Friday, March 18, 2011

Julian Meagher at Lindberg (Melbourne, VIC) and Gallery Ecosse (Exeter, NSW) April 2011

  Julian Meagher From where you'd rather be (2011) 150 x 180 cm Oil on linen

Julian Meagher Nanjing peasant produces Black Label to celebrate the good news
(2011) 60 x 60cm Oil on linen

Julian Meagher Only real men wear pink (2011) 120 x 120 cm Oil on linen

Julian Meagher Strong Men Also Cry (2011) 150 x 180 cm Oil on linen

The son of a father who insists that "only real men wear pink", Julian Meagher's latest body of work is an extension of his ongoing investigation into modern-day masculinity; it's rituals, it's boundaries, it's icons. The work in this exhibition presents us with a marriage of interests, every element is balanced by its counterpart. Where there is masculine, there is feminine, where there is blue, there is pink, and where there are elements of the foreign and exotic, there are bold trophies of Australiana.

In Western culture, the practice of gender-dimorphic colour coding in pink/blue for female/male is actually an inverse of its original assignment. From the late 19th Century through until the 1940's it was deemed more appropriate to dress girls in blue because of its daintiness and its connotations to the robe of the Virgin Mary. Pink was deemed better suited to boys because of its' proximity to red; the colour of passion, blood and fire.

An attraction to Oriental design has led Meagher to continue to return to Japanese tattoos and Chinese Ming vases for subject matter within his paintings, and his clinical presentation allows us to appreciate the form of each object as it's own entity, as well as in terms of its contribution to a broader composition.

Taking the archetypal domestic and picnic scenes that adorn these vases, Meagher articulates them within an Australian framework through the playful inclusion of the iconic Victoria Bitter and Johnny Walker. The slab of beer as well as the bottle of scotch takes centre focus amongst small groupings of people, presenting it as an object of almost religious significance.

Meagher's titles and his colour balance within his work toys with notions of what is masculine, and how we perceive it. The figures that occupy the show disclose a gamut of examples of masculinity; the binary nature of the components of Strong Men Also Cry presents paintings that embody a synthesis of density of content and layers of meaning, which Meagher balances with a thoughtful and clinical presentation. These paintings oscillate between presence and absence. What is left is a porthole through which we may glimpse instances of cultural reckoning in both intimate, personal chronicles and broader historical contexts.

- Kat Sapera, 2011 (full article available as catalogue essay)
Julian Meagher You can get it milking a cow (2011) 120 x 80 cm Oil on linen
Julian Meagher is a 32 year old Sydney-based artist, working from his studio in Surry Hills. Four years ago he left work as medical doctor to pursue painting full-time. He currently shows at Chalk Horse Gallery in Sydney (of which he is also a director), Lindberg Gallery in Melbourne, Gallery Ecosse in Exeter, Edwina Corlette Gallery in Brisbane and Cat Street Gallery in Hong Kong.

Lindberg Gallery (Melbourne, VIC) 01- 30 April 2011

Gallery Ecosse (Exeter, NSW) 09 April – 07 May 2011

Friday, March 11, 2011

Hothouses of talent give galleries a run for the money, Joyce Morgan March 12, 2011

Making the transition ... the manager of Chalkhorse Gallery, Clementine Blackman, is overseeing the evolution of the art space from a collective into a gallery. Photo: Tamara Dean
SOME are in old warehouses and factories, others have no fixed address. They may last a year or two but at least one has survived for 25 years.At a time when debate rages about whether Sydney has lost its arts mojo, the number of artist-run spaces suggests that a shortage of creative ideas is not the problem.On the city fringes, especially in Redfern, Surry Hills and Marrickville, the number of small galleries/studios and performance spaces is growing.They are hothouses of talent, says Tamara Winikoff, the executive of the National Association for the Visual Arts.
Non-profit co-operatives are not new but they began to register on the radar of mainstream art lovers about five years ago.''They are now much more where you would go if you were an astute collector or writer or critic to find out what's going on in the field of contemporary arts practice. That's where it's all at,'' said Winikoff. ''The real energy in terms of contemporary practice is located very often in these ARIs [artist-run initiatives].''There are at least three dozen in the city, from Gaffa, in a heritage building behind the Queen Victoria Building, to First Draft in Chalmers Street, Surry Hills, which is believed to be the city's longest-running space.
Winikoff believed the growing awareness of such places is in part because art buyers are changing. ''Instead of the well-established, wealthy people around Paddington, Woollahra and the better-heeled suburbs, you are getting young people who just want to own contemporary art and be part of the contemporary art scene.''
The growing appeal of artist-run spaces has prompted the association to organise a national symposium on them later this year. ''We want to establish a national network and keep track of what is going, how they are evolving.''
In Surry Hills, Chalk Horse began as an artists' collective five years ago but is in the process of morphing into a commercial gallery. So far, it is the only such space in Sydney to do so. The transition began last year, its manager, Clementine Blackman, said. ''It was a natural progression for us. But it is much more common for ARIs to close down than become commercial galleries.''The gallery has built a stable of artists aged under 35 whose works are priced under $20,000. It continues to present pop-up fringe events - this month a man will spend a week in a coffin.It has retained its co-operative feel. ''Some of our artists will come in and help us hang a show or build a door,'' Blackman said. ''You wouldn't find that kind of love happening for a strictly commercial dealership.''

