An exhibition of a 26 meter single wraparound charcoal drawing across 12 linked canvases, based on remote The Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia.
Wendy Loefler is a visual artist based in Sydney. Drawing is central to her practice and integral to her lifelong engagement with the natural world. Her landscape-based work focuses on arid zones and wilderness. While her large panoramic charcoal drawings reveal a fascination with the minutiae of the desert world, her prime preoccupation is with space and scale. This work is an important marker in Wendy's enduring investigation into vastness and wilderness advancing here to a 360 degree circling aspect.
Essay extract: We all know that feeling, when we leave the city and our visual field is suddenly filled with sky, and the horizon of our vision retreats and finds a more remote place of rest. We might experience this when we go out to sea, drive across the flat lands of the outback or look down from a high summit. The arrival of capacious vision can have a dizzying effect. This can trigger a sense of inner displacement, a shudder of uncertainty about our place in the world. Wendy Loefler knows that such moments are the very stuff of art. As the philosopher Bachelard wrote in The Poetics of Space, a book much loved by artists, ‘immensity is within ourselves. It is attached to a sort of expansion of being that life curbs and caution arrests, but which starts again when we are alone’. While Bachelard inhabited the forest to contemplate the phenomenon of limitlessness in both a spatial and subjective sense, it is to the deserts of Australia that Wendy has returned again and again. Here one might look in one direction, knowing that the dunes rise and fall for nine hundred kilometres, but be unable to bring a perception of that terrestrial depth to consciousness. Such constraints upon our literal imagination are of course precisely the opposite for our poetic imagination, and it is in this space that Wendy dwells to make her work.
Dr Laura Fisher