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Press Release: Antipodean Inquiry

13 Dec 2015

Yavuz Gallery is pleased to present Antipodean Inquiry, a group exhibition of leading artists from Australia and New Zealand, curated by guest curator Owen Craven. The exhibition will open on 22 January 2016 during Singapore Art Week, and will coincide with Gillman Barracks’ Art After Dark event.

Antipodean Inquiry explores the vast and varied artistic approaches that make up the fabric of contemporary art coming out of Australia and New Zealand. As nations of diverse beauty and extremes, landscape has been central to their art, as a reflection of its looming and defining presence in the Australian and New Zealand psyche. Antipodean Inquiry provides a fresh alternative frame of reference highlighting disparate narratives: nations as a complex, urban, immigrant and sophisticated society.

This ambitious exhibition looks beyond the confines of original perception to present the features that define contemporary Australian and New Zealand art: bold, quality, originality and diversity. Informed by global ideas and interactions, the artists on exhibition make work inspired by their collective, personal journeys in response to their antipodean place in the world. Their artistic practice reflects and embraces their experiences. Always distinct, their idiosyncratic voices confidently expand the global canon of Contemporary Art.

Antipodean Inquiry presents work in a variety of media. Sculptor Penny Byrne presents a politically poignant ceramic work Weapons of Mass Destruction. Photographs by Tamara Dean and Daniel Shipp explore our connection to the natural world. Works on paper feature by Steve Lopes and Joan Ross alongside paintings by Lucas Grogan, Andre Hemer, Anna Kristensen, and Euan Macleod.

David Noonan works with silkscreen linen collages in which the figurative is superimposed with the abstract to investigate formal qualities of graphic and textual elements of the picture plane; Danie Mellor reflects on the migration and similarities of plant species within tropical environs, and how people and culture also move and respond to environments; Brook Andrew continues his action of twisting historical perception and visual immersion and recalls the debates about imperial conquest through photography; Joan Ross engages humour in her new media video works about colonial history; and Lindy Lee’s personal works on sheet metal give insight to the complexity of Australian multiculturalism, while her flung bronze spherical artwork employs chance and spontaneity as a meditation on nature and life.

Based in Sydney, guest curator Owen Craven has worked as an independent curator and arts writer for over a decade. Past exhibitions include Not the Way Home and Your Friend the Enemy. He is currently a curator with Urban Art Projects (UAP) where he works as an artist liaison on large-scale public art commissions. Immediately prior to joining UAP, he was the editor of Artist Profile and Art Almanac, Australia’s leading visual arts publications.