Plasticine Drawings

Plasticine has been used as an expanded drawing medium in Clarke’s practice since 2012. The drawings are ephemeral by nature, adhered to walls or structures, sometimes created over a period of days before they are unceremoniously destroyed. The plasticine is stored and reinvigorated to be reused at a later date. Wherever Clarke constructs a drawing, the plasticine accrues dust and debris, thereby embodying traces of each site, which it then carries to the next. As the plasticine travels and ages, as it gathers more ‘knowledge’, it greys and becomes less desirable than the fresh commodity it once was.

Sally Clarke, Sketch on the Wire, 2022, plasticine on wire, 25 x 25cm. Photo: Sally Clarke

1. Sally Clarke, The Void (NAS, Sydney), 2017, plasticine, 350 x 350cm. Photo: Sally Clarke. 2: Sally Clarke/Chelsea Farquhar, 2017 (Adelaide). 3: Sally Clarke, Drawing the Void. Photo: Lynne Eastaway

Sally Clarke, Snake Charmer 2, 2016, plasticine, fishing line, 400 x 30cm (at widest point, floor level). Photo: Margaret Roberts.

Sally Clarke, Memory Machine (Mobile Gallery) 2016, plasticine on car window. Photos: Sally Clarke.

Memory Machine (Mobile Gallery) 2016 transforms the car into both a mobile camera and gallery. From its interior the observed world is captured in plasticine outlines, allowing the memory of one place to be relocated and layered over another, whether that be an actual place or through the layering or collision of drawings. The drawings are destroyed from time to time, through melting heat, by the need to wind the window down, by dogs pawing or through my desire for change. Viewers from the outside of the car see my memories in reverse, they never see what was originally observed, in the way the artist did. Even passengers in the car will see the drawing in a different context, from a different perspective. The lines will never match its original subject again.

Sally Clarke, Beast People (details), 2016, plasticine, chemistry glassware, variable dimensions. Photos: Sally Clarke

Sally Clarke, Bush Incantation (She Bush), 2015, plasticine on wall, 275 x 450cm. Photos: Fiona Susanto

Sally Clarke, Big Cow 2, 2014, plasticine on wall, 150 x 150cm. Photos: Luminere Imaging

Sally Clarke, Snake Charmer, 2014, plasticine, glass, 275 x 120cm. Photos: Luminere Imaging

Sally Clarke, Equal Parts, 2014, plasticine, variable dimensions. Photos: Sue Blackburn.

Sally Clarke, still lost, 2013, plasticine, 12 x 60cm. Photo: Sally Clarke

Sally Clarke, Big Cow, 2012, plasticine, 100 x 100cm. Photos: David Eastwood

Big Cow is a reference to the term ‘cow’ that Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas reportedly used as their secret code for orgasm.