Nicole Welch at Shoalhaven Regional Gallery, 2019-2020
- Altered States - curated group show with Tamara Dean
30 November 2019 to 8 February 2020
The exhibition will explore Australian identity and our changing relationship with our natural environment through landscape photographs which have been modified by the hand of the artist. By adjusting the expected vista, with the addition of foreign objects, figures or projections, the artists cause us to look twice at their works and question the land we inhabit and how we relate to it, now and throughout history.
- Bridget Macleod, Curator, Shoalhaven Regional Gallery, 2019
Nicole Welch at Manly Art Gallery & Museum
- Manly Dam Project
6 December 2019 to 23 February 2020
Represented artist, Nicole Welch will be in a group exhibition at Manly Art Gallery & Museum for the Manly Dam Project.
'The Manly Dam area is a unique landscape rich in natural biodiversity, shaped by the interventions of engineering and science. Once the source of drinking water in Sydney's north, freshwater continues to flow from the catchment to the sea.
Along with a rich Aboriginal cultural significance, the area's European history is layered with stories of social and recreational activity.
Adjacent to this area, now known as the Manly Warringah War Memorial Park, is a hub of international research through the work of the Water Research Laboratory (WRL), a facility of the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UNSW Sydney.
Eight contemporary artists from a variety of practices have created new work inspired by place, history, water management and engineering.'
- Curated by Katherine Roberts and Ian Turner
Ruth Ju-Shih Li in group exhibition at Xinying Cultural Centre, Taiwan
- Every Moment With You
10 January - 1 March 2020
Ruth Ju-Shih Li has been invited to exhibit in a group exhibition Every Moment With You at Xinying Cultural Centre, Tainan, Taiwan.
Ruth Ju-Shih Li at CC Gallery, Taiwan
- Solo Exhibition, 2020
14 January to 29 February 2020
A Solo exhibition by Ruth Ju-Shih Li at CC Gallery, Taiwan.
Hendrik Kolenberg & Evan Salmon
- Urbanscapes, 2020
29 January to 16 February 2020
Evan Salmon and Hendrik Kolenberg share an interest in making paintings of their suburban environment – streets & traffic, houses & rooftops, cranes, telegraph poles & wheelie bins, domestic and industrial settings, the working harbour, parkland & waterways. They find their subjects in the familiar everyday or commonplace, the city & suburbs as well as further afield. For Evan that includes landscape near at hand; for Hendrik, Rotterdam, his birthplace. It isn’t place that matters to them as much as the power of light to transform, intensify or surprise them.
This selection of recent paintings features subjects close to home for each of them, around Warrawong, south of Sydney and Eastwood in Sydney’s north west, each typical of modern urbanism and its unencumbered spread north, south and west of metropolitan Sydney. Painting En Plein Air has preoccupied Evan for some years now, while Hendrik constructs his paintings from drawings and studies in pen & ink, charcoal and oil on paper.
Evan and Hendrik draw together (which is how their friendship developed) and with others but painting is a private occupation for them. This is their first exhibition together.
(images on the previous page)
Top: Evan Salmon, Truck depot, Port Kembla 1, 2019, oil on linen, 51.5 x 61cm
Bottom: Hendrik Kolenberg, House fronts, First Avenue, Eastwood, 2019, oil on gesso on linen on plywood, 63 x 72cm
- Eastern Suburbs Streetscapes, 2020
29 January to 16 February 2020
This suite of paintings explores the back streets of Sydney's Eastern Suburbs where a gritty working class history and village charm lingers despite the gloss of gentrification and the encroachment of high-rise development. Kevin enjoys finding ready-made compositions in urban environments and applies the formal concerns of compositional design with the particularity of place as he seeks a theatrical intensity in the ordinary. Stillness and transience compliment each other in his road-based paintings where architectural forms provide a fixed point in contrast with the flux of light; a momentarily parked car; or randomly placed 'street furniture' (wheelie bin, witches hat, road sign etc); or indeed the conduit of the road itself, a constant in the ever changing city.
BLACK BOX PROJECT Presents - Todd Fuller
- How to Raise a Siren, 2020
29 January to 16 February 2020
'A dugong is a terrible thing to waste.
