Filtering by: 2011

Justin Cooper — Virtual Voyager
Nov
17
to Dec 23

Justin Cooper — Virtual Voyager

Justin Cooper,  Voyager 12 - After Age Of Empires III , 2011, painting, mixed media on cedar panel, 120 x 80 cm

Justin Cooper, Voyager 12 - After Age Of Empires III, 2011, painting, mixed media on cedar panel, 120 x 80 cm

Twice finalist in the Doug Moran Portrait Prize, Justin Cooper is a unique emerging artist whose first solo exhibition at Anna Pappas Gallery features a suite of multi-layered drawings with a twist; the artist created each drawing, after playing a different video game for 42 hours straight.

Without sleep, with barely any food, only stopping briefly to urinate in a milk bottle, the artist forced himself into a hyper-intense situation before responding to the individual experience through making an artwork. Tellingly, the drawings are painstakingly detailed, frenetic and techno-coloured, reflecting the particulars of each gaming session but also the artist’s self-induced hallucinatory state. As written by the artist: “The games began to overshadow my thoughts of the real world, mental images and dreams. Playing for such a prolonged amount of time, I found myself thinking about ways different shapes in the real world can fit together to create an imagined world.” Part endurance performance, part science experiment, Virtual Voyager is a conceptually rich and exquisitely executed investigation into the parameters of reality. A game by nature offers pleasure but has proven ironically to have the potential to cause pain, such as seen in the case of the 28 year old South Korean man who died after playing online computer games for 50 hours. In his works we are also reminded that although the dream world presents us with beauty that we may be deprived of in reality, it is still only a product of the mind where darker things also reside.

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Brad Haylock — Without Time
Oct
12
to Nov 13

Brad Haylock — Without Time

Brad Haylock,  Anarchy Lite , 2011, neon tubing, 120 x 120cm

Brad Haylock, Anarchy Lite, 2011, neon tubing, 120 x 120cm

Without Time continues Brad Haylock’s ongoing questioning of the commodification of critical practices, in particular the intersection of artistic avant-gardes and luxury capitalism. The exhibition’s title is derived with irony from a literal mistranslation of the Italian ‘senza tempo’, accurately translated as ‘timeless’, the name of the 2010 collection by Italian furniture maker Minotti. Certain works in the exhibition evoke suprematist inquiries into an essentialism of form, but take as their content the graphic tropes of fashion magazines and perfume packaging. In contrast, other works evoke the symbolism of oppositional subcultures or the historic political left. In this exhibition, just as in today’s designer home, divergent motifs and materials come together in pursuit of a seamless whole.

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Simon MacEwan — The World’s Fair
Oct
12
to Nov 13

Simon MacEwan — The World’s Fair

Simon MacEwan,  The works of industry of all nations , 2011, steel, wood, perspex, foam, wood veneer, lichen, model grass, ping pong ball, glass dome, 160 x 40 x 40cm

Simon MacEwan, The works of industry of all nations, 2011, steel, wood, perspex, foam, wood veneer, lichen, model grass, ping pong ball, glass dome, 160 x 40 x 40cm

In the hands of Simon MacEwan the fantastical wonderland of the fair, unmoored from the constraints of reality, drifts like a lost balloon into strange territory. The World’s Fair imagines a strange afterlife for the vast spaces that housed international exposition halls during the 19th and 20th centuries. Ghosts of buildings are inhabited by people who could never have met in the real world and inventions grow and evolve in ways that their creators never might have imagined. A small Indian elephant carved from graphite, one of the very few items that survived a fire that destroyed Sydney’s Garden Palace in 1882, morphs into a giant beast standing tall amongst ancient ruins and fairy lights.

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Korean International Art Fair — Various Artists
Sep
22
to Sep 26

Korean International Art Fair — Various Artists

Matt Coyle,  Time Out , 2010, pen on paper, 89 x 53cm

Matt Coyle, Time Out, 2010, pen on paper, 89 x 53cm

Exhibiting work by: Matt Coyle, Michaela Gleave, Grant Nimmo, David Palliser, Elisabeth Weissensteiner.

