Clare Ellison Jakes – ‘Cej’ for short – is a settler visual artist, working in Naarm (Melbourne). Cej acknowledges the Traditional Custodians throughout Australia, in particular the Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung Peoples whose country she lives and works on, and recognises their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. Sovereignty was never ceded.
Cej’s practice primarily explores the relationship between art – and by extension culture – and the ‘natural’ world. Particularly in the Global North, there is a prevailing culture-nature divide; the metabolic rift. In a time where our separation from the environment is colliding with humanity and more-than-human nature’s existence, a paradigm shift is critical. Cej’s recent works are an intimate reconnection to her/our eco-surroundings and the mortality, affect and complexity of this existence.
In 2017, Cej graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts with First Class Honours. She is now studying a Master of Environment, at the University of Melbourne, specialising in environmental humanities.