I grew up on Garigal land in Sydney, moving to nipaluna (Hobart) in my early twenties, where my visual arts practice has formed over the past two decades. I work with imagination housed in my Irish and European ancestry, dwelling in my uneasy location on Aboriginal land. Through storied artforms in miniature and large organic works on paper, I attempt to give expression to a sensitive resonating space which is fleeting, almost habitable yet not quite reachable. Shimmering and shadowy impressions emerge through my work, suggestive of memory felt below the surface. For me, a significant part of engaging with and caring for place is to create space and time for personal and collective memory to reveal itself.


In my wet studio, I create works on paper that mirror human scale. I work in an immersive state, reflecting on the vibrancy of matter. I am attentive to the way watery ink and earth mutate and coalesce across the page to suggest an ambient territory that is infused with ancient memory. Sometimes, raw pastel-drawn markings and symbolic expressions come to hover through these spaces. Small artforms are my resource to think and feel with place/life at a hand-held scale. Within these works, imaginary [chrysalid-like] figures emerge and recede in a story of uncertain becoming. They drift between past and future identities, calling forth a mythic world within.


Sara Maher, 2023


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