• Archibald and Wynne Prize

    Congratulations to Fiona McMonagle who has been selected as a finalist in the Archibald Prize! Our Congratulations also extend to William Mackinnon who has been selected as a finalist in both the Archibald and Wynne Prize!

    You can see the finalists exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales from May 12 to September 9 with the winner to be announced on May 11.

    Archibald Prize Finalist – William Mackinnon, The long apprenticeship, 2018, acrylic, oil and automotive enamel on linen, 95 x 125.5 cm

    William Mackinnon’s painting is a self-portrait. ‘For many years, I got jobs in a self-styled apprenticeship where I could learn from exceptional artists,’ he says. ‘I watched Jeffrey Smart paint, helped catalogue the Roger Kemp estate, worked as Tim Maguire’s studio assistant, and as Kim Westcott’s printmaking assistant. I was an intern at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice and at Donald Judd’s Chinati Foundation in Texas.’

    In 2010, Mackinnon was a field officer at Papunya Tula, an Aboriginal artist cooperative in the Western Desert. ‘That is where this image comes from. Sitting with Naata Nungurrayi, 500km west of Alice Springs, mixing her paint and watching her sing and paint, was an extraordinary privilege,’ he says.

    At age 28, Mackinnon went to the Chelsea College of Arts in London, then completed a Master of Arts at the Victorian College of the Arts. He now lives between Melbourne and Spain, and paints full-time. ‘Looking back, it’s not a bad CV but at the time it was precarious and disjointed. I want that to come across in the painting. As an artist, you have to live by your wits, create opportunities and find your own voice. It is scary at times but an incredibly rewarding way to be in the world.’

    This is Mackinnon’s first time in the Archibald Prize and the second year in a row he has been a finalist in the Wynne Prize.

    Archibald Prize Finalist – Fiona McMonagle, Sangeeta Sandrasegar, 2018, oil on linen, 101.5 x 88.5 cm

    Dr Sangeeta Sandrasegar is a Melbourne artist currently based in Germany. Born in Brisbane to Malaysian and Australian parents, she spent the first part of her life between both countries before settling in Melbourne where she studied at the Victorian College of the Arts. She has exhibited nationally and internationally since 2000.

    ‘When I first began the process of choosing a sitter, I knew one thing: that I wanted to paint an inspiring, strong woman, also one that I connected with. It just so happened that one of my closest friends fitted the bill perfectly,’ says Fiona McMonagle of her first Archibald portrait.

    ‘Our close friendship has allowed me to be privy to her innermost thoughts and I believe this has given me the insight to paint her from the inside out, looking past her physical beauty and gentle nature to uncover her true strength and determination.

    ‘On approaching this portrait, I wanted to capture all the complexities that make up Sangeeta’s personality and directly confront the viewer as if to say: “Don’t underestimate me”. Her face is partly covered by her hair so as not to reveal too much and to suggest she is keeping just a bit to herself.’

    Wynne Prize Finalist – William Mackinnon, The Lucky Country?, 2018, acrylic, oil and enamel on linen, 201 x 300 cm

    This painting depicts me as a field officer for Papunya Tula, during a time where I spent two years in central Australia and the Kimberley, mixing paint for the great artist Naata Nungurrayi in Kintore. It was the time when I came to understand the significance and depth of Aboriginal culture (Pintupi culture in this case) and their true connection to country.

    The contemporary reality is bleak. But times were also tempered with amazing people really trying to help heal what is still an open wound caused by colonisation, trauma and disenfranchisement. It is very complex, and that is what I am trying to get across here. The nuances.

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: Lisa Roet | Emmaline Zanelli

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of Lisa Roet’s ‘Moment In Time’ and Emmaline Zanelli’s ‘Looks Like A Fish, Tastes Like A Lizard’.

    For over two decades Lisa Roet has won acclaim in Australia and internationally for her powerful investigations into the complex interface between humans and our simian relatives.

    Bathing Snow Monkeys (Japanese Macaque) have been cited in recent scientific journals for exhibiting learned evolutionary behaviour. Bathing for these monkeys only began after observing humans in man made pools at a resort in the 1960s. Roet’s sculptures depict a glowing surface, achieved though a complex heating process, mimicking the effect that the hot springs have on the colour of the monkeys faces. For Roet, these works represent a fleeting moment in time, where a touch and a movement communicates the shared human condition.

    Emmaline Zanelli’s ‘Looks Like A Fish, Tastes Like A Lizard’ examines the research of prehistoric life performed by a domestic paleontology enthusiast. The artist uses collected stories of scientific experiments conducted in the paleontology lab and animation studio as inspiration for scenes of backyard research: a polystyrene microscope ready for printed live blood cells; an Ichthyosaur built of papier-mâché National Geographic images swimming above the piano; a character using a stock photo elephant to imagine the gait of a sauropod; plasticine bones in a vinyl creek bed waiting for scanning to become animated. These are latent experiments independent of any employer or institution. Processes used in professional environments to imagine and decipher life before humans are referenced and used throughout the work, melded with home-invented methods. ‘Looks Like a Fish, Tastes Like a Lizard’ depicts the effects that images have on our collective perception of nature, and the – at times ridiculous – human endeavour to understand and recreate it.

