Photo: Sarah McEvoy

Posted by & filed under Arts & Entertainment, Exhibitions, Gallery & Museums.

The practice of Melbourne-based artist Heidi Yardley explores elusive worlds of displaced identity via elliptical protagonists and surreal configurations. Yardley’s new collection of paintings, The Sinking Belle, excavates the socio-historical edifice of female experience.

Voyeuristic vistas of erotically-posed female figures in private interior spaces recall the photographs of 1970s men’s magazines, and yet their surface sexuality slowly gives way to darker truths. Heidi Yardley said that she “appropriated these images and reworked them, sometimes cropping or adding collage elements. I’m interested in creating an other-worldly mood in my compositions.”

When asked why she decided to do so, she said that she has “always been interested in using the figure to explore psychological narratives. I work from found images so the inspiration really comes from photography from the 1960s and 70s.

The paintings embody the enigmas widespread throughout human experience – the branches to the edifice of life, spanning morality and appropriateness which in turn displays the bottled up wasteland that acts as a foundation to humanity and drives one’s primal desires. The two sides to life.

An ode to 1970s New Wave cinema can also be seen through Heidi Yardley’s work. Portrayed through the use of Australian mythology and iconology, namely; native Australian reptiles.

When asked about giving advice to budding artists Heidi Yardley said, “it’s important to trust your instincts and to believe in your vision. It can take a long time to get there but the long hours are part of the process.

Aug 17-Sep 2, Arthouse Gallery, 66 McLachlan Avenue, Rushcutters Bay. Info: www.arthousegallery.com.au

By Tommy Boutros