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Isiiad (I saw it in a dream) is an arts and design blog. It is centred in Warrandyte and the surrounding Yarra Valley but will go where ever my creative spirit takes me… so Warrandyte to the world. Creator and blog owner is Jeannette Davison.

All that is solid melts into air.

All_that_is_solid_detail_copy

Sue Saxon and Jane Becker

All that is solid melts into air  (installation detail ) 2011-12

936 eggshells on light strands 600cm. x 200cm.

How often do you think about the fragile beauty of an eggshell? That little natural gem is front and centre in the third of four new exhibitons at TarraWarra Museum of Art.  Artists Sue Saxon and Jane Becker have collaborated to create a site specific installation which sugggests, ever so subtly, the fragile nature of our relationship with our environment.  Visitors to TWMA will be drawn to the North Gallery by the work above, All that is solid melts into air, where 936 delicate eggshells illuminated by LED lights cascade down and 'pool' into an upturned vitrine lid.  (The question of how that work was hung without breaking the eggshells has occupied a great deal of my thought lately.) In the face of this illuminated 'waterfall', I was aware of holding my breath and taking great care while walking around the space...heaven forbid that I should bump it and thereby literally and metaphorically risk breaking its magical spell. Such is the power of this work to evoke a response in keeping with its theme. How clever! 

Lifeboat_TarraWarra_copy

Sue Saxon and Jane Becker

Lifeboats (Sydney and TarraWarra) 2011-12

eggshells, plaster, ground eggshells and vegetation dimensions variable (8cm. x 5cm. approx.)

There are references to the ability of the environment to regenerate (above) and also pretty scary references to the possibility of complete destruction (below in Freefall).  In his essay titled Common Groundlessness1 Anthony Fitzpatrick suggests that the word freefall brings to mind phrases like 'economy in free fall' and 'biodiversity in free fall', or worse, 'ecological collapse'. There's also a Humpty Dumpty mosaiced from tiny tiny pieces of broken egg shell...(but you'll have to go out to TWMA to see that for yourself).

Untitled_copy

Sue Saxon and Jane Becker

Freefall 2012

117 eggshells on light strand 80cm. x 450cm.

As I wrote and researched this piece, my appreciation of the complexities of this installation went off the scale. Then I haven't begun to talk about the appropriateness of siting it at TarraWarra, where the beauty of the environment is never far from my awareness. Catch All that is solid melts into air at TarraWarra Museum of Art before 28th May 2012.

Thank you once again to Anthony Fitzpatrick and Eliza Ordinans for their assistance with this post.

 

1. Anthony Fitzpatrick  Common Groundlessness, TarraWarra Museum of Art Ltd, 2012.

 All photography in this post is by Paul Green and published here with the permission of TarraWarra Museum of Art.

© Artists, Photographer, TarraWarra Museum of Art Ltd 2012.  

 


Parent Category: Arts

Passages at TarraWarra Museum of Art

kokoso

Khai Liew

Kokoso 2009

cabinet in American black walnut

1200 x 1200 x 500

 

Here's an artistic collaboration of breathtaking elegance.  Three artists- Brian Castro, Khai Liew, John Young, three disciplines- literature, design and visual art respectively, incorporated in one exhibition. Passages is curated by arguably one of Australia's most experienced and respected museum directors, TWMA's Inaugural Director, Maudie Palmer AO. This is the last time she will curate at TWMA. The Museum's new Director, Victoria Lynn, takes up the position at the end of this month. Passages is a fitting finale to Maudie Palmer's time at TWMA.

The exhibition's title suggests travel.  Travel is significant in the lives of the artists.  All three were born in Asia but now live and work in Australia.  Thus, Passages poses questions about mulitculturalism and the concept of 'Asian Australianness'.   

While Maudie Palmer has created a fascinating context, each artist's work stands confidently in its own right. Brian Castro's words poetically evoke memories and ideas, engaging the viewer's intellect and emotion. (Not bad for six or seven lines of prose.)  Khai Liew's furniture literally did take my breath away. John Young's paintings push out the boundaries of contemporary painting, convincing me at least, that the art of painting is alive and well in Australia. That said, it's the clever way all three disciplines subtly bounce off each other, that had me smiling the most. Passages is a great example of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts.  

I leave you with some images and words from the exhibition.

Naive20and20Sentimental20Painting20X

John Young

Naïve and Sentimental Painting X, Winter 2011

oil on linen

1450 x 1900

Courtesy of Anna Schwartz Gallery Melbourne

 

"Young downloads- at times randomly- a thousand digital images per day. Transformed overnight through a system of filters, a selection of the altered and now abstracted images is then scaled up and fastidiously realised in oil on linen." from  Passages exhibition catalogue essay, Making a case for the interrupted dance, by Wendy Walker, published by TarraWarra Museum of Art, February 2012

 

                        NAIVE & SENTIMENTAL

Here in the eucalyptus light of the heart of Australia, I wondered

why the table I bought was stamped on the under-side: "WHITE

LABOUR". It was a political Party, I was sure. Or else an import

from a Russian gulag.   The weight of history was heavy in its

veins and in my ignorance I felt impelled by an uneasy empathy.

Was it a paradox, this slave trade beyond my ken?

Brian Castro 2012


                                       stephanie_side_oak

Khai Liew

Stephanie 2011

armchair in American white oak, cow hide

760 x 540 x 560


 

Passages closes on 27th May 2012

 

 


Parent Category: Arts

TarraWarra Museum of Art's State of Being.

Chiharu Shiota

Twma_Pic

Chiharu Shiota State of Being 2012, black wool, double bass and violin, installation view, Photography: Mark Coulson, © Chiharu Shiota

I'm very very fond of the art of installation.  Japanese born, Berlin based artist Chiharu Shiota is responsible for this latest offering at TarraWarrra Museum of Art.  Titled State of Being, it has transformed the Vista Walk at TWMA into an avenue of  memories- as if the sounds of the double bass and the antique violin entwined in its spider web of black thread, linger in the space.  I was reminded of the Mozart Violin Concerto No. 5 with all its intricate weaving of sounds.  Such is the enveloping power of this work that each viewer will be drawn into its web and experience it in their own unique way. 

If you would like to learn more about this extraordinary artist, a trawl around the www offers gems of information regarding Shiota's work. Designboom has great pics and info.  La Maison Rouge, Paris, where Shiota exhibited in 2011, offers a short documentary.  There is an interesting podcast with an interview of Shiota and the curator of her installation titled Memory of Books, James Putnam here.  Closer to home in Tasmania, information about her installation for MONA FOMA 2011 titled In Silence can be found here.  Haunch of Venison (London) also has pics and info from her installation there in 2010.  

Treat yourself to the experience of State of Being at TarraWarra Museum of Art before 27th May 2012.

I'm sure it's no accident that the main gallery at TWMA will be filled with the sounds of the Australian Chamber Orchestra this coming weekend. It's a perfect marriage with Chiharu Shiota's installation. Alas, the performances are all booked out but there are still seats available for Richard Tognetti's master class on Sunday morning.

Along with this installation, TWMA opened three exhibitions last Saturday. TWMA curator Anthony Fitzpatrick ably guided me through each of the exhibits today. My head is still buzzing with the excitement of it all. I've decided to show you the exhibitions separately over the next few days... to make the experience last and last.

My sincere thanks to Eliza Ordinans and Anthony Fitzpatrick for their assistance with this post.


Parent Category: Arts

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