Jobe Williams (HYPER REELIST), Campbell Henderson, Bronte Hock, Tess Williams, Jonathon Bolitho, Emily Hana, Jennie Feyen.
19 January- 30 January
Opening Night: Tuesday 18 January 2015; 5-7 PM
Visions Beyond is an group exhibition that explores ideas of spirituality, immateriality, fluidity and the experiential; and their potential to flow beyond, across and through artists and their individual works. Underpinning these diverse practices is a striving for a state of being that is otherworldly and using a sensory experience of light and colour. Visions Beyond is an exhibition that employs the interdisciplinary media practices of Jobe Williams, Campbell Henderson, Bronte Hock, Tess Williams, Jonathan Bolitho, Emily Hana Johnson & Jennie Feyens. Through a collaborative making process, these artists give and take influence from one another to create a multi-sensory conversation circulating around the notion of transcendentalism.
This aesthetically playful exhibition occupies a phenomenological and sensorially affective space of exploration, where each artist’s individual styles connect through close collaboration and curation.
Bronte Hock’s work explores spirituality through religious iconography and the repeating gestures found within religious studies. There is an element of abstraction in Bronte’s work which is mirrored by Tess Williams’ painting works which explore repetition as a spiritual practice. Alongside these, sits Tess’ performance work, which replicates yogic movement and the fluidity of whole-body actions. This is combined with Jobe Williams’ delayed projection visuals which overlay Tess’ movements, complimenting her actions with colours and shapes to reflect the intention of her practice. In a live performance space, Jobe and Tess’ collaborative practice engages the audience in an serene sensorial experience of a movement-based meditation. In alignment with this transcendental state of performance is Campbell Henderson’s projected video work which plays on the Ganzfeld effect, which is intended to engulf the viewer and trick the mind into intense hallucinatory visuals. Campbell and Jobe’s projection and prism photography works employ similar colour fields and motifs as they operate in the space together, pulling influence from one another. This is also true of Jobe and Jonathon Bolitho, who have a close collaborative practice that explores human homeostasis and the phenomena of light through interactive technology and electronics. Emily Hana’s paper sculptural works explore the relationship of light and shadow in affecting our understanding of objects. Similarly, Jennie Feyen utilises the medium of light to explore notions of sexuality and body politics. The fluid dialogue between the artists and their works in the exhibition space speaks directly to the central theme of the exhibition - that is a movement beyond, across and through.
With a wide variety of material experimentation, this collaborative group exhibition explores interdisciplinary art making practices underpinned by the notion of a sensorial experience of transcendentalism. In this way the Visions Beyond exhibition is a practice of meditation and mediation through sculpture, sound, video and performance.
Lap-Xuan Do-Nguyen & Jihye Min
2 February - 13 February 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 1 February 2016; 5-7 PM
A while explores the perception of time in relation to the fragility and resilience of the human soul. Within the interval, one’s past, present and future are rather the fractions of one’s struggles. Within the interval, there are hopes, doubts, and anything in between.
Through varying art practices such as Ceramics, Drawings, Installation, Performance, both Jihye and Lap-Xuan express a personal process of healing. Jihye’s works lie along the vacuum time, which may bring her to the real presence. As for Lap-Xuan, the works are found in the intricate threshold between a personal realm and the outside world.
For a while, countless births and deaths happen. The dialogues of human experiences are portrayed gently, yet the yearning for the other ends could be sensitively disturbing.
Image: Lap-Xuan Do-Nguyen & Jihye Min, ‘Dialogue’ – ‘A while’ exhibition development 2015, Mixed media performance installation, Dimensions variable.
Amaya Lang & Sheila Alati
17 February - 27 February 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 16 February 2016; 5-7 PM
A shared exhibition of new works by Sydney-based artist Amaya Lang & Tasmanian-based artist Sheila Alati that reflects on our relationship to our insides-envisioning its fluctuating, unpredictable and naturally messy states. Themes concerning the human body are central to the work of each artist and are expressed differently through their respective practices. Amaya Lang’s unsettling sculptures incorporating sound and light, along with Sheila Alati’s two dimensional flows of mixed media on drafting film, consider the bodies mutability, while reflecting on the paradoxical nature of bodily control.
