My sculpture Grunt made from welded iron spray-painted orange and wrapped in black industrial plastic is showing at Alternating Current Artspace, 248 High St, Windsor, Vic, 3181 until the 5th of October, 2019.
The work is wrapped in a length of wide industrial strength black waterproof plastic called ” grunt “. It is commonly used as a waterproofing membrane to protect building applications or to be incorporated into building techniques. I sourced a small role of it discarded on a footpath in West Melbourne early in 2019 at the front of a building site.
The work consists of three four disparate sized screens welded and hinged together.
The metal for the screens was sourced from a metal fabrication workshop in Williamstown. It was purchased in three uniform lengths, cut down to size so it could fit in my car and welded together in the the desired shapes at the workshop. Each screen was subsequently hinged together in the required configuration.
To enable it to be spray-painted much cleaning and rubbing back of the metal was required to remove impurities and to create the best surface to which the paint would adhere seamlessly. Ultimately the piece was carried to the spray booth where it received three layers of spray paint manually applied from the can.
Many iterations where experimented with for both the placement of the screens and the encasing wrap of the “Grunt”.
Ideally this sculptural work, ” Grunt ” needs an expansive space for suitable display and to allow the viewer to walk around it.
My fellow artist Lauren Kennedy, was exhibiting her four piece neon installation at Ne Art Exhibition 2016. Its located in downtown Collingwood at the gritty end of Smith St. I caught the packed 86 tram along gertrude st to make a foray northside. An old converted shop space with upstairs rooms its an artist run initiative. I talked to several of the exhibiting artists including “Teloc” a diminutive vocal man who expounded on the virtues of neon.
The man whose factory made all the artists neon pieces, Steven Cole, is a third generation “bender”, industry speak for manufacture of neon. He said his industries early work was in signage but laterally it has been in art installation, and he shyly showed me his piece.
Lauren’s panels were proudly on display in the third room placed strategically next to the “Ziggy Stardust” piece. I wondered if this piece had been created prior to the great man’s demise. Her work brightened the dim space, gleaming iridescently and invitingly in the small space. As a body of four panels it made a bold statement addressing her creative intentions of depicting the inner angst a creative mind struggles with.
I also admired the work of Konstantin Dimopolous , Standing Man, a neon study in life drawing and Ally Pyers piece, “Selfie” epitomising the current obsession with phone self portraiture.
Graduating, studying, and past and present students, were asked to submit works to exhibit and compete for two prizes. Six honourable mentions were made to other exhibitors. The prizes, were for $1000 and $500 respectively and were won by students, in the Creative industries Course, at Victoria University. The major prize winner was an impassioned painting, of outback Australia, a mountain range, executed in thick impasto paint, and even included the artists paint brushes. The other prizewinner was a more delicate watercolour, with a photo image transposed over the top. Both were worthy prize winners as were the honourable mentions.
The indefatigable curator was Peter Burke, who did an excellent job of hanging works with the assistance of local, emerging artist, Sarah Hayes. Megan Culhane, graduating VU student is exhibiting two lino cut prints, as am I.
Saw Fiona somerville’s show at bright spaces gallery in st Kilda last week .
It’ was titled “ruined ” . Conjures up many pre – conceived ideas and visual images . The show was not what I was expecting . The artist has a unique choice of subject matter . Her work is about the detritus of Australia’s more recent rural past. She depicts the remnants of shacks, humpys and dongas lying about in our landscape . She depicts them in a clean , almost candy box like format . The lines are clean , the palette pastel and their is an absence of the bush landscapes and people native to the region of her work . An engaging and visceral body of work it challenges the viewer to disassociate ourselves from the obvious expectation of the title to view the work .
As a visual artist I work with of sea ravaged , gathered and ruined objects . It challenged and expanded my expectations of this subject matter .