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Maurice’s Monsters

Words by Liz Pertile, image by Lee Grant.

Maurice Golotta did the paintings on the outside of the Salon and Dining rooms at the Monster kitchen and bar… A crazy ass mix of the abstract, colours, and fittingly, monsters.

The first answers to my (attempted) very professional type interview is “80’s porn”, “more bush than in the White House”, and some answers that would make this article come up on some risqué search queries on the goggle machine. A bit rude.

The question was a very innocent – “what inspires you”.

After an appropriate period of giggling like pork chops we get to the more printable answers – movie posters, Italian Futurists, typography, books, travel and good design and the golden age when things were made by hand.

For Maurice much of his work is about bringing his memories into the concrete world, albeit often in an abstract way. It’s about chasing his 12-year-old self – growing up a cheeky punk kid in a big (and very loud) Italian family in the south-east of Melbourne, hanging out with his older cousins in daggy 80’s rumpus rooms full of posters and records.

The 80’s influence is obvious (in a good way) in his use of fluorescent colours. “I’m into the relationships that different colours have with each other. Just like people, some clash and others live in harmony”.

The next answer is “vagina”… Really not making it easy here Maurice. The question was “what is the underlying essence of your work”.

We’re sitting on the couch, I’m taking notes, Maurice’s head is cocked to the side in thought…. It’s kind of turning into a therapy session…

“It’s true, it’s an homage to vaginas and I don’t mean in a sexual and sensual way but the forms I come up with are quite similar in shape. It always comes back to sex and death, not in a direct and obvious way but it’s there”.

Maurice’s obsession with monsters also harks back to his ‘youth’ (he’s still pretty bright-eyed and buoyant) and his love for horror movies, special effects, Fangoria magazines, and monster masks.

The combo of colours and monsters is a bit perfect for the Monster kitchen and bar. It’s about time the Monster made some mates.

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