If one falls from the sky, you should always do your best to catch it. If you find yourself catching one, be sure to use two hands and a light touch or even better, a jar half filled with water.
Dugongs are a type of Sirenia and are the loyalist of creatures, with their waggy-slippery tails and their shiny stiff whiskers. Dugongs are generally shy, so if you manage to see a rare dugong smile, you should always smile back. A smile from a dugong is a gift in itself.
If you are a lucky person who manages to snag a dugong, here are some handy tips for looking after him:
1. Ensure he has room to swim, and frolic and grow. Dugongs like their space.
2. Make sure their tank is always clean, a tidy home is everything.
3. Tell him stories about jellyfish, seagrass and love.Especially Love as Dugongs are very into romance.
4. Scratch his back where his fins can’t reach and be sure to keep his wrinkles clean. This rule is not just applicable to dugongs, you should also be vigilant with the cleanliness of your own wrinkles.
5. Hide him from lawnmowers, they are the enemy of seagrass which is of course a dugongs favorite food in the whole wide ocean.
6. Dugongs hate curse words so be careful not to swear when they can hear you.
7. Remember to smile when the time comes for your dugong to return to the sea...'
Catherine O'Donnell, at Tweed Regional Gallery, 2020
- 'Fibro Façade', An installation by Catherine O'Donnell
31 January to 28 June 2020
> Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre, 31 January to 28 June 2020.
“Catherine O’Donnell’s draughtsmanship skills are some of the finest this country has even seen. Rather than create static replications of sites, she imbues her houses with a pathos and resonance which reveals her talents as a storyteller. It is this strength that draws audiences beyond the awe of her life-like drawings, evoking the shared experience of home...” - Lizzy Marshall, curator of 2168: Estate of Tomorrow
Fibro Façade is an installation comprising eleven meticulous charcoal drawings of elements from common fibro housing and an architectural tape outline connecting them. O’Donnell’s installation was commissioned by Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre and was on display there in 2018 in the solo exhibition 2168: Estate of Tomorrow.
O’Donnell leaves the screen door ajar, pulls back the curtain, opens the window and shows the uneven lines of the venetian blinds to reveal that her renderings are equally about the occupants as they are about the structures that they call home.
Images by Silversalt Photography, courtesy of the Artist and MAY SPACE Sydney
- Suspended Narratives
19 February to 8 March 2020
'My art practice gives emphasis to the suburban landscape by abstracting and reinterpreting its overlooked dwellings. Using minimalism, I isolate these modest buildings from their contexts and represent only their structures to explore their compositional potential and underlying symmetry, striving to offer a renewed vision of these often-bleak landscapes.
Through my drawings, I aim both to present the formal aesthetics of the buildings and to extract the sense of humanity that emanates from lived-in spaces. I employ realism to ignite the imagination of the viewer and invite them to look beyond the mundane and banal. My work intends to reinterpret and reinvigorate inhabited environments by accentuating attributes of life and longevity, beyond physicality.
While my work displays a high level of realism, my interests do not lie in simple reproduction. Rather, I delete extraneous information and reveal signs of life, both historical and contemporary. Small moments of suspended narrative enter my images through detail; an open window or drawn curtain suggests habitation and bears witness to lived experience. These moments maintain an element of the personal within the impersonal, and as such, my drawings become active reminders of human existence. The viewer is called to delve into their own memories of home and to contemplate the individual narratives embedded in these common-place structures.
At the heart of my artistic practice are my interests in minimalist architectural structures, the pictorial power of illusion, scale and perspective and the pursuit of a shared narrative. My works seek to combine these elements to illuminate narrative within structure and to find life within the minimal.'
- Catherine O'Donnell, 2019
- Voyages, 2020
19 February to 8 March 2020
'My work is a voyage through rooms, selecting moments upon which to reflect as hand-carved meditations. These images depict remnants and mementos of significance, alongside objects that are ordinary or everyday. The process of selecting, carving and hand-rendering is a means of remembering, gathered and arranged as new understandings. Both the momental and the seemingly insignificant are united in a single frame. A red snuff bottle evokes recollections of conversations in a Mongolian ger beside the red matchbox for the evening's fire. A can from a wharf in Mapua, New Zealand sits alongside a sweets container from Verona, Italy. Each work exists as an unintentional relationship, as reflections of multiple places in a single captured moment, suspended as a carved and painted image in timber.
