Plastic Heart: Indonesian Australian sisters navigate intimacy & identity at Goodspace in Sydney

Sisters Sally Ann and Emily May will open their ‘Plastic Heart’ exhibition tonight at Goodspace.

Born in Sydney and raised in Jakarta, Sally & Emily had their career start in 2012. For Plastic Heart, the pair wanted to open up ideas about reflection of the self, pain, pleasure, intimacy, and identity in a temporary phase of life. Installations in plastic and mixed media will bring depth and physical texture to images hanging from the walls, lovingly photographed over the last few years.

We asked Sally Ann and Emily May about self-discovery and contemporary femininity, being sisters, who they are as women and their rich Indonesian heritage.

Plastic Heart_BTS

What’s it like working with your sister?

Sally (S): We finish eachother’s sentences! Working together feels like second nature to us, since as we are very close. Having Emily by my side gives me the constant courage to take any kinds of leap of faith.
Emily (E): She’s the yin to my yang. It can also be a vulnerable thing to show your stuff out there because you are showing what’s inside your head. Creating with Sally completely takes out the fear behind it. She calms the soul and we constantly remind ourselves not to be obsessed by the result. The fun is to do stuff and to make a business out of what makes you happy. Of course it’s not going to be perfect, and that’s okay.

How does your Indonesian heritage influence and inform your femininity?

E: Growing up in a fairly conservative, yet interesting culture in Indonesia, there’s definitely a shift of the meaning of a modern female within today’s femininity. We are no longer obliged to consider what it means to be female. This inspired us in a lot of our past works, to remind young girls to be the women they aspire to be, that they are in in charge of their destiny and realising that they have the power to do so.
S: It also teaches us a broader sense of compassion and respect towards diversity.
Sally Emily Plastic Heart 3

What’s your favourite mindless distraction?

S: People watching
E: Crushes and confusions.

Can you share your favourite photo with us?

S&E: The frame titled “Praying for Love, Paying in Naivety.”
Sally Emily Plastic Heart 1

How does your sense of style translate to your photography styles?

S: Bold, playful, and vulnerable.
E: Masculin féminin. When it comes to personal style, I do find a woman’s manly side is what’s sexy.
When it comes to personal style, I do find a woman’s manly side is what’s sexy.

What can people look forward to seeing or feeling when they come to Goodspace tonight?

S: Our works always come from a place of experience and inspired by both joy and suffering as a cycle.
E: The frames are born out of love, sweat, tears, late nights, and paper cuts. I want people to be able to relate and see themselves in these pictures.
Sally Emily Plastic Heart 2

Our works always come from a place of experience, inspired by both joy and suffering as a cycle.

In addition, the exhibition will feature Sally & Emily’s collaborative works with Australian based artists, stylist, models, make-up artists and brands including Amy Love, Ajok Madel, Archie Pham, The Armoury, Courtney James, Cubone Club, Dempsey Rai, Gloria Kolya, Jess Diez, Merry Mae, and Rachel Rutt.

PLASTIC HEART opens for one night only this Wednesday (tonight) 24 October at Chippendale’s Goodspace Gallery between 6-9 PM. Entry is free.

Sally Emily_Plastic Heart_Poster



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