The Museum of Contemporary Art have announced the artists to be showcased in their annual Primavera exhibition. This year’s curator is the redoubtable Felicity Fenner who has brought together nine artists for the showcase of new talent: Monika Behrens and Fiona Lowry from NSW, Madeleine Kelly and Jemima Wyman from Queensland, Daniel Mellor from the ACT, Michelle Ussher from Victoria, Pedro Wonaeamirri from the Northern Territory and Tom Müller and Yukultji Napangati from Western Australia.
The MCA is boasting two firsts. Their first claim is that the artists come from both urban and remote areas. The second claim is that the show is thematically linked:
In another first, Primavera 2005 will have two central, linked themes. All works use painting as their primary medium and share a conceptual theme of land and landscape. Referencing synergies between the history of documenting the landscape and contemporary approaches to the land and landscape painting, the exhibition is themed The Lie of the Land by guest curator Felicity Fenner.
“With this year’s Primavera show, we’re listening for the responses of younger artists to the land – Australia – at a time when issues of global conflict, land rights and environment are at the political forefront”, says Ms Fenner. “We are very excited that this exploration includes the voices of young Aboriginal artists from remote areas in Western Australia and the Northern Territory”
It’s about time someone put together a show themed around painting and the landscape. These two linked ideas seem so naturally related that it boggles the mind that no one has thought to put them together before. It’s also good to see artists from remote places get a free ticket to the opening. We just got back from Western Australia and we can tell you it’s a bloody long way away and even if Müller and Napangati started walking now, they may not make it for the opening on September 7. Also of note is that the MCA has secured Deutsche Bank as a supporter of Primavera so instead of being forced to say “thanks Telstra” (while thinking, ‘yeah right, they can’t even install an ADSL line no matter how many times you make the booking, yeah, right, thanks Telstra…’) we can all join together and say “Danke shoen Deutsche Bank!”