Image: Sheila Alati, Fulfil your function (detail), Mixed media on drafting film 100 cm × 148 cm, 2015. Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
2 March- 5 March 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 2 March 2016; 5-7 PM
Fijian military bodies have become a valuable commodity in the economy of war. In Somatic Sotia, Torika Bolatagici presents photographic, video and mixed-media works that explore Fijian masculinity, militarism and the intersections between gender, embodied knowledge, commodification, migration and globalisation.
Drawing on her research into archival military footage of nuclear tests in the Pacific and contemporary soldier images from social media, the work in Somatic Sotia is concerned with the ways the Fijian military body has been mythologised and constructed through colonial and neo-colonial representation and the ways Fijian agency is performed in vernacular contexts.
Image: Torika Bolatagici, includes aspects of Export Quality #4 (2012), Hand stenciled masi designs on backlit lm, approximately 42 x 59 cm.
Presented by the Greek Festival of Sydney
16 March- 20 March 2016
Opening Night: Wednesday 16 March 2016; 5-7 PM
This exhibition celebrates the work of the late Greek-Australian artist Vasilis Natsis from the 1960s to the early 2000s. His striking images reveal his love of the stark beauty he saw in the urban landscapes and architecture of Greece or the weathered coastlines of Australia. Whether inspired by the juxtaposition of a jutting balcony and a church dome, the memory of an Athens square in times gone by, or the bleakness of solitary rugged outcrops around Sydney’s coast, his nostalgic fascination is expressed with rigorous attention to structure, perspective, line and tone in meticulously executed pen-and-ink drawings and in carefully composed photographs.
Image: Vasilis Natsis, Hydra, alley with iron fence, 1967. Ink on paper, 32 x 22cm
5 April-16 April 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 5 April 2016, 5-7 PM
Designed By is an exhibition of work from students of UNSW Art & Design’s Design faculty. The exhibition features student work across all studio streams. Designed By showcases a cross section of the work created from second to fourth year within the faculty of design. The projects on display encompass the six studios that students can major and minor within. This includes Graphics, Spatial, Textiles, Jewellery, Object and Ceramics.
This semester 1 2016 edition of Designed By is the inaugural show in what will be a program of biannual design exhibitions held at Kudos Gallery.
Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
20 April- 30-April 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 26 April 2016; 5-7 PM
Artist Talk: Wednesday 20 April 2016; 1-2 PM
The news media afford a vantage point to remotely observe crisis and catastrophe that is at once privileged and passive, distant and affective. This ambivalent mode of witnessing raises manifold social, ethical and political questions, and points to the complicity of the news in the affective politics of fear and anxiety that have permeated everyday life since 9/11.
'The Anticipated Image' examines media witnessing through 24-hour television news and photojournalism with a focus on the coverage of current events. It explores the affective potential of timing and resolution, in video installation and digital print, using the tactic of post-production to recombine and abstract found images and footage sourced from the media.
Image: preparation image for The Anticipated Image by Chris Ross. Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
Mitchel Cumming, 110% Collective (Beth Dillon, Kieran Bryant and Lachlan Herd), Marian Tubbs, Alex Gawronski, Make or Break (Connie Anthes and Rebecca Gallo), Dara Gill, JD Reforma and Cooper Michael in addition to Connie Anthes and Rebecca Gallo leading public programs in conversation with Benjamin Forster and Clare Cooper.
Curated by Anna May Kirk
18 May- 28 May 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 17 May 2016, 5-7 PM 2016
Public Program The Third Chair: 21 May 2016; 1-4 PM
'ART/WORK' will explore the intersection of art and labour, art economies, and the nature of the artist as 'worker'. It will pose the question; is the artist the ideal model for the post-fordian worker, creative, flexible and cheap as artists deal in an economy of ideas and models of experience capitalism. The exhibition will reflect upon the unique economic position of the artist as creator of both financial and cultural value. Making invisible labours visible and analysing the transformation of value through the poetic process of materials and concepts becoming art. Drawing upon ideas of economic success, leisure, free and favour economies, transformative value, and artist as labourer, 'ART / WORK' is aimed to act as an education platform. Incorporating a library area, a publication and a series of public programs with performances these ideas will be explored and expanded upon.
'The Third Chair' will convene an open discussion about invisible labour in the arts, focusing particularly on the role of the 'artist biography’ as a construct that serves to perpetuate myths surrounding art work and artistic labour.
