• Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion
    Bendigo Art Gallery
    17 Aug –
    10 Sep 2019
    By Matthew Linde
    28 Sep 2019

    I was staying with Mona Bismarck in Capri when the news came. I was downstairs, dressed for dinner, having a drink. Consuelo Crespi telephoned me from Rome, saying it had just come over the radio that Balenciaga had closed his doors forever that afternoon, and that he'd never open them again. Mona didn't come out of her room for three days. I mean, she went into a complete…I mean, it was the end of a certain part of her life!

    – Diana Vreeland on Mona von Bismarck in D.V.

    Twentieth-century couture is immortalised by three masters: Chanel, Vionnet and Balenciaga. But only one is deemed the "couturiers' couturier", or so the platitude goes. The title of Bendigo Art Gallery's latest fashion exhibition, Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion, on tour from London's V&A Museum, does little to dissuade this grand narrative. Shaping Fashion not only suggests an allegory for sculpting cloth but also the revolutionary shaping of history itself.

    In 1973, Diana Vreeland opened her inaugural exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute, The World of Balenciaga. An image captured during install depicts the impresario preparing Balenciaga's now canonised one-seam coat (1961). Staged atop a plinth, appearing as grand necromancer, her hands contour the coat as if levitating its sculptural cadaver. While packing detritus, undecided shoes and background ensembles clutter the image; the coat is seen autonomously, afloat a headless bust mannequin, erected by an indiscernible metal stand.

    Diana Vreeland installing one-seam coat in The World of Balenciaga (1973).

    Ghostly austere, the one-seam coat exemplifies the apogee of Spanish-born Cristóbal Balenciaga's 360-degree approach to design. Known for his minimal "purist" shapes, he effaced ornate decoration and abandoned nineteenth-century construction techniques to innovate staggering new forms through experimental cutting, darting and nominal seaming. Made by one piece of fabric with a single seam running the underarms across the yoke line, the coat cocoons the body in a convex husk engineered by no less than twenty darts. Catalysing a modernist sartorial grammar for the post-war period that developed until the late 1960s, Balenciaga has been touted as the progenitor of numerous silhouettes and lines that defied the human figure. And while it's silly to declaim Balenciaga "redesigned" the woman's body, the exhibition's conceit of Shaping Fashion proposes a profound puzzle: the silhouette's innate ambivalence for the human form.

    Opening his couture house in 1937, it wasn't until Christian Dior's New Look emerged in 1947—a kind of BC/AD myth-making timestamp in fashion history—that Balenciaga gained his polemical position. During this time of post-sumptuary feminine recuperation, when Dior's hailed hourglass figure saw waists radically synched in, Balenciaga debuted his controversial barrel line: a waistless ovate-moulded suit that hunched volume across the back and tapered at the skirt's hem. A relatively reduced look, it garnered much criticism from the fashion press, reconfiguring the body's geometry in unsightly proportions. By obliterating the waistline, it seemed Balenciaga had obliterated the very coordinates that conceived the self.

    Walking through the exhibit, we learn of Balenciaga's many design milestones, more through explanatory notes than garments, leaving those less informed spatially guessing. He continued his figurative abstractions with the sweeping taffeta harem balloon dress of 1950, later developing into the balloon jacket of 1953, a spherical sleeveless bodice from which the head floated above. In 1955, he would reveal the tunic silhouette, a chemise-style tubular dress. Built as an elongated unfitted sleeveless bodice, its body gathered at a bias-rolled stand-away collar and was sewn into a dropped waistline forming a calf-length skirt.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, tunic dress (1955).

    Dramatising this line ever further, Balenciaga debuted the infamous sack dress of 1957. In one of its iterations, the silhouette was cut in wide curved lines that tapered slightly below the knee. Unadjusted by darts or belts, it hung with certainty from the shoulders, enveloping the body to create unprecedented space between garment and body, with its unknown figure regarded as profane yet utterly precipitating the mass-produced shift dress of the 1960s. The following year, the lampshade or babydoll silhouette was revealed, a lightweight fluted trapezoid dress with a low waist and flounced skirt. And so the list goes on (my personal favourite being the 1960 amphora line!)… In fact, decades before Rei Kawakubo's 1997 masterstroke Body meets Dress, Dress meets Body, Balenciaga had already exhausted half a career interrogating the strange aberration between garment and body.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, sack dress (1958).

