• Hugo Michell Gallery Open: The Sunshine Suite & Yarrenyty Arltere Artists

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of ‘The Sunshine Suite’ Featuring Jon Campbell, Nadine Christensen, Tony Garifalakis, Richard Lewer, Rob McHaffie & Fiona McMonagle + ‘Creature Collection’ featuring Yarrenyty Arltere Artists’.

    Six Melbourne artists show new lithographs in The Sunshine Suite exhibiting concurrently at Hugo Michell Gallery, Adelaide and Darren Knight Gallery, Sydney. Organiser Jon Campbell has brought together fellow artists and friends, Nadine Christensen, Tony Garifalakis, Richard Lewer, Rob McHaffie and Fiona McMonagle for this project.

    This is the first time any of the artists have worked in the medium of lithography. Their practices are diverse but usually involve drawing, painting or making three dimensional objects in individual studios. The printmaking process is different in that it is often collaborative, artists using lithographic crayon to make an original image on a metal plate or slab of limestone which is then chemically fixed, inked, printed and editioned by an experienced or ‘master’ printmaker, in this instance, Adrian Kellett of Sunshine Editions.  Kellet also encouraged the artists to experiment with spray paint on acetate, acrylic paint and ink on acetate, paper stencils and transparent inks that further extended the possibilities of lithography and produced new and exciting outcomes.

    Rob McHaffie reflects on the process:

    Drawing directly on the lithograph plate was a refreshing experience. You can’t rub out mistakes so once a line is down there’s no turning back. The texture of the plate means that the litho crayons move slow and steady across the plate so for me it was an awakening experience. After completing the drawing I wanted to add colour, which meant separating the image into 3 suitable colours and blocking in those areas on separate plastic sheets that could then be transferred and printed on top of one another. The whole process of transferring the drawing and colours is still a complete mystery that I cannot fathom and is a credit to Adrian Kellett. The final prints pick up every tiny mark that I made during the production of the images.

    Kellett has worked as a technician in the printmaking department of the Victorian College of Arts, Melbourne since 1999. He undertook a twelve month printer training program at the renowned Tamarind Institute at the University New Mexico in 2012. During this period of intensive study he decided to focus on collaborative lithographic projects and to set up a dedicated studio. The result is his newly established workshop located in the Melbourne suburb of Sunshine.

    The exhibition at Hugo Michell Gallery will run from 6 April until 20 May, and at Darren Knight Gallery from 8 April until 13 May 2017.


    When we came back from that long summer break we were so happy to see each other. Some of us had been a long way away, maybe all the way across the ocean. And some of us were lucky to sit down out bush watching the desert turn green, the rivers flow and the air drip thick with humidity. Some of us sat down at home in Alice Springs in our Town Camp, Yarrenyty Arltere. It was quiet some days and noisy other times. It was good but then we got started in our heads to want to have the art room open. We were thinking in our minds of all the things we could make. We were thinking we are ready now to start sewing. To get all those stories and all those ideas from our heads and make them come alive into our hands with the wool and the needles and the blankets. So when we opened the door first for 2017 and switched on that air con and flicked on that kettle and said hello and started making, well everything seemed to just settle down in the right way. We all felt happy and strong welcoming each other back and so all these creatures, this whole collection just came rushing out of us because we had us all back together, in our room, doing what we love so much, sewing up our stories, together.

    Please join us in celebrating these two fantastic group exhibitions on the 6th of April!

    The Sunshine Suite

    Image: Richard Lewer, Richards Disasters (Sam), 2017, Lithograph, 56.5 x 46 cm edition of 10

    Image: Rhonda Sharpe, Warrior, 2017, mixed media of woolen blankets embellished with wool, found objects, 74 x 33 x 9 cm

  • The National 2017: New Australian Art – Richard Lewer

    The National 2017: New Australian Art will be launching across multiple sights on the 30th of March. Featuring 48 artists working across a range of mediums, 2017 will be the first series of exhibitions biannually, over a six-year period. Spanning across three Sydney locations: the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Carriageworks and the Museum of Contemporary Art.

    A six-year initiative over three editions in 2017, 2019 and 2021, the curatorial vision for the exhibition represents a mix of emerging, mid-career and established artists drawn from around the country and Australian artists practicing overseas. New and commissioned works encompass a diverse range of mediums including painting, video, sculpture, installation, drawing and performance.

