Exhibitions

Kevin McKay

- Glory Days: South Sydney Studies, 2015

17 March to 11 April

This series of small paintings explores the unique urban landscape surrounding the Brenda May Gallery. I enjoy finding beauty in the everyday and immersing myself in a locality where traditional working class terraces, public housing towers and contemporary development produce surprising geometries animated by atmosphere and light. They were painted en plein-air and in the studio during the summer of 2014-15.

- Kevin McKay, 2014

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'Resolving Ruins', curated by Screen Space

- Black Box Projects, 2015

17 March to 11 April

The artists in this exhibition all take the detritus of human activity as their starting point and transform and resolve this in unique and often mesmerising ways.

Videos by David Mutch, Leela Schauble, Zoe Scoglio, and Polly Stanton.

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Emily McIntosh

- Synthesis, 2015

17 March to 11 April

This new work investigates themes of cell regeneration and repair. The development of stem cell therapy and the mapping of the human genome (DNA), has provided much insight and scope into how these incredible processes then occur within live organisms and now can often be controlled, enhanced, and manipulated within a laboratory or even though the more indirect influences of lifestyle, stress and heritage.

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Paper Works III

- curated group exhibition, 2015

14 April to 2 May

Paper is such a commonplace and pervasive material. We write on it, read it, drink out of it and eat off it, yet in terms of conservation it is considered one of the most fragile of mediums in the art world.

This third installment of our Paper Works series endeavours to illustrate the diversity and versatility of paper, providing a glimpse into the range of creative potential for this medium.

Artists include Lee Bethel, Daniel Chant, Glen Clarke, Todd Fuller, Lisa Giles, Nicci Haynes, Bettina Hill, Therese Kenyon, Melinda Le Guay, Jo Meisner, Louise Morgan, Nicola Moss, Helen Mueller, Al Munro, Mylyn Nguyen, Janet Parker-Smith, Pamela See, Lezlie Tilley, Elizabeth Willing.

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Todd Fuller, 'Little Star'

- Black Box Projects, 2015

14 April to 2 May

By night one way, by day another,
the spinning ball of blue and the others of light.
One falls from the sky.
The dream.
To catch that ball, to be that star.

Zvezdochka, or Little Star was the 11th dog to be sent to space by the Russians. Like the others in her program, she endured extreme conditions as a scientific experiment into the effects of orbital travel on a living creature. Other dogs may dream of space, watch for shooting stars or wonder what the world looks like from above. Little Star didn’t have to wonder.

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Janet Tavener

- Memento, 2015

5 May to 6 June

In my previous work ice sculptures of both heirloom and exotic fruits were photographed as they melted in a constructed glacial landscape. These works acted as a metaphor for shrinking polar icecaps, indicators of global climate change and fragility of our food system.

In the new series ‘Memento’ the crystalline fruit and vegetables are no longer floating on a melting surface but have sunken into the ocean - semi submerged as they are swept along the icy current. Objects such a skull and fly, symbols of decay and transience, join the icy fruit and vegetables that once nourished and sustained life. The photographs have an innate sense of loss – a frozen moment in time that has already passed.

While dealing with the present, the work is also seeped in the traditions of the still life painting dating back to the 17th century in which the depiction of everyday objects represents our temporality – a Memento Mori, and our folly if we believe we can cheat nature.

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Ashleigh Garwood

- Of Other Spaces, 2015

5 May to 6 June

'Of Other Spaces' are allegorical images that exist to question the influence and power that landscape imagery holds in neutralizing societal frameworks and cultural understanding. 

The majority of early painted landscape imagery that is presented at Australian national art institutions is of a rugged, but peaceful and unified environment. There seems to be a hidden ideological agenda that informs the portrayal of the landscape, which in turn promotes that ideology. My project, 'Of Other Spaces', is a way of examining the process by which this is achieved, by which our collective memory is affected.

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Head On Photo Festival, 'Moving Image Prize Finalists'

- Black Box Projects, 2015

5 May to 6 June

The Head On Moving Image Prize was established in 2014 and forms part of the acclaimed Head On Awards which are the centrepiece of Head On Photo Festival.

Head On is Australia’s largest photography festival celebrating excellence in all genres from photo-artists from across the globe and provides a major platform for discovering new talent, re-discovering established artists and exploring new technologies and ideas.

'Mouthfeel', curated by Megan Fizell

- Black Box Projects, 2015

9 June to 4 July

Mouthfeel is defined as the physical sensations in the mouth created by food or drink. The objective of this exhibition is to stimulate a synaesthetic response in the viewer through the observation of these films. The mouth is used by these artists to trigger the sense of taste and touch by the ingestion of edible and non-edible substances.

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Multiples

- curated by Akky van Ogtrop, 2015

9 June to 4 July

An exhibition of prints, books, photographs and sculptural objects.

The ideology behind the artist’s multiple is born out of the anti-art movement, fuelled by Dadaism, Fluxus, Conceptual Art and Pop Art.

Creating artist’s multiples, typically in short runs, allows artworks to be accessible to a larger portion of the population via the employment of economical materials and processes. Also, by making reproducible artwork, the sacredness of the object itself decreases, allowing for the concept behind the work to take precedence and for these concepts to reflect the interests of their audience: the general public.