'The Third Chair' is a space for cake and conversation, initiated by artists Rebecca Gallo and Connie Anthes in response to their live art project Make or Break. Inviting artists and thinkers from their extended networks to inhabit a ‘third chair’ for an hour or two, the artists host earnest, intimate and open conversations as a form of public enquiry into studio and post-studio practices, art as labour, social practice and intangible economies.
Join Make or Break artists Rebecca Gallo + Connie Anthes in conversation with Benjamin Forster (A Library, Frontyard Projects) and Clare Cooper (The Now Now Festival, Splinter Orchestra).
This conversation will be followed by the launch of the publication Make or Break by Connie Anthes and Rebecca Gallo, which features contributions by David Eastwood and Bek Conroy.
Image: Connie Anthes and Rebecca Gallo, Make or Break. Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
Amy Roser, Andrew Maloney, Aston Creus, Carina Burke, Carrie Chan, Darsh Seneviratne, Dion Avamides, Emily Kaar, Emma White, Etu Bokshi, Eva Masterton, Gemma Evans, Harriet Clapham, Isabella Russell, Ivi Nathalia, Jake Cruz, Jaqueline Corcoran, Jonathan Cao, Jordana Marshall, Joshua Bentley, Laura Nash, Lauren Paterson, Lily Golightly, Lisa Murray, Lisa Stratigos, Louella Adey, Luke Power, Megghan Ressler, Milly Scarlett, Paloma Maine, Rachel Stevens, Sean Jackson, Sian Davies, Tallulah Moore, Vanessa Leong, Viktor Kravchenko, Yasmin Keers, Ziju Wang
1-4 June 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 31 May 2016, 5-7 PM
Featuring the work of artists in Third Year Professional Practice at UNSW Art & Design ‘Three’ is an exhibition that features a small selection of works spanning a multitude of disciplines and studio practices. Curated by the students, the exhibition showcases innovative conceptual work of artists emerging into the art world. ‘Three’ covers a huge variety of works that attempt to navigate our changing social, political and cultural landscape. Through an exploration of expression, ‘Three’ allows artists with various themes, concepts and practices to come together and celebrate the variety and diversity of UNSW Art and Design students.
Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
8 June - 11 June 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 7 June 2016, 5-7 PM
'Tyrannium' is a multi-media, reactionary exhibition by Dionysos Anton showcasing the artist’s explorations into the chaotic existence of youth on the fringe of society.
The narrative of ‘Tyrannium’ is like that of a Cheez-Tv-esque cartoon plots: a chemical culture catalyst, ‘scuzz’, turns a stale UNSW research terrarium into an ultra-violent dystopic society. Tyrannium is born.
Exploring questions of delinquency and disorder in the contemporary epoch, Anton demonstrates the “trash punx” culture he recalls from his adolescence and art school experience. In conjunction with this personal concern, the artist also references environmental concerns most prevalent in the edge urban living such as excessive waste and over populated share housing.
The works are a nod to all things anti-style, composed of objects and techniques typical of low fidelity art.
Image: Scuzz Punx, 2016, texta on paper, 70cm x 100cm. Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
Clare Powell and Mark Mailler
16-25 June 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 21 June 2016; 5-7 PM
Klub Kids crave the Klub. The late nights, dark lights and the booty shakes. The loss of inhibition and the intensity of the party pash. Klub Kids crave the Klub.
In light of Sydney’s lock out laws, the change in ownership of the iconic Imperial Hotel and the growth in Klub venue regimentation, Klub Kids are now an underprivileged minority; stripped of safe spaces to explore frivolity.
Through Klub dreamings and collective encouragement, Shallow Kids transform the Kudos Gallery space into an immersive Klub style experience. Employing the use of performance, video installation, collected artefacts and social media forums, Klub Kids reflect their sincere will for political, cultural and social emancipation within contemporary Sydney nightlife. This exhibition will rejuvenate aspects of the city’s creative club cultures (CCC) through the activation of a new Klub site.
You’re all invited to Klub.
Image: Still from Promotional Video, Shallow Kids, 2016. Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
Anton Benois and Beth Dillon
Opening Night: Tuesday 28 June 2016; 5-7 PM
'I'm still new here’ links two bodies of work created by collaborative duo Anton Benois and Beth Dillon during their time in residence at Listhus Arthouse, Olafsfjordur, North Iceland, and ARE Holland, Enschede, the Netherlands. Works of video, photography, costumed performance and sculpture play with constructions of the wilderness and the recurring figure of the nomad in fashion and tourism media.
