Amos Gebhardt


Gebhardt presents a filmic dance of an entirely different kind. In this multi-channel video, Lovers, 2018 – Gebhardt celebrates the drama of powerful thoroughbred horses, performing a courting ritual of extraordinary intimacy. Gebhardt’s poetic meditation on the animal language of consent and desire connects the viewer to a force and emotion, in which we become complicit partners to an act of passion.

Erica Green, Divided Worlds, Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art 2018

Elizabeth Willing

“Exploring the sculptural and multisensory potential of food has been a key focus of Elizabeth Willing’s practice. Her work includes sculpture, installation, performance and participatory dining events that engage audiences through sensory dimensions such as smell, taste, and touch. In creating her work Willing is not only an artist, but a cook, designer, engineer and scientist, testing and manipulating the material qualities and limitations of food and applying her highly refined aesthetic sensibility.”

– Rachael Parsons, Director, New England Regional Art Museum 2018

 

Elizabeth Willing’s Strawberry Thief project, presented at Melbourne Art Fair 2–5 August 2018, has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Douglas Lance Gibson

Douglas Lance Gibson (b. 1984) is a Sydney-based artist.

Previously he has worked as a demolition and construction labourer, gallery assistant, chef, ski lift operator, door-to-door salesman, cotton entomological scout, and once spent 3 months working on a pheasant farm in Wiltshire, England.

Danie Mellor

Danie Mellor’s work is at once beautiful and a calling to account. Finely crafted, embellished and framed, with images and devices that disarm with humour, narrative and a play on the ‘exotic’, the work nonetheless confronts and confounds our understanding of the past. Mellor tells stories that are neither simple nor complete. Instead, the view is presented with multiple layers that challenge assumptions. Stories collide and metaphors reach further than expected.

Dr Campbell Gray, Danie Mellor: Exotic Lies Sacred Ties, The University of Queensland Art Museum, 2014, page 11.

Nicholas Folland

Nicholas Folland’s realm poses speculations for ratbag scientists, fringe dwellers, explorers and dreamers.

Alexie Glass 2008

Nicholas Folland transforms the everyday, the overlooked and the no longer fashionable.  Using domestic crystalware, repurposed taxidermy, ice and other wonders, he makes material metaphors that speak to our history and identity.

Lisa Slade, The Extreme Climate of Nicholas Folland, Art Gallery of South Australia, July 2014 – January 2015

Riley Payne

Comprising uncanny accumulations and pairings of classical forms and Google image search results, Riley Payne’s fastidiously realised drawings might be considered in terms of collage. Banana bunches and cigarette-smoking carrot men coalesce, while a neon hot dog perches before Antonio Canova’s Sleeping Nymph. Art history and the absurd knock heads, as do the labour of technique and the flippancy of the one-liner.

Dan Rule, Mad Deep Thoughts, Perimeter Editions 001, 2012

Dan Moynihan

…In one interview, when asked what his influences are, Moynihan nominated ‘inappropriate text messaging, the radio, driving a shitty car.’ This is a nice summation of his modus operandi. Moynihan is an artist strongly orientated towards the vernacular. His artistic palette is comprised of the stuff that surrounds most of us most of the time…

Phip Murray 2013

Fake it ’till you make it, Catalogue essay, Dan Moynihan, Lost In Space, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, Australia

 

Martin Bell

Martin Bell works across various mediums including collage, photography and sculpture. His work has been exhibited at Hell Gallery, Melbourne, the Australian Center for Photography, Sydney and in association with the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.

Like a Piranesi prison, there is no escaping from Bell’s drawings. There is nowhere to rest the eye, with chaos filling every space. Homes appear as castles in a feudal society. Woven within that society are Bell’s characters, trapped within the drawing’s sprawling architecture. Rarely are Bell’s characters at rest, but even when they appear motionless, there persists a futile struggle for space and harmony.

Peter Drew, Catalogue essay, 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart


                                                                            

Ben Quilty

Ben Quilty paints like there is no tomorrow. … Quilty uses licks of luscious paint to conjure his subjects which include his beloved LJ Torana, his ‘wasted’ mates, his son Joe and more recently himself. His subjects are modern day memento mori; pithy reminders of our mortality and a call to live life in the fast lane.
 
Painting itself is also the subject of Ben Quilty’s work. He summons his subjects with a palpable physicality. Abstract slabs of vivid colour, often underpinned by urgent aerosol drawings, bring his subjects to life.

 

Ben Quilty LIVE! 8 May – 19 July 2009 The University of Queensland Art Museum

Judy Watson

Australian indigenous art has a broad reputation as being innovative; but few artists are as intriguing as Judy Watson. While her work takes its inspiration from the land and traditions of the Waanyi culture, Watson distils her distinctive stained canvases into poetic abstractions that have the power to speak to all.

Margie West comments: “Even though the messages in her work are often tough, they are conveyed in an almost subliminal and subtle way, to be discovered in the layering of the surface and the imagery that floats mirage-like on it.”

David Wadelton

David Wadelton gives a new spin to the term surrealism.  Wadelton uses comics, advertising graphics, still life and just about anything that comes to hand, throwing it into a blender and leaving the top open to spray incongruous contrasts and juxtapositions.  Recent works utilise computer-based montage.  These images take on a manga-like gloss in this new form of cyber-surrealism / popist-postmodernism.

Caroline Rothwell

Through the creation of her hybrid animals and plants, with their skewed sense of scale and environment – a sort of “nature on acid” – her works interrogate the relationships between humans and the natural environment. Says Curator Clare Lewis, “Rothwell devises fantastical species and ambiguous narratives which mimic the naïve exuberance of Disney, with a toxic edge.”

Jo Higgins, Caroline Rothwell Australian Art Collector, Issue 43, January – March 2008

Patricia Piccinini

Exploring concepts of what is “natural” in the digital age, Patricia Piccinini brings a deeply personal perspective to her work.

Rachel Kent notes: “Since the early 1990s, Piccinini has pursued an interest in the human form and its potential for manipulation and enhancement through bio-technical intervention.  From the mapping of the human genome to the growth of human tissue and organs from stem cells, Piccinini’s art charts a terrain in which scientific progress and ethical questions are intertwined.”

 

Tim Maguire

Tim Maguire’s paintings and prints are cinematic in scale and distinctive for their rich colouration and technical skill.  Giant flowers and golden fruit resonate from ambiguous backgrounds.  The work is sumptuous, romantic.  Shaun Lakin argues that Maguire’s painting is “both historical and contemporary”.  But these modes “do not exactly co-exist …they rub up against each other.”

Maguire uses digital photographs as source material for his oil paintings.  He applies colour separation techniques – not unlike those used in commercial printing – which blur the distinction between the digital and the handcrafted.

Tim Maguire has exhibited extensively in Europe and Australia for more than two decades, including a 2008 major solo show at Ikon Gallery, UK. For many years he has worked collaboratively with the French master printer, Franck Bordas.

Rosemary Laing

Rosemary Laing is a photo-based artist. Her projects are most often created in relation to cultural and/or historically resonant locations throughout Australia. With interventions undertaken in situ or through the use of choreographed performance work, she engages with the politics of place and contemporary culture.

The Unquiet Landscapes of Rosemary Laing, a major survey of her work was held at Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney in 2005 and travelled to Kunsthallen Brandts Klædefabrik, Odense, Denmark in 2006. TarraWarra Museum of Art, Victoria presented a major survey of Rosemary Laing’s work in 2018, consisting of 28 large-scale works spanning a 30-year period.

Christopher Langton

Christopher Langton is a pop sculptor and installation artist who creates gigantic plastic blow-up ‘toys’ of frightening proportions.

Curator Mark Feary comments: Langton’s work makes you feel good, but only sort of. Indeed there is something ominous about these sculptures despite their bright colours, smiling faces and fun media.  They blend the playful naivety of Betty Boop and Astro Boy with the more knowing aesthetic palette of Roy Lichtenstein.  Langton breathes plastic life into bobbing and bopping figures like a Geppeto gone mad.  Dazzling wall works (popoptic bubbles) are swoon material – Highly toxic in nature and highly toxic in effect.

Acclaimed for his large scale installations, Christopher Langton has exhibited extensively in Australia and overseas.

Anastasia Klose

Anastasia Klose’s work explores a particular “aesthetic of the pathetic“, but not in the derogatory sense that it may first imply.  Reviewing her work in NEW07, Jared Davis wrote that:
Klose’s self-deprecating artistry reveals a superb talent for the manipulation of her filmic medium.  Her dry, apathetic sense of humour is both consciously ironic, and holistically human…Klose’s work is not merely provocactive irony, but an exquisitely intrinsic view of people – our strengths and our failures.

 

Klose’s video work embodies the “low tech aesthetic that is heralding a wider shift in contemporary Australian art-making practices”.

Jo Higgins, Australian Art Collector, Issue 43, 2008

Tim Johnson

Often described as floating worlds, Tim Johnson creates extraordinarily powerful paintings that embrace the spiritual iconography of a range of cultures including those of Aboriginal Australia, the Buddhist East and Native America.

His paintings are landscapes of desire, images of impossible unity, imagined syntheses of cultural and visual systems that freely draw upon images whose meaning we do not necessarily recognise or understand.