Lezlie Tilley

- camouflage, 2015

7 July to 1 August

525 Concealment

N. concealment camouflage confinement hiding covering up disguise deception masquerade anonymity incognito smoke screen hidden agenda evasion misinformation white lie subterfuge trickery suppression cover-up duplicity secrecy mystery clandestineness secretiveness conspiracy plot cipher code

Adj. concealed hush-hush covered hooded masked veiled smothered suppressed underground unintelligible obliterate stifle disguise obscure eclipsed stay in the shadows bamboozle cryptic unnamed covert arcane confidential lurking hugger-mugger evasive vague silent

Vb. conceal cover up paper over whitewash blot out bury muffle keep secret give nothing away not utter a syllable make no sign be discreet stay in the shadows bamboozle draw a veil over make no sign prowl lurk skulk conspire pussyfoot blindfold

The tiny pieces of river gravel are arranged according to the laws of chance on a formal grid to express a rhythmical pattern that carries with it a multiplicity of meaning for camouflage when covered by a layer of paint.

Claire Anna Watson, 'Heterochiral Sequence'

- Black Box Projects, 2015

7 July to 1 August

In this new video work, plant matter is transposed into a galactic realm that is at once cosmic and guttural. Each physical body spins and twists in a contorted and yet poetic dance that is mesmerising in its simplicity and subtle nuances.

My practice has the ability to initiate new imaginings in the minds of its viewers, presenting the strangely familiar within an otherworldly construct. My works are immersed in the intensity of the ordinary, leaving a taste in your mouth that is strangely alluring yet tinged with suspense and oftentimes a dark undercurrent.

My recent works trigger the curious mind to consider the natural world and our manipulation of it as a spectacle unto itself. I invites you into a swirling vortex, which reflects upon the extraordinary synthetic world we inhabit.

- Claire Anna Watson, 2015

Robert Boynes

- In Plain Sight, 2015

7 July to 1 August

As the title implies the subject and content in this work, is available to us all, it is clear, it is ubiquitous. Because it is there it does not mean that we see it. Peripatetic patterns of motion may be unseen or unsighted. By stopping this action or slowing it down the viewer is invited to become part of the act, remembering glimpses or chance encounters that we would not normally scrutinise. At times there are media images that are seared into our brains and memory so clearly that we become dumb to their existence. These images are all around us, they are in plain sight.

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'Screen Surface', curated by Geoffrey Weary

- Black Box Projects, 2015

4 to 29 August

It is easy to fall into old habits of interpretation. This is particularly true of screen-based artworks when they resemble a narrative or documentary film. Invariably the question of meaning becomes associated with content and “form” is of little consequence. The works selected for this exhibition are engaged in a two–way interaction where social, environmental and identity issues are mediated through highly personalized approaches to the treatment of the surfaceof the projected screen image.

Irianna Kanellopoulou

- Wanderland, 2015

4 to 29 August

This work captures the adventures and wandering tales of protagonists with a hidden, throwaway past. Released from their captivity these characters and found objects are given a renewed purpose and claim a re-discovered and re-invented identity. These previous ‘throwaways’ are now the new heroes in a surreal, super reality and blur the line between ambiguity and recognition. Fragments of dialogues are whispered and tales are unravelled. We are allowed only glimpses into this new stage of these merging, independent worlds as we are never shown the whole story.

Nicole Welch

- Eastern Interiors: explorations from Bathurst to Albury, 2015

1 to 26 September

Through the placement of specific historical objects into the landscape and by throwing projections onto the terrain I aim to illuminate representations of Australia from the past by bringing them into the present. The resulting works are hybridised landscapes that reveal the multiple historical paradigms informing our present-day relationship to country.

In the Bicentennial year of the settlement of Bathurst and the subsequent opening of the eastern interior of Australia to exploration, I will follow the early pathways journeyed, stopping at significant locations to enact installations in the landscape. The region as a whole is richly represented in Australian historical collections, from explorers’ journals, to drawings, prints and paintings. The English explorer Thomas Mitchell depicted these regions in his journals of discovery titled, ‘Three expeditions into the interior of Eastern Australia, 1835’ from which the title of the project is borrowed. An antique mirror and descriptive text taken from journals will reflect and emerge from the terrain, resulting in truly incongruous images that record in real time both past and present ideologies.

Waratah Lahy

- Not far from the truth, 2015

27 October to 21 November

My current work explores ideas of truth and distortion of memory. My images are derived from photographic documentation of events that are both personal yet ubiquitous. I focus on imagery which suggests a narrative, such as the open door, the empty room and the mirror, as well as looking for pattern, colour and repetition. The resulting painted images are not replicas of the photos – each is distorted and exaggerated in order to enhance a specific mood, feeling or interpretation of the scene. The differing scale of the paintings also addresses interpretation of memory: is a small painting more personal and private, is a large painting something to be shared? With this body of work I am asking what is the truth? Is my memory the truth, or is the act of recreating a truth in itself?

Nina Ross, 'Untitled #1'

- Black Box Projects, 2015

27 October to 21 November

'Untitled #1', 2015 is a HD video drawing on the artist’s experiences using and sharing language during pregnancy and with her newborn child. Using self-portraiture performance video, this work seeks to investigate the influence of language at the beginning of an infants life and how one learns how to communicate through interactions with others before any words are spoken. Particular influence in this process and to the work itself includes researching and experiencing the origins of turn-taking in language with her own son. This exhibition at Brenda May Gallery is the premier screening of this new work in Sydney.