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Artist Yhonnie Scarce delves into Australia’s darkness with new exhibition

Rhiannon Clarke -

Renowned Kokatha and Nukunu artist Yhonnie Scarce, is set to present her captivating and impactful creations through Yhonnie Scarce: The Light of Day

The Art Gallery of Western Australia exhibition will captivate visitors with its grandeur and magnificence as it showcases the largest collection of her mesmerising glass and mixed-media artworks ever displayed in Australia during the Perth Festival in 2024.

Scarce's artistic practice delves into the intersection of politics and the stories depicted in the artworks shed a healing light on Australia's recent history, leaving a lasting impact on those who witness them.

Through the mediums of glass and photography she sheds light on the historical and societal implications of nuclear testing in the Woomera Prohibited Area in South Australia.

Yhonnie Scarce Death Zephyr 2016. (Image: supplied)

The exhibition also addresses the ongoing consequences of the forced removal and relocation of Aboriginal communities from their ancestral lands.

Family history plays a pivotal role in Scarce's art, as she uncovers and critiques the stories of her family members who endured indentured labour.

The narrative is conveyed through a combination of mixed media with the glass yams suspended like grandiose chandeliers within the gallery area - accentuating the craftsmanship and visual allure of the glass medium.

Through archival imagery from her photography collection, intertwined with her meticulously crafted glass creations, Scarce illuminates the shared histories of forced labour and the enduring trauma experienced by communities worldwide.

Her works not only showcase the artist's exceptional craftsmanship but also emphasise the captivating beauty of the glass medium as her installations feature colossal glass yams suspended like magnificent chandeliers within the gallery space.

Yhonnie Scarce Working Class Man (Andamooka Opal Fields) 2017. (Image: Supplied)

In a world where the threat of global nuclear conflict looms, Yhonnie Scarce: The Light of Day serves as a timely reminder of the importance of acknowledging and learning from our past mistakes.

By remembering our history, we can strive to avoid repeating the same errors in the future.

The exhibition runs from 2 February to 19 May 2024 as part of the Perth Festival, which is being held from 9 February – 3 March 2024.

Additionally, Yhonnie Scarc will attend the Artist Talk on Friday 2 February as well as the panel discussion on Saturday 3 February.


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