Linda Michael, 2001

Brendan Huntley

As the saying goes, eyes are the window to the soul.  Whether, in placing their eyes, Huntley uncovers the souls in his objects and paintings or gently guides them into being, it is in these apertures that their life force seems to be contained.  Before any appraisal of colour, form or texture can be made, you must let them look you in the eye.

Francis. E Parker, Curator, Monash University Museum of Art, 2011

Peter Hennessey

For all the ‘realism’ of his ‘sculptures’, Peter Hennessy sees his sculptural work as ‘abstraction.’ His is an odd mission to reverse the tendency of the contemporary world to digitize images. He wants to grab back the digital into the ‘real’ world, doing a reverse Alice in Wonderland trick by dragging those things we can only encounter via the media – the digital rabbit hole – back into the lounge room as real, hulking objects.

Ashley Crawford 2005

Louise Hearman

When an artist concentrates so strongly on elements of reality, they become hyper-real.  This is the method used by a filmmakers such as David Lynch.  In Blue Velvet, he turns an ordinary American town into a scene of Gothic menace, focusing on the amplified crunching of insects in suburban lawns or a severed ear lying in the grass.   Hearmans paintings can be very Lynch-like in the way she depicts unassuming locations such as a park, a pond, a street or the side of a road, and then introduces a disturbing element.. Her work is distinguished by a very sure and confident touch, even in the smallest details: a patch of light on a cheek or nose, or a glint in an animals eye.  In the manner of the greatest painters of the past, Hearman sees light as the key to all forms of painterly expression.  

John McDonald, Mistress of Epiphanies, The Australian Financial Review Magazine, March 2004

Brent Harris

Brent Harris’ paintings and works on paper are brooding, dripping swamplands delineated in the most meticulous way.  Stark planes, often black and white, belie the swooping organic gestures and expressionist shapes.

“Many of his forms vibrate, rise and fall, and cause the viewer’s eye much exercise in following them”, noted James Mollison in Art and Australia.

But what surprises most is the sensuality of the work; as though the sharp lines and immaculate surfaces can barely contain the emotions brooding beneath.  This is the Unconscious confronted by a taut, graphic sensibility.

Andrew Browne

Mysterious and highly sophisticated, the stylised paintings of artist Andrew Browne are based on his continuing observation of the world through photography.  While his recent works are more descriptive than in the past, they continue his fascination with selective vision and the nature of seeing.  Using photographs as notations, Browne captures the banal and ordinary and makes strange the familiar.

Louise Tegant, Depth of Field, 2002

Peter Atkins

“When I think of the way Peter Atkins works, I am reminded of the great natural historians of the nineteenth century who sought to understand the world around them and the complex relationships that existed within it by looking, collecting, categorising and classifying the specimens they found.  Through this process of documenting similarities, identifying patterns and defining difference, they established a rich resource of physical and visual material that provided the basis for their own scientific inquiry and much subsequent understanding.  Similarly fascinated by the surrounding world, Atkins looks intently, collects relentlessly and sorts, finding order and variation.  His focus is however firmly on the twentieth and twenty-first centuries and the man-made specimens that are mostly overlooked as ubiquitous elements and detritus of the everyday urban environment.” Kirsty Grant 

 

Benjamin Armstrong

Benjamin Armstrong creates glass and wax sculptures that slide between the homely and the uncanny.  Writing about Conflict (Monash University Collection), in which a pair of eyeballs shaped from wax sit at the edge of an egg shaped table top supported by impossibly thin legs, Dr Kyla McFarlane noted that Armstrong triggers both an emotional and intellectual response in viewers … an involuntary physical shudder of horror and delight registers deep in our own bodies.

Dr Kyla McFarlane, Swells and Shudders, Before the body – Matter 2006

Brook Andrew

Brook Andrew is a Melbourne based artist who works with neon, installation, photomedia, mixed-media, performance and video. Andrew challenges cultural and historical perception, using text and image to comment on local and global issues regarding race, consumerism and history.

His work with archival material has created debate and new thought surrounding contemporary philosophies regarding memory, its conceptual and visual potency linking local with international histories. By co-opting the tools of advertising, the media, museums and Wiradjuri language and culture, Brook Andrew’s art challenges the limitations imposed by power structures, historical amnesia, stereotyping and complicity.

Laura Murray Cree, ‘Brook Andrew’, Artist Profile, Issue 11, 2010, pp. 50-59

 

 

Bill Henson

Bill Henson is a visionary explorer of twilight zones, between nature and civilization, youth and adulthood, male and female.  His photographs are painterly tableaux that continue the traditions of romantic literature and painting.

Hensons elegant, formal photographs – of battered landscapes and fragile, wispy youths – resemble nothing so much as Flemish still-lifes; rarely has colour photography captured so profoundly the furry texture of night time. 
The New Yorker 2004