Tour Dina Broadhurst's Contemporary Terrace
Welcome to The Makers. Each week, we’re celebrating innovators, artisans, and crafters of all types, taking you on a private tour of their creative spaces. For this instalment, we head to the light-filled home of Dina Broadhurst. The eminent photographer specialises in collage, and turns her glossy mixed-media creations into fine art prints. Broadhurst has sat at the helm of her eponymous atelier for around eight years, and her popular photomontages are glittery explorations of memory, self and sexuality, while nodding to the Instagram generation’s fixation with luxury and image. Her pearlescent pieces have earned her a loyal following within the fashion and art sets—you’ve no doubt seen her work grace the pages of decorating magazines or the lounges of chic inner-city offices—and here, we sit down with Broadhurst to discuss her practice, style philosophy and the simple trick she swears by to catch those all-important zzzs.
Tucked away on a quiet street in Sydney’s leafy Woollahra is a classic two-storey terrace that the photographic artist du jour calls home. The roomy share-house is a sanctuary which boasts all the hallmarks of dream homes in the area—high ceilings, impeccably-preserved original detailing and the ever-desirable north-facing aspect. Two original fireplaces inject character to the living and dining spaces, while decorative accents—think mid-century furniture, Italian ceramics and geometric sculptures—create an interestingly interplay between the old and the new. Of course, Broadhurst’s lauded work features (you’ll see exactly where in a second) but like her pieces, this artist’s interior style is contemporary, delicate and carefully restrained. As she’d tell you herself, when it comes to interiors (and art, for that matter) it’s not a matter of collecting a lot of things—it’s rather about curating the right things.
Hi Dina! This series is called The Makers. What is it that you make?
I am a digital artist who specialises in collage photography and mixed media works.
How does the act of “making” relate to your personality and who you are?
I’m drawn to interesting ‘things’ of shape, colour, texture and sparkle—and all these pretty snippets of life become part of my work. Like a bower bird, I collect and file things (it’s the Virgo in me) and then reuse them at the right time, in the right piece.
How would you describe what you do for a living?
I live and breathe as an artist and an image maker. I’m inspired by memories, experiences, love and all that surrounds me.
How did you initially know this was the path for you?
I always knew art was my path and I always made things. Since I can remember, I would cover anything and everything I owned in collage. However, it was Instagram that gave me the opportunity and exposure to gain an audience. People quickly started to enquire about and commission my work from all corners of the world.
Your art is incredible, when did your appreciation and practice begin?
I started producing my art as limited edition fine art prints around eight years ago. I could then achieve more dramatic scale to my work. I generally keep the original works in my personal archive, and I have also started creating large scale original canvas works. You will see more mixed media elements incorporated into these pieces. While I love the digital world, I love getting out of it, too. It’s nice to be crafty and hands-on.
I have always made collages taken photographs and painted so in that respect, I have always been an artist. My career took a few forms before selling my art, and they are intertwined in a lot of ways. I was a makeup artist, then I worked in fashion PR and advertising, and as an interior designer before moving full time into the art world.
Now the home stuff. How long have you lived in your home?
Did you do any renovations or make any big changes after moving in?
The terrace house is a rental and we were very lucky that it was renovated just before we moved in. It was a blank canvas and I’ve added my personal touches throughout. The natural light is beautiful and fantastic to work in.
How does your home reflect you as a person?
There are lots of interesting collectables—there are pieces all over with a story to tell. It’s also a simple, clean (and mainly white) palette, so all the decorative items and art pieces become focal points.
What was the thought process behind the way you’ve styled the interior?
It’s creative, eclectic, minimal and contemporary.
What are your favourite pieces in your home?
I have a few. The Mies Van De Rohe tan leather dining chairs with a corset tie to the back; and a vintage clear Perspex coffee table that houses and displays all my favourite books. This was was given to me by a friend. I love collecting mid-century, vintage furniture—just like I would art—for its sculptural and material elements.
Do you have any special décor pieces you’re looking to add?
I am always buying chairs and photographic art but at the moment I’m obsessed with ceramics and want to add a full dinner set from Alex and Trahanas, with all the unique hand painted vases platters and plates from Italy.
Tell us about your bedroom.
The bedroom gets beautiful light all day and is finished with French doors that lead on to a balcony. I love letting the fresh air in and lay on my bed to read, finish emails and just have a siesta or a wind down with no noise or interruptions.
Which are your favourite objects in your bedroom?
A comfy King-sized bed and linen sheets are everything as there is nothing better than a good night’s sleep. I also use magnesium oil spray on my belly before I sleep. It makes all the difference, and lulls me into a deep, uninterrupted sleep.
Do you have any exciting projects coming up?
I am working on a show through Lyons Gallery which is, planned for August. I’ll be showcasing a new collection there, and I will travelling to LA in September to headline Art Women Art Week.
What’s the best thing that’s happened since you started?
All of it! It’s such an exciting world to be a part of. To be able to live your passion 24 hours a day and create things that make others feel—there is no place in the world I would rather be.