    How then might one exhibition represent such hefty hermeneutics? First of all, there is serious scepticism towards this mode of bought-in blockbuster, and for good reason. Although the escalation in worldwide fashion blockbusters expose the public's keen interest for the genre (in 2014 the National Gallery of Victoria became the ninth leg for Jean-Paul Gautier's retrospective as part of an international twelve-stop museum circuit), these touring hagiographies simultaneously thwart curatorial exploration and critical response. As fashion Professor Peter McNeil has written, "The reality within museums– in Australia at least– is that the curatorial commitment to sartorial fashions has declined– not been buoyed– in recent years,", suggesting that the increased dedication to the blockbuster's triumphalism has outweighed the need to build both "collections and the careers of curators". Under the directorship of Karen Quinlan and now Jessica Bridgfoot, Bendigo Art Gallery offers a possible alternative to this narrative. For if museums aspire to be assemblies of market interactions, then at least pessimistically it's productive to reroute such a blockbuster to this regional town.

    However, more than just providing key economic stimulus for Bendigo, the gallery's shows generate unique community dialogue and exposure with the work, and because of its smaller scale and strictures could hopefully even spark new curatorial experimentation unexplored by goliaths like the V&A or NGV.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, evening gown and cape (1967).

    Amongst the various garment highlights, the most astounding was to finally encounter the evening gown and cape (1967). Carrying all the motifs of his most iconic ensemble, wedding dress (1967), an impossibly costly artefact to have had mounted here, it exudes Balenciaga's ecclesiastical tendencies. Miming the shapes of clergy vestments (mozetta and soutane), this sweeping black sleeveless dress with mirrored cape both demonstrates Cristóbal's expert cutting, its sculptural form achieved by a single centre-back seam, as it also recounts the famous clientele he garnered. Made for Gloria Guinness, often cited in International Best Dressed lists, his other devotees included Pauline de Rothschild, Ava Gardner and Mona von Bismarck, who, as one of the world's richest women, reportedly bought one hundred and fifty pieces from a single season.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, wedding dress (1967).

    The raciest moment however, was to be found in video: a small projected montage of several salon shows. Here we see his spectral figures in flight, presented in hushed solemnity, representing the antithesis of Christian Dior's exuberantly graceful shows, with their serious attitude imbuing the designer's own taciturn character and ascetic work ethic. In discussing Balenciaga's tense performances, modelled by "monster mannequins", Ernestine Carter, fashion editor of The Times of London, wrote of one prolific Balenciaga model, Colette:

    with her Dracula walk, her big head low like a bull ready charge, her shoulders hunched down, her arms swinging low, and a look of almost violent hatred on her face as she passed, concealing the number of the dress from the spectators.

    Wrapped up in Balenciaga's religious references and monastic reverence another, perhaps stranger, magic emerges—the silhouette's psychic medium. The conundrum of the silhouette persistently troubles us: the fact that, despite our best efforts to load it with temporal significance (the 80s "power" shoulder = the new woman CEO, etc.), the silhouette's relentless proleptic mode demands that its meaning be detached and abandoned for its own self-preservation.

    In Elizabeth Wilson's archaeological Adorned in Dreams, the author refers to René König's psychoanalytical account, seeing its "perpetual mutability, its 'death wish', as a manic defence against the human reality of the changing body, against ageing and death." If the body is dangerously ambiguous, the silhouette serves to capture the volatile self in the certainty of its image. Many have also confronted the changing silhouette as axiomatically the project of modernity. Anne Hollander has charted the origin of this relationship through the advent of thirteenth-century plate armour. By mathematically mirroring the anatomical lines of the body, plating improved the functionality of its clumsy chainmail predecessor by generating its own dazzling abstraction, expressing our rationalisation of the body but only through its representation at a remove.

