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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Lara Torr | Feature Artist

Tell us about yourself, how would you describe your work?
I'm an artist and arts administrator. I juggle jobs in the arts and disability sector and urban renewal with my independent practice. There's a strong community focus in both these jobs and it means lots of meetings and conversations with lots of people. In contrast, my artwork is quite personal and quiet. Often small.

While I love working with other people to help them get creative projects off the ground, it's nice to have my own work to escape into.

Who or what inspires you to create?
I spend a lot of time on public transport and the combination of travel and thinking time seems to result in lots of ideas. I think it's really nice to spend a bit of time just sitting and thinking, so fellow passengers often see me smiling like a fool or making little notes and drawings on the scraps of paper in my bag.

Where was your inspiration drawn for this work?
I have been studying antique embroidered samplers for a number of years. They are primarily practical, rather than decorative, objects and I see them as a record of labour.

I’ve also been musing about the fact that portraiture often gives the impression that people in the past never moved; that life was conducted in painted freeze-frames featuring Sunday best and an indirect gaze.

What materials do you like to work with?
Paper and ink seem to be the mainstays for me with forays into fabric, plaster and sometimes metal.

What are your favourite 5 art related websites or blogs?
I mainly read cooking blogs (I think I make better art on a full stomach) but recently I've been a fairly regular visitor to these two sites: a great pattern resource and this site grew out of the amazing series of  podcasts 'A History of the World in 100 Objects'. Totally fascinating.

If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring artists, what would it be?
Arts takes time. Be patient.

Lara Torr graduated from the South Australian School of Art in 2006 with a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours). She has exhibited locally and nationally, including selected work for Hatched, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art and the touring exhibition Undercover (The Artist Book). She currently works at ArtsSA for the Richard Llewellyn Arts and Disability Trust and is a project coordinator for Renew Adelaide.


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