This collection of landscape studies take as their central motif the figure of an artificial Dieffenbachia fern. To Dillon and Benois, the artificial fern symbolises the escapist fantasies of travel, and the disorienting effects of constant relocation on one’s sense of identity. The artificial fern - evergreen, eternal implant, appears in their work again and again as an icon of commodified nature, and a fetishized object of the lure of elsewhere.
Image: courtesy of the artist.
by Ellen Hewitt
To whom it may concern,
There’s a problem with existing in one place for too long. Roots, eventually, rot. Despite planting ourselves in our best environment, we wither. The rhythm of the daily grind eventually turns us strange colours and makes us slump. Slowly and inevitably it sucks the moisture from our limbs and souls until we are wrinkled and falling ungracefully to pieces.
So we rip our roots from our allocated slice of the earth and implant ourselves in far flung places. In distant and unfamiliar soils, we transform ourselves into foreign objects. For a time, we live in a new reality, one where we no longer rot. We remember what it feels like to experience the new, the different and the uncertain.
It’s an environment that seems to be made easier to adapt to if we document everything around us, including the self. We must show the world and ourselves how we have stopped rotting. We have to duplicate these images of self as nomad, traveller, tourist and insert it into everything. No surface, no object, no social media page, no fabric left unmarked. It is this complete enveloping that absolutely ensures we are able to recognise ourselves as living rather than dying.
We continue to take selfies, watching ourselves, before finally we return. But now the patch of the earth you ordinarily inhabit is the foreign thing. Everything seems different and new. Even the movements of the clouds. The passing breeze. Forcing yourself to physically wander, instead of just wonder, makes you realise that
Yes, everyday can be a holiday. Adventure is all around us. If you take the time to open your eyes, and see.
This essay has been produced as part of the White Cube Program
20 - 23 July 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 19 July 2015, 5-7pm
In this exhibition my painting comes Off The Wall. A hybrid of painting, performance and installation will be created inside Kudos Gallery. Each day performative elements of the installation will be added and subtracted.
It is the moment that is captured during my painting that is also similar to the moment of performance. The reaction to the current situation, the colours, the light or the food I had for breakfast contributes towards the action and outcome. From these initial paintings I seek to draw a link to my performance practice through the medium of installation.
From interaction with place, elements and objects are collected and reinterpreted in the studio/gallery using my paintings as a guide for action. These painting installations are constantly developing. The interaction between painting and object is paramount in communicating the performative elements of my practice. This exhibition will form a major part of my Masters research for 2016 looking at the link between painting and performance art.
Image: Al Poulet, 'Installation #1', 2016.
27 July - 6 August 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 26 July 2016, 5-7 PM
In photographing the ailing health and dementia of the her great godfather Peter MacDonald Tow, Kate Farquharson provides unobtrusive glimpses into a crumbling life.
Disintegration investigates the imprints the human body leaves on its environment and upon other’s memories. It seeks to represent not only the ailing of the human body, but the dissolution of the mind. It is a lament to the collapse of great minds, the devastation of dementia and is an avenue of quiet contemplation.
Peter was a child of the Great Depression and grew up in poverty in South London. Through obtaining scholarships he was able to study Medicine at Cambridge University and specialised in Psychiatry. In 1955 his book Personality Changes Following Frontal Leucotomy was published. Peter travelled between England and Australia until the 1970s, when he settled in the suburb of Red Hill, Canberra.
Image: Kate Farquharson 'Chair,' digital image on photo rag, 841mm x 560mm, 2013.
Kate Farquharson: 'Disintegration'
Words by Dara Wei
Old armchair, worn curtains, broken kettles, discarded vintage car, Persian rugs, cigarette packets, wilted flowers, artworks, clocks, and piles of books and newspapers… These are some of the objects featured in the photographic exhibition 'DISINTEGRATION' by Kate Farquharson.
The documentation project began in 2009 when Farquharson realized that dementia had started eroding the physical and mental health of Peter MacDonald Tow, the artist’s great-godfather, a child of the Great Depression, a self-made psychiatrist, a lifelong autodidact, and a hoarder of books, notes, newspapers, and patient files. Throughout the documenting process continuing after Peter’s death in June 2015, the artist captured the traces of a fascinating person whose physical and mental existence went through dissolution due to aging and dementia.
