Friday, November 28, 2014

Graduate Show at NAS - 28 November

How will I #react?  Well, my first reaction was, wasn't this the tagline for last years show?  I mean, I realise Saatchi and Saatchi are still the sponsors but they couldn't spring for some new banners?  I'll be #underwhelmed if this theme is rolled out again next year ...

Second up.  How good is it, finally, that NAS seems to have worked out a half decent online strategy?  The website they had (and I use the past tense as they've already taken it down!) was actually pretty good.  Sorted by all the disciplines you could actually see nearly 100% of the works online.  Which is pretty handy to get a good feel for the show before you actually go, because opening night when I swung by is always jammed packed.  The one downside of the excellent website is that I didn't take notes, thinking I'd just look it up at home.  Big mistake as I am writing this on 9 December and google is not helping out much.  Luckily I had taken a few snaps on opening night.  Pictured top are two of Hilary Sandeman's pieces which made the cut for the main gallery.  Smaller works but I loved them.  Hard to make out in the photo but the glass jars were filled with wax hearts.  I think I've mentioned before I have a thing for medical models of hearts and Hilary was bang on with these.  If I'd have been a bit more organised these should've made their way to Big Lamington HQ as the grad show is always very affordable and good to support young artists.  Other highlights were Bahman Kermani who made these persian rugs (pictured middle) out of train tickets.  Not bad, although would take up a fair bit of space in a Paddo terrace so you might need to think about different ways to display.  Maybe put a glass table top on and make it a coffee table?  Hey, just trying to help.  Lastly, I was really digging the linocuts of one grad whose name I can't track down.  But in trying to find this online I found Jake Morrissey's name.  And he did some cool prints of Fidel & Marilyn from memory.  Speaking of which, next time I will remember to post earlier!

Points:  Hilary Sandeman will get the 3 for Tried to Feel But Couldn't Touch.  Bahman Kermani will take the 2 for the ticket carpet.  And my unknown artist will take a point for these great linocuts above. The two alpacas in the bottom right were my favourite.  I think one was even from the Hunter Valley!  Have I mentioned before that I'm from ….

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Primavera at MCA - 20 November

Okay - apologies for the delay in posts readers but it was a busy November for the Big Lamington team with, well, other stuff happening! I am going to power through some quick thoughts on the shows I saw to get the blog up to date.  Here's my thoughts on Primavera, which if you need the backstory you should first read Frosty as I am going to just dive in.

I read somewhere that the consensus was curator Mikala Dwyer had crammed in too much work into a small area of the gallery and it was an incoherent hang.  Unkindly, my first thought was how could they tell?  That is not to say the MCA always crams random art together, they usually do leave more room.  It is just that my abiding memories of previous Primavera exhibits is that it is always random and incoherent because of the nature of just selecting a couple of young urgers (its like contiki, they have to be under 30 or something) to have a crack.  There was only one real star in my mind, Paul Yore.  Those textile works were, to quote the Chemical Brothers, out of control.  Way out of control.  I loved them.  Maybe a few too many cocks for home display but the fact that the middle one (apologies as I can't find my notes, is that 'Welcome to Hell' or 'This moment is Critical'?) was such an amalgam of random thoughts, like a art school patchwork quilt.  My favourite element was the rainbow eureka flag (pic above).  This was from memory a scaled down version of what he had at Sydney Contemporary.  What else?  I thought the pvc and can sculpture of Sean Peoples was pretty cool and I liked the randomness of his telepathy project with Veronica Kent.  Not so much the art but the fabric on the chairs was cool in a Yinka Shonibare knock off kind of way (image below).  Maybe they should've been inspired by Australia's own Utopia Goods

Points.  3 for middle tapestry (pictured top) and 2 for the ejaculating tapestry (not pictured top).  That's 5 points for Paul overall.  I would say keep an eye on Paul as his works were quite affordable at Sydney Contemporary.  Not for long if you ask me.  Finally, for those who can count backwards you can guess Sean will pick up 1 point for his sculptural effort 'Ouroboros Centipede'.