Claerwen Leahy is a fine art (hons) graduate of Central Saint Martins College, London. She creates sculpture, large scale photography, video and performance work. She lived in London for 8 years whilst studying and working but now lives back home in Melbourne, Australia.
Her sculpture and photography work features native Australian flowers and seed pods.
I like to highlight the exotic, alien forms of native Australian flora, especially Banksias. In my sculptures these shapes are embellished by adding fluorescent and metallic highlights, using materials that are often found at home. Recycling, sentimentality, craft, humour and playfulness are all important elements of the work. Ordinary objects are exaggerated and re-ordered to create supernormal displays that aim to captivate despite their humble ingredients.
The photography work is a collaboration with my partner Richard Smallwood. A macro lens is used to capture the beauty in the detail of the plants. The arrangements are photographed at night on our kitchen bench.