    Then there's the truism of the commodity fetish—handy in discerning sartorial integrity, it still doesn't explain the silhouette's scriptural supremacy, which, seen on a large scale, reshapes entire historical structures as a kind of ritualistic mad rationality. Considering this dilemma back in the 1930s, Walter Benjamin became fascinated by the strange anachronistic silhouettes of his time, the Belle Époque revivalism. Benjamin's famous musings of fashion's insubstantiality to historical linear time led him to write of modernity as "the eternity of hell". The Silhouette, as our sick collective medium, represents revolutionary change deprived of all telos.

    Such visions of Balenciaga's psychic shape-shifting, I would argue, are never quite fulfilled in Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion. The most consequential disappointment was just how unbearably claustrophobic the initial vitrines were. For an exhibition devoted to the onerous idea of Shaping Fashion, tamping these mannequins into such tight containers, visually cluttered by didactics, ephemera and pokey downlights, rendered these sculptural paragons more like dusty doodads.

    This was especially true of the royal tulip dress (1965), an architectonic gown featuring a curvilinear petalled line, in which a suspended panel of fabric built into the shoulders creates the illusion of monumental bloom. Here it looks just desperately inconvenient.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, tulip dress (1965).

    On the other hand, it was fantastic to see his fabric swatch books, outlining the designer's long-term collaboration with Gustav Zumsteg, a Swiss textile manufacturer, on his most signature cloth: gazar. A nubbed silk intended to imitate cotton bandage, it bestowed deep, structural folds without the need for superfluous reinforcements.

    The second, bulkier arena of the exhibit covers Balenciaga's legacy, those later designers evangelized by his work. Vanguards such as Mary Quant and André Courrèges expound upon his exceptional wasitlessness, translated through novel prêt-à-porter, while there was the clever inclusion of Sybilla's green balloon dress (Spring/Summer 1987), whose undulating sculptural balloons emulate Balenciaga's free-floating caterpillar dress(1961) (not featured in the show).

    Sybilla balloon dress (Spring/Summer 1987).

    While many other participants provide contemporary delight few offer actual insight into his design impact. Sure, Molly Goddard churns out the tulle babydolls season upon season, but how do they contribute to either technique or shifting corporeal ambivalences? Or there is the tenuous inclusion of celestial Disney warrior Iris van Herpen, now a typical presence for so many of these blockbusters in general, with her tormented addiction for mirrored fractals seemingly unlocking the pineal gland of any stuffy museum. Reinforcing the rather dreary claim that fashion is daringly eclectic, Balenciaga's "legacy" lacks the curatorial precision other exhibits have taken to wrestle the shifting silhouette, like Richard Martin's superbly syncopated Three Women: Madeleine Vionnet, Claire McCardell, Rei Kawakubo at the FIT Museum, New York; or Véronique Belloir's and Olivier Saillard's Balenciaga-specific Balenciaga: l'Oeuvre au Noir at the Musée Bourdelle, Paris. Both suggest less is more.

    Cristóbal Balenciaga, caterpillar dress (1961).

    Given this unfocused trajectory, I took the liberty to target a different storyline: the house's own continued governance. After two revival attempts in 1987 and 1992, it wasn't until Nicolas Ghesquière's appointment in 1997, loved by patricians and hipsters alike, who upheaved the house from obscurity—none are ungrateful to see here his fantastically armoured PVC sliced sack dress (Autumn/Winter 2008), layered with spongy lining and bonded seams, installed with the same singular valour as Vreeland's one-seam coat. Succeeding Ghesquière was Alexander Wang, whose 3 year stint was as pitiful as Demna Gvasalia's current reign is colossal. Occasionally reinterpreting Cristóbal's deft sculptural manoeuvres, the exhibition includes Gvasalia's salient Helly Hansenski jacket (Autumn/Winter 2016), whose dart values have been merged into the zipper line so that, depending where it's fastened, the silhouette arches new volume away from the bust or back! Despite this and other cunning silhouette studies (of which warrants its own review), Denma's Balenciaga obviously plunders a different cultural junkyard to that of Cristóbal's or even Nicholas'. Thanks to the ascendency of new emerging markets, an info-supremacy society and the levelling towards meaner production, the house, mechanised through the gruesome power of its parent conglomerate Kering, has come to epitomise the memetic image of the moneyed globalised streetwear hipster; a new target much more influential than the bygone high society Madame.

