Official: EMR King of The Hill

Polls Dec 10, 2007 No Comments

The voting is now closed and it’s official – EMR is the most important artist run gallery of all time. Hats off to Russell Barker and Neil Hawkes, the organising force behind what was the address for happening art in the Redfern area in the mid to late 1980s. The gallery launched numerous careers including those who would go on to win major awards, represent Australia in prestigious international exhibitions and have highly influential art practices.

Overall, the poll was a hotly contested race ending in a controversial three way tie for second place – Yellow House, the former Potts Point squat that has a major claim to the same sort of importance and lasting influence as EMR and now the site of Martin Browne Fine Art; Sylvester Studios, EMR’s old next door neighbours in Redfern, now the site of some anonymous and ugly apartments; and Imperial Slacks the gallery/collective in Surry Hills whose alumni are now making major art careers and a highly sort after space that is now an upscale homewares shop.

Third place goes to CBD, the fun sized Wynyard gallery that was the spiritual home of g____e and is now a massive hole in the ground.

The Most Important Artist Run Gallery of All Time?

Yellow House 13% 40
Inhibodress 3% 11
One Central Street 6% 19
Sylvester Studios 13% 40
EMR 14% 44
Art Empire Industry 1% 4
COG 0% 1
CBD 11% 36
Shephard & Newman 4% 14
Alpha House 2% 5
Art Unit 2% 7
Union Street Gallery 1% 4
Rubyayre 4% 12
Gallery 19 5% 16
Herringbone 1% 2
Gallery Wren 3% 9
Imperial Slacks 13% 40
Beta House 0% 1
Pendulum 2% 5
Sirius Cove Art Camp 2% 7

317 votes total

There was some discussion of galleries that weren’t included, galleries with a claim to greatness, importance and lasting influence in the Sydney art scene – South, Front Room, Airspace, Catacombs, Pod, Side On, Blaugrau, Briefcase, Block, Phatspace, MEMEMEMEME Hyper Contemporary Lodge, Lanfranchie’s Memorial Disco, The Wedding Circle, Black and many, many others. While all these could easily have been included on the list, we’re limited to 20 options and we wanted to also cover the last 150 years of the artist run phenomenon. We hope that you’ll take our latest poll just as seriously: The most influential Sydney artist of all time!

The Art Life

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