• Hugo Michell Gallery Open: WORD | A group exhibition featuring text-based work.

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of WORD, an ambitious group exhibition presenting text-based work from nearly 30 artists.

    Featuring: Abdul Abdullah, Roy Ananda, Brook Andrew, Narelle Autio, David Booth [Ghostpatrol], Jon Campbell, James Dodd, Will French, Tony Garifalakis, Lucas Grogan, Kate Just, Anastasia Klose, Sue Kneebone, Alice Lang, Richard Lewer, Sophia Nuske, Nana Ohnesorge, Trent Parke, Philjames, Kenny Pittock, Toby Pola, Tom Polo, Elvis Richardson, Derek Sargent, Paul Sloan, Sera Waters, Gerry Wedd, Min Wong, and Paul Yore.

    From raw mark-making to a choreographed line, text allows us to transfer ideas and connect universally. It is a coded form of communication that negotiates language and dialect. WORD presents a library of pithy phrases and sensitive secrets that span the entire gallery.

    Please join us on Thursday the 30th of August to celebrate.

    See the Facebook event here.

    Richard Lewer, Why do we have to clean before the cleaner comes, 2018, acrylic on pegboard, 38 x 79 cm, for WORD at Hugo Michell Gallery

    Image: Richard Lewer, Why do we have to clean before the cleaner comes, 2018, acrylic on pegboard, 38 x 79 cm

    Sue Kneebone, Way too Tough, 2018, Giclée Print, 84 x 119 cm, Edition of 5 + 2APs, for WORD at Hugo Michell Gallery

    Image: Sue Kneebone, Way too Tough, 2018, Giclée Print, 84 x 119 cm, Edition of 5 + 2APs

  • Justine Varga in TarraWarra Biennial 2018

    Justine Varga has been selected alongside nearly 30 artists for the TarraWarra Biennial 2018: From Will to Form. Varga will exhibit six photographic pieces including three from her most recent series Photogenic Drawing. From Will to Form is accompanied by a range of performances, artist talks and a comprehensive catalogue, providing audiences with a variety of contemporary art experiences.

    From throwing liquid bronze to whistling for three days straight, the TarraWarra Biennial 2018: From Will to Form considers how the wild, intangible forces that animate behaviour might be present within an artwork.

    For the sixth TarraWarra Biennial, 23 artists and one artist group from across Australia will present anarchic and persistent energies in a range of sculpture, painting, performance and film works. For some artists, will is drawn from a relationship to country and earth, while for others it is channeled through the psyche. Other artists highlight the role of the body as either a conduit for, or a concealer of, wilful forces.

    The Biennial includes 19 new commissions, performance events and works that refigure the spaces of TarraWarra Museum of Art itself, including Bidjara, Ghangalu and Garingbal artist Dale Harding’s site-specific 30m-long painting on the renowned Vista Walk wall as well as new works from Vicki Couzens, Claire Lambe, Michelle Ussher, Mike Parr and Rob McLeish among many others.

    TarraWarra Biennial 2018: From Will to Form artists:

    Belle Bassin (VIC); Vicki Couzens (VIC); Naomi Eller (VIC); Artists from Erub Arts (Torres Strait); Starlie Geikie (VIC); Agatha Gothe-Snape (NSW); Julie Gough (TAS); Dale Harding (QLD); Claire Lambe (VIC); Lindy Lee (NSW); Bridie Lunney (VIC); Rob McLeish (VIC); John Meade (VIC); Sanné Mestrom (VIC); Alison Murray (QLD); Michelle Nikou (SA); Kusum Normoyle (NSW); Mike Parr (NSW); Michael Snape (NSW); Hiromi Tango (NSW); Fairy Turner (WA); Michelle Ussher (NSW); Justine Varga (NSW); Isadora Vaughan (VIC).

    For more information, visit, TarraWarra Biennial until November 6.

    Image: Justine Varga, Post Impression, 2017, c type photograph, 158.5 x 122 cm, edition of 5

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: Tim Sterling | Yarrenyty Arltere Artists

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of Tim Sterling’s ‘Tactile Site’ and the Yarrenyty Arltere Artists’ ‘We use our Kapurta (heads) for looking after things’. From July 19 until August 25.

    In ‘Tactile Site’, Tim Sterling’s intricate drawings and sculptures of architectural forms are used as analogies for agoraphobia. Sterling’s work invites audiences to examine intrinsic patterns within mass representation.

    Sterling received The Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship in 2004, attending the Sandberg Instituut in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Sterling has exhibited widely, including at the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia, the Australian Experimental Art Foundation, and the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art.

    In their second exhibition at Hugo Michell Gallery, the Yarrenyty Arltere Artists present ‘We use our Kapurta (heads) for looking after things’, featuring new work by Marlene Rubuntja, Trudy Inkamala, Louise Robertson, Rosabella Ryder, Rhonda Sharpe, Roxanne Petrick, and Dulcie Sharpe.

    “Sometimes you see on TV those people on safari in Africa, their heads just popping out over those cut-out cars, looking out to what’s going on all around them: Looking out for animals. Well we thought that’s what we do with our Kapurta, we look out for everyone here at Yarrenyty Arltere. When we are working at the art centre, when we are sitting at home, and when we are driving around: We use our heads for looking out for each other, for thinking, for ideas, and for watching with our eyes making sure everyone is safe.

    So we made these 6 big Kapurta and we thought they can watch all the other soft sculptures when they go to Adelaide, the people, and the animals. Like on safari, but from our country, from our own Town Camp, from our own ideas.”

    Please join us on Thursday the 19th in celebrating these two incredible exhibitions!

    Image: Tim Sterling, Besser Brick 3, 2018, cable ties and paper clips, 17.5 x 24 x 44 cm


    Image: Marlene Rubuntja, Dog 1, 2018, mixed media, 25 x 37 x 9 cm

  • Hugo Michell Gallery Open: James Darling & Lesley Forwood | Sue Kneebone

    Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of James Darling & Lesley Forwood’s ‘Living Rocks: A Fragment of the Universe’ and Sue Kneebone’s ‘Spurious Natures’.

    ‘Living Rocks: A Fragment of the Universe’ is a transportive and exceptionally ambitious installation, achieved in collaboration with Jumpgate VR and the Australian String Quartet.

    On a trip to the Limestone Coast, an ecologist informed Darling and Forwood they would find thrombolites; rare rock-like microbial structures which, when emerged from beneath water, photosynthesize. Thrombolites and stromatolites are both microbialites whose structures colonise lake floors and which, over billions of years, supplied the first large quantities of oxygen to the atmosphere of our planet.

    Darling and Forwood have responded to the extraordinary natural structures with an expansive and evolutionary installation, which includes flooding two-thirds of the seventeen-metre-long gallery. In collaboration with Jumpgate VR, the artists have generated a landscape spanning 3 billion years. ‘Living Rocks’ also features an original score composed by Paul Stanhope, recorded by the Australian String Quartet at UKARIA Cultural Centre.

    Sue Kneebone’s interdisciplinary practice seeks to draw the viewer in to consider insidious subtexts such as disturbed ecologies and dispossession from colonial incursions. A combination of field trips and archival research into her family past have fostered a deeper understanding of the inherited and ongoing legacies of colonial settler culture. This landscape of contrasting brutality and gentrification has inspired a broader personal investigation of this colonising period. Her works seek to reflect the duplicitous nature of colonial settler culture entangled in the shadowy undercurrents of the past that still resonate today.

    ‘Spurious Natures’ taps into the current state of eco-anxiety by exploring the relational disconnect between the colonial-settler body and its environment. Through these works, Sue Kneebone explores the affective nature of her colonial ancestors, already afflicted by chronic illness before emigrating to South Australia in the 1850s. This was a time when nineteenth-century British doctors held the underlying assumption that disease developed if one’s bodily constitution was irritated, imbalanced, or out of harmony with its environment. The temperate climate in the southern parts of Australia developed a reputation as a potential restorative haven for those with consumption and other delicacies of the chest. Despite this hope, many colonial emigrants succumbed to their illness within a few years of arriving in Adelaide (Kaurna Country). In ‘Spurious Natures’, a tide of colonial pathos left over from failed self-cures and anthropogenic neglect has been expressed through the tremulous tensions held within these mixed media tableaux.

    Please join us on June 14 to celebrate these incredible South Australian artists.

    Image: James Darling & Lesley Forwood’s Living Rocks: A Fragment of the Universe at Hugo Michell Gallery 2018


    Image: Sue Kneebone, Carrier Class, 2018, cement, grey rock pigeon wings & metal platters, 90 x 120 cm approximately

  • 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.