Jackie Ralph’s interest in Sumo wrestlers began while she was living in Japan. These large wrestlers with their shifting weight and heavy movements are revered and disliked by Japanese mainstream.
The Sumo culture is strongly connected to the past, but disconnected from the present. Ralph emphasises this disconnection by taking the Sumo wrestler out of context completely. The wrestler is painted in combat alone and without grounding. An excellent draftswoman, Ralph captures the Sumo in frozen moments whilst retaining motion. The figures hover in a groundless space, yet they appear weighted and balanced.
The canvases are painted primarily in blue intensifying the isolated void in which the figures float. Only a few shades separate the figure from the background. As a consequence the Sumo seems to wrestle with the spatial void which is threatening to engulf him.
Jackie Ralph is currently undertaking a Masters Degree at the Victorian College of the Arts. This body of work is a continuation of the her exploration into imbalance, disassociation and dislocation. She has exhibited in Japan and Victoria.