Thursday, May 21, 2015

If you've joined us from BuzzFeed

A quick shoutout to those folks who have arrived at this page via a BuzzFeed list 6 Exciting Aboriginal Artists You Need To Know About Right Now.

As you can see, there's not a lot of action here on this blog. Best to head to my Facebook page for marginally more interaction there.

And a quick thank you to Buzzfeed for the mention. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Transforming Tindale - an interview with ABC's 730 Queensland

Here is the link for an interview I did with Michael Aird for Transforming Tindale. This interview aired last Friday (November 7th) evening.

Other posts for Transforming Tindale:

Transforming Tindale is open everyday until the 9th of December.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Hallmarks of the Hungry

My solo exhibition Hallmarks of the Hungry, opened last night at Milani Gallery.

This exhibition marks my tenth year exhibition with Peter Bellas and Josh Milani.

The exhibition runs from 8 November, 2012 to 1st of December 2012

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Trevor Nickolls 1949 - 2012

I am sitting in my studio making work for an upcoming show and I find out that Trevor Nickolls has died.

I thought I’d just say a few words about what Trevor Nickolls means to us.

There are artists who work hard and innovate; they persist and endure. And there are artists who give themselves permission to strike out on their own and make a space where there was none before.

For Blackfellas like me, the work of Trevor Nickolls, in the 1970s and ‘80s was a visual language that gave voice to the confusion and complexity around the identity politics of the times. As a visual artist, he gave voice to our frustration and anger at our powerlessness and our invisibility like no artist before had.

He had arrived on the scene at a good time. As happens sometimes, when as artists, as a people, we really need someone to point us in the right direction, a direction of substance, Trevor Nickolls turned up, brush in hand. On the back of the Civil Rights era in Australia and in an era of much political change for Blackfellas his ‘Dreamtime-to-Machinetime’ works were like nothing any of us had seen before. And Nickolls is rightly known and remembered for these paintings more than anything else in his canon. In 2010 I saw Nickolls’ survey show at the Samstag Museum in Adelaide and was lucky enough to catch it again in Woolongong. It all seems familiar now.

As a young fella in the 1980s, my first seeing the work of Trevor Nickolls left me knowing that there was more to Aboriginal art than what I was seeing in the fabric prints, and knick-knacks and t-shirts that tourists paraded about in Cairns. In Nickolls’ work I found potential, potential for art, potential for Blackfellas. And I felt encouraged too. I still had to find a way to achieving the kind of permission Nickolls somehow allowed himself. But I knew I would go looking for it. Certainly, in the late-1980s/early-1990s, post-‘Bicentenial’, I came to admire the work of Fiona Foley, Tracey Moffatt, Gordon Bennett, Gordon Hookey and Richard Bell, and many more since, all contributing to, and shaping the space that Nickolls opened up for us.

In 2012 we are still grappling with identity and art. It is a healthy dialogue I think. And Nickolls is as much a part of that discourse as he ever was. I think back to when I first moved to Brisbane in the early 1990s and people began talking more and more about this thing called ‘Urban’ Aboriginal art. Trevor Nickolls was before all that.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Deadly Awards 2012

Last night I won the Deadly Award for Visual Artist of the Year.

It was the best night, surrounded by blackfellas.

It was great to be nominated alongside Richard, Merv, Brook and Brenda. I'm very pleased to have won the award, but I would not have felt bad had any of these other artists won.

Thank you for the nominations and everyone who voted. I'm looking forward to attending more Deadly Awards in the future.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Legacy of Tindale Symposium

Just a quick post to say a big thankyou to everyone who helped out today at the "Legacy of Tindale: photography and the politics of anthropology and native title symposium at the State Library of Queensland".

I'd like to thank the hundred or so people who attended as audience members, as well as people who watched it online. Also thanks to Daniel Browning for his facilitation of the day. I've known Dan for a few years now and there are few people who can engage so well with such diverse topics.

Thanks also to Michael Aird and Louise Denoon with whom I worked most closely in bringing the exhibition together.

The speakers were great. Thanks to Professor Bruce Rigsby, Flo Watson, Henrietta Marrie, Lindy Allen, soon-to-be Dr Marcus Waters, Des Crump, Jeanie Bell, Lindy Allen and Nancy Williams.

My greatest hope for the exhibition was that it would be about our families, not about Tindale and not about anthropology. I had the same hope for the symposium today. And I got what I wanted.

Thank you again.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Transforming Tindale press

Screen shot of a write-up in the local North-West News / Quest Newspaper this week.

Press updates for Transforming Tindale: Michael Aird and I have done a few interviews for the Transforming Tindale exhibition.

We were interviewed by Louise Denoon from the State Library of Queensland for the Transforming Tindale exhibition. You can view it here.

Link straight to the video:

We were also interviewed by Daniel Browning for the Books and Arts Daily programme on ABC's Radio National. You can listen to the interview online.

Transforming Tindale is open everyday until the 9th of December.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The future's not what it used to be

Have arrived in the UK for a brief stopover. I say "UK" rather than England or London, as I'm actually in Cardiff, Wales for a first ever visit.

I'm here for the exhibition The future's not what it used to be, at Chapter Gallery and curated by Deborah Smith. My work features alongside the work of Tony Albert, Darren Almond, Matt Bryans, Susan Hiller, Jeremy Millar, Patricia Piccinini, Marjetica Potrc, Amie Siege, and Monika Sosnowska.

Looking forward to posting images when I return to Australia

Exhibition runs from 21st September through to the 4th November 2012.

Note: This post is a re-written version of an accidentally deleted post from earlier this week.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Transforming Tindale

A very busy end of the month with lots of activity but very little blogging.

The proppaNOW exhibition at the State Library of Queensland is about to come to an end, and I'm looking forward to the new exhibition, State of Emergency. Each of the proppaNOW members had a Kuril Dhagun Night by the Fire evening. I'm fairly certain Richard's event had the most people. He had a well-deserved captivated audience of at least 50 people.

Richard Bell at Kuril Dhagun's Night by the Fire

Transforming Tindale at the State Library of Queensland opened on the 5th of September. It was a great night, with many excellent speakers, including Marshall Bell and Flo Watson. Thanks to everyone involved including the opening night speakers, the State Library of Queensland, and Michael Aird.

Quote of the night was from Marshall Bell when he said "It doesn't matter whether Tindale was good or bad. It doesn't matter whether what he did was right or wrong. Those photos are real."

Marshall Bell and Michael Aird
We've been busy with promoting the Transforming Tindale exhibition with events held during the Brisbane Writer's Festival last weekend and a few events coming up over the next month, including
Transforming Tindale is open everyday until the 9th of December.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Interview for MONA

I recently did an interview with Elizabeth Mead for the MONA Blog. Good questions posed, and there are some  interesting comments on the post that question my philosophy and ideas ...