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Mechelle Bounpraseuth: Westside Story

Mechelle Bounpraseuth
Smiths Chicken Chips, 2016
Coloured ceramic
Image courtesy of the artist

A peek inside the cupboards of suburban Australia in Westside Story. Sydney artist Mechelle Bounpraseuth created unique still life scenes in ceramics, as she reminisced on her own childhood growing up as a first generation Australian in the south west of Sydney.

One imagined opening a cupboard in the artists' family home, finding condiments like soy sauce, fish sauce, her dad’s empty Nescafe jars filled with MSG, garlic and oil, along with ‘typical’ Australian condiments like Heinz tomato sauce, Vegemite and Gravox. The cupboards represented part of the artists story, growing up in public housing with Laotian refugee and migrant parents.

Bounspraseuth used these iconic objects and scenes to highlight the cultural connections that are shared in the mundane and banal details of everyday Australian life.

Bounspraseuth completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the National Art School. Although primarily working with ceramics, her practice also includes drawing, photography, artist books and zines. She has exhibited at the National Gallery of Australia, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, Craft Victoria and Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney.