'LOCKDOWN MAPS' BY LYNDI SALES

CONTEMPORARY SOUTH AFRICAN ARTIST  |  EXHIBITION  |  CLAY FORM(E)S

lyndi-sales-ceramics

A NEW EXPERIMENTAL BODY OF WORK: EXPLORATIONS WITH CLAY AND ABSTRACT PAINTING

This new experimental body of work showcases Lyndi Sales’ most recent explorations: that of ceramic and abstract painting – combined to create clay maps, or islands, both whimsical and fragmented. Lockdown Maps, a series of nearly fifty individual pieces, presents the introduction of both a new medium and artistic process into Sales’ larger body of work whilst simultaneously bringing through previous thematic threads, namely those around space and time. 

BY OLIVIA BARRELL

lyndi-sales

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

lyndi-sales-ceramics

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

These painted ceramic microcosms, conceptualised as islands, are a testimony to Sales’ experience over the past year, living through a series of lockdowns in South Africa, in flux between controlled and uninhibited action. ‘”Sometimes I just want to lose myself in the making, which can be dangerous, but I just can’t help myself,’’ says Sales. 

Lyndi Sales’ unmistakable visual language has often drawn from multitudinous sources of inspiration, frequently from either microscopic or macroscopic scientific data – and more specifically, from the abstracted appearance and forms within the data itself. There are echoes of biological microcosms, climatological and geological charts, cartography, and other abstracted forms from the natural world in the artist’s visual imagery, imbued at the same time with deeply philosophical and spiritual currents. Lockdown Maps extends undeniably in this direction, drawing inspiration from the artist’s obsession with cartography but equally from the dystopian universe of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, Buddhist philosophy from The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, and the nonsensical Fook Island by South African artist Walter Battiss. Each piece within Lockdown Maps represents a fusion of worlds, intricately mapped out by the artist. ‘’It’s like a pouring out – information coming in and then going out into something physical,’’ says Sales. 

lyndi-sales-lockdown-maps

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

lyndi-sales-lockdown-maps

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

“During the hard lockdown, it felt as if I was on an island, I was in my space and I wasn’t able to move beyond that.’’ Lockdown Maps is the amalgamation of various literary inspirations with the artist’s unconstrained creative yearnings, to make but also to experiment. In addition, Sales explores questions around spiritual and psychological journeys given her shifting post-pandemic reality. The artist fuses fictional universes, both utopian and dystopian, with her own imagined clay worlds which are playfully illustrative yet evoke contemplation.
On reality.
On journey.
And perhaps, on our own spiritual internal landscapes.

"It’s like a pouring out - information coming in and then going out into something physical" -Lyndi Sales

lyndi-sales-ceramics-lockdown-maps

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

lyndi-sales-lockdown-maps

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

This experimental ceramic body of work – part map, part abstract painting – showcases a new and deeply personal creative expression from Sales. Each piece, a fragment and mediation made material, speak to Sales’ sensitive and curious process. Limbo and questions around states of being are integral to Lockdown Maps, recurring themes in many works by Lyndi Sales – veins of investigation linked to consciousness, life, death, and the states in between. ‘’From The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, I was intrigued by the six Bardo states – states of being that you live your life in – each state is almost like an island and in between, there is limbo from one destination to the next. The maps are an escape to a more utopian world,’’ says Sales. 

The pieces within Lockdown Maps showcase Lyndi Sales’ playful experimentation with form, line, colour and shape – the latter both organic and geometric. Each clay form possessing a unique personality – the outline of which reverberates through the painted visual language, creating the impression of a world within a world, an island on an island, and an echoing, seemingly unbound form that offers the viewer the sense of expansiveness – so characteristic of Sales’ work, that draws one further and further in.  

lyndi-sales-ceramics

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

lyndi-sales-ceramics

Lyndi Sales | ‘Lockdown Maps series’ | 2021 | acrylic on ceramic

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