Full SMH article click here

Thursday, March 10, 2011

SHUNDABA by David Capra

21-27 March 2011
Launching Tuesday 22 March, 6-8pm with a performance by the artist.
Depot II Gallery 2 Danks Street, Waterloo NSW

Shundaba continues David Capra’s investigation into what is deemed ‘prophetic art’; work inspired by divine encounters and ecstatic notions that surpass the rational.  His new work will survey phonetic expressions of speaking-in-tongues and accounts of sudden manifestations of gemstones and gold dust.

This exhibition was generously donated by Leo Christie in association with Art Month Sydney’s first Artist Speed Dating Project.

On the evening of the opening, Capra will be performing what he calls “prophetic and intercessory dance” 

There will also be an Artist Talk titled Artist as Mystic: In conversation with David Capra on Saturday 26 March, 2-4pm, Depot II Gallery

Yinjaa Barni on Aboriginal Art News

That's a phrase that's come into my life twice recently. 
Reviewing a mighty tome on the Burrup Peninsular's extraordinary petroglyphs, I was introduced to that phrase as the words of the Yaburara people who'd created that extraordinary ancient rock gallery used to describe their Dreaming. As the Yaburara are almost certainly extinct following 19th Century massacres, it had a sad resonance.
Now it turns up more cheerfully at the Chalk Horse Gallery in Sydney. There it's the translation of Ngurra Nyujunggamu, linking the Yaburara's still very extant neighbours, the Yindjibarndi back to a time whenMarrga spirits named and shaped the country, then its birds and animals, and finally the Yindjibarndi themselves – before disappearing into its rocky rivers and gullies.
So it's the title for the second Chalk Horse showing of paintings by the Yinjaa Barni artists of Roebourne on the edge of the Pilbara – a group that only came together to paint in 2006. In 2007, they started winning prizes at the local Cossack Art Awards, and the local Shire (with miner Rio Tinto's help) gave them a fine potential studio in a heritage-listed house. Involved in the reconstruction of that studio was Jasper Knight's father-in-law – and Jasper is an artist on the board of Chalk Horse....
Maudie Jerrold Yiliway (Rainbow)
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 140 x 88cm
Wendy Derby Red Dust
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 153 x 91 cm
Wendy Derby Country II
2010 76 x 122 cm Acrylic on Canvas
Marlene Harold Early Morning Mist
Acrylic on Canvas 2011 76 x 122 cm
Clifton Mack Jarman Island Sunset III
2011 Acrylic on Canvas 122.5 x 76 cm
Aileen Sandy Jiirda (Increasing Site)
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 140 x 80 cm
Clifton Mack Colours of the Rocks
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 170 x 65 cm

Yvette Coppersmith- Incu Art Windows

Incu Art Windows have curated an epic curated spread featuring a stunning 6 panel work by Yvette Coppersmith entitled Forever in Blue Jeans. Her model and muse is Melbourne based curator Mark Feary. Feary is presented here as a kind of specimen or even spectacle in a glass box for the world to inspect and dissect. Coppersmith refers to the work as a kind of homage to the power of desire at work between artist and muse, as an element of sublimation. 

Yvette Coppersmith is an incredibly accomplished young painter whose work has won a number of prizes including the inaugural Metro Art Award and has been a finalist in a number of major competitions including the Archibald Prize (finalist with portraits of Paul Capsis and John Safran), Stan and Maureen Duke Gold Coast Art Prize, Doug Moran National Portrait Prize and more.  For more information about Yvette Coppersmith please click here

Yvette Coppersmith studied painting at the Victorian College of the Arts in 2001 and has since presented seven solo shows in Sydney and Melbourne. She is represented by Chalk Horse, Sydney.

Yvette Coppersmith
Forever in Blue Jeans, 2009
Oil on linen
Courtesy of the artist and Chalk Horse, Sydney in association with Incu