From the Fleurieu to fashion icon

by Lana Guineay

South Australian artist Dana Kinter’s new collaboration with national clothing retailer Gorman wouldn’t have happened without the power of social media.

Living and working on the Fleurieu Peninsula, the artist received a call out of the blue from the label’s founder Lisa Gorman last year, pitching a collection based on Dana’s artwork. The team had discovered Dana’s artwork on Instagram and passed it onto Lisa, who personally got in touch to suggest working together.

“We had a fabulous chat, I was immediately excited and thrilled to be a part of this collaboration,” says Dana.

“We talked about using different fabrics and embroidery to emphasis the texture of my paintings, she explained the history Gorman had of collaborating with artists, and that they were looking for an artist working with the Australian fauna, flora and landscape.”

Dana Kinter + Gorman, image courtesy of Gorman

Dana Kinter + Gorman, image courtesy of Gorman

It was a perfect fit. The newly launched collection, featuring bags, apparel, and homewares, takes inspiration from the South Australian landscape, each print based on one of Dana’s original artworks.

Drawing on the natural beauty of the region – and an encyclopaedia of Australian birds handed down by her grandmother – Dana creates organic, whimsical work with a strong local signature.

Dana says the Flerieu is the ideal base and inspiration.

“I live nestled in the trees, and love early morning walks through the scrub and on the beach. It’s quiet and you can hear the birds, wind, and the trees singing to you. The Fleurieu is also a fabulous supportive community especially with the arts.”

Translating the artwork from wood and paint to fabric was a new journey. “I try to leave lots of textures in my work, from the beginning pencil lines, dribbles of ink, layering of paint and line and dot patterning. All of these are beautifully captured on the fabric, even the natural timber that I like to peek through my artworks comes up perfectly in the fabrics.”

Dana Kinter + Gorman, image courtesy of Gorman

Dana Kinter + Gorman, image courtesy of Gorman

Seeing her artwork worn by real people has been a new – and thrilling – experience.

“I’ve chatted with lots of customers, both interstate and here in South Australia, who were so pleased with the clothing and pretty excited to meet me, especially as I was South Australian. I even had my photo taken with a few. I’ve had lots of people sending me photos of themselves wearing the collection; wedding photos, cute selfies, and Adelaide florists from the East End Flower Market recently posted a fabulous Instagram photo wearing my raincoats.”

You can see more of Dana’s work here.

Top photo courtesy of Elle Dawson-Scott