    Please join us on Thursday May 3 to celebrate these two incredible exhibitions.

    Image: Lisa Roet, Untitled, 2018, bronze

    Image: Emmaline Zanelli, Fern Eater, 2018, giclee print on smooth cotton, 84.1 x 59.4 cm, edition of 5

  • Autio and Parke win Imagine VR Award

    Congratulations to Narelle Autio, Trent Parke, Matthew Bate (Closer Productions), and collaborator Anton Andreacchio (Jumpgate VR) for winning the Imagine Film Festival, Imagine VR Award for ‘The Summation of Force’!

    In their creative collaboration, Parke and Autio turn their gaze to the possibilities of filmic narrative, and look to family and sport for subject material. In a moonlit suburban yard, two brothers battle one another in a mythic game of cricket. A study of the motion, physics and psychology of elite sport; a cosmic, dreamlike and darkly beautiful metaphor for life.

    This is the inaugural award at Imagine Film Festival for a virtual reality piece.

  • Elvis Richardson in Kyneton Contemporary Art Triennial

    Elvis Richardson is exhibiting in the inaugural Kyneton Contemporary Art Triennial (KCAT), launching Friday April 13.
    Artworks by ten Australian artists will be on display in unusual sites all over Kyneton.

    Artist Lifestyle presents machine style, hand painted, enamel on aluminum, for shiny, capitalist marketing promises, both a sales pitch and a word of warning, depending on the target audience.  Is the artist lifestyle for you?  Anagrams of Artist Lifestyle feature on each panel and together mysteriously unpack a hidden truthfulness, underlying expectations and assumed promises within its self referential reshuffled letters.

    The words generated seem to speak directly to the contested social and economic value of art and the role of being an artist today.  Artist lifestyle questions how personal, civic and national identity are formulated around artistic acts, objects and events.

    Artist Lifestyle installed like real estate signs in the Kyneton Triennale comments on the global phenomenon of gentrification which is a localised form of colonialism where economically disadvantaged residents are forced to move on and out of neighborhoods and communities they contributed to developing to accommodate a new set of property owners.  The artists implication in the process of gentrification is being the visible beacon to property investors and developers to make their moves.

    Image: Elvis Richardson, ‘Fits Retail Style’, 2018, from ‘Artist Lifestyle’, painted enamel on metal, 120 x 80 cm

  • Sally Bourke joins Hugo Michell Gallery as a Represented Artist

    Hugo Michell Gallery welcomes the addition of Sally Bourke to our represented artists!

    Sally Bourke is a Newcastle based artist with a firm footing in painting, incorporating a range of techniques producing incredibly profound outcomes. An obsessive maker, Bourke has a rigorous approach to her day-to-day studio practice. These habitual processes are evident in her paintings which often depict an image archive reconciling experiences from the past. Though abstract, Bourke’s paintings are curiously recognisable, a celebration of personal encounter and memory.

    Selected group and solo exhibitions include Artist Focus at Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, Lake Macquarie (2018); Yarn, Newcastle University Gallery, Newcastle (2017); Brutal, The Lock Up Art Space, Newcastle (2017); Opening the Box, Tamworth Regional Art Gallery, Tamworth (2013); An Open Secret, Cessnock Regional Art Gallery, Cessnock (2013); MARITIME, The Lock Up, Newcastle (2011); Latitude, The Lock Up Art Space, Newcastle (2008) and Pandora’s Box, Newcastle Art Space, Newcastle (2006).

    We congratulate Sally on all her achievements and we are thrilled to work with her in the future.

  • Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra

    Buku-Larrnggay Mulka and Hugo Michell Gallery are humbled to present the final body of work by Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra, Mokuy.

    Out of respect for the passing of Wunuŋmurra last week and to honor the wishes of the his family, Mokuy will open on Thursday March 22. Please join us in celebrating the life and career of esteemed artist, Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra.

    For full tribute by Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre Co-ordinator, Will Stubbs via Artlink Magazine, click here.

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: James Dodd | Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of James Dodd’s ‘Miller’ and Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra’s ‘Mokuy’.

    The miller is a person who operates a mill, a machine traditionally employed to grind cereal into flour. Milling is one of the oldest human occupations. The mill, in essence, is any machine that processes materials via rotational grinding, crushing or cutting. Mills operate to serve a range of industries and outcomes – in this case -the mill is used to facilitate painting.

