Issue 32:1 | March 2012 | Pattern & Complexity
Pattern & Complexity
Issue 32:1 | March 2012
Issue 31:4 | December 2011 | Phenomena
Issue 31:4 | December 2011
Issue 29:3 | September 2009 | Rational / Emotional
Rational / Emotional
Issue 29:3 | September 2009
Issue 28:2 | June 2008 | Art Mind Beauty
Art Mind Beauty
Issue 28:2 | June 2008
Issue 25:2 | June 2005 | Remote
Issue 25:2 | June 2005
Issue 21:4 | December 2001 | Best Practice: Export Quality
Best Practice: Export Quality
Issue 21:4 | December 2001
Issue 21:1 | March 2001 | Taking in Water
Taking in Water
Issue 21:1 | March 2001


Choreography of the elements: Janet Echelman
American artist Janet Echelman reshapes urban airspace with monumental, fluidly moving sculpture that responds to environmental forces including wind, water, and sunlight. The artist’s ongoing series of aerial net sculptures started in 1997 when she was in India as a Fulbright Scholar and became fascinated with the beauty and movement of traditional fishing nets. In 2011 her installation 'Tsunami 1.26' hung over the Town Hall traffic intersection in Sydney as a joint initiative of the Powerhouse Museum and Art and About Sydney.
The inchworm revisited
Artist, writer and honorary visiting Professor at the Centre for Computational Neuroscience and Robotics at the University of Sussex in England Paul Brown sketches out the long intertwining history of the relationship between C.P. Snow's two cultures - art and science, design and mathematics, beauty and computation, and extrapolates upon Lady Ada Lovelace's famous words: "We may say most aptly that the Analytical Engine weaves algebraical patterns just as the Jacquard-loom weaves flowers and leaves."
Fractal food
John Walker is the founder of Autodesk, Inc. and co-author of AutoCAD. In Fractal Food he discusses the marvel of fractal forms (complex shapes which look more or less the same at a wide variety of scale factors) as they are seen in a rather wonderful vegetable - the chou Romanesco.
Openwork patterns: Love Lace
Powerhouse Museum Curator of Textiles Lindie Ward discusses the groundbreaking 'Love Lace' exhibition on show at the Powerhouse until April 2013. A globally sourced series of works it showcases 130 designs for openwork structures from 20 countries.
A Meme is born
Adelaide writer and artist Peter Drew looks at various examples of recent street art and the many ways it is circulated and reproduced as a meme in a wired and globally connected world. "As it turns out," he says, "memetics can be very useful in understanding the patterns of street art."
Not just black and white
Scholar and inaugural director of the new Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre in Katherine Cath Bowdler discusses the work of two indigenous artists Brook Andrew and Gunybi Ganambarr and suggests that they are both operating at a conceptual level as bricoleurs in a globalised world, inventing new juxtapositions of materials and revealing new ways of seeing the world through the prism of local histories and traditions.
Caroline Durré: Reforming the earth
Drawing Studio and Program Co-ordinator at Monash University Stephen Garrett examines the optically challenging artworks of Caroline Durré which blend patterns and perspectives.
The Poliness wall drawings: not quite right
Artist Kerrie Poliness writes about her wall drawing projects, one of which appears in the exhibition 'Art, Pattern and Complexity' at RiAus, Adelaide from 16 February to 16 May 2012. The wall drawings begin with the artist's instructions but are produced with intuition rather than rulers.
Mesne: Stitches in the Air: computational craft
Media artist, techno-evangelist and digital nomad Fee Plumley responds to Mesne Design Studio's lacemaking environment 'Pricking Version 2.0' which is their answer to the question “what happens if you apply computational processes to the historical notion of craft?”.
Shape of the wind: pattern & chaos in Sue Lovegrove's island art
Head of Environmental Studies at the University of Tasmania and writer Peter Hay describes the recent paintings of Sue Lovegrove made from her experience of different islands off the coast of Tasmania - Maatsuyker Island, Egg Island and most recently Tasman Island. Lovegrove began with painting clouds but has moved on to paint the shape of the wind.
Mesne: Pattern In(formation)
Tim Schork and Paul Nicholas founded MESNE Design Studio, an innovative architecture and urban design studio working globally as one office from London and Melbourne, to explore the relationship between architecture and divergent domains of knowledge through the use of computation in order to create innovative design strategies for novel spatial structures. They write about the back story of the project "Pricking', an interdisciplinary collaborative project between MESNE Design Studio, Ian Maxwell (supermanoeuvre) and Indae Hwang, which involves an interactive lace-making table with an infra-red based multi-touch interface.
Pipilotti Rist I Packed the Postcard in my Suitcase
Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne 21 December 2011 – 4 March 2012
Tooth and Nail
Grand Opening Exhibition Adelaide December 2011
Medi(t)ation - 2011 Asian Art Biennial
1 October 2011 – 1 January 2012 Curator: Iris Shu-Ping Huang National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts?(NTMoFA)
Everyday the possible
Sonia Donnellan, Anna Hughes & Sonja Porcaro South Australian School of Art (SASA) Gallery 14 August - 16 September 2011
Sequences and Cycles: contemporary ceramics from the desert

