Here is a link to a show i just watched on the ABC Iview. This show called Artspace follows the Queensland Art Gallery contemporary art curator team as they put together a series of large installation and interactive contemporary art pieces. This was a wonderful and insightful documentary. it really demonstrates the the current movement in contemporary art especially installation works to completely immerse the audience in the material. This documentary provides a Unique insight into how a gallery is putting together these works and how they are perceive this movement. It also briefly considers how the arts consider the gallery space and how they can transform it.
It is interesting to see them describe it as audience focused exhibitions and how audiences of to day are coming to desire the challenging and interactive or immersing attributes of the works. I have noticed that this is a common theme throughout modern literature about contemporary art in this decade.
Definitely interesting viewing and i will be trying to work this in to my essay.
Sarah Contos’s studio had a warm feel despite the warehouse apperance. Her space or should i say use of space acts essentially an extension of her persona complimenting her taste and character well.
I enjoyed the distinct variation in approaches between Sarah’s work and that of Caroline’s. Sarah’s seems to make a more anthropological critic of social conventions while Caroline’s has this strong scientific undertone. When viewing Sarah’s studio pace and various works it is clear that they act almost as running commentary of social trends and entities. Her works seem playful overall entwined with dark humour and social satire communicated through imagery and representation. There are clear themes running throughout her works including the playing with masks of various forms, tribal art, public and recognisable icon, genderisation of everyday objects, as well as an inclusion of erotic and fetish based art .
Sarah’s practice includes collecting of everyday object from op shops and then manipulating the way we see it by reinventing the space around the object. Her clear tendency to manipulate the known representing them in a new way helps an audience to challenge their conventional and learnt responses to items viewing them in a new way. Hopefully those viewing these works will be challenged to rethink and reconsider how they perceive the world around them and the conventions we accept. Sometimes Sarah’s works help to make more sinister objects seem more playful, innocent and less threatening for example the laxtex mask covered in beads. at other times ordinary objects through her gendersation become more sexual in nature. For example the classify of the violin as female and the bag pipes as male. It will be interesting to see what conventions she will challenge with her piece in No Place to Hide.
I have started collating the reading i have been doing over that last few months. The below quote has really stood out. I am considering using it a central quote for my paper. I have also included some thoughts about this quote
“ Humanist investment in the power of art to profoundly move us, sharpen our empathy and add to our understanding of the world” ( Jacquiline Miller pag 8 Conceptual Beauty)
If what Jacqueline miller points out is in fact what audiences today are expecting from art it is vital to consider how art galleries and are attempting to achieve this. It is clear that it is public opinion that is the art gallery’s responsibility to source, collect and present modern art in a way that will meet the above criteria and meet expectations of audiences. it is no longer acceptable or effective for galleries to just display they are also expected to inform and communicate to the audience in a greater level than required to do so before. This increased need can be seen as a direct response to the increased availability of information in today’s oversaturated information platforms such as the world wide web. Never the less there is a strong demand on galleries to provide new insight and more information for today’s modern gallery audience. This is a demand that should be meet with new techniques and methods in order to increase outreach, understanding and encourage interaction through immersing of audiences in the artwork with the supplementary material.
After discussing and formulating a concept I set about documenting the process as much as possible. Caroline went out for coffee allowing me free reign in the studio for 20mins. I went crazy taking photos and recording footage on my tiny canon Inxus 105 digital camera. Great Christmas present thanks mum and dad . When Caroline returned I was well and truly in the flow of things. We began discussing what was in the room. The works in particular fascinate me. The works look soft and textured but are in fact hard solid metal with no give. It is amazing how your brain tries to tackle and make sense of the contradictory image it is seeing and the learnt response to certain shapes, textures and images. It is only through the actual use of touch are you able to finally make cohesion of the contradiction. This must be awful for those in the galleries as they are typically not allowed to touch but you almost have a compulsion to do so just to make sense of what is portrayed before you. I am indeed lucky to have this opportunity in the studio to finally reconcile my sense of sight and my brain my including the addition of touch. It really does make you think about the power of the senses and the brain especially in regards to its learnt responses and the way it reacts to certain stimuli. This is experience is definitely deepening my understand of the works and really appreciating Caroline’s love and inclusion of scientific concepts in her work.
Foe the next 3 hrs we worked side by side. Caroline continuing her routine and work and I documenting as much as possible via, photo, filming or writing down quotes until my camera ran out of space and battery. The best part was when Caroline began to experiment with material in her studio. I stood by and filmed the process in a series of stages. Over the next few weeks I will by uploading the images and footage I feel would be best to share. I will be also selecting the footage that might be most useful for the end product. I will send the pictures to Jacqueline so she can begin her collage.
A special mention should be mad to Muddy the friendly dog who belongs to the artist upstairs who owns the studio space. He was a great and unique addition to the scene