2006 - Rodney Simmons

Rodney Simmons

- New Painting, 2006

21 November to 16 December

Rodney Simmons, winner of the prestigious Norvill Art Prize for 2006, will exhibit new work at the Gallery in November.

Simmons describes his complex painting process:

My painting is meant as pure abstraction; a distillation of experiences. I wrestle with a painting over many months alternating between furious unthinking hits, hours of contemplation, time apart and moments where I?m trying to balance, solve and conclude.

During all of this there are many occasions when I suspect I have arrived at something only to discover it is more trickery and artifice. So I start again - usually with an attack that will open the work up in a new direction. This process continues and pauses, until I am finally faced with something that I connect with and where the connection lasts and seems true.

Carol Murphy

- Sculptural Forms, 2006

21 November to 16 December

"Sculptural Forms" is my third exhibition exploring the human figure, following on from "Primitif" (2002) and "Reclining Figures" (2003).

This body of work has been created with the following sculptural principles in mind; the creation of figures with separate elements, disjointed or condensed then arranged to suggest a single object, the use of both positive and negative space as a conscious element of the design and working within the limitations of a block form, thus confining the figure to exist within that framework.

In the early nineteenth century, artists such as Andre Dérain, Constantin Brancusi and Jean Arp changed our way of seeing with their experiments in modern sculpture. I see my work as a continuation of some of their ideas, specifically with the paring down of surface details, the simplification of forms and the use of polymorphic shapes. Working with the plastic nature of clay, which lends itself to the manipulation of form, the sculptures are often contorted into impossible poses; the surfaces are finished with dry tactile glazes and are mostly monochromatic.

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Jim Croke

- Sculpture and Drawing, 2006

24 October to 18 November

I make the sculpture I do because if I didn?t, nobody else would. This is not an arrogant stance but an acknowledgement that, for me, making sculpture is a genuinely creative act. I couldn?t imagine not making it. When I am removed from the act of making it for a length of time I get very unsettled. It is so essential to the way I live. Even when the work is not progressing well I thrive on the challenge.

The sculpture is classical. When I am making it I am not concerned with politics or the state of the world, I am only concerned with creating beautiful works. This beauty could be expressed through strength, fragility, elegance, power, rhythm or movement which are all fundamental elements of my work.

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2006 - Melissa Hirsch

Melissa Hirsch

- De Natured, 2006

24 October to 18 November

The creation and use of tools has paralleled the evolution of our species. The development of shape, size, material, composition and distribution are historically significant. Tools are integral to our survival, for creation, for destruction, to control, and incite fear.

As a child, the most common-placed tools were garden tools. These domestic implements allowed the householder to create and define their territory, manipulating the allotted space to meet their own desires.

However, as each generation moves into smaller, purpose-built spaces, the natural environment becomes a managed park or garden and the tools of choice change as we move into these controlled surroundings.

Through our tools we have manipulated and attempted dominance over nature. The organic materials used to create the tools in this show demand that the viewer considers this somewhat uneasy relationship between the natural and constructed worlds.
2006 - Bronwen Bassett

Bronwen Bassett

- Natura Naturata, 2006

26 September to 21 October

My paintings lie somewhere between abstraction, figuration and decoration. They are, however, grounded in a close examination of the natural world.

I always start a painting on a surface which has already been covered with some kind of complex image. This initial image may be, for example, a rubbing of plant matter or a monoprint from an unfolded origami. I then use the brush to find the image that is ?hidden? inside. I think of this process as one of removing unnecessary information.

When painting I think in terms of positive and negative space, foreground, background, edge and scale. I aim to reveal an image which is almost, yet not quite, representational. The finished images are very full, rich and exuberant. They are all surface yet have depth. They are illusory yet concrete, open yet closed.

Lezlie Tilley

- Back to the Drawing Board, 2006

26 September to 21 October

For me, drawing is visual thinking, providing a link between the thought, the action and its ability to expose the essence of the innermost life of things. Each thought is exposed to the world as a medium on a surface, releasing a new sensibility often experienced for the first time.

Most of my drawings are fragments of first concepts, which at times are successful enough to remain in that state. At other times the fragments demand more information, more material, more investigation - they are desperately attempting to discard the shackles of academia.

I find these current drawings infinitely more satisfying because they are not trying to be anything other than simply honest marks which relate to the past, present and future.

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Robert Boynes

- New Painting, 2006

29 August to 23 September

'Boynes attempts to grasp and steal time. He creates a sense of significance from seemingly inconsequential moments.'

'His mediated images of cities, people moving across architectural spaces in and out of light and shadow are a manifestation of how we all operate in the world, dealing with ambiguity and fluctuations within the very nature of existence.'