    This is hardly a nostalgic whinge for a lost heritage –von Bismarck has had her day—only the recognition that Balenciaga has successfully re-mastered the new conditions of sign-value circulation. Online cultures and disposable soft irony now define the house; no wonder megastar Anne Imhof is a Balenciaga associate, her libidinal malaise the leitmotif of our atomised internet age. Christian Dior's famous deification of Balenciaga as "the master of us all", today reads deliciously Orwellian under Gvasalia's tutelage.

    Nicolas Ghesquière for Balenciaga Autumn/Winter 2008.

    Neglecting to satisfy my lust for either spatial penetration or insightful comparisons, the exhibition does bare the silhouette through clues of technical striptease. The full ensemble x-ray scans by artist Nick Veasey evidence the invisible weights embedded in evening gown and cape's hem, while the calico replica of the fuchsia ballgown (1954) reveal the unfastened internal ties that would otherwise suspend its majestic pendulous hem. Interesting in terms of construction, exposing the ghost in the machine also reminded me how couture evinces an extremist mode of secularist mysticism, in which technique is bestowed with supernatural reverence. And that unlike the liturgical vestments Balenciaga so wonderfully evoked, it was the magic of beau monde materialists that encrypted his designs with divinity. Whereas other designer exhibitions mightn't need to illustrate their commercial frameworks, this show did well to outline, throughout its didactics, the patronage of socialites and royalty who equally shaped this fashion history.

    If that seems an obvious observation, it was also one that spoke to me about the deeper potential of fashion's irrationality. Skim the surface and there's no dearth of highfalutin Balenciaga anecdotes. As Vreeland once remarked:

    One never knew what one was going to see at a Balenciaga opening. One fainted. It was possible to blow up and die.

    Easily read as rabid affirmations of consumerist culture, this fetishistic drive also points to spiritual encounters, a horizon line breaching the non-sentient world. Like the talisman of embedded weights or hidden ties, the poetic mutations of the relaxed waistline or new silhouette cannot be adequately justified by reason alone nor do they adhere to the mechanical standardisation or scientific progress of our time. To quote Elizabeth Wilson quoting Walter Benjamin, fashion accumulates within itself "the dream energy of society", of which he felt culture had otherwise been so drained. In a world of such wholesale commodification, the Silhouette, whose inbuilt perpetual novelty renders itself the perfect capitalist gift, can also become its most ardent opponent. Delivering messianic self-implosions, Balenciaga's abstractions point to the fallibility of our collective experience, and through it we may glimpse an escape route. And, in this sense, the exhibition's ludicrous title seems almost deserved.

    Matthew Linde is a fashion exhibition-maker and PhD candidate at RMIT University, School of Fashion & Textiles.

