each artist takes to tackle the subject differs significantly, it’s this “opposites attract” effect that gives the display an edge.

“I’m very loose in my approach and very simplified. You see (my work) and it’s very large and very simply put together. Jan paints and it’s very tiny.”


Witnessing two styles channelling the same idea, but executing it in contrasting ways provides an interesting point of difference to the exhibition.



Carolyn Cardinet ‘Coral’ 2013




“We like the idea of being opposite in the way of volume, but really in (regards to the) subject, we are talking about the same thing.”


Cardinet hopes viewers take away the message that society as a whole “has to be more careful,” her voice lowering as she explains the sharp increase in rubbish being washed up on the shore.


“I’ve been walking this beach for 20 years and it’s increased dramatically in the past two years … I can pick up 10 bags of rubbish,” she says.


Ideally Cardinet and Ryan envision a world where humans take responsibility for their actions for the sake of generations to come.


But in the meantime, expect to find the duo taking matters into their own hands as they stroll along the shore, garbage bag in hand, seeking inspiration for their next project.



Regurgitate by Carolyn Cardinet and Janita Ryan

The Library Art Space, 100 Barkly Street, North FitzroyWednesday-Saturday Noon-5pmUntil March 239482 2113







« Mémoire de Vie »





Peintre et Sculpteur, Carolyn Cardinet peint et assemble les fragments de vie délaissés qu’elle trouve au hasard, lors de ses promenades.


Sensible aux traces que la vie laisse, Carolyn nous emmène faire un voyage anthropologique à travers ses expositions.


Un voyage qui cherche à sensibiliser la génération actuelle. Une population qui jette et achète dans le surplus que la société lui offre. Une génération qui ne se donne pas le temps d’apprécier les êtres ou les choses qui déjà les entourent. Le résultat est déjà inscrit dans leur relation avec l’environnement immédiat.


A travers ses sculptures d’objets trouvés, Carolyn parle  des matières qui sont rejetées pour d’autres plus neuves et moins résistantes. Dans un monde qui vit à la vitesse de l’internet, nous créons des relations sans ‘éclat de vie’. Cette génération qui court tellement vite dans toutes les  directions, une génération qui  oublie de regarder et d’apprécier son entourage.


On trouve dans l’œuvre de Carolyn un réseau de fibres de vie qui s’accordent, s’opposent, et qui se reposent sous nos yeux apaisés.


Le résultat est une atmosphère visuellement poétique. C’est comme une note de vie avec un passé, un présent et un futur que l’on ressent un peu dérangeant et qui nous implore.






Articles similaires