Sharne Wolff finds a pattern Brisbane…
Last week I wrote a review on Lucy Griggs’s show in Brisbane, The Republic of Bees. At the same time I visited Milani Gallery for Griggs’ show I visited six other commercial galleries. Since I began reviewing for The Art Life it’s rare that I’ve had trouble deciding which exhibition to review – usually someone stands out from the crowd. This time, the choice was more difficult so I settled on a ‘round up’ of the art that continued to resonate with me after I’d arrived home. Although each artist uses vastly different mediums and techniques, if there’s an overriding theme here it would have to be ‘pattern’.
Lincoln Austin, A change of Tack,2 011. Polyester, glass, wood, brass_25x17x17cm.
Lincoln Austin @Andrew Baker
Lincoln Austin made jewellery and theatre sets before becoming a full time artist. He surely must have excelled in maths and physics at school. He uses these skills and combines them with an extraordinary aesthetic ability to make art – sculptures in stainless steel and framed matt board constructions that simultaneously defy the eye and realise the inconceivable. His works perplex and confuse the viewer with their beauty and imagination. They use symmetry and asymmetry in balanced measure.
The artist’s three-dimensional pieces are made with incredible craftsmanship and old-fashioned attention to detail. You can’t help but be drawn in for a closer look and when you approach there are more surprises. The viewer’s grasp of the visual meaning of each piece changes depending on where they stand. Perhaps that’s what this show is really about.
Jason Fitzgerald, Arctic Rookery, 2011.
Jason Fitzgerald @Jan Murphy
‘Origin Unknown is Jason Fitzgerald’s first solo show at Jan Murphy Gallery. Fitzgerald’s works are 3 dimensional constructions painstakingly assembled from pieces of cut recycled timber. The faded colour palettes of the timber assist in allowing small separate pieces of wood either to merge and blend together to create the whole piece.
Dragon Swarm 2011 and Silver Swarm 2011 are the stand out works of the show. The seemingly random squares of wood appear to move on the wall like a swarm of bees. The optical trick is disarming and the constructions have a depth that is only evident in the real of the Gallery setting.
Jason Fitzgerald ‘Origin Unknown’ continues at Jan Murphy Gallery until 22 October 2011.
Kate Ticker, Quilted Night Sea, 2011.
Kate Tucker @Edwina Corlette
‘Exploded View’ almost sold out before opening so buyers may have already missed out – but it’s still worth catching this show. Tucker is from Victoria and this is her first show with Edwina Corlette. Although she sometimes works in 3D, the feature works of this exhibition are acrylic on linen. Several paper collages and a number of paintings with gouache on archival paper are also included.
Apart from ‘Rock Spine’ (in greys and whites) the works are quite literally explosions of pop colour – abstracted versions of nature and city ‘landscapes’. The acrylics appear as painted versions of paper collages. Although the titles of her pictures often give the game away if you look hard and long enough the subject will emerge.
Each of the galleries is located close together in or near the Valley so it’s possible to see these exhibitions in a single morning or afternoon. At the same time, Philip Bacon Galleries (next door to Jan Murphy Gallery) has a group show of some of Australia’s best-known artists – so it’s definitely worth sticking your head inside the door to see a Jeffrey Smart and a John Young (or even if its just to play the ‘eye contact’ game with Bacon’s staff).