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Tag: Installation Art

Sydney Morning Herald Column

White Rabbit: Commune

Saturday, November 1st, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In the words of the Chinese philosopher, Mencius, “we survive in adversity and perish in ease and comfort.” This thought may be universally applicable but it is especially relevant to China today, as the horrors of the 20th century recede into the mists. It has been almost 40 years since the end of the Cultural […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Gwangju, Busan & SeMA Biennale

Saturday, October 4th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In South Korea the word “exhibition” seems to be translated as “biennale”. At the moment the Koreans are hosting at least four biennales, if one includes the Daegu Photography Biennale (until 19 October). Last week I managed to catch the other three, two of which have begun in an atmosphere of high controversy. The most […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Annette Messager

Saturday, September 6th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Annette Messager was born in the French provinces to a family of atheists who took a particular pleasure in the local Catholic church. Her father favoured the architecture, while Annette liked the stained glass windows. This biographical tidbit takes on significance when one considers the nature of Messager’s work, which draws freely on the iconography […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

19th Biennale of Sydney

Saturday, March 29th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Biennales thrive on controversy but there is a feeling of unease about this year’s headlines. No-one envisaged artists boycotting the Biennale because the founding sponsor has government contracts to manage detention centres. It was no cause for celebration when Transfield’s Luca Belgiorno-Nettis, one the few dedicated patrons of the arts in corporate Australia, felt obliged […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Dark Heart: 2014 Adelaide Biennial

Saturday, March 15th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Before heading south for this year’s Adelaide Biennial I saw Opera Australia’s production of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin. Pushkin’s famous character is the archetypal ‘dark heart’. Onegin humiliates the young Tatiana, who has confessed her love for him. He plays a nasty joke on his best friend, and keeps going long after he should have stopped. […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Sculpture City

Saturday, February 15th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

As proven by the annual Sculpture by the Sea exhibitions sculpture enjoys a widespread popularity, but this doesn’t translate into a thriving market. It remains much harder to sell a sculpture than a painting, as private buyers tend to view sculptures as large, cumbersome objects that have no place in the domestic environment. The pieces […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Christian Boltanski

Saturday, January 25th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Life as a conveyor belt, taking us inexorably from birth to death, is not an original idea. Charlie Chaplin had the same thought in the famous sequence from Modern Times (1936) when the worker is dragged through the machine. Chaplin had a political agenda but the image also captured the helplessness and insignificance one feels […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Melbourne Now

Saturday, January 11th, 2014 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In Melbourne Now the National Gallery of Victoria has staged a sprawling, colossally ambitious survey of the city’s contemporary art that also includes architecture, design, dance, performance and more. Although the logistical achievement is impressive, the exhibition is an act of metropolitan navel-gazing on a scale inconceivable in any other Australian capital. The catalogue is […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Cai Guo-Qiang

Saturday, December 14th, 2013 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Cai Guo-Qiang is an artist who understands spectacle. In an international art scene as crowded as a commuter train at rush hour he creates large-scale installations that stop viewers in their tracks. Where so many artists are identified with a trademark style, Cai has managed to regularly turn over his themes and techniques. What all […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Yoko Ono

Saturday, November 30th, 2013 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

For an artist who has devoted her career to peace, love and understanding, Yoko Ono’s press call at the Museum of Contemporary Art was unpleasantly regimented. Journalists and photographers were herded from room to room like errant sheep, and it was made clear that questions about John Lennon would not be welcome. The only problem […]