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Christina Hayes — Before I Wake
Aug
26
to Oct 9

Christina Hayes — Before I Wake

Christina Hayes,  James Monroe of Charleston , 2011, oil on linen, 56cm x 56cm

Christina Hayes, James Monroe of Charleston, 2011, oil on linen, 56cm x 56cm

Referencing the old children’s prayer ‘If I die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take’, Christina Hayes presents a series of portraits that explore passages through geographies and phases of mortality. Local living pigeon fanciers who breed pigeons to fly and deliver long distance handwritten messages, such as those used during wartime, and characters who transmit messages through sea voyages, such as sailors, submariners and sea veterans, are the protagonists in this series. Fascinated by the historic methods of communication and the people who persevere with them, Hayes has captured a rare sort of people that dominate her imagination.

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Julia Robinson — Slumber or Perish
Aug
26
to Oct 9

Julia Robinson — Slumber or Perish

Julia Robinson,  Bury it  , 2010–11, fabric, thread, bedhead, plaster, foam, fibreglass, timber, fixings, approx 100 x 100 x 95cm

Julia Robinson, Bury it , 2010–11, fabric, thread, bedhead, plaster, foam, fibreglass, timber, fixings, approx 100 x 100 x 95cm

Reflecting her fascination with death and the uncanny, Julia Robinson’s new exhibition is inspired by the poetry of Edgar Allan Poe. Severed limbs protrude from domestic objects and nearby walls. A giant dislocated tooth envelops a chair while dismembered arms reach out pleadingly from a wooden double bedhead. However, her dark subject matter is tempered with delicate needlework using traditional fabrics and quilting techniques that imply a labour of love and devotion. Although they are based on horrifically violent tales, the works in Robinson’s exhibition are ultimately beautiful and moving beyond their content; her finely crafted objects reflecting a playful and intricate creative process.

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Rod Moss — Mirror
Jul
20
to Aug 24

Rod Moss — Mirror

Rod Moss,  Mirror , 2010, synthetic polymer paints and graphite on Stonehenge 300gms paper, 117 x 174 cm

Rod Moss, Mirror, 2010, synthetic polymer paints and graphite on Stonehenge 300gms paper, 117 x 174 cm

Rod Moss continues his story as a whitefella living in a remote Aboriginal town camp on the edge of Alice Springs. His distinctive subjects, both white and Aboriginal, interact with each other and the landscape to create striking incidental scenes. These include real life scenarios, such as elders playing traditional music or a child watching a group of dogs, and imagined, such as a surreal scene of girl handing a ball to a giant colourful bird. Moss’ new series utilizes his highly developed palette of oranges and dark blues to depict the harsh landscape of outback Central Australia and its inhabitants.

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Elisabeth Weissensteiner — Fragments and Dances
Jul
20
to Aug 24

Elisabeth Weissensteiner — Fragments and Dances

Elisabeth Weissensteiner,  Three Yellow Dancers Floating , installation view, 2011, polyester resin, fibreglass and pigments, height 220cm each

Elisabeth Weissensteiner, Three Yellow Dancers Floating, installation view, 2011, polyester resin, fibreglass and pigments, height 220cm each

Elisabeth Weissensteiner’s new installation explores our continuous dance through time and space. Some taller than life-sized forms leap and skip through the gallery space, sculpted from fiberglass and brightly coloured polyester resin using a technique the artist has spent over eight years developing. Additionally, Weissensteiner presents a new video projection of black and white slowly moving images, which continue to explore the theme of fragments. Together the exhibition’s elements remind us that everything we perceive in our life is just a fragment of a larger whole. The places we inhabit, the people we meet, the things we are surrounded by, become part of a dance as we attempt to remain upright on this spinning ball of earth.

