Sculptor, painter, and PhD candidate at UNSW Art & Design, Clare Nicholson is unafraid of those things dark and seductive.
In the same vein as Angela Carter’s The Magic Toyshop, Clare’s work references haunting fairy tales, loss of innocence, human cruelty, and the mutability of nature. Her unsettling gaze seems to be on nature disrupted and grotesque. She builds, carves, and guilds horse and human figures from wood, clay, and bronze. Initially seductive in appearance, upon closer examination Clare’s art reveals that things are not as they seem. Her carousel horses have no heads - instead knotted tails spout from both ends of these macabre creatures. Some of her rocking horses have extra legs and their double heads that jostle each other for the lead. Her bottled horse embryos are twisted and deformed. And her bronze horses are mutilated and tortured.
Masterfully constructed and dynamically posed in moments of intense pain or midstride, Clare’s work explores the battle between nature and the desire of humanity to master it regardless of the costs.