    Richard Lewer will present a newly commissioned video piece which examines the 1983 death in custody of a 16 year old Yindjibarndi boy, John Pat. Titled ‘Never Shall Be Forgotten – A Mother’s Story’ Lewer presents the work from (John’s mother) Mavis Pat’s perspective. Lewers commitment to research and story-telling is evident in his ernest presentation of drawing, animation and photography.

    Richard Lewer on his piece:

    “My practice deals with contemporary social realism; exploring sub-cultures, fraternity, alienation, and as part of this, I’m interested in experimenting with notions of the artist’s role as commentator or interpreter, which sometimes involves discussing awkward or taboo issues. A key component of my practice is exploring the relationship between studio activity and life outside the studio, and I’m often creatively motivated by my personal response to and active engagement with my subject matter through research and participation. Recent examples of this are bodies of work made during and after immersion in Aboriginal communities in Gumbalimba in the Northern Territory and Parnngurr in the Western Desert, WA; and the Fly-In-Fly-Out mining community in Karratha, WA.  Participation in endurance-based performances (such as large scale wall drawings, boxing and wood-chopping) and the participation of others in the creation of my work is also an integral part of my practice.

    The work I proposed to make for the National is a 10-min video animation which continues my examination of extreme behaviour and the resilience of the human condition. I started to look into the subject and wider issues when I was in Karratha researching the impact of FIFO culture on the region. My research led me to look into John Pat’s death in police custody in 1983, and I painted a work called Remembering John Pat (2013).”

    The National 2017: New Australian Art is not to be missed, dates below. You can see Richard Lewer’s piece at Carriageworks.

    Art Gallery of NSW: 30 March – 16 July 2017

    Carriageworks: 30 March – 25 June 2017

    Museum of Contemporary Art: 30 March – 18 June 2017

    The National 2017: New Australian Art

    For more information click here.

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: Paul Yore & Will French

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of Paul Yore’s ‘OBSCENE’ + Will French’s ‘AU WOP BOP A LOO BOP A WOP BAM BOOM!’.

    OBSCENE brings together over two years of textile works by Melbourne-born artist Paul Yore, in his Adelaide debut. Ranging from intimate textual needlepoints to wall-sized collaged appliqué works, Yore excavates the bedrock of our neurotic globalised civilisation, questioning the foundational myths of Western culture and the slippery position language plays in structuring our perception of selfhood, time, reality, and sense of place in history. Yore draws on the traditions of classical Greek art, decorative Flemish and French tapestries, trashy pop-culture, gay porn, cartoons, psychedelia, and the frenzied excesses of Rococo style to build up immersive portals abounding in deconstructive linguistic riddle and iconoclastic patchworks of unabashed animalistic carnality.

    On the surface, layers of hand-sewn beads, buttons and sequins exude a sense of queer frivolity. But this glitzy skin belies darkness beneath the surface, where themes of colonial brutality, debased capitalistic vice, and the collapse of the symbolic order mingle with images of homoerotic fantasy in some kind of grandiose psychosexual melodrama.

    Sampling lyrics from Little Richard’s 1955 breakthrough hit, ‘Tutti Frutti’, this work places them in the unlikely context of a national park timber sign. Commonly recognised as a signifier for directions, this beacon instead appears to offer gibberish.’Tutti Frutti’ translates to ‘all the fruits’ in Italian; ‘Aw Rooty’ is Louisianan cadence for ‘alright’ (but in truth just sounds like ‘wanna rooty’); and ‘A wop bop a loo bop a wop bam boom’ is onomatopoeic nonsense that emulates a drum beat (but does it have far more suggestive undertones?).

    Undeniably sexy and irreverent, this song shaped the evolution of early Rock ‘n’ Roll. Capturing a wild and untamed departure from the mainstream, Rock ‘n’ roll became a soundtrack for counterculture and defiance, a search for self awareness and authenticity.

    This work presents these three phrases as alternative paths to consider.

    Please join us in celebrating these two brilliant exhibitions on the 2nd of March at 6pm! Exhibition concludes 1st April.

    Paul Yore, See You In Hell, 2017, wool needlepoint, 30 x 48 cm

    Will French, Untitled (Documentation of an ‘L’ Plate intervention on Post Box), 2016

  • Janet Laurence commission at Australian Tapestry Workshop

    Janet Laurence is working with the Australian Tapestry Workshop to produce a new commission Listen, to the Sound of Plants. The commission is expected to be completed in late February.