Pantjiti Lionel, Mel Robson, Pip McManus, Patsy Morton, Suzi Lyon, Amanda McMillan Co-curators: Jo Herbig and Franca Barraclough Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs 19 November 2011 - 22 January 2012

Revealed: Emerging Aboriginal Artists from Western Australia
Curator: Thelma John Gallery Central, Perth 24 October - 12 November 2011
In Action, Inaction: Dara Gill
MOP Projects Gallery 1 1 December - 17 December 2011
The James C. Sourris A.M. Collection
Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane 12 November 2011 – 19 February 2012
2112: Imagining the Future
Curator: Linda Williams RMIT Gallery, Melbourne 2 December 2011 - 28 January 2012
Andre Lipscombe: BOO!
Nyisztor Studio 1 - 23 October 2011
Threads: Contemporary Textiles and the Social Fabric
Curator: Ruth McDougall with Maud Page and Russell Storer Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane 1 October 2011 – 5 February 2012
Shadowbox: The Desert Paintings
Liverpool Street Gallery 3 – 23 December 2011
Tell Me Tell Me: Australian and Korean Art 1976 – 2011
Museum of Contemporary Art at the National Art School Gallery, Sydney 17 June - 24 August 2011
Untitled - 12th Istanbul Biennial
Antrepo 3 & 5, Meclis-i Mebusan Caddesi, Liman Ísletmeleri Sahas?, Tophane Curators: Adriano Pedrosa, Jens Hoffmann 17 September - 13 November 2011
Isea 2011
Uncontainable Istanbul 14 - 21 September 2011
Tarryn Gill & Pilar Mata Dupont Curator: Leigh Robb Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts 3 September - 30 October 2011
The Torres Strait Islands: A Celebration
Land, Sea and Sky: Contemporary Art of the Torres Strait, GOMA Strait Home, State Library of Queensland Awakening: Stories from the Torres Strait, Queensland Museum Belong, Bangarra Dance Theatre, Queensland Performing Arts Centre Mabo Oration 2011, Follow the Stars: Indigenous culture, knowledge and intellectual property rights 1 July - 23 October 2011
Ray Harris: Hold me Close and Let me Go
Australian Experimental Art Foundation Adelaide 30 September - 29 October 2011
Julie Gough: Rivers Run
Devonport Regional Gallery 3 September - 2 October 2011 Cairns Regional Gallery 5 February - 14 March 2010
Tom Freeman: 18th and 19th Century Prisoner art
The Museum of Natural Mystery, North Perth 22 - 23 July 2011
The Mad Square: modernity in German art 1910 - 37
Curator: Jacqueline Strecker Art Gallery of New South Wales 6 August - 6 November 2011 National Gallery of Victoria 25 November 2011 - 4 March 2012
Blakely & Lloyd - Social Documentary Photography
Museum of Brisbane 12 August - 20 November 2011
Louise Haselton: Errand Workshop
Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia CACSA 22 July - 28 August 2011
The Swamp
142 Liverpool St, Hobart 26 August 2011 and ongoing
Chromophobes, Xenophones and Lots of Textas
Kirsten Farrell muses on colourphobia through her life, her Phd and her reading of the book Colourphobia (2000) by David Batchelor
Sara Hughes: Colour coded to quicken the heart
New Zealand-based Sara Hughes considers colour has been degraded throughout Western history. She uses coloured vinyl applied to architecture to "articulate social meaning".
World Summit on Arts & Culture

Executive Director of NAVA Tamara Winikoff missed the voices of artists at the October 2011 World Summit on Arts & Culture in Melbourne.

