Hair of the Dog
Opening Thursday, July 26, 6-8PM
Runs July 26 - August 18
Priscilla Bourne’s latest body of work consists of two elements, the painterly and the sculptural. The subject matter of the two is essentially separate, though there is an unmistakable connection and continuation between them
In 2017, Priscilla Bourne moved from Sydney to the Blue Mountains, a shift that helped inspire this body of work. The paintings in Hair of the Dog offer us a shift, from animals tragically incompatible with urban living to a nature-dominated landscape where wasps sting humans and dogs bite red belly snakes.
Some of paintings depict events in a dreamlike stasis, where attributes we hold true dissipate and perspective is shifted. In Snake in the Grass, a towering cat stands in high grass either next to or in front of behind a red belly snake, whose length forms loop de loops. The background is the colour of the sky just before dawn. The viewer’s perspective is warped, objects seeming out of balance, though at first it is hard to tell why. We feel both larger and smaller in front of these works. There is an impermanence befalling each element individually, a dysmorphia that applies to both the viewer and the subjects, whereby size is intangible.
Bourne’s works have an unsettling effect on the viewer. We are not necessarily uncomfortable, though it seems we are in a dream world where rules don’t quite apply and our relative size makes little sense. The paintings are eerily beautiful and the sculptures hold a raw energy that is fuelled by the movement of their individual parts. Hair of the Dog explores new terrain, both in the physical and the metaphysical world.