    …The original artwork is comprised of images from Laurence’s extensive archive of images of plants. These have been digitally collaged photos of paint poured across glass, to create a layered transparency effect.

    ATW weavers Chris Cochius, Pamela Joyce and Cheryl Thornton have selected a wide pallet of green’s to create this tapestry, including cotton yarns – which can be used to highlight areas in tapestry. ATW yarn dyer Tong Stefanovski dyed a new range of green cottons to achieve specific tones for the weaver’s requirements.

    In Listen, to the Sound of Plants, the weavers are trying to capture the layers and use of transparencies and glass that are the hallmarks of Laurence’s work. The translation into tapestry is quite challenging for the weavers as they navigate the reflective surface elements of the design. They are working to achieve a soft watery effect by using very subtle colour mixing techniques and using many tones that are close together in the colour range.

    For full statement, click here.

    Australian Tapestry Workshop

    Listen, to the Sound of Plants in progress.


    Australian Tapestry Workshop

    Laurence gives artist talk to ATW weavers.

  • William Mackinnon – Psychological Landscapes

    New short film titled Psychological Landscapes featuring William Mackinnon. “Each painting creates a bridge to the next one. There are no shortcuts or mistakes, it’s layers upon layers until the painting forms.” In this new short film, William Mackinnon speaks about his process and inspiration as a journey through a psychological landscape.

  • Stanislava Pinchuk [Miso], Winner: Glenfiddich Artist in Residence Prize

    Congratulations to Stanislava Pinchuk, winner of the Glenfiddich Artist in Residence Prize! Now in its fifteenth year, the Glenfiddich Artist in Residence Prize is valued at $21,000 and includes a three month residency in Dufftown, Scotland. During the residency artists are encouraged to examine the historic and scenic Scottish highlands and distillery. A piece will be acquired by Glenfiddich for the permanent collection as a result of the the residency.

    Read more about the residency here!

    Press:The AustralianThe AU Review


    Image: Stanislava Pinchuk, Fukushima (detail), 2016, pin-holes on paper, 75 x 101 cm

  • Sera Waters, Winner of the Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016

    Sera Waters has been announced as the WINNER of the Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016! A huge congratulations to Sera, for taking out this $15,000 acquisitive prize.

    “The Heysen Prize was established by the Hahndorf Academy in 1997 to commemorate the nationally and internationally eminent local artist, Sir Hans Heysen (1877-1968).

    Sir Hans Heysen had a deep connection with the Australian landscape and is famous for his paintings and drawings of Hahndorf in the Adelaide hills, and the Flinders Ranges. He documented village life in Hahndorf and conserved the mature gums in the surrounding area. Because of the implied realism of his pictures, many think of his art as literal depictions of the landscape that existed in front of him.”

    You can see her winning work along with the other finalists at the Hahndorf Academy until December 4th. More details here

    Sera Waters, Fritz and the rose garden, 2014, felt, hand-dyed calico and string, cotton, wool, hand-made stones, trim, approximately, 300 x 200 cm

    Image: Sera Waters, Fritz and the rose garden, 2014, felt, hand-dyed calico and string, cotton, wool, hand-made stones, trim, approximately, 300 x 200 cm

  • Dodd, Sloan and Waters in Heysen Prize

    Congratulations to James Dodd, Paul Sloan and Sera Waters who have all been selected as finalists in the Heysen Prize for Landscape 2016. Established in 1997 by the Hahndorf Academy, the Heysen Prize commemorates the life and career of renown Australian landscape painter Sir Hans Heysen.

    This acquisitive, biennial prize is worth $15,000 and will be exhibited at the Hahndorf Academy from the 8th of October till the 4th of December. The winner will be announced at the launch on Saturday the 8th of October.

    For more information, click here.


    Image: James Dodd, Mildura Boys, 2016, acrylic on linen, 56 x 150 cm

    Paul Sloan, I'm going to tell my children's children #2, 2016, Gouache on paper, 75 x 60 cm

    Image: Paul Sloan, I’m going to tell my children’s children #2, 2016, Gouache on paper, 75 x 60 cm

    Sera Waters, Fritz and the rose garden, 2014, felt, hand-dyed calico and string, cotton, wool, hand-made stones, trim, approximately, 300 x 200 cm

    Image: Sera Waters, Fritz and the rose garden, 2014, felt, hand-dyed calico and string, cotton, wool, hand-made stones, trim, approximately, 300 x 200 cm

  • Janet Laurence in 56th October Salon and XIII Bienal de Cuenca

    Congratulations to Janet Laurence who has been selected to participate in the 56th October Salon in Belgrade, The Pleasure of Love: Transient Emotion in Contemporary Art and the XIII Bienal de Cuenca: Fragile. 

