Thursday, May 29, 2008

Mourning the Morning

eO inc., Central Coast Contemporary Arts Initiative, has over the past five years, striven to progress the Central Coast’s Contemporary Arts agenda. Unfortunately, despite the passionate commitment of its members, a point has been reached when they can no longer sustain the energy required to keep eO alive.
Therefore, eOinc. announces that, Shell Collection will be eOinc.’s final exhibition, and the last in a successful programme including f3Xit, col-aberration, re-View and Kvinna-Nainen-Women. Earlier in the organization’s life, it was the agency that sent four Central Coast artists to an Environmental Art Symposium in Korea, and the foundation organization for the Dawn Light Symposium at the Gosford Regional Gallery in 2005.

Central Coast artists Meredith Brice Copland, Sandy James and Maumer Cajic in Cheongju.

Meredith and Sandy proudly display their eO T-shirts

This is not the occasion to detail why it is so difficult for independent artist-directed organizations, or individuals, to be positively engaged in contemporary art in the region. It is enough to say that the art community is diminished by the ending of eOinc. The details are well known, and constitute the hill up which, inevitably, one gets tired of pushing shit.
It is not surprising if artists decide to just get on with their work, and go somewhere where there are more people pushing in the same direction. In these times when the scope of art is global, Gosford needs leading edge artists more than the artists need Gosford.

Engagement is not so difficult if the forms pursued fit the cultural paradigms in vogue, but critical practice will always contest orthodoxy, even in its experimental guise.
Yet despite this, there is a core of contemporary artists who live locally and who would like to see local practice able to participate in the broader intellectual and critical milieu that constitutes contemporary art. It is tragic to see the passion and enthusiasm, the time and effort, the generous community spirit, worn down.
But – don’t be surprised if a few ex-eO members pop up unexpectedly. They might have been pushed to the fringes, but there be a feral and fertile place to play.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The dimming of the Dawn

eO incorporated is proud to present its final exhibition!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Hanging out

Berlin street performer Johan Lorbeer

Just hanging about. Don't try this one in Kibble Park, Gosford, Johan. Loitering is prohibited, according to the sign in William Street, with a penalty of $500.
(I thought that was one thing parks were for)

Thanks to Sharyn for the link.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

It never rains

"Rising seas will swamp thousands" (Express Advocate, 14th May) No news there.

Margaret Roberts, who as part of her work in the Dawn Light Symposium in 2005, shows anticipated sea level at the Gosford Regional Gallery.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Cida de Aragon & Steffen Lehmann

Steffen Lehmann has sent some information about the completion of the work that Cida de Aragon and he have been working on for Brisbane.
This will be of particular interest to those who had the opportunity to meet them both at Art inTent.

Re: *Resilience* - The Women Suffrage Memorial in Brisbane.

"According to the dictum of Adolf Loos, only memorials and tomb stones are worthy of true architectural attention (Loos, A: 'Ornament and Crime', Vienna 1910). 'Architecture is about monuments and graves', said the Viennese architect at the turn of the 20th century.

I am pleased that a small memorial project in Brisbane has come to completion:
The completed artwork by media artist Cida de Aragon in collaboration with Steffen Lehmann is located in close proximity to Brisbane City Hall
and King George Square.

The Women Suffrage Memorial commemorates one hundred years of women's right to participate in state elections. It commemorates the centenary of women suffrage and is a reflective, quiet place where people may walk and sit in the shade. It is a permanent artwork visible from all sides and surrounded by high-rise buildings, so scale was crucial – the memorial needed to be large, with an abstract graphical reading of the historical facts. It therefore uses texts on steel panels and an inserted light box, expressing both resilience and delicacy.

The three silver-coloured steel volumes form a cross in plan - symbolizing the cross on the ballot paper of the first state election in1907, when women were allowed to vote. The kaleidoscopic repetition of the faces represents each of the three female pioneers as well as all women of Queensland. The light box shows historical portrait photos and creates a dignified visual presence, while the slanted steel elements (a metaphor for the struggle) create a sheltered space in the urban landscape.

The work deals with the complexity of contemporary memorials and the problem of commemorating historical achievements in the 21st-Century. It acknowledges the contribution of these dedicated and resourceful women, whose legacy, fought one hundred years ago, is still ongoing and unresolved, as even today we find discrimination against women, for instance in the form of unequal pay. With this commission, we could explore some important questions, such as: What is the connection between collective memory and commemoration? What are the challenges of integrating memorials into the urban fabric, and how is the appropriate scale determined.

End of May, the memorial will be inaugurated by the Premier; the project has also just been selected to be exhibited at the forthcoming Architectural Biennale in Venice (Sept. - Nov. 2008), as part of the Australian exhibition."

I hope you have a chance to see the memorial at your next visit to Brisbane's CBD.

Best wishes,

Ph.D., AADipl.

Chair, School of Architecture and Built Environment
The University of Newcastle.
s_Lab space Laboratory for architectural Research and Design

Editor, 'Journal of Green Building'