CURRENT Exhibitions

Catherine O'Donnell

- Urban Abstraction, 2018

14 November to 2 December

Urban Abstraction is a suite of drawings based on the Brutalist architecture of social housing in Paris and Sydney developed in the mid 1900s. In these geometric constructions I see simplicity of form, and it is this that captures my imagination. I draw what I regard as beautiful or interesting in order to highlight the power of the ordinary, commonplace architecture of the urban landscape. At first glance these qualities may not be evident, as these housing developments are not always given the same value as other housing. But to me, these buildings are so much more than the physical embodiment of the post-war utopian ideals and principles of European modernism. They have been and still are home for many people. 

I use the representational forms of these places in a minimal, abstracted way. This allows me to explore the compositional potential and underlying symmetry of these dwellings. My drawings display order, abstraction, and geometry, as to elevate these structures through aesthetic contemplation, contradicting the ordinariness of their existence and allowing for the possibility of transcendence.

... view exhibition

Alexander Boynes

- As Above, So Below, 2018

14 November to 2 December

As Above, So Below reflects on the loss of the Australian landscape in the drive to extract what is beneath it by the fossil fuel industry; land that before anything else is held in the custody of Traditional Indigenous owners.

This melding of landscape and industry speaks of our failure to invest in a renewable future, as coal, oil and gas extraction dominate the power industry without consequence. Meanwhile standing in a rapidly changing environment, the figure represents both the catalyst and the casualty of these actions. 

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Catherine O'Donnell at Penrith Regional Gallery & The Lewers Bequest

- The Ideal Home, 2018-2019

1 December to 24 March

The Ideal Home presents a history of the 20th century Australian home told through household objects, furniture and design classics from the MAAS Collection.

Todd Fuller

- Convicts and Queens: a passionate history of Australia, 2018

5 to 22 December

"My dying wish is to be buried beside my beloved James Nesbitt, the man with whom I was united by every tie which could bind human friendship, we were one in hopes, in heart and soul and this unity lasted until he died in my arms"

-Andrew George Scott, aka Captain Moonlight, 20 January, 1880

On the 6th of December 2017, as debate raged in the House of Representatives regarding Same Sex Marriage in Australia, independent member for Kennedy Bob Katter suggested that the gay community and its advocates have "oh maybe, sixty years on their side" while he claimed to have "three and a half million years of genetic programming" on his side. His argument went on to discuss aids, safe schools, gay hate crimes and his best selling book, but it failed to acknowledge the rich and often concealed contribution of LGBTIQA+ individuals in the grand Australian narrative. Convicts and Queens reimagines a selection of Queer Australian stories, both historical and contemporary, to explore how notions of masculinity in Australia may not be innate, enduring or eternal.

Continuing their collaboration, the opening will include a performance by Todd Fuller and the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Choir.

... view exhibition

Carol Murphy

- Colour my world, 2018

5 to 22 December

A mixed media exhibition featuring a range of disciplines including ceramics, painting, drawing, and collage.

A celebration of my life up until now.

Colour my world is a flashback of music, life, death, love, loss, colour, darkness, and sadness.

Shelf Life

- curated group exhibition, 2019

6 to 24 February

Shelf Life will consider the still life genre, with a particular focus on representations of bottles and containers, ubiquitous items that we use to carry, preserve and contain. An artistic linchpin since the 16th Century, the lush bouquets, glistening silver vessels, ripe fruit and lifeless game animals of early still life paintings became more humble as Realism, Impressionism and then Cubism watched artistic subjects and techniques change. The genre took on a three dimensional form through Dada, and as shopping carts began to fill with more packaged produce in the 1950s and 1960s, many Pop Artists let consumer goods take centre stage. Shelf Life will display paintings, photographs, sculptures and video artworks that aesthetically speak to different moments in the history of the still life. Hoarded, forgotten and expiring on shelves and in sheds, the vessels we use to store liquids, medications, toxic chemicals, food and other substances will be the central subject matter of these traditional and contemporary takes on an art historical genre.  (Image: Jude Rae, SLL001, lithograph, ed of 10)

 

Todd Fuller at Glasshouse Regional Gallery

- to see the ocean the first time, 2019

16 February – 22 April

Ruth Li

- Florilegium, 2019

27 February to 17 March

In my work, I explore different ways of narrating both traditional and multicultural concepts of beauty, transcendence and the sublime as a cross-cultural language in to the spiritual. Building on this fascination, I draw inspiration from the myriad influences of my diverse cultural heritage, both philosophically and aesthetically; while utilizing the collective language of dreams, myths and of utopia to further nourish the awareness of the continual evolution of life, death and time itself. This layering of imagery becomes a metaphorical representation of the self extending onwards to consider the transitory nature of human existence.