    James Dodd’s thumbs have been busy operating the joysticks of a remote controller sending signals to a range of cordless drills variously attached to a kind of cobbled together gantry comprised of an old bicycle, roller blades and a variety of aluminium and timber pieces. This is the Painting Mill. Dodd has been working his Painting Mill project through a range of outcomes and presentations over recent years, experimenting with approaches and applications, developing an intimacy with his machine and it’s range of lurches and oscillations. His thumbs correspondingly channel accumulated and inherent understandings of painting substrates, pigments, mediums, viscosity, velocity and momentum.

    Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra present’s his latest body of work ‘Mokuy’.

    “The mokuy or nanuk (spirits) come in together, Dhuwa and Yirritja to the sacred ground called Balambala, past Gangan, the other side for all the mokuy to get together. The spirits go there and that’s where they make the yidaki sound. It’s like showing Yukuwa (sacred yam emblem) and Morning Star feathers – they are different. Like same goes with yidaki, different sounds for Yirritja and Dhuwa. The Yirritja and Dhuwa play yidaki to call in the Mokuy to the same ground Balambala. The Yirritja mokuy come in on the birds, djilawurr (scub fowl) and bugutj-bugutj (banded fruit dove). The Dhuwa mokuy they come in from rangi side (saltwater).”

    Please join us in celebrating these two artists and their latest exhibitions on the 22nd of March!


    Image: James Dodd, Mill Painting (Blue and Pink), 2018, acrylic on canvas, 96 x 96 cm framed

  • David Booth [Ghostpatrol] in Adelaide Biennial

    The 2018 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art launches this week at the Art Gallery of South Australia and features a new installation by David Booth [Ghostpatrol].

    Curated by Erica Green, Divided Worlds  ‘recognises that we live in troubled times. However, rather than foretelling conflict, the focus has been on assembling an exhibition that celebrates the enduring role of art and culture. Divided Worlds offers an opportunity to experience an alternative dimension – one where “difference” is the natural order of things, and a strength to be celebrated’.

    “For ‘Divided Worlds’, Booth brings his world into contact with ours. His universe sweeps across the Art Gallery of South Australia walls, inviting visitors to momentarily relax the boundaries between fact and fiction by conflating elements from the two.”

    David Booth [Ghostpatrol] will also be participating in START at the Gallery. Experience a live painting demonstration in the Sculpture Courtyard on Sunday 4 March, 11am – 3pm.

    Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: 3 March – 3 June 2018

    Image: David Booth [Ghostpatrol], ‘Power Up Desk Frisk’ (detail), 2017-18, watercolour and pencil on paper, 69.5 x 95 cm.

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: Richard Lewer | Sally Bourke

    History of Australia’ and Sally Bourke’s ‘Tall Tales and True’.

    “Over the last few years I’ve read, researched, listened to oral histories, travelled extensively, and interviewed many people, all with the aim of immersing myself in Australia and Australian culture. Giving context to the time that I live in in Australia, I am considering its history, politics, culture, people, et cetera.” – Richard Lewer

    Representing the culmination of a period of research, Lewer’s latest body of work, ‘The History of Australia’, projects a national narrative. Throughout his career, Lewer’s visual outcomes have examined the intricacies of social narratives, and offered an immersive view of experience and community. However, ‘The History of Australia’ forms a broader chronicle, summoning the chorus to which these findings contribute. ‘The History of Australia’ provides documentation and an understanding of events that Lewer believes have shaped the Australia we live in today.

    ‘Tall Tales and True’ by Sally Bourke is a container for oral histories with unbelievable elements. The narrator seems to have been included in its’ stories. The silent glances of the characters belie the gravity of its heroes. Perhaps even at the expense of the truth. The painted protagonists of ‘Tall Tales and True’ ride the spectrum between Veritas, gossip, and the ironic solitude of the echo chamber.

    Please join us in celebrating these two incredible exhibitions and our first of 2018!

    Image: Richard Lewer, The History of Australia (detail), 2017, oil on steel, copper, brass, 720 x 141 cm

    Image: Sally Bourke, Black Sheep, 2017, oil & acrylic on archival mount board 104 x 84 cm

  • The Summation of Force – Sundance Film Festival Selection

    Congratulations to Narelle Autio, Trent Parke, Matthew Bate, and Anton Andreacchio, the team behind The Summation of Force. Officially selected for the Sundance Film Festival: Mobile VR Lineup, The Summation of Force will be exhibited in January 2018 alongside an extensive international festival program.

    In their creative collaboration, Parke and Autio turn their gaze to the possibilities of filmic narrative, and look to family and sport for subject material. In a moonlit suburban yard, two brothers battle one another in a mythic game of cricket. A study of the motion, physics and psychology of elite sport; a cosmic, dreamlike and darkly beautiful metaphor for life.

    Previous iterations of the video piece were exhibited during 2017 at the Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art and in for the first time in VR (virtual reality) at the Adelaide Film Festival.