These works connect to the historic period when illuminated manuscripts were replaced by that of the printed image. Each work is a return to the notion of hand-coloured individual pieces, working in direct opposition to their potential as a replicated image in the digital age, signifying the importance of knowledge. This journey through an interior is an investigation into daily spaces, a new voyage of discovery for both the artist and the viewer.'
- Julian Laffan, 2019
Todd Fuller in the Tom Bass Prize for Figurative Sculpture 2020
- Juniper Hall, Paddington
6 - 22 March 2020
Todd Fuller has been named a Finalist in the Tom Bass Prize for Figurative Sculpture 2020 with his work Harry II (2019).
The exhibition is open from the 6th to 22nd March, with prizes announced on the 5th March.
- Anthropocene Landscapes, 2020
11 to 29 March 2020
Merrick Belyea’s paintings are deeply focused on the curious human appetite for destruction. Environmental concerns are central to his recent paintings, referring to a potential for devastation, pointing to a future of mechanical scarification of the landscape. Paring back the veneer of previously prepared paint layers reveal the detritus of process and the fragility of surface.
This will be Merrick's inaugural solo exhibition with MAY SPACE.
- Finite, Infinity, 2020
11 to 29 March 2020
'Finite Infinity (2020)— a series of mixed-media paintings — takes inspiration from poems that express opposing notions in line with my exploration of the binary forces that life presents. The work is of a restrictive palette, ambiguously portraying the dichotomies of experience such as absence and presence, darkness and light, and fragility and resilience; aspects that have accompanied human existence. Consequently, Finite Infinity offers a visual metaphor for how these opposing dualities can simultaneously exist and cause ripples or understanding in our lives.
The materials used — linen, wood, brass, thread and paint — were chosen for their transformative qualities. Through a continuous process of experimentation — building, deconstructing, cutting, painting, pulling threads and sewing — symmetrical and asymmetrical forms are created and juxtaposed to evoke a sense of space, volume and distance while the textures and layers unveil the degree of psychological responses of such experiences. The titles of each piece, on the other hand, directly reference fragments of poems to offer a deeper insight into the abstract ideas presented in the work.
Overall, the exhibition is a thoughtful reflection on my past experiences and attempts to reconcile these dichotomies by creating a space for viewers to contemplate their own experiences. The binary forces that play out in our lives, collectively form an endless tapestry of human experience, the meaning of which can only be gained by taking a step back.'
- Graziela Guardino
SYDNEY PRINT 2020
- A curated exhibition selected from members of Sydney Printmakers
1 to 26 April 2020
Sydney Printmakers is a self funded, self directed, independent organization successfully spanning nearly 60 years. Members are practicing artists and art professionals who have a specific focus on print, however continue to work across all media including digital and more experimental approaches. The group shows regularly in NSW, across Australia and overseas.
The following is an except from the intro essay for the 50th Anniversary Exhibition catalogue, by Professor Sasha Grishin AM, FAHA, The Sir William Dobell Professor of Art History Australian National University
"Sydney Printmakers is a unique phenomenon in Australian art with few parallels anywhere in the world. Although numerous exhibiting associations of printmakers have cropped up from time to time in Australia, what distinguishes Sydney Printmakers is three things. Firstly, no other exhibiting organisation of printmakers has so effectively represented the best printmakers of a city and has done this so comprehensively. Secondly, no other organisation of printmakers in Australia has managed to sustain itself independently over such a prolonged period of time without becoming a de facto filial of an institution, such as an art school. In other words, Sydney Printmakers have remained truly independent. While thirdly, no organisation of printmakers has managed to survive for fifty years without extensive periods of dormancy".
Ruth Ju-Shih Li at Kyoto Ceramics Centre, Japan
- Australian Flowers Exhibition, 2020
17 to 29 April 2020
Australian Flowers Exhibition, a group exhibition with Ruth Ju-Shih Li at the Kyoto Ceramic Centre, Japan.
