Jessie McLennan

Jessie is a figurative sculptor.
She works predominately in clay and plaster with some in wax and cast in bronze.

Jessie works in her studio in West Gippsland.

Artists Statement

I sculpt because I love it. I love the feeling of the clay. I love the process, and it is a long process. I make many small works. sometimes I like one enough to make a bigger version. By the time I finish these projects, it is like the slow unwrapping of a treasured present.

Portraits
I love the feeling of capturing someones essence. When I make portraits it is very exciting the closer it comes to finishing. It feels like I am bringing them to life. It makes me smile and I want to talk to them. Sometimes I make portraits from memory, sometimes my subject is sitting there talking to me or doing another activity. Usually they are from a few photos.

Paris
I went to Paris in 2010 to study the incredible archive of art there. I spent many days at the Louvre. I studied the beautiful torsos and the amazing carved eyes of the classical italian marble sculptures and busts. I was also deeply taken by the joy and life communicated in the sculptures from the Belle Epoque by artists like; Jean Houdon, Francois Rude and Francisque Joseph Duret. There were sculptures absolutely everywhere in Paris. I sketched Maillol's Bronzes as I ate lunch on the grass. I returned numerous times to the Rodin Gallery. The more time I spent there, the more I absorbed his works. He had captured such movement and torment. I also became very aware of his mark and that the artists can leave a mark, that sculptures don't have to be pollished like a machine. The artists mark that Rodin left connected me to him through the sculpture. I also identified more with Rodin as a sculptor because his sculptures, like mine, all have huge hands and feet.

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