With great economy Beckett creates the sensory feeling of movement, sound and the chill of winter. Using the reflection of car lights, she transforms the street from an unremarkable flat grey into a vibrating field of atmospheric space, reflected light and liquid colour.
The car light reflections cleverly conjure an effect of flickering light on a wet and cold Melbourne evening, and we can almost hear the rapid splash of tyre through water. Clarice Becketts’ distillation of compositional elements fuse to create a powerful subliminal, almost hypnotic, sensory experience. Here, she paints the first images in Australian art in which an ordinary tarred road is elevated to a high-art subject. Like the telegraph pole and electric light, the road becomes a motif of modern life.