Paradoxically, the body of the subject matter is visually absent from the works and physically from reality. It’s intriguing to ponder the implication of Peter’s disappeared presence or existing absence in an exhibition that is all about him. Strolling along picture after picture, the viewers gather the fragments of a life once fully lived and project an image of it that is visible to their mind’s eye. Not unlike assembling numerous puzzles, the subject matter of 'DISINTEGRATION' is approached, felt, and imaged from the scattered visual and emotional clues from the works.
At the back of the gallery, the artist configured a stage of patterned wallpapers, vintage curtains, and withered leaves as a glimpse into the artist’s perception about her great-godfather. It makes one wonders that when the leading role of a life story is off stage forever, what remains that might be still influencing other’s memories? Not intended as an installation work, the arrangement of the back stage does not disrupt the flow of the photograph series but cast an intimate touch that is integral to the narrative of the exhibition.
Throughout the duration of the exhibition, I was approached by visitors with positive feedback. Many have found that they deeply resonated with the photographs because they have families or friends suffering from dementia or other kinds of physical and mental disintegrations. A sense of lose is therefore communicated and shared in a flow, adding another dimension to the exhibition. This contemplating state of mind is precisely what the artist intended and indeed a goal well achieved. The entire gallery room generates a pausing effect to slow down and have a quite moment to get lost in one’s own thoughts.
Titled 'DISINTEGRATION', the exhibition itself, in contrary, has constructed a rare integrity found in both the individual works and throughout the show. At a time of dazzling immersive installations and experimental forms of art that often reach out to the external world, 'DISINTEGRATION' explores the internal possibilities and limits, and provides a mindful occasion to reconcile our outer urges and inner tranquility.
This essay has been produced as part of the White Cube Program
10 - 20 August 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 9 August 2016; 5-7 PM
With the intention of encouraging excellence and promoting research and practice in drawing the Tim Olsen Drawing Prize, now in its sixteenth year, and the accompanying exhibition has been an important event on our school's calendar. The Tim Olsen Drawing Prize has been a collaborative initiative between the Tim Olsen Gallery and former Department of Drawing and Painting, School of Art since 2001. This collaboration has been continuously supported by Tim Olsen Gallery and the new venture - Olsen Irwin. Since 2014 Tim Olsen Drawing Prize has been open to all Postgraduate and Honours students who use and demonstrate drawing as a very significant part of their research practice across the faculty.
Event Image and 2015 Tim Olsen Prize Winner: Eunjoo Jang, 'The Physical - Virtual Continuum', scratch hologram & drawing on cylindrical aluminium screen, 90cm x 76cm (in diameter). Photos: Gavin Pili and Zoe May
24 August- 3 September 2016
Opening Night and Prize Announcement: 23 August 2015, 5-7 PM
Now in its 15th year, the Kudos Award seeks to recognise, nurture and support innovation and excellence across all disciplines at UNSW Art & Design.
This award aims to promote excellence in visual art and design at UNSW, to encourage experimentation and development of process, material and concept, to display UNSW Art and Design to the broader community and to nurture creative activity and community within the Paddington campus of UNSW.
All UNSW Art & Design students working in any medium are eligible to enter. Entry is free for Arc members, and Arc membership is free!
Image: Athena Thebus. 'Angry Angel', 2015.
7 - 10 SEPTEMBER 2016
OPENING NIGHT TUESDAY 6 SEPTEMBER 2016, 5-7PM
Designed By is an exhibition at Kudos Gallery that showcases work by undergraduate design students from UNSW Art & Design.
The exhibition brings together a selection of design projects by second, third and fourth year students from across all the studio streams of graphics, spatial, textiles, jewellery, object and ceramics. Offering the opportunity to view innovative and diverse responses to project briefs in the six design studios, Designed By also celebrates the creative achievements of students engaged in the process of developing their own understanding of design practice. Devised by fourth year design student Alexander Tanazefti, Designed Byis the second edition in a biannual design program held at Kudos Gallery.