Good enough to eat: Katherine Hattam's paintings blogger and book designer W.H. Chong describes the paintings of Katherine Hattam that "zing and crackle with edible hues."
The Digital attribution of Colour
Director of Sydney-based New Media Curation Deborah Turnbull explores the way colour choices in a digital environment involve ideological and philosophical dimensions as well as aesthetic ones.
Speaking in Colour
Artist and curator Una Rey writes about the exhibition 'Speaking in colour' that she curated for the Newcastle Gallery from their collection in March-May 2011. Her experience of working with Indigenous artists in Central Australia coloured her choices and her interpretations of them.
Kate Shaw: Amping up the Magic Hour
In an interview format artist and academic Stephen Haley discusses the work of Kate Shaw the artist whose work features on the cover of the Phenomena issue of Artlink. Shaw talks about the way she uses colour, her techniques and goals from garnering attention to depicting an ambivalent relationship to the natural world.
The Mystery of Shit: Wim Delvoye
Belgian artist Wim Delvoye is having a retrospective at Hobart's MONA. Stephanie Radok looks at the materials and concepts he uses in a broad context and asks whether his art is critical or spectacle.
The Hammer and the Screw: Thom Buchanan's drawings
South Australian artist Thom Buchanan's most recent drawing adventure was on stage with dancers from the ADT.
Sympathy for the Devil: the creatures of Julia Robinson

South Australian artist Julia Robinson's striking sculpture draws on the darkness in human culture that has often been represented by goats. Made from fibreglass and snugly covered in fabric they assume strange forms and positions that give them a "reverberating energy".

Radical Ethology: Jussi Parikka's Insect Media
In his meditations on the recently published book Insect Media by Jussi Parikka, the New York-based staff writer for Rhizome at the New Museum Jacob Gaboury suggests that the dehumanisation of media technologies may be seen as engaging with the world in a form of non-human affect.
Bridging the brains of humans, bees and flies: Fiona Hall at the QBI
'Out of mind' the work by Fiona Hall at the Queensland Brain Institute at the University of Queensland draws together scientific research with art research to demonstrate that both approach the world with wonder and intrigue. "Hall’s work ... is apt for neuroscientists are indebted to the neural architecture of animals. The brains of insects like fruit flies or honeybees are much smaller and simpler than ours, yet because similar molecular mechanisms underlie their operation, these creatures may very well hold the keys to unlocking the mysteries of autism, schizophrenia, depression and a range of other human disorders."
Caterpillar Country
Alice Springs-based writer Kieran Finnane describes the caterpillar dreaming in the Alice Springs area. She draws attention to changing attitudes over the years towards traditional custodians and the places they care for.
Flight of the Cicada: Susan Purdy's insect photograms
The inaugural Watermark Literary Fellow Carolyn Leach-Paholski describes the black and white photograms of Susan Purdy which were made in the course of a long wet winter.
Transplanting Life: the distributed media of embodied selves. The Body is a big place
Personality psychologist at Macquarie University Doris McIlwain does yoga and throws pots. She writes about new media installation 'The Body is a Big Place' the recent work of Peta Clancy and Helen Pynor which deals with the complexities of organ donation.
We Are Here: the International Symposium for Artist Run Initiatives
This year marks the 41st anniversary of the development of ARIs in Australia, and as both a celebration of and an indication of how far national and international ARIs have come, a four-day symposium organised by NAVA and Firstdraft was held in Sydney in September 2011.
Remembering Bernard Smith

Writer and academic Juliette Peers remembers Bernard Smith and queries the hagiography that sometimes surrounds him.

Memoir Series: Elnathan Mews

A further instalment in the memoirs of Australia's most revered art theorist Donald Brook. Yes, he is still alive.

