2016 Friends of the Gallery Runner Up Award $1500

Anzara Clark
Bushido – Way of the Warrior

Bushido – Way of the Warrior  Vintage Japanese book pages, recycled used teabags, sashiko thread, paper yarn, dye, paint and Bondcrete Photo: Grant Wells

Bushido – Way of the Warrior
Vintage Japanese book pages, recycled used teabags, sashiko thread, paper yarn, dye, paint and Bondcrete
Photo: Grant Wells

About the piece
Bushido - Way of the Warrior, explores the tensions between the martial and non-martial philosophical aspects of the Samurai tradition, whereby aggression is tempered by self-discipline, honour dances with loyalty, and justice and benevolence are inseparable. Not uncommonly with Anzara's practice, she allowed the piece and the character to guide it's progress. The result: two distinct garments were required in order to portray all that was essential about this ancient and powerful way of life.

Samurai tradition was underpinned by the Eight Virtues of Bushido, otherwise known as 'The Samurai Code'. The eight virtues - justice, courage, mercy, politeness, honesty, honour, loyalty and self-control - are embellished in calligraphy on the back of the kimono. The Kimono is paired with a complete set of ancient Samurai armour, reflecting the discipline of the warrior's life, whereby every detail demonstrates a commitment to the philosophy of Bushido. The armour consists of over 2000 hand cut and shaped laminated paper scales and over 2 kilograms of hand twisted paper yarn. (Edited from Design Concept submitted for entry).

Materials: Recycled vintage Japanese book pages, recycled used teabags (1800 in total!) sashiko thread, paper yarn, dye, paint and Bondcrete.

Photo: Grant Wells

Photo: Grant Wells

About the artist
Anzara is a textile and paper artist with a strong focus on wearable art and garment based sculptural forms. For Anzara, the "...process of fine crafting in my garments challenges me to immerse myself in the voice of the work and the making of memories as well as the visual aesthetic. It is a way of valuing age-old practices, mastery and patience...the construction process is as critical as the end result and questions the instant gratification and mass production ethos of contemporary western culture…my work experiments with different ways of engaging with everyday materials and searching for alternative possibilities for conceptual and visual expression. Using recyclable and non-textile materials is not only a central aspect of material exploration but also asks questions about our cultural values and definitions of beauty." (Artists statement from website).

Anzara has studied extensively in the areas of fine arts (including sculpture and printmaking), Art History and Fashion Design. Throughout the past decade Anzara has consistently exhibited and won numerous accolades and awards. In 2016 she was the overall winner in the inaugural 'Life in Death' art competition run by Palliative Care Australia.

Anzara's relocation from Tasmania to Victoria in 2016 saw her undertake an Artist in Residency at the Heritage Hill Museum and Historic Garden and have a sculptural piece - Ex-Libris (made from recycled books and paper) - exhibited at the State Library of Victoria as part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival. She has facilitated several community workshops and was the inaugural co-ordinator for Wearable Art Whispers (2017). This project is run by Wearable Art Mandurah, and involves artists from around Australia.