    2020 #28 Audrey Schmidt Lost in the feed/translation
    2020 #27 Vincent Le Nicholas Mangan, Termite Economies: Neural Nodes and Root Causes Sutton Gallery
    2020 #26 Lévi McLean, Paris Lettau The Tennant Creek Brio NIRIN: 22nd Biennale of Sydney
    2020 #25 Giles Fielke Improvements and Reproductions West Space
    2020 #24 Victoria Perin Peter Tyndall bLogos/HA HA
    2020 #23 Helen Hughes Confined 11 The Torch
    2020 #22 Hester Lyon HTTP.PARADISE Incinerator Gallery
    2020 #21 Rex Butler Jane Sutherland, Obstruction, Box Hill, 1887 Art Gallery of Ballarat
    2020 #20 Amelia Winata John Nixon, Groups + Pairs 2016-2020 Anna Schwartz Gallery
    2020 #19 Chelsea Hopper Justine Varga, Tachisme Tolarno Galleries
    2020 #18 Anna Parlane Patrick Pound, The Museum of There, Not There STATION
    2020 #16 Robert Schubert Terre Thaemlitz, Love Bomb/Ai No Bakudan The SUBSTATION
    2020 #15 Philip Brophy Lewis Fidock and Joshua Petherick, Weevils in the Flour Gertrude Contemporary
    2020 #14 Jane Eckett Virginia Cuppaidge, The Skyspace Paintings 1977 - 1982 Nicholas Thompson Gallery
    2020 #13 Rex Butler Callum Morton, Monument #32: Helter Shelter Alfred Deakin Place Ballarat
    2020 #12 Amelia Winata Ari Tampubolon, Symposia: This show is dedicated to K-pop girl group, TWICE. I love you. SEVENTH Gallery
    2020 #11 Giles Fielke Warwick Baker, Hi-Vis Dreams Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2020 #10 Amelia Wallin Agatha Gothe-Snape, The Outcome is Certain Monash University Museum of Art
    2020 #09 Audrey Schmidt Alethea Everard, Art show Meow2
    2020 #08 Chelsea Hopper Elizabeth Gower, LOCATIONS Sutton Gallery, Sutton Projects
    2020 #07 Paris Lettau KAWS: Companionship in the Age of Loneliness NGV International
    2020 #06 Victoria Perin Assembled: The Art of Robert Klippel Tarrawarra Museum of Art
    2019 #51 Luke Smythe Colin McCahon: Letters and Numbers National Gallery of Victoria
    2019 #50 David Wlazlo 110%: Wet Nurse c3 Contemporary Art Space
    2019 #49 Helen O'Toole Luke Sands Guzzler
    2019 #48 David Homewood Robert Hunter Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia
    2019 #47 Giles Fielke Kate Wallace, Views to Remember / Travis McDonald, Clock Face C3 Contemporary Art Space
    2019 #46 Audrey Schmidt In Costume Mejia
    2019 #45 Marnie Edmiston Collection leads: John Scurry—small paintings Geelong Gallery
    2019 #44 Rex Butler Collecting Comme National Gallery of Victoria
    2019 #43 Francis Plagne Elizabeth Newman Neon Parc City
    2019 #42 Amelia Winata Preparation Haydens
    2019 #41 Victoria Perin Never the same river Anna Schwartz Gallery
    2019 #40 Philip Brophy Haroon Mirza: The Construction of an Act Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
    2019 #39 Matthew Linde Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion Bendigo Art Gallery
    2019 #38 Maddee Clark Fiona Foley: Who are these strangers and where are they going? Ballarat International Foto Biennale
    2019 #37 Giles Fielke Karrabing Film Collective: The Mermaids, or Aiden in Wonderland KINGS Artist Run
    2019 #36 Aneta Trajkoski SERIAL McClelland Sculpture Park+Gallery
    2019 #34 Philip Brophy ...(illegible)... MADA Gallery
    2019 #32 Ella Cattach On Vulnerability and Doubt Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
    2019 #31 Helen O'Toole George Egerton-Warburton, also known as , Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2019 #30 Victoria Perin, Brendan Casey I will never run out of lies nor love Bus Projects
    2019 #29 Anna Parlane FEM-aFFINITY Arts Project Australia
    2019 #28 Jane Eckett Josef Stanislaw Ostoja-Kotkowski: Solid Light McClelland Sculpture Park+Gallery
    2019 #27 Elyssia Bugg Prima Materia Bundoora Homestead
    2019 #26 Amelia Winata Angelica Mesiti: ASSEMBLY Venice Biennale
    2019 #25 Rex Butler Hans and Nora Heysen: Two Generations of Australian Art Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia
    2019 #24 Francis Plagne Janet Burchill and Jennifer McCamley: Temptation to Co-exist Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2019 #23 Audrey Schmidt Octopus 19: Ventriloquy Gertrude Contemporary
    2019 #22 Anna Parlane Serene Velocity in Practice: MC510/CS183 Monash University Museum of Art
    2019 #21 Sophie Knezic Arlo Mountford: Deep Revolt Shepparton Art Museum
    2019 #21 Philip Brophy Christian Thompson: Baya Gardiya Australian Centre for the Moving Image
    2019 #20 Victoria Perin Isabel Davies: Recent Geometric Constructions Stephen McLaughlan Gallery
    2019 #19 Chelsea Hopper Taryn Simon: Contraband Anna Schwartz Gallery
    2019 #18 Rex Butler Tracey Moffatt: Body Remembers Tarrawarra Museum of Art
    2019 #17 Stephen Palmer Amalia Lindo: Computer Shoulders Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2019 #16 Giles Fielke Carve A Future, Devour Everything, Become Something Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia
    2019 #15 David Wlazlo Compromise Warrnambool Art Gallery
    2019 #14 Ella Cattach Emma Phillips: Too Much to Dream Reading Room
    2019 #13 Paris Lettau The Museological Consciousness Lyon Housemuseum Galleries, Meow
    2019 #13 The Editors Memo Review 01. Perimeter Books, World Food Books, Monash University Museum of Art
    2019 #12 Giles Fielke Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits Bendigo Art Gallery
    2019 #11 Sophie Knezic The Tennis Piece Gertrude Contemporary
    2019 #10 Victoria Perin Papermade / John Nixon: Screenprints, Woodblocks & Unique Relief Prints Negative Press, Australian Galleries
    2019 #09 Francis Plagne Visions of Paradise: Indian Court Paintings National Gallery of Victoria
    2019 #08 Amelia Winata Daniel von Sturmer Anna Schwartz Gallery
    2019 #07 Audrey Schmidt Carny Neon Parc
    2019 #06 Rex Butler Christian Marclay: The Clock Australian Centre for the Moving Image
    2019 #05 Anna Parlane Marlene Gilson Art Gallery of Ballarat
    2018 #52 Memo Review Thanks for reading in 2018
    2018 #51 Victoria Perin Sweeney Reed and Strines Gallery Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2018 #50 Paris Lettau Katie West: warna (ground) Caves
    2018 #49 Audrey Schmidt Aesthetics, Politics and Histories: The Social Context of Art AAANZ Conference 2018 - RMIT University
    2018 #49 The Editors Does the art exhibition have a future? AAANZ Conference 2018 - RMIT University
    2018 #48 Rex Butler Mira Gojak and Takehito Koganezawa: The Garden of Forking Paths Buxton Contemporary
    2018 #47 Jane Eckett Clement Meadmore: The art of mid-century design Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2018 #46 Francis Plagne Spencer Lai: A smile forms into a grimace / Matilda Davis: Too Many Dinner Parties Bus Projects
    2018 #45 Anna Parlane Lili Reynaud-Dewar, TEETH, GUMS, MACHINES, FUTURE, SOCIETY / Alicia Frankovich, Exoplanets Monash University Museum of Art
    2018 #44 Amelia Winata Hito Steyerl: Factory of the Sun National Gallery of Victoria
    2018 #43 David Wlazlo Biennale of Australian Art Art Gallery of Ballarat
    2018 #42 Giles Fielke Anne Ferran: White Against Red Sutton Gallery
    2018 #41 Sophie Knezic Eavesdropping Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2018 #41 Benison Kilby State of the Union Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2018 #40 Tim Alves John Stezaker: Lost World Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2018 #39 Paris Lettau Brook Andrew: The Language of Skulls Ten Cubed
    2018 #38 Jane Eckett Design for Life: Grant and Mary Featherston Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2018 #37 Rex Butler Tom Roberts: Shearing the Rams National Gallery of Victoria
    2018 #36 Victoria Perin Baldessin / Whiteley: Parallel Visions National Gallery of Victoria
    2018 #35 Hester Lyon Architecture Makes Us: Cinematic Visions of Sonia Leber and David Chesworth Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2018 #34 Francis Plagne Robert Smithson: Time Crystals Monash University Museum of Art
