Rex Butler
The Art Exhibition vs Art: 'Brave New World: Australia 1930s' | 'Call of the Avant-Garde: Constructivism and Australian Art', by Rex Butler

Brave New World: Australia 1930s, installation view, NGV Australia, courtesy NGV.

Brave New World: Australia 1930s, Ian Potter Centre, National Gallery of Victoria, until 15 October

Call of the Avant-Garde: Constructivism and Australian Art, Heide Museum of Modern Art, until 8 October

Brave New World: Australia 1930s and Call of the Avant-Garde: Constructivism and Australian Art are both important new museum shows. They involve a serious investment of institutional resources. They d...

Victoria Perin
‘Discovering Dobell’ | ‘Dobell’s Circle’ at TarraWarra, by Victoria Perin

William Dobell, Abstract-three figures, 1960, oil on hardboard, 16.9 x 27 cm, Private collection © Sir William Dobell Art Foundation

Discovering Dobell | Dobell's circle, TarraWarra Museum of Art, 311 Healesville-Yarra Glen Road, Healesville, 27 May – 13 August 2017

TarraWarra, clearly reaching for the best of both worlds, likes to market itself as 'privately funded, public art museum'. As a charitable not-for-profit company, the museum is sponsored by the Besen Family Foundation, whil...

Amelia Winata
Grotesque Mostest: Spencer Lai, ‘Contaminant, Figures’ at Fort Delta, by Amelia Winata

Spencer Lai, Mustard (torture device), 2017, synthetic felt, 940 x 720 mm. Image courtesy of the artist and Fort Delta.

Spencer Lai, Contaminant, Figures, Fort Delta, 6-29 July 2017

Spencer Lai's work is part of a contemporary exploration of the grotesque that taps into the destabilising qualities of late capitalism and considers its effect upon issues of identity, including gender and sexuality. This current was picked up on by Jonathan Griffin in his 2012 essay Rudely transgressing th...

Helen Hughes
Liam Osborne: Hot Copy

Liam Osborne Hot Copy

Punk Café, 8 July – 22 July 2017

by Helen Hughes

Presented by Liam Osborne, the young Melbourne artist and director/curator of the Brunswick East gallery Punk Café, Hot Copy is a meditation on themes of boredom, repetition, monotony, uselessness and impactlessness. These themes are charted both in relation to the artist's day-to-day routines (working to pay rent, to make art, etc.) and in relation to the role of Punk Café as a Melbourne artist-run gallery (one that...

Kylie King
Dale Frank

Dale Frank

Neon Parc, 15 Tinning St, Brunswick, 30 June–12 August 2017

By Kylie King

Any presentation of Dale Frank's work could easily be passed off as a prime prop for Instagram ops. His paintings—dazzling in size and colour, slick and hyper-reflective—demand attention and entertain. Yet they are also unsettlingly grotesque and possess an overarching posture of cool detachment. Indeed, his current exhibition at Neon Parc is as much confronting as it is alluring.

Dale Frank, It was a b...

Francis Plagne
Every Brilliant Eye

Every Brilliant Eye

Ian Potter Centre, National Gallery of Victoria

By Francis Plagne

Walking through Every Brilliant Eye—a large survey of the NGV's holdings of Australian Art from the 1990s curated by Jane Devery and Pip Wallis—I was struck by how much it look like parts of Melbourne Now, the NGV's sprawling 2013-2014 snapshot of contemporary art practices in Melbourne. It is not only that many of the same names reappear, sometimes with work little changed by the twenty years separat...

Rex Butler
Russia in Melbourne: I can see Russia from here

I can see Russia from here

TCB art inc., Level 1, 12 Waratah Pl, Melbourne VIC 3000, 7 June – June 24, 2017, curated by Chelsea Hopper

By Rex Butler

I walk along grimy Waratah Place in downtown Melbourne. The walls of the buildings are black from use, a chef from a nearby Chinese restaurant crouches on the pavement playing on his iPhone. I climb a flight of rickety wooden stairs and enter the gallery. Two young volunteers sit huddled together in front of a computer screen ignoring me, the...

Kate Warren
Andrea Grützner: Tanztee and Erbgericht

Andrea Grützner Tanztee and Erbgericht

Centre for Contemporary Photography, 9 June – 23 July 2017

By Kate Warren

Writing in Artforum in 2004, Abigail Solomon-Godeau described the 'miniature guillotine' of the camera's shutter. The camera slices a moment in time from the world, removing it from its original context, but also potentially relaunching it as a new, transformed event. In Andrea Grützner's current exhibition at the Centre for Contemporary Photography, the German artist has foc...