A love of process and insatiable curiosity for life’s contradictions are the hallmarks of Sally Anderson’s painterly style. Abstracted and instinctual, her compositions are intangible landscapes of vaguely constructivist forms, reactionary mark-making and opaque references to past experiences. Comprised of layers, both physical and metaphorical, they catalogue a practice of meditation and technical application that gives the works a gritty depth at odds with their optimistic colour palettes and quirky titles.

Laden with autobiographical content, Anderson’s paintings both obscure and make blatant her emotional response to interpersonal relationships, private contemplations and observations on memory, association and context. Often paired to directly complement or contradict their twin, each work explores the way meaning is formed and how the use of language influences perspective. As the artist herself says, “we understand what ‘hot’ means because we know what ‘cold’ is”.

Crowning the works are Anderson’s unconventional titles, often seeming as meandering streams of consciousness. Lyrical and occasionally fractured, they are a poetic reminder of the friends, lovers and experiences that shape her idiosyncratic art practice.

Born in Lismore, Sally Anderson began her undergraduate studies in Visual Art at Southern Cross University before transferring to the College of Fine Art in Sydney. A past finalist in the Sulman Prize at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, the Portia Geach Memorial Award, the Sunshine Coast Art Prize and the Paddington Art Prize, Anderson was invited to participate in the Association of Icelandic Visual Artists residency in Reykjavik, Iceland, in 2014. In 2017 Sally Anderson won the prestigious Brett Whiteley Travelling Art Scholarship administered by the Art Gallery of New South Wales and completed the three month residency at the Cite des Artes in Paris.

Carrie McCarthy