Artsite Galleries, Sydney, May 2021
‘The memory of place forces us to return to the immediacy of our environment and to all that is absorbed, both familiar and strange within that environment.’ 1
Uncanny Archives is the debut solo exhibition by Sydney-based artist Lisa Carrett. Through painting and sculpture this show explores the transient sentiments of home within the broader Australian landscape. Carrett investigates how home is inextricably tied to the past and present, as memory informs individual perceptions of place.
The home as a repository for memory, is explored as Carrett identifies key symbolism from the homes of her and her families past. Carrett’s works are based on the family albums, collective stories and her childhood experience of home within the Australian landscape.
Each work stems from a sense of nostalgia, drawing upon the memories from the artist’s past. “Riding in rusted holden ute's on my grandparents farm and playing alongside childhood domestic animals, the work offers a sense of familiar comfort to the viewer. This representation of place, evokes a sense of longing, to return to that intimate sanctuary of home.” Lisa Carrett, 2021
However, the familiarity of these significant sites, is contrasted with a darker Australian history and a sense of estrangement from place. These uncanny landscapes use recognisable Australian iconography contrasted alongside ambiguous, fluid shapes, forms and colours to highlight this sense of disconnect. Comforting interiors and vast, open landscapes evoke sentiments of familiarity, yet simultaneously incite a sense of alienation or strangeness. Detail is removed, reflecting on the way our memories are altered through the passage of time. This fractured state relates, to both an individual’s memory and imbued traumas but also a larger collective memory within the landscape.
1 Trigg, D, The Memory of Place, 2012