Sally’s art passion has roots in the past

SALLY Spencer has culture in her blood and it's down to her dad.

"My father was a classical scholar and professional painter and he brought my sister and I up on a diet of Greek myths and ancient history. That was bed-time reading for us," she said.

The local sculptor recently returned from a month long residency in Holt in Canberra where she had the chance to work with bronze.

"I was invited down. I haven't done that since I left England (30 years ago). I haven't been able to get near a foundry," she said.

Sally said it was exciting returning to her roots for a little while and that when she first started sculpting she worked in iron for five years.

"It was the '70s and the feminine revolution and we could do anything," she laughed.

The Strathnairn "Let There Be Sculpture" exhibition in Canberra opens Thursday and three of Sally's pieces will be featured, along with three of her sketches.

It took Sally four years to complete the pieces for the installation which will be officially opened on Friday May 6 at 6pm.

"Mother India" is Sally's interpretation of the artefacts found in north-west India and Pakistan from the ancient Harappan civilization.

In addition to being influenced by the Bronze Age figures of the Indus Valley, Mycenae, Greece, Turkey, Anatolia and Cyprus (where she lived for a number of years), a lot of Sally's work has an environmental theme.

"I've done an awful lot of work on the Mary River turtle," she said, referencing her exhibitions "Mary River Turtle" and "Spirit of Mary".

"Mother India" is a comment about climate change.

"The Harappan civilization of ancient India came to an end because of climate change," she said.

The massive "Mother India" exhibit was transported up to Maryborough in three loads and incorporates clay, stone, wood and sketches, including 56 yoga inspired figurines.

Sally is busy working on her next exhibition which will be heavily influenced by ancient Greek and Cycladic artefacts.

"I haven't got as far as booking that in yet," she said.

Gympie Times


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