Jenny Watson: The Fabric of Fantasy
Heide Museum of Modern Art, 4 November 2017 – 3 March 2018
By Chelsea Hopper
When you first start making stuff, finding your voice as an artist can be a bit of a slog. There will always be bad paintings, clumsy drawings of still lifes and failed charcoal figures from the life drawing classes you were forced to take at art school. It can be a case of trying things out and then trying them again and again. After a few years, you ultimately make the decisio...
Wayne Eager New Paintings
Eastgate Gallery, 158 Burwood Road, Hawthorn, 14 October – 11 November 2017
By Ian McLean
An exhibition that caught my eye last week reminded me that the surrealists didn't seek their aesthetic thrills in Paris' modish contemporary art galleries or amongst the Old Masters in the Louvre, but in unexpected places. Somewhat off the beaten track, in an old picture framer founded in 1879, about a dozen very uncontemporary large abstract expressionist paintings occupied...
Jason Phu, My Parents Met at the Fish Market
Westspace, 27 October – 9 December 2017
By Anna Parlane
Jason Phu’s My Parents Met at the Fish Market is the latest in Westspace’s series of solo commissions, in which all four galleries are given over to one artist. While he is younger and less experienced than previously commissioned artists, Phu is clearly up to the task of filling the space. His irrepressible style is immediately manifested in the fact that to enter the exhibition’s secon...
Gareth Sansom: Transformer
Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, 15 September 2017 – 28 January 2018
By Rex Butler
The Pulitzer Prize-winning critic Sebastian Smee barely got a word in during the Q & A held soon after the opening of Gareth Sansom’s retrospective at the NGV. Sansom, just about the ultimate alpha-male for all of his cross-dressing, entertained the audience with tales of his early cricketing prowess, his father returning home after the war without a limb, his e...
Joseph Kosuth, A Short History of My Thought
Anna Schwartz Gallery, 7 October – 25 November 2017
By David Wlazlo
Coupled with the pervasive hum of the neon transformers, Joseph Kosuth's A short history of my thought at Anna Schwartz Gallery is a grab-bag of his past fifty years working with neon. Far from any noir promise historically associated with the technology, the neon works—mounted on the pristine white walls of a commercial gallery—seem muted and grim, limited in their referenti...
Darren Sylvester, Céline,
Bus Projects, 4 – 28 October 2017
By Amelia Winata
Stepping through the front door of Bus Projects and being met by Darren Sylvester’s Céline, I am reminded of Anna Viebrock’s set design for the exhibition The Boat is Leaking. The Captain Lied at the Fondazione Prada in Venice. Viebrock, a stage designer by trade, was invited by curator Udo Kittelman to take part in the exhibition alongside Thomas Demand and Alexander Kluge. She completely tr...
Brent Harris, the small sword
Tolarno Galleries, 28 September – 4 November 2017
By Helen Hughes
Hallucinations between figure and ground flicker across the surface of many of Brent Harris’s compositions in his new exhibition at Tolarno Galleries, the small sword. In the studio (2017), for example, the main figure’s cartoonish outline—that most primitive of compositional devices that distinguishes an object from its background—wobbles and warps, as if filtered through the mottled lens...
The Ian Potter Museum of Art, 1 August – 5 November 2017. Curated by Jacqueline Doughty.
By Kate Warren
One of the things I enjoy most about going to an orchestral performance are the moments when the musicians onstage complete their final warm-ups, exercises and tunings. Being not yet focused into a single force, the performers’ last-minute preparations are individual and not precisely coordinated or harmonised. Nonetheless, they blend and complement each other, creating a mix o...