Meet the artist behind Monaro Mall’s new look

Published on 25 October 2017

For painter (and creator of our beautiful artwork for Monaro Mall) Bobby Clark, home is where the art is. Seven years ago, Bobby and her husband Steve came to Australia from their native Scotland, and immediately found themselves at home in a new creative community in Melbourne. Making her way into Canberra Centre this season, meet the woman behind the shapes.

At first, Bobby and Steve were only planning a temporary stay in Australia, but having rediscovered her art in a nurturing environment, Bobby set up her home studio and has since thrived with her painted studies of shape and colour.

“Steve and I, we’ve always been quite independent,” Bobby explains. “We’ve always sacrificed social aspects of life in order to go after what we want work-wise.

“Where we’re living now, I think I adapt every space to suit myself. If my house isn’t set the way I want it to be, then the rest of my life is in absolute chaos. That’s my number one priority, I’ve learned over the years – if my home space isn’t right, then I’m not right.”

The intersection of home and creativity in Bobby’s art extends to her upcoming work for Monaro Mall, for which she has drawn inspiration from the labyrinthine home of Barcelona sculptor Xavier Corbero. “His use of simplistic shapes such as arches and stairs in raw materials and renders inspired the compositions of my work,” Bobby says. “The scale and beauty of
his home, which he has been working on for over 50 years, is breath-taking, and his support for the artistic community is really incredible.”

While Bobby has a long history in creative pursuits – she studied fashion at university and created hyper realistic portraits of older people – the impetus for a career in painting only came about after she arrived in Australia.

“When I was studying, it was completely different to what I’m doing now. I was really secretive with my work – I couldn’t work if anyone else was around. When I came to Melbourne, I worked with a [workshop] called Pop & Scott, and I was involved in designing, so it was all stripping it back to really basic shapes. Poppy – who was the owner of Pop & Scott – and my husband were like, ‘You have to start painting again.’ I really stripped back and almost started going back to primary school, learning to paint shapes again. I just went and started doing it, and these things just flowed out of my head.”

Follow Bobby on Instagram at @bobbyclark____, and find her work around the Canberra Centre and at the entry to Monaro Mall on Level 1.

Bobby Clark mural painting

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