Place Markers // Artist biography

Sally Blake 
Sally Blake is a Canberra-based visual artist working across textiles, drawing and sculpture. Through her practice she visualises the complex patterning and connections between the human and natural worlds. Sally is particularly interested in cycles of death, renewal and regeneration as well as finding the points where transformations may take place. Her previous careers as a paediatric nurse and midwife deepened her understanding of birth and death cycles.

In Sally’s contemporary drawings and textiles, cyclic patterning and the interconnected whole are explored, as well as the consequences of their undoing. She feels deeply about disconnections in human understanding of the natural world which result in environmental crises. And in turn Sally contemplates the effect of the climate crisis upon humans, examining art’s purposeful role in bringing attention to, and examining significant environmental and social issues. In her recent solo exhibition, The Ancient Gaze at Belcoarts the ancient wisdom embodied in European Palaeolithic figurines was brought into conversation with contemporary environmental concerns.

Sally has held solo exhibitions throughout Australia and has participated in group shows in Australia and internationally. She has been a finalist in many significant art prizes including the Blake Prize, The Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize and the Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize. She won the Jan Brown drawing prize in 2012. She has been supported in her eucalyptus-dye research and investigations of place with funding grants from The Australia Council and ArtsACT.

She was awarded her PhD from ANU School of Art and Design in 2015. Sally’s work is held by the Canberra Museum and Gallery, Australian National University, Australian National Botanical Gardens, the ACT Legislative Assembly, Tamworth Regional Gallery and numerous private collections in Australia and overseas.

Image: Sally Blake, Requiem for the Forests. Photo: courtesy of the artist