Designed By is a part of Sydney Design Festival programming https://sydneydesign.com.au
Use the hashtag #SDF16
Opening night drinks provided by Young Henrys
14 - 24 September 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 13 September 2016, 5-7 PM
Artist talk: Wednesday 21 September 2016, 1-2 PM
The dry landscape gardens of Japan are especially severe in their editing; to convey a ‘thusness’ of forms only the most fundamental elements remain. Rocks represent mountains and raked gravel simulates the push and pull of the sea. And these parched spaces parallel the arid land of Australia, an open plane where exposure to the elements and a scarcity of resources enforces a certain economy of material and form. In an attempt to see what is most essential to living and working in the desert, its manmade tools and structures are brought into the gallery through a process of simulation and subtraction, similar to the construction of a dry garden. What remains is a ‘fierce calm’, an aesthetic dryness like gravel waves and a great leveling of man’s ambitions.
The Hardest Drought is the third part of a larger MFA research project at UNSW Art and Design. It began as a meditation on the desert and traditional Japanese aesthetics, evolving to consider the importance of the cut in artmaking. This arid, subtractive lens encourages a closer inspection of the basic components of our aesthetic experiences including space, form and repetition.
Image: Kyle Walker, The Hardest Drought, 9 of 300 sculptures, mixed media, dimensions variable, 2015—2016.
28 September - 8 October 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 27 September 2016; 5-7 PM
This exhibition explores camouflage and subterfuge and how possibly non-deliberate or deliberate concealments affect our perception and preferences which in turn generates a matrix of information. And within this shifting information exchange matrix everything exists by virtue of its relationship with other aspects of the matrix.
Camouflage, Subterfuge & Emptiness: Nothing, Matters is an exhibition incorporating sculpture, painting, drawing and video works by Gabrielle Somers in her MFA show.
The exhibition is concerned with the depiction of matter, how it emerges and how it interacts with and is constantly interconnecting with other matter and how matter can have a presence, yet be simultaneously empty.
Image: Gabrielle Somers Nothing, Matters (still)
Viviana Barrero, Michelle Chanique, Danny Giles, Karen Lee, Vanessa Martinez, Tamara Pavlovic, Karen Riethmuller, Luke Robinson Lisa Stratigos.
Curated by Ailsa Weaver
2 - 5 November 2015
Opening Night: Tuesday 1 November 2016; 5-7 PM
a paradigm / a pixel / a culture / a frame / a screen / a euphemism / a square / a box
SQUARE/BOX offers intensely personal answers to universal contemporary questions. What is the experience of the physical self in the digitised age? How porous is the membrane between sexuality and gender? How do social politics feature in a culture of cyber anarchy? Can we identify anachronisms of the future by evaluating the values of the past?
Viviana Barrero / Michelle Chanique / Danny Giles / Karen Lee / Vanessa Martinez / Tamara Pavlovic / Karen Riethmuller / Luke Robinson / Lisa Stratigos
Nine interdisciplinary practitioners associated with the UNSWA&D Master of Art program explore gender, sexuality and technology in SQUARE/BOX, an artist initiated project curated by Master of Curating and Cultural Leadership (MCCL) candidate Ailsa Weaver.
Assistant Curator, Kudos White Cube Internship Program: Alex Malcolm.
by Alexandra Malcolm
Group show SQUARE/BOX asks us, are we inside or outside the box?
Nine interdisciplinary artists showcase artworks exploring contemporary themes of gender sexuality and technology.
When thinking of the word “square” and “box” a variety of interpretations come to mind, many of them engrained within the world of art as well as contemporary society itself. One could think of the abstract concept of “…a gender paradigm” or otherwise one could also consider the literal notion of “…a screen” or “…a frame”. We could even think of the white cube gallery space as being connected to the physical dimensions of a “square” or “box”. Master of Curating and Cultural Leadership candidate Ailsa Weaver (UNSW Art & Design) in conversation with nine creative practitioners has drawn upon these interpretations to form a conceptual framework, loosely surrounding gender, sexuality and technology in the exhibition ‘SQUARE/BOX’.
‘SQUARE/BOX’, held at Kudos Gallery from the second to the fifth of November 2016, was initiated by the nine diverse interdisciplinary artists who previously knew each other through the UNSW Art & Design Master of Art degree. The relationships between the artists, whether personal, academic or collaborative provides this exhibition with an interwoven awareness of each other’s discipline as well as brings intriguing conversations amongst the different work on display. The further addition of Ailsa Weaver to curate the exhibition, complements the artist’s works by establishing a thematic structure that draws connections between the artists’ works as part of a unified exhibition.