Excerpts from: Therese Kenyon, 'Still Stealing Time', exhibition catalogue, Manly Art Gallery and Museum, May 2006

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Sybil Curtis

- On the Waterfront, 2006

29 August to 23 September

For the 2005 exhibition I intended basing my paintings on the waterfront. However, I was sidetracked by the interiors of large industrial buildings (some of which were on the waterfront) and I rarely ventured onto the docks.

In these paintings I will be outside where there is an ever-shifting array of elements; primary coloured, rectilinear containers; delicate, lacy cranes and gantries; solid buildings; bulky streamlined ships and water.

Water is a moody substance, sensitive to the conditions of the moment. Its presence will help create an atmosphere and bind the contrasting forms into a harmonious whole.

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Melbourne Art Fair 2006

- Royal Exhibition Building, Carlton, 2006

2 to 6 August

The Gallery will be travelling to Melbourne to take part in the Melbourne Art Fair. The Art Fair showcases the best in contemporary Australian and international art with only the leading commercial galleries invited to exhibit.

The Art Fair, a not for profit organisation, remains the only internationally renowned exhibition of its type to take place in Australia and we are delighted to exhibit here once again.

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Melinda Le Guay

- Silent Order, 2006

1 to 26 August

Historically and mythically, certain tasks such as needlework, embroidery and weaving have often been associated with women who work alone, living in self-imposed or enforced isolation. As part of a structured daily routine these repetitive tasks, along with habit and ritual, can become a form of silent incantation. While appearing serene and beautiful these routines can also mask the punitive aspects of a sublimated existence.

My current work, still strongly based in process and repetition, embellishes, manipulates and deconstructs the surfaces of fragile and translucent materials ? seeking to evoke the notion of the simultaneous existence of beauty and punishment in habit and ritual.

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2006 - John Cottrell

John Cottrell

- Signs of Life, 2006

1 to 26 August

My current work has an organic quality that suggests a process of growth or change - signs of life. It has its origin in nature and science referencing the amplified observations of microscopic imagery. These circular forms keep coming back in my work, each time slightly different, they relate to universal processes from cell division to astronomy.

My work has developed from narrative-based paintings in the 1990s to paintings that capture the vibrational energy of nature through sound recordings. With the use of open, layered and transparent colours, the work reflects these harmonic tones of nature.

Anne Ross

- Past Lives Lost Loves, 2006

4 to 29 July

This new work is about discarded old toys.

They have a history, like old shoes.

They were once loved, adored, needed, and then they were discarded, abandoned, not wanted anymore.

I find them, live with them, and then give them new identities.

It is a celebration/acknowledgement of the freedom and imagination of childhood, and the ultimate truth about toys.

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Peter Tilley

- Journey Past and Present, 2006

4 to 29 July

The 3D still life has been the primary focus of recent work and remains the current influence. I am still drawn to the spatial relationships of object, scale and context, and continue to investigate the potential of disparate elements to form a relationship with new meanings when brought together.

This tension between every day mass produced objects, laboriously crafted objects, and in some cases cast figures, is persued further by arranging and presenting as if on a stage. The sum total of this is a layering of symbolism that considers personal, social and environmental issues.

A recent inclusion in these smaller scale works is the human figure. The scope for invention and expression is limitless and I am still developing a way to use and depict a tradition that carries so much historical weight.

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2006 - Deborah Beck

Deborah Beck

- The Cars That Ate Paris, 2006

6 June to 1 July

Deborah Beck?s exhibition at Brenda May Gallery consists of work resulting from a two month residency in the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris in September and October 2005.

The relationships between people and cultures
has long been an interest in her work. During
her residency she spent time researching and observing methods of transport in the metropolitan city of Paris and its surrounding regions. She gathered collage material ? mostly maps and images of early French cars, and began a series of paintings in gouache painted directly onto the French maps. Since returning to Sydney, she has continued to work from the drawings, photographs and magazines she collected in Paris resulting in composite images of streets, street signs, numberplates and cars interwoven to create the works in this exhibition.
2006 - Hadyn Wilson

Hadyn Wilson

- The Tabula Cebetes, A Story, 2006

6 June to 1 July

The Tabula Cebetes was written by the philosopher Cebes around 450 BC. Cebes was a disciple of Socrates and his particular type of moral philosophy. The Tabula Cebetes belongs to the first area of Socrates? philosophy - the divine system - that represents a neat compartmentalised interpretation of life (the house of life) which nevertheless tries to accommodate the random and unpredictable nature of things.

The works in this exhibition follow the story, chapter by chapter, and attempt to give a very old piece of writing some contemporary relevance.

Angela Macdougall

- New Sculpture, 2006

9 May to 3 June

These sculptures are a result of a psychological study of relationships, in particular looking at the work of American psychologist John Gottman. The work acts as a blank screen on which emotions and meaning can be projected.

