From Sharne Wolff…
Hanging in the centre of the room Leah Fraser’s installation of 90 small earthenware birds sets the scene for an extravagant display. A new series of Fraser’s Rousseau-like paintings crowd the walls, scattered with a visually dense array of mystic figures entwined in lush jungle backdrops of colourful flowers and exotic fauna. Dreamy and longing, Frasers wistful characters are distinguished on the canvas by their shocks of dark black hair as the whites of their eyes catch the viewer’s scan. To round off there’s a selection of Fraser’s primitive-meets-gaudy ceramic sculptures – where vessels and shaman figures alike are draped and studded with semi-precious stones.
Retaining the mystical atmosphere is Heidi Yardley’s Meeting the Shadow series. The exhibition catalogue refers to Yardley’s interest in Carl Jung’s philosophy of ‘the shadow self’ or “the darker side of human consciousness”. Drawn entirely in black, white and multiple shades of grey, Yardley’s large scale charcoal on paper images make striking use of dark negative space to explore this idea. Inspired by personal memories and a large collection of vintage material, Yardley’s works often begin their life as collages adding impulse to their surreal quality. Subsequently rendered in their almost photographic likeness, perhaps the most intriguing part of Yardley’s works is what we can’t see.
Until June 20
Arthouse Gallery, Darlinghurst
Pic: Heidi Yardley Twoism, charcoal on primed paper, 110 x 152 cm