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Ewan Coates — Hatchlings
Jun
10
to Jul 17

Ewan Coates — Hatchlings

Ewen Coates,  Satori Discs,  2011, cast bronze discs, dimensions variable

Ewen Coates, Satori Discs, 2011, cast bronze discs, dimensions variable

These objects evoke a containment of thought cast from the body. Much the same way meditation allows inner spaciousness, a brief stepping out of the voice in your head. – Ewen Coates

Ewen Coates new sculptural works are cairn-like forms that one might easily perceive as religious symbols or markers. Cast in bronze, the archaic patina that covers them only adds to this first instinctive impression. Contemplative, but possibly detached from some ancient and unknowable context, they easily hold ones gaze. Added to this is a dynamic sense of energy; the frequencies suggested by these works are dense yet pulsing with life.

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Cyrus Tang — The Fleeting Now and Eternity
Jun
10
to Jul 17

Cyrus Tang — The Fleeting Now and Eternity

Cyrus Tang,  The fleeting now and eternity , 2011, animal bones and Borax, dimensions variable, installation view

Cyrus Tang, The fleeting now and eternity, 2011, animal bones and Borax, dimensions variable, installation view

Cyrus Tang’s fascination with water is the vehicle through which her artworks both dissolve and take shape. Using a combination of animal bones and the crystallising agent Borax, Tang has enabled these skeletal remains to be encased in dazzling crystal formations. According to the artist: I am trying to capture a sense of being nowhere, feeling disconnected/ alienated in the world and my eternal struggle to remember/maintain the memory of my homeland which is disappearing. Whilst the impetus for the work is nostalgic and melancholy the resultant imagery is haunting and quietly delicate.

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Lisa Andrew — New Works 2011
May
11
to Jun 7

Lisa Andrew — New Works 2011

Lisa Andrew,  un-form , 2011, graphite and gouache on polyester film 84 x 59cm

Lisa Andrew, un-form, 2011, graphite and gouache on polyester film 84 x 59cm

New Works 2011 continues Lisa Andrew’s experimentation with the possibilities of textile drawing. She utilizes the reductive act of cutting and stitching to accentuate the qualities of line and form with surface. Fabrics are stretched, draped, hung and layered in and out of frames, resulting in a seemingly light and ephemeral installation.

The exhibition demonstrates Andrew’s unique approach to materials, which for New Works 2011 include wax, graphite, wool, linen and Vellum alongside different fabrics, both natural and synthetic, matte and translucent. The resulting semi abstract images are inspired by industrial and craft processes, axonometric drawings and diagrams as well as machines and architecture. However, they remain true to the essence of their origin.

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Johnnie Dady — An Uncertain Object
May
11
to Jun 7

Johnnie Dady — An Uncertain Object

Johnnie Dady,  An Uncertain Object , 2011, installation image

Johnnie Dady, An Uncertain Object, 2011, installation image

An Uncertain Object continues Johnnie Dady’s exploration of hybridity in sculpture. For this new exhibition Johnnie Dady has fabricated improbable yet commonplace objects, things that just might work, or failing that, be returned to the scrapheap of invention. Barrow, for instance may well be a chair or a barrow, but it might also be a remodelled Duchampian readymade. According to the artist: The works are proposals or prototypes for things I imagine, but somehow they avoid being useful. Unsteady creations they may be, but Dady’s work is grounded in the Modernist principles of old, its love of invention and irreverence to the fore.

In his previous bodies of work Dady had taken to building faux antique furniture from nothing but humble corrugated cardboard sheets. Much like Picasso in his halcyon Cubist period, Dady plays with our sense of perception and reality. His third solo exhibition at Anna Pappas Gallery, An Uncertain Object will run from 11 May to 7 June, 2011.

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Michaela Gleave — I Would Bring You The Stars
Apr
13
to May 7

Michaela Gleave — I Would Bring You The Stars

Michaela Gleave,  I Would Bring You The Stars , 2010, lambda Print, 59 x 39cm

Michaela Gleave, I Would Bring You The Stars, 2010, lambda Print, 59 x 39cm

Iceland’s weather was highly unusual in 2010, the year Michaela Gleave undertook the NES artist residency in Skagaströnd. One of Iceland’s most frequently erupting volcanoes, Eyjafjallajökull, ejected lava several hundred metres into the air before exploding fine, glass-rich ash to over 8 kilometres into the atmosphere. The event made international headlines as it caused enormous disruption to air travel across western and northern Europe.

