Monday 11 December 2006

Sara Lindsay's show at Maroondah

Here's a piece about a recent show by the curator of Maroondah Art Gallery, Damien Smith:
Sara Lindsay
Serendip: Tapestry and Works on Paper 1997 - 2006

This exhibition surveys approximately ten years of work by Melbourne based textile artist Sara Lindsay, incorporating a selection of intricate woven pieces and delicate works on paper. Representing only a small selection of works produced during this period, the pieces reflect Sara's interest in exploring both the formal considerations and personal associations conjured by the medium of textiles.

For Lindsay, fabric, in both its historic and material presence is linked to her own journeys of self-discovery. Everyday patterns, such as the seemingly innocuous gingham, are interrogated for their rich history in both eastern and western cultures. In other works, striped or line based patterns become a metaphor for journeys of discovery. Employing a mapping pen - an instrument traditionally used for cartography - Sara has produced works on paper that are simultaneously decorative and meditative. The patient construction consistent across all of Lindsay's oeuvre is of vital importance to how one reads and interacts with this delicate, time-based aesthetic. Drawing also on aspects of English abstraction (painters such as Ben Nicholson come to mind), Sara unashamedly celebrates the formal possibilities of irreducible geometry.

In recent years, Sara's focus has shifted to Sri Lanka where her grandfather once worked and died in the county's tea plantations. After travelling there in 2005, Sara has developed works derived in part from colours and dyes produced by local species of tea. Staining caused by tea reappear in later works, symbolising the lingering, even indelible, power of the past. Like much of Sara's works, these pieces may be read as decorative surfaces or as artworks laden with personal and social histories. Either way their quiet yet persistent presence is worthy of thoughtful exploration.

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