Artist Biography

Sara Khamkoed is a visual artist, writer and educator based on The Central Coast, NSW.
Often known as a daydreamer, Sara sees this as one of her greatest strengths. Sara’s work involves stories and playful explorations of the world and the way we see it. Her practice spans a variety of mediums, with a focus on printmaking, illustration and mixed-media drawing. Sara has been an artist-in-residence at Ne’Na Contemporary Art Space and Artist Residency Thailand, supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She has run art workshops for young people in Australia and internationally for over 10 years. In her final year of a Bachelor of Visual Arts/Bachelor of Education (Secondary), Sara will soon be a Visual Arts and English Teacher.

Artist Statement

Tales of War and Home

Houses hold stories, and so do the objects within them. Tales of War and Home explores a selection of objects found in The Chifley Home.

On a mantelpiece in The Chifley Home sits a brass shell case, repurposed as a vase. An object of war being used to hold flowers seems a stark juxtaposition. Yet war impacted on everyday life in 1940s Australia, such as rationing of food, clothes and petrol. Ben Chifley was appointed Prime Minister of Australia one month before the end of World War II.

In another room, embroidery items sit in a basket by the Singer sewing machine. Elizabeth Chifley enjoyed embroidering; a skill that was passed down from her mother. Embroidery was a common activity for women during this period, as they needed sewing skills to mend and make their few items of clothes.

Out in the front garden are beds of flowers. The Chifleys enjoyed gardening, however once Ben Chifley became Prime Minister he no longer had time for this activity.

In Tales of War and Home, the symbolism of black and white objects from World War II contrast with bright, embroidered sprigs of Australian native flowers. These objects tell a tale of life in the 1940s for Ben and Elizabeth Chifley; one of war and hardship, but also of home.

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