- Dog Park and Other Things
29 April to 17 May 2020
‘This series of paintings and watercolours are based on both real and imagined observations of people, their dogs, and the surrounding landscape. Most days begin in the early hours of the morning at the dog park with my own companion, Zozo, as people begin to trickle in with their dogs and the scenes from which I conceive my works come to life. This series exposes the half-seen glimpses of life at the dog park — as breeding and behaviour are scrutinized, friendships endure, intense rivalries form, unrequited love lingers, new life and death occur in the life of these dogs and their owners. I am fascinated by the change in environment, from the highly urbanised inner-city suburbs of Brisbane, to a dog park hidden and framed by tall trees and softened by birdsong.
I love the dogs, the people, and the trees - equally I think.’
- Jane Grealy
- When Rivers Die
20 May to 7 June 2020
'Along the western shore of Lake Kati Thanda (Lake Eyre) is a line of springs where one of the edges of the Great Artesian Basin comes to the surface and discharges freshwater. This has made it possible for people, wildlife and plants to live there. As a nation building project in the late 1800s, a railway line was built from Adelaide to Alice Springs, with steam trains dependent on this good supply of freshwater. Ironically the line suffered continuous damage mostly from flooding and the arrival of diesel locomotives saw it abandoned in the 1960s.
Early European explorers expected the inland flowing rivers would be filling a vast sea and were dismayed to find they disappeared into a network of dry channels or bitter salt lakes. It is a rare occasion that any rivers actually ‘flow’ into Lake Kati Thanda and it fills with water. I have only seen it as a glittering white surface of salt that stretched to the horizon with a shore of sand, gravel and sparse vegetation. Into this stark landscape intrude the remains and ruins of water towers and train stations as reminders of our hubris.'
- Sybil Curtis, 2019
Image: Sybil Curtis, Curdimurka, Kati Thanda 2019, oil on linen, 125 x 125cm
- Unequivocally New York
22 July to 9 August 2020
'For two decades I have executed my drawing with charcoal. Charcoal, a medium which derives from nature; essentially a charred, burnt wood used to create mark makings and tones in drawings. While creating with charcoal, its physical presence reminds me of my childhood picture making, with a piece of bog oak. The bog oak, thousands of years old, was taken from beneath the layers of peat lands in the west of Ireland, where rural families, like my own, spent long summers ‘saving the turf’.
The process of using a natural simple medium to recreate man-made architectural structures, has essentially, being a core value in the work and its execution. Fascinated with urban environments from an early age, captivated by pictures, movies, stories and eventually experiencing cities; it was New York City, that left a lasting imprint and a desire to investigate and convey it, as a subject in my practice.
Capturing the city, its unique urban characteristics and beauty, whilst sharing the lasting impact I felt when there, together with a strong awareness of contrast and perspective within the work, was a crucial part of this investigation. The medium, subject-matter and scale of the drawing depend and rely on contrast and perspective for an inclusive audience and an immersive experience.
Showcasing it through charcoal, merging both passions to deliver NY Rambling, a simple, gray-scale, soundless environment, unlike a regular New York sensory experience. It offered an opportunity to view the city in urban details, to view it through the eyes of the artist.
Finally, inviting viewers to share an experience strolling along sidewalks, crossing streets, sharing a coffee perhaps, grabbing a bargain in China town or hanging on the edge of a rooftop. Taking in the expansive area congested with gritty details, bricks, shadows, taking care to avoid that smoke stack!'
- Miriam Innes
Catherine O'Donnell and Waratah Lahy at Canberra Museum + Gallery (CMAG) 2020
- A group exhibition curated by Mark Bayly
1 August to 7 November 2020
Communities are formed by people and the built environments they construct and reside in. This exhibition examines imagery derived from, or alluding to, the built environment and ways of living in specific locations with particular identities. These material and social constructs take multiple forms - from high-rise, high-end apartments to prosaic suburban divisions, to locations where people have endured the collapse of their communities.
The focus of this project is how contemporary artists and designers translate their responses to the built environment. In doing so, the exhibition tells individual stories of the resilience and imagination of the human spirit.
Ruth Ju-Shih Li - Taiwan Ceramics Biennale, 2020
- Featuring represented artist, Ruth Ju-Shih Li, 2020
9 October 2020 to 11 April 2021
Represented artist Ruth Ju-Shih Li has been selected to participate in the Taiwan Ceramic Biennale and International Competition for 2020.
Established in 2004, the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale is organised by the New Taipei City Government and hosted at the New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum.