We’re thrilled to see that Paul Sloan’s majestic, mirrored pigeon has become an overnight icon for South Australia! The 2.3 m tall sculpture, which was unveiled on 6 November, has been drawing record crowds to Adelaide’s Rundle Mall.
Simply titled ‘Pigeon’, the striking work sits in good company close to Bert Flugelman’s ‘Spheres’ and Lyndon Dadswell’s ‘Progress.’
‘Pigeon’ is the world’s first large-scale, permanent public artwork of the internationally omnipresent bird. It is also Paul’s first major public art work.
Commissioned in 2019 as part of the City of Adelaide’s Gawler Place Upgrade, it is one of the city’s most significant commissions in recent times.
Paul is interested in examining that which often escapes our attention. Ubiquitous, yet often overlooked the sculpture elevates the humble pigeon to the realm of awe and wonder.
For many years, Paul has studied the form and symbolism of this common bird. For him, the pigeon speaks of migration and immigration, it connects the urban realm to the natural world, suggests navigation and homing instincts, reminds us of the messages and news we bring each other, and is a unifying feature of cities across the globe.
Birds, navigation, history and the natural world are all enduring themes of exploration in Paul’s work, as are geometric abstraction and mirrored surfaces.
Through the poetry of geometry and the escapism of the spectacle, this sculpture playfully disrupts the everyday. Through its mirrored surfaces, it reflects its viewer, environment and surrounding architecture while inviting closer inspection.
The work speaks of the built world (materials, structures and sculptures), of the natural world (birds and abstracted natural, geological forms), of direction, movement and mapping. It generates intrigue, makes passers-by stop, investigate, circumnavigate and explore the artwork.
Recognised as a homing pigeon from the band on its leg, the bird’s place of residence is recorded in GPS coordinates – cementing a sense of place and patriality for everything this resilient, remarkable bird symbolises.
Despite its fledgling status, for many the sensitively considered sculpture seems like it has always been in the public realm – a masterful achievement for this artist’s first major public art commission.
Congratulations to Paul!
Pictured: Paul Sloan, Pigeon, Adelaide, Australia, 2020. Sam Roberts Photography
Edit: Gallery Open as of 24 NovemberIn line with SA government direction, our gallery spaces are now temporarily closed. As always, we are accessible online and you can contact the gallery directly to receive digital materials regarding exhibitions and available works.All orders through the Hugo Michell Gallery online shop will be processed once we are able to return to the gallery.It is important for our cultural sector that we continue to support artists and creative outcomes. We extend our support and sympathy to all impacted in our community.Look forward to seeing you in person, on the other side!Pictured: Paul Yore, HANG IN THERE, 2020, Wool needlepoint, 45 x 29 cm (irreg)
Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of Elvis Richardson’s ‘Settlement and the Gatekeepers’ and Bridie Gillman’s ‘A space between walls’.*Please note*If you wish to join us for the opening of these exhibitions, RSVP is essential.Elvis Richardson’s ‘Settlement and the Gatekeepers’ is a suite of new works using painted metal and photography that expand upon previous iterations of Settlement 2016 investigating the aesthetics and personalities found in domestic interiors and access to the Australian dream of home ownership.—
Of the exhibition Bridie Gillman states: My practice is informed by ideas of place, and the ways in which experiences and memories shape our perspective of a site. Everyday observations that could be easily overlooked or forgotten are remembered and expressed in paint using colour and abstract gestures. This process of responding to past experiences from the context of my studio environment offers me different ways of connecting to a place when I am physically no longer there. Memories of a place often shift over time, with details fading and colours changing. My practice welcome’s the distortion that occurs in the process of remembering.Please join us in celebrating the launch of these two exhibitions, our final shows for the year!Exhibition Opening Thursday 11 November 6-8pm
Exhibition runs from: 11 November – 9 DecemberHugo Michell Gallery acknowledges the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region, and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.Pictured: Elvis Richardson, Settlement #3, 2020, Pink powder-coated, bent mild steel gate, 188 x 90 x 45 cmPictured: Bridie Gillman, I thought they were pretty (“Bridie, why did you buy this?”/“Bridie, kenapa kamu beli ini?”), 2020, oil on linen, 183 x 137 cm
Hugo Michell Gallery are thrilled to be presenting the work of Richard Lewer and Lucas Grogan in Sydney Contemporary Presents 2020!
“Designed to showcase art a little differently, Sydney Contemporary presents 2020 is an experiential platform that takes you on an art buying adventure from the comfort of your own home. Explore, discover and buy from over 450 artworks by 380 Australian and International artists all created in 2020. We always remember the story of when, how and why we bought an artwork so why not take this opportunity to acquire a work created during this iconic year, and support our artists.”
Running from 1-31 October.Pictured: Richard Lewer, Ground Parrot, 2020, acrylic on rusted steel (sealed), 22.5 x 30.5 cmPictured: Lucas Grogan, The Ascension, 2020, Ink, acrylic & enamel on archival mount board, 102 x 82 cm
Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of Marc Etherington’s ‘Cave Paintings’ and Pepai Jangala Carroll’s ‘Ngayulu ngaranyi nyaratja (I was standing there)’.*Please note*
– If you wish to join us for the opening of these exhibitions, RSVP is essential.Of his exhibition ‘Cave Paintings’, Marc Etherington states:
“The show is about how since moving to Canada a year and a half ago, I have been feeling a bit of isolation and missing my family and friends. It’s hard starting off in a new country. I’ve found solace is listening to Nick Cave’s music which is like listening to a familiar old friend. These paintings are about me wondering what Nick and I would get up to if we were best friends.”—“Art is also a type of memory theatre for Pepai Jangala Carroll. Although based for decades in Pukatja…Carroll’s custodial home country is his father’s country near Kintore in the Northern Territory. Carrying the recurring title of Walungurru, in this naming, like the act of painting and working in clay, is recuperative for Carroll, enabling him to call up Luritja/Pintupi country.” – Lisa Slade, 2016.Please join us in celebrating the launch of these two exhibitions!Exhibition Opening Thursday 8 October 6-8pm
Exhibition runs from: 8 October – 7 November Hugo Michell Gallery acknowledges the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region, and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.Pictured: Marc Etherington, Summertime Happiness, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 122 x 152 cmPictured: Pepai Jangala Carroll, Walungurru (664C-19), 2019, Stoneware, 35 x 22 x 15 cm
Hugo Michell Gallery welcomes the addition of Clara Adolphs to our represented artists!
Referencing abandoned photographs, Clara Adolphs works explore the notion of time and memory. She is fascinated by the question of what remains after a moment has passed.
Based in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Adolphs completed her Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts at the University of New South Wales in 2008. Adolphs has exhibited in numerous solo exhibitions in commercial and public galleries. Adolphs has also been a finalist in the Archibald and Sulman Prize.
In 2018 Adolphs was the recipient on the Eva Breuer Traveling Scholarship, travelling to Paris for a residency at the Cite International des Arts. She has also undertaken residencies at Corridor Projects, ArtSpace Mackay, Leigh Creek, The Armory, and the New York Studio Art School.
Adolphs has work in numerous private and public collections including ArtBank, Goulburn Regional Gallery and Gold Coast City Gallery.
We congratulate Clara on all of her achievements and are thrilled to be working together in the future.
Pictured: Clara Adolphs, Butterfly, 2020, oil on linen, 112 x 178 cm
Congratulations to Richard Lewer and William Mackinnon who have been announced as finalists in the 2020 Archibald Prize, presented by Art Gallery of New South Wales!
The Archibald Prize, first awarded in 1921, is Australia’s favourite art award, and one of its most prestigious. Awarded to the best portrait painting, a who’s who of Australian culture – from politicians to celebrities, sporting heroes to artists.
Pictured: Richard Lewer, Liz Laverty, 2020, acrylic on rusted steel (sealed), 140.5 x 80.5 cm
Of the work, Lewer says: “It is easy to feel an instant rapport with Elizabeth Laverty (a fellow red-head) because she is a warm, passionate, humble woman. I will always remember her response when I first asked if I could paint her portrait, “Why would you want to paint me, what have I done?”
Liz and her late husband Colin were among the first collectors to travel the country and stay in remote Aboriginal communities to visit the art centres and meet the artists of the work they were falling in love with. Over several decades, they built one of Australia’s best collections of indigenous Australian contemporary art whilst championing the artists and art centres and working tirelessly to raise money to provide dialysis centres on country and swimming pools for the communities they visited.
The portrait’s rugged materials allegorise Australia’s beautiful yet harsh outback landscape and required a physical painting process involving scrubbing and scraping of the paint and working with the mercurial rusting process until the final portrait revealed itself.”
Pictured: William Mackinnon, Sunshine and Lucky (life), 2019, acrylic and oil on linen, 220 x 160 cm
Of the work, Mackinnon says: “Birth is such an overwhelming and emotional moment. The image of one’s newborn suckling his mother’s breast is just incredible. I thought it would make a great painting, so simple but so powerful; however my emotional register was so overflowing, I was finding beauty and meaning everywhere. I let the idea and initial drawings percolate then last year revisited the subject, working in quite a realistic way, which didn’t capture the intensity. I began using collage and included pieces of fabric from the gown Sunshine wore at the birth and a kimono from a memorable holiday when we were falling in love.
‘I made seven successive paintings, continually simplifying the composition and managed to make the mother/son interconnection more powerful and sensual. The final painting came out in a week or so, the speed and familiarity with the subject giving the painting a freshness and intimacy.”
Exhibition runs 26 September until 10 January 2021.
Hugo Michell Gallery welcomes the addition of Kate Just to our represented artists!
Kate Just is an established artist who works with sculpture, installation, neon, textiles and photography to produce art works that promote feminist representations of the body and experience. Just is well known for using textile crafts including knitting as both a narrative device and unwitting political tool. In addition to her highly crafted solo artworks, Just often works socially and collaboratively within the community to tackle significant social issues including sexual harassment and violence against women.
Just holds a PhD in Sculpture from Monash University, a Master of Arts from RMIT University, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Victorian College of the Arts. Just has exhibited her artwork extensively across Australia an internationally including the National Gallery of Australia, ACCA, Artspace, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Craft Victoria, Gertrude Contemporary, RMIT Project Space, the Margaret Lawrence Gallery, CCP, CAST, PICA, CCAS, AIR Gallery and the AC Institute in New York, at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Richmond Virginia, the Rijswijk Museum in the Netherlands, Kunsthalle Krems in Austria, Sanskriti Gallery in New Delhi, Youkobo Artspace in Tokyo and Titanik Galleria in Turku, Finland.
Just’s work is held in numerous public and private collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Artbank, Ergas Collection, the City of Port Phillip, Wangaratta Art Gallery, Ararat Regional Art Gallery and Proclaim Management Collection.
We congratulate Kate on all of her achievements and are thrilled to be working together in the future.
Congratulations to Janet Laurence who has been announced as the recipient of the 2020 Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship.
“Janet will spend time at Australia’s Casey research station to develop an immersive installation. The proposed installation will be based on extensive on-site research, including photographs, video works, drawings, watercolours, and collected writings on the Antarctic landscape and Casey station. “My aim for the project is to bring back a captivating experience of Antarctica’s preciousness and power to those that have never been,” said Ms Laurence. “I have expectations, and yet I know that the actual experience of Antarctica will open up unknown and far-reaching possibilities.”
The Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship has been running since 1984 and is supported by the Australian Antarctic Division with additional support provided by ANAT since 2017.”
Janet Laurence will undertake the residency in the 2021-22 season.
More details here.
Hugo Michell Gallery invites you to the opening of William Mackinnon’s ‘Learning to Love the Wind’ and Pip Ryan’s ‘Flesh Creepers’.*Please note*
-Due to the current government restrictions we are unable to serve refreshments at this exhibition opening.
-If you wish to join us for the opening of these exhibitions, RSVP is essential.In 2018 Mackinnon was injured in a surfing accident, which meant he had to change the way he painted in order to produce his large-scale canvases. This injury, followed by pandemic-induced lockdown, may have tested his mettle, however he has come to appreciate that such obstacles can trigger breakthroughs, thus the title of this show, ‘Learning to love the wind’…As a mid-career artist who’s exhibited in Australia and overseas for close to two decades, Mackinnon is increasingly alert to “the delicate thread” that connects one painting – and body of work – to the next. “Something is revealed as the way forward. Battling through difficulty towards something beautiful is what it means to be human, to be conscious and to have potential. Ultimately, I’m trying to convey what it feels like to be alive in the world.” – text by Tony Magnusson—‘Flesh Creepers’ is a new series of works by Pip Ryan that began whilst on residency at Bundanon Trust in November 2019 and has continued throughout the pandemic. Both Bundanon and the lockdown are spaces that are isolated, one in the landscape and one in the domestic setting, lending themselves to a world where the things around you can morph and mutate.This body of work draws heavily from an ongoing series of darkly comical beasts and playful surreal imagery. Banal objects are reconfigured and anthropomorphised, absurdly transforming the familiar into the uncanny as they slip further from their domestic space.Exhibition Opening Thursday 3 September 6-8pm
Exhibition runs from: 3 September – 3 October Hugo Michell Gallery acknowledges the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region, and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.Pictured: William Mackinnon, In my secret life, 2020, acrylic, oil and enamel on linen, 150 x 200 cmPictured: Pip Ryan, Pink Banksia, 2020, watercolour, gouache, 22k gold leaf, pencil on paper, 76 x 56 cm