Sally Clarke is an Australian artist based in Mittagong, NSW. She is informed by the spaces and environments she inhabits and the materials and beings she encounters; taking what is found and pushing it into imaginative realms. Clarke is particularly, but not exclusively, interested in humanity’s place within the natural world and how, as a species, we interpret and manipulate it to fulfil our own needs, wants and desires; and how we use it as a mirror to examine ourselves. This inevitably requires consideration of the way we engage land, sea and air as foundations for our societies, cultures and political systems.
Trained in painting and drawing Clarke remains open to the possibilities of all materials, processes and influences when considering a response to her observations and encounters. Completing a PhD in 2008 Clarke has developed specific knowledges around gender, sexuality and landscape, while teaching at a tertiary level for fourteen years has demanded broad and ongoing research across art history, contemporary practice and theory.
Clarke has exhibited her work in artist-run spaces, university spaces, regional galleries and state institutions. In 2013 she founded AirSpace Projects with Brenda Factor – a five gallery and unconventional museum space in Sydney that exhibited the work of over four hundred established and emerging Australian and International artists – and directed it until the end of 2017. In 2018 Clarke and Factor donated the space to the community in the form of a not-for-profit association and moved to Mittagong to focus on their own art practices.