Liss Fenwick

Liss Fenwick describes the aim of her practice as being an exploration of “the allegorical potential of rural Australia throughout cycles of expansion and decay.” But while she does not state the fact, Fenwick is clearly also exploring the moral cycles, those of abuse of the land and its indigenous peoples, its momentary physical rewards and its long-term moral and environmental consequences. Her Ant Works simply take this further – a decorated solid-silver platter from Colonial times is now simply a dining plate for native ants – such is the folly of man. Fenwick may have grown up with only a fundamental education in the township of Humpty Doo, but she has avidly consumed Camus and Nietzsche and any other literature she could get her hands on. She has simultaneously comfortably completed a dual Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Queensland and is now avidly ploughing through a PhD at RMIT. And she has, with a wisdom and aesthetic that belies her age, through her art, tackled major questions of Australia’s mixed history and dubious future. One can only follow Liss Fenwick’s career with a certain degree of awe, and perhaps fear, for her Ant Works take no prisoners.