    2018 #34 Philip Brophy Robert Smithson: Time Crystals Monash University Museum of Art
    2018 #33 Amelia Winata Nicholas Mangan, Termite Economies Sutton Gallery
    2018 #32 Giles Fielke Philadelphia Wireman World Food Books
    2018 #31 Victoria Perin, David Wlazlo, Amelia Winata Melbourne Art Fair & Spring 1883 Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Windsor Hotel
    2018 #30 Anna Parlane A Lightness of Spirit is the Measure of Happiness Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
    2018 #29 Giles Fielke, Amelia Winata, Tiarney Miekus Best and Overlooked of 2018 Recess, Ian Potter Museum of Art, Gertrude Contemporary
    2018 #28 Shelley McSpedden Auto Body Works Arts Project Australia
    2018 #27 Rex Butler Colony: Australia 1770–1861 / Frontier Wars National Gallery of Victoria
    2018 #26 Paris Lettau Andrew Browne: Spill Tolarno Galleries
    2018 #25 Jane Eckett The Sculpture Park Point Leo Estate
    2018 #24 Giles Fielke Lucina Lane and Nigel Lendon: Teach the Kids to Strike Neon Parc
    2018 #23 Tim Alves I hope you get this: Raquel Ormella Shepparton Art Museum
    2018 #22 Chelsea Hopper Diane Arbus: American Portraits Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2018 #21 Rex Butler The Field Revisited National Gallery of Victoria
    2018 #20 Anna Parlane Hard Feelings The Honeymoon Suite
    2018 #19 Francis Plagne Abstraction 17: A Field of Interest, c. 1968 Charles Nodrum Gallery
    2018 #18 Eva Birch Kieren Seymour: Blue Blindness Block Projects
    2018 #17 Amelia Winata Natalie Thomas and the Women's Art Register: Finding the Field True Estate Gallery
    2018 #16 David Wlazlo Troy Ramaekers: Double B-Sides Five Walls Projects
    2018 #15 Helen Hughes Vivienne Binns: It is what it is, what it is Sutton Gallery
    2018 #14 Kate Warren Soda_Jerk: TERROR NULLIUS Australian Centre for the Moving Image
    2018 #13 Paris Lettau The Shape of Things to Come Buxton Contemporary
    2018 #12 Victoria Perin Unfinished Business: Perspectives on Art and Feminism Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
    2018 #11 Giles Fielke Samraing Chea: Universal Drawings Reading Room
    2018 #10 Nicholas Tammens Mutlu Çerkez: 1988-2065 Monash University Museum of Art
    2018 #09 Tiarney Miekus Genesis Breyer P-Orridge: Loyalty Does Not End With Death The SUBSTATION
    2018 #08 Anna Parlane Kirsten Lyttle: Digital Mana Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2018 #07 Francis Plagne Tony Clark: Chinoiserie Landscape 1987 - 2017 Murray White Room
    2018 #06 Rex Butler Richard Bell: Dredging up the Past Gertrude Contemporary
    2018 #05 Amelia Winata Kieran Butler and collaborators: Rainbow Bois and Magical Gurls Blindside
    2017 #52 Giles Fielke Triennial National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #51 Victoria Perin Del Kathryn Barton: The Highway is a Disco National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #50 Julia Lomas Angela Brennan: Forms of Life Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2017 #49 Kate Warren Cover Versions: Mimicry and Resistance Shepparton Art Museum
    2017 #48 Paris Lettau Our Knowing and Not Knowing: Helen Maudsley Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia
    2017 #47 Francis Plagne Douglas Lance Gibson: What Was Once Yesterday Today & Tomorrow Tolarno Galleries
    2017 #46 Chelsea Hopper Jenny Watson: The Fabric of Fantasy Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2017 #45 Ian McLean Wayne Eager New Paintings Eastgate Gallery
    2017 #44 Anna Parlane Jason Phu: My Parents Met at the Fish Market Westspace
    2017 #43 Rex Butler Gareth Sansom: Transformer The Ian Potter Centre | NGV Australia
    2017 #42 David Wlazlo Joseph Kosuth: A Short History of My Thought Anna Schwartz Gallery
    2017 #41 Amelia Winata Darren Sylvester: Céline Bus Projects
    2017 #40 Helen Hughes Brent Harris: the small sword Tolarno Galleries
