This is a series of little images(1) of the night; the sky, the mountain, and the space in between. Just after twilight, once known and discernible features in the landscape become one-field, under a veil of Indigo that finally turns to Prussian blue. In the moonlight these colours change again, acquiring depth and luminosity.
The materiality of the work is integral and evident; the paint moves across the surface of the support in much the same way that clouds form and merge as they move across the sky. This quality is often magnified to emphasise the notion of Nietzsche’s ‘least thing’(2).
The inherent nature of the materials is at-one-with the application. The gestural nature of the mark combined with the hand-made surface reflects the conceptual basis for the work which is drawn from the pantheist notion that – there is no separation, everything is connected.
(1) The term ‘little Images’ refers to a series of works by Lee Krasner from 1946 – 1950, where she painted images within images.
(2) ‘... the least thing precisely, the gentlest thing, the lightest thing, a lizard’s rustling, a breath, a whisk, an eye glance – little makes for the best happiness. Be still’.
In 1987 James Rowell graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the VCA, but got sick of being told that the piece of paper represented only a bachelor of apathy. He responded by beginning a series of works about science, which have only been brought to completion in the last couple of years.
Included in Sciency Paintings are a variety of works featuring electrical circuits, equipment used in empirical chemistry, biological displays and iron load stones that are used for investigating the properties of electricity. The strongest attribute of the pictures, aesthetically speaking, is the use of strong vibrant colours that have been achieved through the very careful and regulated use of tone, where tone is colour and colour is tone. Once again, Rowell has broken down the images into dots to give all the works something in common that is universal.
Image: James Rowell Pyrex Beaker 2018, acrylic on canvas
Geomancy responds to the poetics, strangeness and unexpected drama to be found on building sites and gardens through the medium of painting. The exhibition seeks to explore temporal spaces that emerge by accident, as landscapes undergo transition from a natural form, to a construction site, to a manicured feature of urban life. This body of work uncovers the ways in which we build our physical surroundings in pursuit of a neat final product as signals of our social aspirations.
Becky Gibson is interested in a broad spectrum of subject matter but is mainly drawn to the Australian landscape and the visible changes that occur within it. Her work focuses on these landscapes through which she seeks to document the changes that occur within and beyond the human time scale. Her practice aims to reach a point of truth, one that prioritises experience over appearance, both technically and formally, as well as in conception.
Isobel Rayson and Nick Stranks present an exhibition of new works reflecting on their shared experience as artists in residence on Vancouver Island, Canada.
Isobel and Nick have continued to create works based on mutual interests in a sense of place, temporality and material investigation. Their works both contain strong evidence of the maker and form somewhat of a self-portrait.
The residency program is located at The Ou Gallery, Duncan on Vancouver Island. Much of the work created throughout the residency responded to the local environment and the artists daily walks along the Cowichan Trail that extends through the Valley from the rear of the gallery. The area is heavily forested with tall stands of trees covered in thick moss and lichen. Many of the works exhibited at the end of their residency was created from found materials including found wood from the trail. As these pieces were unable to be transported back to Australia, the artists have created new works expanding and reflecting on these ideas.
Nick Stranks has been supported through a CAPO award sponsored by Shaw and Partners.
Isobel Rayson is represented by M. Contemporary Gallery, Sydney and Boom Gallery, Geelong.
Reflections is an exhibition by Aeode. These works are an intuitive translation of personal experience. Aeode explores feeling, perception, and individual dynamics within relationships. Through a delicate handling of form and colour the inner landscape of both artist and subject are materialised.
Incidental Damage is a collection of recent intaglio prints by 2018 CCAS Resident, Joshua Sleeman-Taylor.
Incidental Damage explores the tensions created when experimenting with unpredictable printmaking techniques, purposefully diminishing his own control of the outcome and surrendering agency to the process. In the process, an aluminium plate is pinned to a wooden board and on its surface a design is drawn with permanent marker. The marker easily glides across the surface of the plate leaving thick lines of ink, which scratches off easily. Small imperfections in its coverage allow acid to bite the metal beneath, and selected lines are engraved with a dry-point tool, a physically demanding medium. When printed these lines agglutinate together, breaking and swelling unpredictably.
Sleeman-Taylor uses images sourced online and live poses as inspiration to create amorphous amalgamations of the human form. The figures do not represent any one individual, rather, they are the basis for works that generate an intense sense of empathy and vulnerability. These figures are cumbersome, exposed and vulnerable. Unwieldy forms that deny the privilege of comfort and evoke a reflexive sense of sympathy. Each figure is characterised by damage sustained when transferred to and from the metal plate.
Image: Joshua Sleeman-Taylor F4 'Temorary' 2019
920.01.SHA is a lifelong, non-figurative self-portrait using index cards and the Dewey Decimal Classification System, by ACT artist Shags. This work distills the artist’s life into a book title for each year, which allude to bigger stories and touch on the idea that no-one ever fully knows another person, we all just fill in the gaps.
1. Biography, genealogy, insignia: Philosophy and theory
Made possible by the generous Canberra Contemporary Art Space Emerging Artists' Residency Award from the 2017 ANU School of Art & Design Emerging Artist Support Scheme
Image: Shags Self portrait (1970 - ____) (detail 20/50 so far) 2018 – , inkjet print on index cards, dimensions variable