ERICA Gray is an artist who uses her creativity to challenge the traditional way sculptures are made and presented.
Ms Gray's exhibition at the Tweed River Art Gallery, 'Rubber gloves, sharp teeth and other pointy bits' is a must see demonstration of her quirky imagination and includes the artist's interpretation of animalistic forms crafted with a variety of fanged mouth parts, spiky armour and rubber teats.
Ms Gray said she started working as a fashion machinist when she was a teenager.
"From machinist, I progressed to a variety of jobs from sewing leather garments through to wedding gowns," Ms Gray said.
"A few years on, I established my own dressmaking business, making a variety of costumes for partygoers, dancers, performers and even the occasional fetish garment."
"After spending more than 20 years in fashion, I now spend most of my time obsessing over my own art."
Mr Gray now creates works which typify her moods, ideas and style and enjoys the challenge of pushing materials into forms and functions they weren't really designed for.
"I'm coming full circle and have recently started to add more fashion elements into my art pieces," she said.
Ms Gray's use of materials include PVC which she uses to create a variety of costumes, mostly cheeky outfits for striptease artists and the occasional 'special' item.
"One time, a gentleman placed a folded-up waterbed bladder on my counter, wanting a wading suit and full head covering made from it," she said.
"A very interesting and fun experience, glue welding the garments together."
Rubber gloves seemed a natural progression."
Gallery director Susi Muddiman said the exhibition might be a little different to what visitors were used to seeing.
"Erica's imagination is very individual," Ms Muddiman said.
"She doesn't shy away from challenging or unusual subject matter, in fact she embraces it."
Ms Gray's exhibition will run from January 18 until March 3 and for those interested in meeting the talented artist, she will be available during an Artist's Demonstration Day on Sunday, February 17 from 11.00 am until 2.00 pm.
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