TANKS Arts Centre
ARTIST IN RESIDENCY
TANKS Arts Centre Cairns Australia
Cynthia O’Brien’s work is based on the emotions of attraction, sex, love and heartbreak. She portrays this through abstracted sculptural plant forms. Intimate details and the use of colour attract the viewer leading to a tactile experience and a sense of protection. As all things have an end, through accident or purpose, a sculptural piece made of clay will eventually break leaving the viewer heartbroken.
O’Brien has used her time at the Flecker Botanic Gardens experimenting with raw clay to create forms that reference real plants within the gardens - Phaleria Clerodendron - Ceiba Pentandra trees. The raw material lends itself to the fragility and beauty of life in the gardens.
A New Path has barnacles that represent O’Brien moving down the wall onto the floor creating pathways into the garden. As the exhibition runs individual pieces will be chosen and placed in a basin of water. Once in the water the clay will dissolve, reinventing itself, perhaps to find a new life. As a resident artist, O’Brien has made an impact on the environment around her yet upon leaving, all trace of her will start to disappear, only to remain in memory.