Exhibition review: Aura

Aura review Art Guide

How does that old Joseph Heller quote go? Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you. Ben Rak, the printmaker behind Aura: Repetition, Reproduction and the Mark of the Artist at the Manly Art Gallery & Museum, does seem a little touchy. Why else would you take on all the things that have traditionally dogged printmaking as a medium?

Full exhibition review over on Art Guide.

Tomislav Nikolic

Excerpt of a story published in Art Collector, Jan-Mar 2015

Tomislav Nikolic insists his work doesn’t reproduce well. For him, painting is a three-dimensional object and photography only flattens it. For his last exhibition at Jensen’s Sydney gallery, he applied multiple layers of transparent colour washes to paper. “By applying dozens or even hundreds of coats of paint it builds up a density and a body of colour. When you’re looking at what looks to be one solid colour, you’re actually not looking at the surface, you’re looking through hundreds of layers of paint,” he explains. Only by looking at a work in the flesh can you get the experience of “how that colour and that pigment and that medium behaves,” he says.

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20 years later: Ginny Green

Published in Art Collector, Issue 80, April-June 2017

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Seriously, if you’re ever feeling jaded about the art world, this woman is your cure. Sydney-based art collector Ginny Green is such a fierce supporter of art and artists. Plus she has a phenomenal eye. The full four-page feature is in the current issue of Art Collector.

Oh and happy birthday to Art Collector! The magazine celebrates its 20th anniversary this issue. Surviving in the art and publishing worlds is a tough gig.

Standout shows: Todd McMillan

Published in Art Collector, Issue 79, January-March 2017

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It was a sublime for our time, for the Anthropocene. There was awe and reverence for the natural world but there was something new and unsettling too, some hard-edged core, to Todd McMillan’s Farewell, exhibited at Sarah Cottier Gallery in Sydney in October.

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Who the bloody hell are we

Published in Art Collector, Issue 79, Jan-Mar 2017

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Jane O’Sullivan previews the multi-venue exhibition that the Australian contemporary art world has been waiting for.

The National. Another gumtree exhibition about what it means to be Australian? “Absolutely not,” says the MCA’s curatorial & digital director Blair French with a laugh. He admits it’s a provocative title but says that’s part of the point. “What it does is throws up the question, if you’re not creating a nationalist show or trying to work at ideas of nationhood, which we’re not, then how can you use that title to problematise those ideas?”

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Beyond the border

Published in the Australian Financial Review Magazine, March 2016

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Well, you could probably write a book on the topic of Australian artists and the struggles they’ve faced making it overseas. I almost did.

Luckily, only the six-page version made it out into the world, as part of the Australian Financial Review Magazine’s annual arts issue.

The featured artists Patricia Piccinini, Alex Seton and Christian Thompson are among those who are starting to get more international recognition – here’s to that!

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Update: Patricia Piccinini’s amazing Brasilian exhibition, which I talk about in this story, made it to #2 in The Art Newspaper’s list of most popular exhibitions in 2016.

Schwartz takes leap into unknown at Carriageworks

Published in the Australian Financial Review, Weekend Edition, 24 October 2015

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Veteran art dealer Anna Schwartz is handing the keys of her Sydney gallery to Carriageworks and teaming up with Carriageworks director Lisa Havilah to mount an ambitious five-year exhibition program in the space.

Schwartz, who will continue to run her Melbourne gallery, has donated $500,000 to fund the series of exhibitions.

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