The exhibition separates the artist’s works into three partially contained sections, leading the audience through a gradual progression of ideas. This organization allows both the focus upon individual works within each room as well as the extensive flow of dialogue between all the works.
Initially the audience encounters the first section, featuring the video Product of Society, by Vanessa Martinez who interprets the exhibition title interchangeably as both a literal and symbolic idea of a square/box. This literal idea of a box is provided through the visual presentation of a video, displayed on a mounted television, creating a frame in which a female body is shown lying down appearing confined within the television’s rectangular screen. On a symbolic level the video addresses the idea of the square/box as being a restrictive gender role expressed through the hyper sexualized media imagery that corresponds with the feminist rhetoric of accompanying audio.
The images contained within the projection are symbolic of the gender roles and sexual objectification of the female body society projects onto women. - Martinez
This audio material, sourced from YouTube channel Style Like You functions as omniscient commentary circulating the front half of the gallery space and carries on the theme of female objectification also relevant to Karen Riethmuller’s surrounding digital prints. Riethmuller further questions society’s narrow standards of female beauty in her work Object (Beauty Lies Within), pigment print, which confronts the audience upon entering. This print, one of three, has also been used as the promotional image for the exhibition and featured prominently across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter creating instant recognition for visitors as well as reaffirming the identity of the show. These prints question female identity constructed through various industries including cosmetic surgery in which the ideal of beauty has become globally homogenized. Riethmuller has drawn upon research of physiognomy and developments in cosmetic surgery to digitally enhance these female images so they appear uncanny.
Within the second section a large mixed media planar installation by Danny Giles titled Past and present, captures the artist’s identity and gender through multiple life size outlines of their body. Here the audience is faced with an experimental project, a journey of transformations questioning the progressive nature of identity, place and gender. This work has an encompassing presence within the space but does not distract from other neighboring works such as the adjacent video installation, Balance, a collaboration between Michelle Chanique and Karen Lee. Both artists explore the theme of decay resulting from excessive mass consumer culture by displaying over three television monitors, a video showcasing subtle changing images of nature. This delicate imagery includes a wilting flower, moving clouds and rock formations. Here Lee’s specialty in digital media and Chanique’s expertise in photography and video are united to create a contemplative vision of their shared feelings towards identity, culture and technology.
What do you get when you put a graphic designer and photographer together? A bold and conceptual collaboration, we understand and push each other creatively and fortunately we have very similar aesthetic styles. - Chanique
Karen Lee further employs digital media and new technologies within her own individual work, Canyons, which is made up of four digital prints. Each digital print displays geometric abstract layers, which are digitally distorted in colour and depth. Lee’s process combines practices of drawing, screen-printing and photography together with digitally based methods including Photoshop Illustrator to alter natural images and expose their hidden complexity.
Adjacent to Lee’s work are three mixed media paintings by Tamara Pavlovic, which further address the concepts of technology, identity and gender. Pavlovic critiques contemporary society through figuratively exploring the socio-cultural impact of technology and its pigeonholing of female identity.
These overlapping figures map our obsession with the female form over the ages from the ‘Venus de Milo’ to the current trend of the ‘Selfie’. – Pavlovic
The largest painting, Picture, picture on my phone, presents an image of a naked female figure from a high angled view as if taken from a mobile phone. This figure is layered upon by various smaller figures using collage as well as semi-transparent oil paint, reinforcing the oversaturation of sexual imagery circulated by technology. This painting leads toward the last section and is followed by the works of Lisa Stratigos, exploring similar subject matter of technology’s impact on sexuality.
Stratigos’s graphite drawings carry on a female perspective whilst addressing issues surrounding new technologies including virtual reality and its breakdown of human contact. The A4 sized drawings hung in a row along the gallery wall are part of the series Tahi-joro (Travelling whore) each presenting a robotic female figure contorting into different poses inside boxes.
On the left side of the gallery space, audiences are confronted with the larger drawing, Jacking On, which showcases men and women visually engrossed with technology whilst engaged in sexual acts. This graphic image proposes the idea of technology creating a disturbed human existence, completely devoid of intimacy.
