“I first saw Sarah Faulkner’s paintings at Realities Gallery in 1988. What I remember most strongly about them was the unbounded exuberance and confidence that they gave off as soon as you entered the space. At a time when traditional studio practice in Melbourne was already being morphed into something else, I felt Sarah’s work represented a king hit for painting.”John Buckley 2004 (No straight lines – a survey, Deakin University catalogue)

As a painter, a brother of the brush, I am challenged by form, colour, structure and texture . My painting is emotive, flowing, spontaneous. It rides on the intuitive, on the way I feel. I love moving paint around. I love the power and rhythm of oil paint. Handled well it can be charged full of life. Sometimes if let loose it can run its own race, the results can be surprising and ultimately satisfying.

I have always been interested in real life- the rough, tough sort that forces you to face diversity and fight for what you want. Starting Roar studios with my youthful co painters and sculptures seemed the obvious thing to do in the face of the conservative art scene of the early 80s. I have always painted my immediate environment, people, animals, places, and have tried to depict situations simply and honestly. From the early Roar days, when I painted life in Brunswick st and the turbulent emotions of that time, to the years travelling overseas, where I would try to depict cultures in an emotional and physical light, the narrative element has always been a strong focus in my work.

Travel and life experience, exploring different cultures and environments has played a vital role in my career as an artist. I have found inspiration and endless challenges to my work in trying to capture the every day lives of people in the countries I have visited. My palette tends to reflect the country or place I’ve been in at the time. However, colour can also be an important channel through which I can enforce emotions and interpretations of a situation. In my later work The Fauves have been a big source of inspiration.

I am conscious that my style is evolving and changes to a degree with each new series of works. I still feel the need to push boundaries, making mistakes and trying new techniques. Recently I have begun using oil sticks to draw the painting on. This suits my style, as drawing is a big part of creating imagery for me. I have also been working in ceramics, painting large bowls using a fast and fluid approach that results in the imagery being very fresh and bold.

To support my career I have chosen to work teaching children and hold art classes in Melbourne and in country Victoria. I have also been involved in mural projects in schools as artist in residence, most recently Wesley College, mural work is something I have always loved since it encompasses both the large and the bold in painting.