Six months later Gleave produced I would bring you the stars: a series of video stills in which a small bomb, made from leftovers of one family’s New Years Eve celebrations, is detonated in front of the Vatnajökull ice cap. Transported via wheelbarrow, the fireworks explode against the Icelandic winter dusk causing sparks to blow horizontally into the glacial wind. A small gesture in the immensity of the Icelandic landscape, the explosion functions almost like a smoke signal, a burst of light thrown out into the timelessness of the universe from an explosion that only the artist ever saw.

Gleave’s new body of work harks back to the 1970s, when experiments in controlling destruction emerged as new form of performative sculpture. One of the first events held in The Museum of Modern Art Sculpture Garden was Jean Tingley’s Homage to New York, a machine rigged to perform for half an hour and ultimately self-destruct. Similarly during this period Fluxus artists devised “Happenings”, minimal performances that blurred the distinction between object and event. The influence of such works upon contemporary art is demonstrated when we consider Swiss artist Roman Signer’s installation Accident as Sculpture (Unfall als Skulptur (2008), in which Signer rolled a three-wheeled delivery car, loaded with water barrels, down 11m high ramp causing the vehicle to overturn and crash to the ground.

Establishing a similar lineage, Gleave’s exhibition I would bring you the stars presents a series of experiments into the nature of matter, space and time. True to this, certain aspects of these works were intentionally left to chance. For example I would bring you the stars (101 nights) is a simple A4 document that makes a pledge to an unknown recipient, in which the artist promises to send them a star every night at sunset for 101 nights. The stars are to be sent via text message, chosen from those present in the night sky that evening. Another performative experiment, 7 Stunden Ballon Arbeit/ 7 Hour Balloon Work, took place live via web cam between Berlin and Sydney in July 2010. The artist sat in a room for the duration of the seven hour event blowing up balloons, gradually filling the space and burying herself in her own actions, before simply popping them all and leaving the room. The work was enacted as a measure of time and space, then immediately flattened by the immediacy of the global communications. The air between before and after, reduced to a pile of deflated skins on the studio floor.

Infused with a sense of hope and longing, the exhibition I would bring you the stars maps the artist’s journey as she attempts to experiment with the unknown. Yet ultimately Gleave’s exhibition poetically confirms there are some concepts and forces that are much bigger than human activity. Some things, such as the stars, will always remain outside of human control.

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Apr
12
to May 7

Grant Nimmo — This Is Woven Piper: Paintings For The Funeral

Grant Nimmo,  boating trip with techno mum , 2010, oil on German bechwood, 30 x 30cm

Grant Nimmo, boating trip with techno mum, 2010, oil on German bechwood, 30 x 30cm

Grant Nimmo’s fantastical landscapes take the viewer on a mystical journey to see strangely non-human forms gather among psychedelic forests. We encounter rainbow triangles and smiley faces floating above idyllic scenery of a stream and nearby cottage. We see lumpy figures sitting in a rowboat enscribed with the title “Good” and visit faceless creatures holding basketballs posing for a group portrait. Dreamlike, these strange scenes seem to emerge from the wilderness and simultaneously dissolve in front of our eyes.

An obscure narrative reflects the possibilities of Nimmo’s extraordinary imagination. Yet as his paintings conjure the story of a lost civilization and the environments they inhabitate, the storyline slips away and we are left struggling to grasp the remaining fragments. In part, the elusiveness of Nimmo’s paintings is due to his process of painting on small panels of gessoed wood. The scale and texture of the wood allow Nimmo to work quickly, leaving behind a fleeting impression of his subject. White highlights, which appear as a glare direct from the sun, are created by leaving areas of the whitened surface he is painting thin layers upon. Nimmo’s style typifies a distinctly Australian impressionism, not dissimilar to that of the Heidelberg School artists who worked here in Melbourne during the 19th century. His subjects, like the little girl in Jane Sutherland’s painting “Obstruction” (1887), seem to merge with their outback surroundings to become part of the natural environment. However, unlike the Heidelberg School artists who enjoyed painting outdoors, or en plein air, it is an important distinction that Nimmo does not paint directly from nature itself. What makes his work interesting is that he works two steps away from nature; painting instead the idea (and the idealization) of the landscape.

