Collection leads: Kate Beynon—kindred spirits
Kate Beynon—kindred spirits is part of the ‘Collection leads’ series of exhibitions that draw on major works held in the Geelong Gallery collection to build a deeper understanding of the artist’s practice.
This painting, Graveyard scene/the beauty and sadness of bones (2014–15), represents a significant moment in an ancient Chinese myth, An-Li: A Chinese Ghost Tale, when the ghostly form of An-Li makes a nocturnal visit to his grieving mother. In Beynon’s contemporary interpretation of this scene she incorporates recognisable symbols and personal references including a heart signifying the connection between An-Li, Rose and his mother, a hand emerging from a lotus flower referring to Kwan Yin/ Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy, hybrid animal/human skeletal figures that act as memento mori, lion-dogs symbolising Beynon’s Chinese zodiac year,
and oranges representing the offerings made by Buddhist ancestors.