    56th October Salon, Belgrade

    The 56th October Salon in Belgrade, The Pleasure of Love: Transient Emotion in Contemporary Art will feature Janet Laurence alongside fellow Australian artist Tracy Moffatt. Curated by David Elliot, the 56th October Salon includes 60 artists both emerging and established, Laurence will be exhibiting two major works Underlying (2016) and Vanishing (2009).

    “Laurence explores what it might mean to heal, albeit metaphorically, the natural environment. Trees are the lungs of our cities – they exchange carbon dioxide and oxygen – and they usually live for several generations. Today, however, very old trees are dying in our cities, while the crops and fields in the outback have been transformed into vast barren expanses. Janet Laurence fuses this sense of communal loss with a search for connection with powerful life-forces. Her work alerts us to the subtle dependencies between water, life, culture and nature in our eco-system. In the face of this, we yearn for a form of alchemy, for the power of enchantment or transformation. It seems that the only place for that sensation is the place of art. In the tradition of Joseph Beuys, and some of the Arte Povera artists from the 1960s, such as Jannis Kounellis or Mario Merz, Janet Laurence reminds us that art can act as a kind of transformation point for ideas and it can provoke its audience into a renewed awareness about our environment.” – Victoria Lynn

    Exhibition runs from 23 September to 6 November 2016

    For more information click here.

    XIII Bienal de Cuenca

    Janet Laurence will also exhibit in the XIII Bienal de Cuenca in a parallel exhibition Fragile curated by Natalia Bradshaw. This marks the first time Australian artists have been included in the Bienal de Cuenca, Laurence will be exhibiting alongside fellow Australian artists Maria Fernanda Cardoso, Reko Rennie and Caroline Rothwell.

    “…Janet Laurence too explores impermanence, transparency and opacity Within her presentation for Cuenca. Known for her elegiac installations That address pressing environmental issues, she explores the physiology of medicinal plants from Ecuador and Their vital relationship to the human world Through This new, site-specific work. A long table supports glass vials, plastic tubing and laboratory equipment plant alongside locally sourced samples, all partially concealed (or Alternately revealed) fabric beneath a white veil. The imperiled state of the natural world, due to human intervention and catastrophe, is a recurring theme Within Laurence’s practice. All living things are Interrelated, she points out, and if we continue to treat the natural world With disregard, we will impact our own future survival as a species. Recently, Laurence has Explored the concept of the hospital as a space for the rehabilitation of plants and ecosystems under threat. The incorporation of laboratory equipment and white gauze in her works, treats including Cuenca, Suggests a space for healing and resuscitation.Through This new work, themes of interdependence and equilibrium are Brought to the fore, offering a sustainable future if we choose to acknowledge our own fragility and place Within the wider scheme of things.” – Rachel Kent, Chief Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Sydney, Australia

    Exhibition runs from 21 October to 31 December 2016

    For more information click here.

    56th October Salon XIII Bienal de Cuenca

    Janet Laurence, Underlying, 2016, Installation, The Pleasure of Love: Transient Emotion in Contemporary Art, Belgrade

    Image: Janet Laurence, Underlying, 2016, Installation, The Pleasure of Love: Transient Emotion in Contemporary Art, Belgrade


  • Lisa Roet’s Golden Monkey in Bejing

    Lisa Roet’s Golden Monkey has been installed in Bejing on The Opposite House. This large inflatable monkey measures an impressive 45 ft high and is manufactured out of gold thread.  The installation is designed to inspire thought about our connections with primates exploring similarities, acceptance and peace.

    Roet has collaborated with Inflatable Design and Felipe Reynolds and the project was supported by the City of Melbourne Arts Grants Program, The Australian Embassy, Creative Victoria, Asia Link and Australia-China Council. 

    Check out the press coverage here: Wallpaper | The Opposite House | Asia Link

    Golden Monkey in Bejing

    Image: Lisa Roet, Golden Monkey, 2016, mixed media inflatable installation on The Opposite House