Best and Overlooked of 2018
Memo Review asked three of our contributors to write on a show they have especially liked but that we haven't had a chance to review. As a special issue we publish these reviews from Tiarney Miekus, Amelia Winata and Giles Fielke.
Ella Sowinska 80 Ways
recess, Friday 30 March – 30 April 2018
By Tiarney Miekus
Considering the amount of things that can be streamed online (i.e., entire lives), it's peculiar how art is a thing that supposedly doesn't h...
Binns' Grids and Voids
Vivienne Binns: It is what it is, what it is
Sutton Gallery, 17 March – 14 April 2018**
By Helen Hughes
Vivienne Binns seems to have taught—or had some sort of mentor-like relationship with—a whole bunch of artists whose work I like: Charlie Sofo, Liang Luscombe, Trevelyan Clay, Kate Smith and Geoff Newton, to name just a few. If there is amongst some or all of these artists a shared sensibility to do with humour, a cavalier attitude towards painting (or 'fine art...
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...
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...
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...
Seasonal Adjustment Disorder: Van Gogh in Melbourne
Van Gogh and the Seasons
National Gallery of Victoria, St Kilda Road, Melbourne, 28 April – 9 July 2017
By Anthony White
There are many extraordinary works of art to be seen in Van Gogh and the Seasons and yet certain aspects of the National Gallery of Victoria exhibition are disappointing. Individual paintings that stand out as masterpieces of modern art are shown side by side with frankly insignificant and minor pieces. In addition,...
Paints like a dream
Tarrawarra Museum of Art, Healesville, 18 February – 14 May 2017. Curated by Anna Davis.
By Rex Butler
Louise Hearman complains about the way that in every review of her work she is compared to her partner Bill Henson, while in reviews of Henson’s work she is rarely, if ever, mentioned.
Of course, she is absolutely right: the male Henson is held up as the standard against which she is measured, whereas the female Hearman does not reciprocally set the...
David Hockney: Current
National Gallery of Victoria, 11 November 2016 – 13 March 2017
By Francis Plagne
With David Hockney: Current, the NGV has made the unusual decision to devote a major exhibition to a selection of work from the last decade by a 79 year-old artist active since the early 1960s. Perhaps this can be explained by the popular appeal of the iPhone and iPad drawings that make up much of David Hockney's output in this period, but the choice is interesting insofar as the narro...