Laura Condren is a Sydney based National Art School alumni whose practice spans ceramics, soft sculpture, painting and beyond. She explores both the physical and psychological experience of womanhood working with organic forms that mimic flesh and skin.
The Earthbleed series details the exploration of trauma on the female psyche and its relation to changing landscape. This fascination with infertility in the harsh Australian landscape and its colonial lack of understanding connects to my yearning for the innate and deeply spiritual healing mutually experienced by women amid these changing socio-political times.
This series was a direct response to personal unresolved psychological traumas, addiction and loss as well as inspired by my visit to the site of Mount Bell in the Dharug Nation amid this period of healing. The fragmentation of landscapes in the surface texture of the paintings relate to Mount Bell’s desolation due to the 2019 bushfires which seem long forgotten amid the rise of the COVID 19 pandemic and its broadcasting.
These works focus on a constant process of growth and decay as each layer is submerged in the next, leaving fragments of the previous stories. My work is heavily process based and intuitive as I let my environment and materials dominate the layering process. I feel overstimulated and oversensitive to the current environmental and political climate and use my painting as a tool to decompress and self soothe.
My process of emotional expulsion onto the canvas as opposed to a preconceived notion of how the piece may end aims to achieve a moment of therapeutic catharsis. The Earthbleed series aims to resemble abstractions of the Australian landscape as well as draw reference to abandoned rural sites and their association to the idea of barrenness.
Carina Capone is a Sydney based sculptor and ceramacist with a Bachelor of Fine arts from the National Art School currently undertaking postgraduate study in Sustainability with USYD.
She mixes classical fine art techniques with crafts and artisan skills to produce ceramics, candles and textiles.
CV and Portfolio:
My work has revolved around self and craving for a long time, I make what I need, whether it’s what I need to share or what I need to see more of in the world. I strive to make my work accessible, democratic and relatable; I want to enrich people's lives and thinking, but in no way speak down to them, as a young woman I’m really over being spoken down to.
Many of my objects are designed to be used, touched, and held. That is really what draws me to ceramics, I want everything to be taken home and loved by someone. My hope is whichever piece you find a connection with can be a reoccurring source of joy or laughter; better my art means a lot to one person than very little to millions.
This show came about through conversation with my friends and my work reflects the way we share with one another. It’s comical, making light of that which is difficult to carry, and personal, because I trust these women with everything. Making felt empowering, I reviewed stresses that I had set aside to deal with later and never came back to. I remembered how confused, exhausted and distraught I have been in my own body.
The “Tax Me Baby One More Time” candles are probably drawing form the oldest memories; I had a stupidly irregular period as a teenager. It never came on time, skipped a month, fluctuated between spotting and Niagara Falls. It was stressful, unpredictable, and messy. I think these ‘guaranteed to stain’ tiny beetroot explosions capture that well, but also provide some humour and beauty to something that lacked it.
“Hurt Like a Motherfucker” is about the experience of having my uterus reject an IUD, it hurt like a motherfucker. It felt as if the thing were that huge, and I had a lot of tests afterwards to make sure it hadn’t done any damage, I was lucky, other women have not been. I’ve particularly enjoyed keeping this piece on my bedroom wall leading up to the show.
The show contains a lot of anger and grief but asking women to stay unemotional in order to make their information more comfortable and ‘professional’ is bullshite, and these women don’t deserve to be treated that way.
Beatrice Buckland-Willis is a Sydney based artist, currently completing her Bachelor of Fine Art at the National Art School (SYD). Majoring in Printmaking, she is interested in all things print, and much of her work utilises traditional print processes such as relief, intaglio, lithography and screen.
CV and Portfolio:
My work aims to explore the intricacies of chronic pain, and specifically, the challenges facing women identifying individuals
and members of the queer community in relation to the dismissal of pain and illness. Inspired by my own experiences with chronic pain and the impact of orthopaedic surgery on both physical and mental health, I have been researching the broader pain experience.
What has come to my attention through this research is the disproportionate amount of female-identifying individuals who experience dismissal of pain, specifically relating to what is considered ‘women’s issues’. Contemplating issues surrounding this dismissal, it is impossible to overlook the expression- or lack thereof- of female rage, and rage as a way of artmaking. The lino plates themselves are based on photographs taken by the myself, of construction sites in my local area.
Using these images as a kind of template, I’ve created a series of repetitive patterns using geometric lines and shapes directly sourced from the construction imagery. These patterns are reminiscent of the scaffolding source material, however, they also speak to surgical intervention and the healing body. The bold black and white graphic linework is symbolic of the interplay between the interior and exterior of the body, as breached through the surgical process. Having undergone significant spinal surgery as a child, I’m interested in the way metallic orthopaedic implants (screws, rods and hooks) have a similar function in both the re-constructed body and scaffolding in the construction of a building. I aim to use this construction imagery as a way to draw attention to the parallels between the brutality of orthopaedic surgery and the brute force used to build an architectural structure.
The introduction of plaster into the series has been a natural experimental progression of the works, as plaster acts as both an industrial material used to patch and sculpt, and a medical grade casting material used to literally scaffold the body. Plaster as a material is incredibly tactile to me as the maker, and its fragility can be compared to the fragility of skin. There is also a personal connection for me, as a child I had to wear a spinal brace and the process of creating these custom braces involved plastering the entire body to get a mould of the torso and hips. Having undergone this procedure a few times as I grew, the strange loss of autonomy of being restrained as warm plaster is slapped onto the skin is a vivid memory I want to incorporate into the work.
Interested in the experience of viewing the work in an installation-esque series, I’m intrigued by how the act of viewing the works causes the viewer to contort the body to crouch, crawl or peer through small confined spaces. This in turn is inviting the audience to step into this world of discomfort.
BRONTE NICOLE SCOTT
Bronte Nicole-Scott is a Sydney based artist with a Diploma in Visual Arts from TAFE Queensland. She has studied in Brisbane and later at Sydney's National Art School.
Her practice spans print, painting and drawing; she has a feminist focus in her conceptual practice drawing from personal trauma, a myriad of experience and moments of sisterhood.
These three works are exploring the process and journey of having a first period while working underage in a brothel. When you don’t have your mother or other family members to turn to you have to put your body into the hands of women you don’t know and don’t trust.
The works touches on having an innocent, natural experience in a young person life in a deeply unsafe patriarchal environment.
Claire Welch is completing her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the National Art School in 2020. Their printmaking investigates experiences of body trauma, and is exceptionally emotive and raw.
Working with monotypes they creates haunting unique images full of coiled tension.
In my work the body is in a constant state of becoming, a living action that is not discrete from the self but not truly understood. I work with monotypes to create unique images that collect that tension.
Initially the project began with themes of fear of an unknown in our bodily function. This anxiety was viewed through a dislocation between body and self. I drew on personal experience of body trauma, exhaustion and fear.
Printmaking is a highly physical process requiring increasing energy with increasing scale, my conceptual practice draws from the experience my material practice creates. Each monotype is a singular unreplicable print that captures gestural mark making rapidly and gives a sense if immediate presense.
I would like to acknowledge the Gadigal people who are the Traditional Custodians of the land I work from. I would also like to pay respect to the Elders past, present and emerging of the Eora Nation and extend that respect to other Aboriginals present.
Sovereignty was never ceded.