Nimmo scours the internet, books and magazines for images of romantic landscapes. Initially, in a 2006 exhibition entitled Natura, these scenes were of popular film stills (Lord of the Rings, The Deer Hunter), although now Nimmo works mostly from generic pictures of natural environments. Already one step removed from nature, he then paints from these found images and through a process of addition or subtraction pushes them towards artificiality. Faces are dissolved, technicolour clothing is added and then, like a computer screensaver, Nimmo’s scenes become idealized images of a nature imagined.

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Sam Grigorian - Breaking Ranks
Mar
11
to Apr 9

Sam Grigorian - Breaking Ranks

Sam Grigorian,  Satellite#1,  2012, mixed media décollage, 70 x 100cm

Sam Grigorian, Satellite#1, 2012, mixed media décollage, 70 x 100cm

Breaking Ranks features the tactile, minimalist experiments in decollage of Berlin-based artist Sam Grigorian, who has developed a unique method of treating and layering paper. Grigorian delights in paper which is rich in history – torn, stained, yellowed, cracked – fragments of handmade paper, parchment or off-cuts which reveal the marks and traces of their origins and their use.

Through the intimate processes of ripping, scratching, staining and layering, Grigorian seeks to get at the hidden realities of the paper, exposing the structures beneath the surface. Through a repertoire of simple, geometrical forms and monochromatic colours, Grigorian creates intense visual narratives that are both abstract and uncanny.

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Jesse Marlow — OAO (One And Only)
Mar
11
to Apr 9

Jesse Marlow — OAO (One And Only)

Jesse Marlow,  OAO #1,  2010, pure pigment on archival cotton rag, 53 x 80cm

Jesse Marlow, OAO #1, 2010, pure pigment on archival cotton rag, 53 x 80cm

Jesse Marlow’s dynamic new photographic series, OAO (One And Only), documents the explosion of graffiti in the Central Australian Desert as a vehicle of expression for indigenous youths. Marlow’s fascination lies in the unexpected directness of Australian desert graffiti, compared with the elusive nature of street art in the world’s big cities. In Marlow’s words: The most intriguing thing about indigenous graffiti is that taggers usually write their full name and the community they’re from.

Through a series of vibrant photographic vignettes, OAO (One And Only) illustrates the manner in which graffiti has evolved into the contemporary equivalent of traditional indigenous rock-painting: the voice of “bored and restless youth” in remote Australia trying to make themselves heard.

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Feb
4
to Mar 9

Project 11 — Paradise...a hell of a place

Bonnie Lane,  The People's Paradise , 2011, fish tank, vinyl prints, wood, mice, 30 x 61 x 31cm

Bonnie Lane, The People's Paradise, 2011, fish tank, vinyl prints, wood, mice, 30 x 61 x 31cm

It is not nirvana. It is not heaven. It is not utopia. The paradise fantasy is grounded in the tangible world, the idyllic landscape of regenerative virgin earth in which one does not need to work. But is this an unattainable dream of the past? Is the mythified period of paradise as it was originally conceived of over, and if so, what kind of contemporary paradise can we hope for, or is one even possible?

paradise…a hell of a place presents eleven Australian and international artists seeking the contemporary relevance of a word that has been reconceived perpetually throughout history. Utilising the diverse media of sculpture, installation, photography, film, animation, drawing and painting, these artists guide/direct us through personal and universal encounters with paradise.

Artists: Brad Haylock, Bonnie Lane, Christopher Koller, Sarah Berners, Deborah Kelly, Natascha Stellmach, Michael Wegerer, The Sisters Hayes, Paolo Consorti, Simon MacEwan, Andy Hutson

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