This exhibition sees a return to working with reclaimed corrugated iron and found objects, both of which allow for spontaneity when compared to the labour intensive processes of casting metal.

I see these works as a reminder of the universality of human interaction; that respect and affection are essential to the success of all relationships and that contempt destroys them.

2006 - Morgan Shimeld

Morgan Shimeld

- Architectural Evolution, 2006

9 May to 3 June

My sculptures are a cohesion of glass and metal, cast and rendered in sharp vertical and elongated planes. They are inspired by aspects of our built environment; the towering skyscrapers, compartmentalized blocks of units and industrial factories that constitute our urban spaces.

I cast the glass in thick sections and polish selected surfaces allowing for variations in texture and transparency. This emphasises the density and optical qualities of the glass allowing the viewer to glimpse through the surface and find evidence of its molten past; suspended bubbles and static veils frozen in time.

Metal elements consist of polished planes and oxidized textural surfaces. Opaque, and often reflective, the metal offers quite different characteristics to the translucent refractive qualities of the glass. Placing both types of media directly in each other?s space allows for their interaction to complement and balance each other. As the elements coexist they often reflect each other?s form and direction, this elusive and subtle dialogue creates the unity and harmony of the sculpted form as a whole.


- curated group exhibition, 2006

11 April to 6 May

Small: of a size that is less than normal or usual. Not in great amount, number, strength or power. Not fully grown or developed. Insignificant, unimportant.

Being small is often defined in the negative sense - not big, not usual, not important. For this show we have asked artists who are familiar with working on a small-scale to contribute works that defy this notion. In addition those who are more comfortable working on a larger scale have been challenged to produce something which fits this category but is not in any way a diminutive correlate of their larger works.

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Leslie Oliver

- The Punctured Plane, 2006

14 March to 8 April

My last three exhibitions have been collaborations with my friend and colleagues Sokquon Tran. The works were 'dioramas' that tapped into the same narrative instincts that drew me into film making. My new sculptural work is transformed by the experience of the collaboration providing me with a broader means of expression.

In my practice, I have realised that the combination of two and three dimensional elements in the one work heighten the impact of both the painting and sculptural mediums. It appears we notice or respond to the solid nature of an object, more profoundly when it is set in contrast to the illusionary qualities of two dimensional surfaces and vice versa. It is this fascination I am exploring without the support of a collaboration in this new body of work.

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2006 - Julie Byrnes

Julie Byrnes

- Stuff Happens, 2006

14 March to 8 April

Remember Ansett Airlines? I certainly did when ?stuff happened? in a warehouse and a pile of used Ansett paraphernalia presented itself. I take this opportunity to pay tribute to Ansett.

Born 1935. Died 2002 after a tragic illness.
Fond farewell friend.

Visual humour is my weapon - whimsey, wit, irony, parody, satire or nonsense. With this weapon I can inform, entertain or advocate. Materials - anything. Like motors and movement. I don?t feel the need to necessarily follow established hierarchies. Part of my challenge is to make the familiar strange and the strange familiar. I enjoy using the disregarded and he devalued and re-establishing their status. That way they become art so that art and the ordinary become one. I like that.

Barbara Licha

- Chaos and Order, 2006

14 February to 11 March

My works always contain elements of lines. In my latest mixed media works the lines multiply over and over, sometimes nearly mechanically. The constant repetition of drawing lines becomes almost an obsession.

My new works will continue to focus on the repetitive elements of line and the multiplication of faces. I would like to merge chaos and order and distinguish maximum/minimum as a constant repetitive occurrence in life.

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2006 - Samantha Robinson

Samantha Robinson

- 380: Works in Porcelain, 2006

14 February to 11 March

The 380 bus route - a well-worn path that connects locals and travellers from Sydney's iconic Bondi Beach to the heart of the bustling city.

Working as an artist for many years in Bondi has made this trip a regular journey for me. My journey begins at the south end of Bondi in the height of summer. The beach captures Sydney lifestyle; fashion, music, food and fun combine with salty skin and wet cossies.

Along the way the changes in scenery and people blur into Sydney life - an amalgamation of it all. This body of work is a porcelain diary that captures the 380. Grab a ticket and step on board - it's worth the trip!

Sculpture 2006

- Applied Arts - Form + Function, 2006

17 January to 11 February

This exhibition features the work of artists and craftspeople working in unique furniture, interior design and manufacture. The work they have created is sculptural but also functional, including furniture, lighting and storage to name a few.

"Form and Function" will be part of the "Sculpture 2006" exhibition at Danks Street. An annual event launched at Access Contemporary Art Gallery in January 1998 to showcase contemporary sculpture.

... view exhibition