The two large photographs by Viviana Barerro, Hidden Foliage I and II conflict this idea of the human body being attached to technology. Barrero presents minimally adjusted images, which capture imperfect details and intriguing elements found within the natural environment and naked human form. Particularly in Foliage II, the naked female and male figures are standing in a forest partially camouflaged by the flora surrounding them, suggesting a rejection of technology for an embracement of nature.
Alternatively Michelle Chanique’s photographs, Homage to Joseph Albers, Red and Blue suggest an open approach to new technologies. The shape of a square is digitally employed within the photographs to disrupt the center of the scenic image, proposing a theme of displacement, reoccurring throughout Chanique’s work. The vibrancy of the square and its symmetrical quality plays with the image’s perspective and directly references the artist Joseph Albers, specifically his series, Homage to the Square.
The audience then encounters the video installation, Empty Room (Warm to Cool) by Luke Robison, comprised of four analogue televisions, set up on the stage in a diagonal row. This installation creates a more isolated surrounding compared to other works, as visitors are required to sit individually on a stool to view the work. Each television displays the same single bedroom, measuring the duration of a person’s absence by the varying sense of warmth and coolness.
Overall ‘SQUARE/BOX’ offers an opportunity for these artists to explore a multitude of viewpoints, interests and approaches, unique to each individual artist. The exhibition aims to challenge, not only audiences but also the artists’ individual understandings towards issues of gender, sexuality and technology.
This essay has been produced as part of the White Cube Program
Monumentalism is curated by Anthony Bautovich with the assistance of the Early Career Curator Award, presented by Kudos Gallery.
Tim Bruniges, Kuba Dorabialski, Igor Grubić, Biljana Jančić, Jan Kempenares, Marko Lulić, Kusum Normoyle
9 - 19 November 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 8 November 2016; 5-7 PM
Our collective memory is shaped by the ideology of the day. The politics of memory enables a regime to record its version of the past. History is conditioned by this shared remembrance.
The decaying brutalist monuments from Tito's Yugoslavia form the backdrop for Monumentalism - an exhibition curated by Anthony Bautovich at Kudos Gallery opening on Tuesday the 8th of November from 5-7pm.
Designed and built in the ‘60s and ‘70s these gestures to modernism are located at sites of battles and concentration camps commemorating the victims of fascism in WWII.
The exhibition will bring together International and Australian artists to respond to the emotional, political and social impact of the failings of the single party state
The exhibiting artists are Croatian multimedia artist Igor Grubić, Dutch photographer Jan Kempenaers, Sydney artists Tim Bruniges, Biljana Jancić, Kuba Dorabialski, Kusum Normoyle and Vienna based artist Marko Lulić.
Image: Jan Kempenares, 'Podgarić', 2010.
Savannah van der Veer, David Leaana, Jazmine Churchill, Angie Adams, CJ Fresi, Adelle Ewers, Yuki Macdonald, Daniel Samuel, Ryan Fensom, Michael Nelson, Jimmy Elbourne, Anastasia Wood
23 - 26 November 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 22 November 2016; 6-8 PM
Mission Australia's Creative Youth Initiative's annual art exhibition is the culmination of two semesters’ worth of work from students participating in the Artworks! program.
Artworks! is a visual arts course for young adults aged between 16 and 25 who may be experiencing difficulties or challenges in their lives. Students' creative practice is a form of personal expression, conceptual ideas and skill development. The exhibited artworks creatively explore a range of themes and media from painting and drawing to printmaking and collage. All artworks are for sale.
Come and support the amazing talents of these gifted and creative young people!
Image: CJ Fresi, “Untitled”, Acrylic on Canvas, 2016.
Consuelo Cavaniglia and Elise Harmsen
Curated by Nanette Orly
14 - 17 December 2016
Opening Night: Tuesday 13 December 2016; 5-7 PM
Changes in perspective are able to initiate a deeper understanding and interpretation of information, even if these changes are unsettling or disruptive. How we perceive our environment influences the way we selectively create an understanding of ourselves and the world. At any given moment in time it is possible to be confronted by scenarios that can distort or obscure how we interpret and understand information.
This collaborative exhibition brings together the works of artists, Consuelo Cavaniglia and Elise Harmsen, and examines the concept of changing perceptions by distorting or obscuring space. The selected works delve into the concept of how space is conveyed while the insertion of interruptions into parts of their work offer alternative perceptions of the same reality.
Image: Consuelo Cavaniglia, Untitled (detail), 2015