Pleasure & Reality Exhibition
Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia | 18 September, 2015 to February, 2016 | Free Entry
Pop culture images and everyday objects take on new meaning in Pleasure & Reality, a new group exhibition that will see five Australian artists subvert reality and create the unexpected. Traversing painting, installation, sculpture and video, Pleasure & Reality brings together new and recent work by contemporary artists Tony Garifalakis, Nathan Gray, Helen Johnson, Marian Tubbs and Justene Williams.
‘Pleasure & Reality brings together a dynamic group of Australian contemporary artists whose practices explore reviving and recycling imagery and objects. They give us a new perspective with which to view the seemingly ordinary things we encounter in our day-to-day lives,’ said Tony Ellwood, Director, NGV.
In Tony Garifalakis’ Blood Line, a suite of fifteen portraits of Britain’s Royal Family, including Princess Diana, Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles, have been defaced by spraying and painting layers of dripping black enamel over their faces, leaving just their eyes and adornments of wealth visible. In doing so, Garifalakis calls their authority into question and renders them as one indistinguishable alien mob.
Sandwich bags, fake nails, lace gloves and ear plugs form the foundation of Marian Tubbs’ brand new series of small sculptures of simple, everyday materials. By using these relatively domestic and mundane objects, Tubbs rediscovers the beauty in the banal by creating a series of thought-provoking and enticing sculptures.
Repurposing the sets and props of Japanese Noh Theatre, Justene Williams will create an immersive theatrette in the gallery, incorporating a new video of her performance art work No Mind where objects from the film bleed into the space, including an eerie mannequin in which chili plants will grow and a bell-shaped bamboo cage. In this immersive environment, Williams seeks to blur the lines between traditional art movements, in this case Noh theatre, with contemporary art practice.
Melbourne based artist, experimental musician and performer Nathan Gray will showcase a three screened video installation, Species of Space. Using a variety of found objects including tools, machinery and metal, he creates a percussive soundtrack, to discover a newfound musicality through a process of experimentation and trial-and-error.
Direct from her debut at Chateau Shatto in Los Angeles, Helen Johnson’s collages of cartoonish caricatures reference Australian history, American comics and Disney characters, creating a collision of familiar imagery that investigates how political and cultural narratives can inform our cultural identity.
Pleasure & Reality is on display at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia at Federation Square from 18 September, 2015 to February, 2016. Entry is free.