From Andrew Frost…
At Penrith Regional Gallery two exhibitions mark out two very different approaches to landscape art. One is the traditional view of the place, of paint on canvas and old modernist masters. The other is a contemporary artist whose work, while at first blush seems far more attuned to the hands-on craftiness of much recent art, but has as much to say about place and culture as those venerated painters of yesteryear.
And that’s nothing against the masters. Spirit of the Land traces connections between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australian painters, including the work of Russell Drysdale, Rosalie Gascoigne and Fred Williams and the art of Rover Thomas, Lin Onus and Kame Kngwarreye and others. The show matches the artists and the semi-mystical conception the land that unites them all, regardless of their origin.
In contrast is Sarah Goffman’s Plastici an installation taking up most of Lewers House. Using found objects sourced from the Penrith area, Goffman has created a series of tearooms and domestic interiors with intensely decorated objects such as bottles and other detritus. Taken from the land, Goffman’s objects have the same aesthetic process of painting but without the frame.
Until January 20
Penrith Regional Gallery & Lewers Bequest, Penrith.
Pic: Sarah Goffman, Plastici, [detail], 2012.