    2017 #39 Kate Warren The Score Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2017 #38 Paris Lettau Isadora Vaughan: Recalcitrant Bodies The Honeymoon Suite
    2017 #37 Francis Plagne Smallness: Trevelyan Clay & Kate Smith Neon Parc, Sutton Gallery
    2017 #36 Audrey Schmidt People Soup Suicidal Oil Piglet
    2017 #35 Anna Parlane Forever Transformed Gertrude Contemporary
    2017 #34 Jane Eckett Sidney Nolan and Elwyn Lynn: A Joint Centenary Charles Nodrum Gallery
    2017 #33 David Wlazlo Future Eaters Monash University Museum of Art
    2017 #32 Beth Kearney Fictitious Realities Bayside Arts and Cultural Centre
    2017 #31 Rex Butler Brave New World: Australia 1930s / Call of the Avant-Garde: Constructivism and Australian Art Heide Museum of Modern Art, Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia
    2017 #30 Victoria Perin Discovering Dobell / Dobell’s Circle Tarrawarra Museum of Art
    2017 #29 Amelia Winata Spencer Lai: Contaminant, Figures Fort Delta
    2017 #28 Helen Hughes Liam Osborne: Hot Copy Punk Café
    2017 #27 Kylie King Dale Frank Neon Parc
    2017 #26 Francis Plagne Every Brilliant Eye National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #25 Rex Butler I can see Russia from here TCB art inc.
    2017 #24 Kate Warren Andrea Grützner: Tanztee and Erbgericht Centre for Contemporary Photography
    2017 #23 Giles Fielke On Campus Monash University
    2017 #22 David Wlazlo Restless Margaret Lawrence Gallery
    2017 #21 Anna Parlane Sky Country: Our Connection to the Cosmos Blak Dot Gallery
    2017 #20 Amelia Winata Unproductive Thinking Deakin University Art Gallery
    2017 #19 Anthony White Van Gogh and the Seasons National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #18 Victoria Perin Harold Freedman: Artist for the People Art Gallery of Ballarat
    2017 #17 Paris Lettau Raafat Ishak & Damiano Bertoli: Hebdomeros Sutton Gallery
    2017 #16 Beth Kearney Bill Henson National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #15 Helen Hughes James Tylor: un-resettling Vivien Anderson Gallery
    2017 #14 Rex Butler Louise Hearman Tarrawarra Museum of Art
    2017 #13 Julia Lomas Sally Smart: The Choreography of Cutting Sarah Scout Presents
    2017 #12 Giles Fielke Open Spatial Workshop: Converging in Time Monash University Museum of Art
    2017 #11 Kate Warren Daniel Crooks: Parabolic / Miyanaga Akira: REALTIME Anna Schwartz Gallery, National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #10 Francis Plagne David Hockney: Current National Gallery of Victoria
    2017 #09 David Wlazlo Project 17: Radical Immanence Anna Pappas Gallery
    2017 #08 Anna Parlane Stuart Ringholt: Works on Paper Neon Parc
    2017 #07 Victoria Perin Don't be too Polite: Posters and Activism Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2017 #06 Amelia Winata O’Keeffe, Preston, Cossington-Smith: Making Modernism Heide Museum of Modern Art
    2017 #05 Paris Lettau Sovereignty Australian Centre for Contemporary Art
    2017 #04 Beth Kearney Ramesh Nithiyendran: In the beginning Ian Potter Museum of Art
    2017 #03 Giles Fielke Lucina Lane: Range White Cuberd
    2017 #02 Helen Hughes The Sculpture of Bronwyn Oliver Tarrawarra Museum of Art
    2017 #01 Rex Butler Suzanne Archer: Moving Forwards, Looking Back: A Survey 1969–2016 Nicholas Thompson Gallery
    Lost in the feed/translation
    by Audrey Schmidt
    Nicholas Mangan, Termite Economies: Neural Nodes and Root Causes
    Sutton Gallery
    by Vincent Le
    The Tennant Creek Brio
    NIRIN: 22nd Biennale of Sydney
    by Lévi McLean, Paris Lettau
    Improvements and Reproductions
    West Space
    by Giles Fielke
    Peter Tyndall
    bLogos/HA HA
    by Victoria Perin
    Confined 11
    The Torch
    by Helen Hughes
    Incinerator Gallery
    by Hester Lyon
    Jane Sutherland, Obstruction, Box Hill, 1887
    Art Gallery of Ballarat
    by Rex Butler
    John Nixon, Groups + Pairs 2016-2020
    Anna Schwartz Gallery
    by Amelia Winata
    Justine Varga, Tachisme
    Tolarno Galleries
    by Chelsea Hopper

    The End.