Nicole Welch, Transformation

- Black Box Projects, 2019

27 February to 17 March

The moving image work Transformation is the latest instalment in Nicole Welch’s ongoing Self series, which was initiated as part of her Illumination works in 2012. In these cinematic works, Welch uses her body as an apparatus and the landscape as a tableau. Undertaking performances in the wilderness, Welch explores the symbiotic relationship humans have with the natural world to reveal the fragility and strength of both. As a continuation the Transformation footage sees the artist engage directly with the natural world through a journey undertaken (journey), and a waterfall (arrival); a universal symbol of renewal, healing and ultimately, transformation.

Filmed over several hours on location during the heart of winter in the lower Blue Mountains, Transformation exposes the artists body to the elements. While the figure is Welch, the symbolism is universal. She embodies a lineage of women through time as a homage to all women – past, present, future. The journey sequence is a celebration of our unique connection to nature, our shared strength and resilience, the cycle of life, mortality – the arrival scene is an act of transformation, both mythical and personal, local and universal.

... view exhibition

Darren Gannon

- Memento, 2019

27 February to 17 March

I have lived most of my life on the southern coastal fringe of Sydney. A good deal of my adolescence was spent surfing on the south coast, camping on isolated headlands or sleeping in cars! As is now evident, the years spent in this environment are embedded in my memory and hold significant meaning for me. I feel a sense of calm and nostalgia when I start the descent from Stanwell Tops down to the coast road and head further south. This may appear to be a romanticised point of view, and to some extent I am happy to concede that it is. When I started painting, it was this landscape I used as a reference point, and it still resonates strongly with me.

The paintings in this show are drawn from the landscape of the area, however they are not strict renderings of a particular spot, they are made from memory. A memory that recalls thick moisture laden atmosphere, a languid, and at times, melancholic emotion. They are made of thin glazes that veil each previous layer of paint, much the same as the natural atmosphere affects our view.

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Dai Li

- A Moment's Silence, 2019

20 March to 7 April

As the title of Dai Li’s exhibition suggests, this new body of work focuses on those instances in life where one finds a brief moment to themselves; moments when one has a chance for reflection and contemplation or to indulge in daydreams and flights of fancy. It is these moments that interest Dai Li:

The inspiration for my artworks are drawn from everyday life. Moments when people are in their comfort zone or lost in thought, when they relax and drop their defences both physically and mentally, it is these moments that I try to capture. (Dai Li, 2018)

These singular sculptures often stand alone, some with an object such as a bath or a toilet, others broaching the surreal. Like voyeurs we look into private spaces, whether that be literally (in the bathroom) or figuratively (at someone lost the privacy of their own thoughts). The exquisite and subtle details of facial expression and body language that Dai Li employs, combined with a lack of overt narrative, leaves the viewer to reflect from their own experience what emotions drive these scenes.

- Joseph Daws, November 2018

 

... view exhibition

Peta Minnici

- Light on Nostalgia, 2019

20 March to 6 April

My current body of work explores recollection, depicting still life objects, people and places evoking and also preserving a memory of a time in the past. By painting from personal objects and photographs I aim to undo the photographic representation of each subject into small brush strokes of tone and colour, imbuing each image with a sensation associated with recollection of a memory and also symbolic in that each mark creates a recording of what I have seen, heard and felt.

My subject matter was inspired by the recent loss of someone who figured prominently in my life and the narrative that jointly connected us with each object. I would like to think that my paintings capture nostalgia with wistful affection and sometimes cynical humour without being too melancholy.

Our Common Bond

- curated by Olivia Welch, 2019

10 April to 5 May

Our Common Bond takes its title from the Australian Citizenship Test booklet, which outlines what it means to be an Australian: the responsibilities and opportunities it affords you, the history you are inheriting, the culture you will be welcomed into, and the rules and regulations you must abide by. “Australia successfully combines ethnic and cultural diversity with national unity. Citizenship is the bond that unites us all.”- p.3 

This booklet opens Australia's arms to people of every culture, religion and ethnicity. However, its language also contributes to Australia’s cultural amnesia when referring to the treatment of Indigenous Australians and migrants, and the effects of colonisation. It celebrates the many positives, but brushes over the negatives as follies of the past that no longer bear scars. It identifies certain days, behaviours and beliefs as being "Australian", even though many Australians would not agree that these ideas and events represent them. 

This exhibition uses this booklet as a starting point to discuss Australia’s history and current attitudes towards the country’s diverse population, as well as examining what is meant by "Australian" culture and values.

(Image: Dean Cross, PolyAustralis #29 (Rolf Harris) 2016, archival inkjet print on cotton rag, 59.4 x 84.1cm, edition 5 + 2AP)

Alex Karaconji

- Morning, 2019

7 to 25 August

Morning is a hand-drawn animation about the first hour of my day. Although the plot is relatively uneventful, I have tried to render each gesture and object as vividly as I can. In doing so, I have tried to revitalise and reclaim a part of my day that I am rarely conscious of. The animation process is well-suited to this task. It is repetitive, slow and involves close analysis of slight, incremental movements. Morning encapsulates my approach to drawing in both its domestic subject matter and in its attempt to intensify an experience of life through the close observation of fine details.