The Underpass Motel
This project grew as an extension of a Fellowship awarded to Stuart Elliott in 2006 from ArtsWA – the major arts funding body of the WA Government. Artists involved: Stuart Elliott, Graham Taylor, Patrizia Tonello, Amanda Williams, Peter Dailey, Ben Jones, Richard Heath and Si Hummerston. The Underpass Motel, DVD premiere and gallery exhibition opens at Turner Galleries 9 October - 7 November 2009. Visit the website:
Visual arts at OzAsia
The 2009 OzAsia Festival runs from 3 – 17 October, and also includes a fantastic family-friendly program of theatre, dance, film, food, as well as the free community opening event, the Moon Lantern Festival in Elder Park. See Open from 29 September - 1 November at the Festival Centre Curious Screen: Festival Theatre (FT) Foyer The Sum of Cultures: Piano Bar Follow, Northern India: Faces and Words and Okami: FT Foyer Miss Taken: Space Theatre Foyer 'this reminds me of some place': FT Foyer 29 September - 8 November, Following Threads: Artspace Gallery (Upstairs, Dunstan Playhouse)
Living palely
The Stoics may have taken rationality too far in their resolute minimisation of all feeling. Are emotions no more than disturbances in the logical landscape? What of Pascal’s ‘the heart has its reasons that reason is not acquainted with’? Perhaps the rationality/emotion divide is overdrawn, risking battle lines forming around pure opposites never found in real life examples. Yet the issue has bite, relevance to intimate features of our life: our friendships, our sense of safety in the world, how much we give of ourselves and give up of ourselves to our working life and the living texture of what it feels like to be us: fugitive, or having the ‘warm antiquity of self’.
Speed of dark: Boris Eldagsen
Artist Boris Eldagsen and writer Robert Cook are both looking down the barrel of forty. Cook is fascinated by other members of his exact generation. In his words: 'They are alternative selves, part of my body. Mid-life is hard life, the life as lived not the life not lived, the other path, the no stepping back.' Cook and Boris did not meet.
Strange bedfellows
Why write or think about the work of Patricia Piccinini and Richard Billingham together? Because the work of each of them elicits a visceral response, a response characterised by emotion and gut feeling. Because the border between humans and animals and the relationships between us are examined by both Piccinini and Billingham in a manner that emphasises our relatedness. These are intensely moral artworks with a strong documentary flavour that ask us questions about responsibility and connection that go to the very heart of our lives.
Notes on melancholy and anxiety in the works of Sanja Pahoki
The artworks of Sanja Pahoki walk a zigzag between melancholy and its contemporary cousin, anxiety. Curator and writer Hannah Mathews interviewed Sanja Pahoki about her recent work while thinking about Daniel Birnbaum's comment about the relationship between melancholy and the arts: "The idea of the melancholic as someone not only passive and depressed but also creative is the basis for the Renaissance idea of the genius – the dialectic between darkness and light, destruction and creation."
Astra and the ventilation hypothesis
Astra Howard’s 'Action Research/Performances' necessarily require participation by members of the public. This makes them unpredictable. Astra’s presence is not about entertainment. It is not a show. There is no star. There is no attempt to expose any individual. There are simply sincere attempts to understand them. Astra acknowledges and responds sincerely to one of our deepest and most affective human needs – our need for emotional expression. Our need to have our voice heard. Our need to vent.
William Kentridge between chance and a programme
Pat Hoffie interviewed William Kentridge on the phone to 'draw' out some of his ideas about drawing and art. His work remains committed to a sense of the tactile, and to the slow grainy effort of drawing. In his words: ‘I would repeat my trust in the contingent, the inauthentic, the whim, the practical, as strategies for finding meaning. I would repeat my mistrust in the worth of Good Ideas.'
The Divided Heart
The divided heart Rachel Power Red Dog Books, Melbourne RRP $29.99
Personal Political Emotional
Artist Megan Evans was for some years the partner of Aboriginal activist and artist Les Griggs who suicided in 1993. Fifteen years later she has begun to write his story - a story of reconciliation with herself and her country, through a relationship that undid her and put her back together again.
Ann Newmarch: Opening Pandora's box
In 2007 Ann Newmarch was represented in 'WACK, Art and the Feminist Revolution', a major exhibition in the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Newmarch embraced feminism in the early 1970s. Her art practice manifests the view that all representation is political. Her new work, reiterates a position that she adopted in 1972 : "I try to get onto the page visual images that combine to make memory: past memories incorporated in new sensations and new images related back to past experience. Contemplation ...of our environment that recalls other times, places and relationships."
The Second Life of Pye: Daniel Jay Mounsey
Social media is the new buzz word and trend - like it or not. Daniel Jay Mounsey is ahead of the pack in having Pyewacket Kazyanenko as his well-established alter-ego in Second Life, AND collaborating and performing online through an avatar with Stelarc and others, AND(!) performing onstage live as anime character Hell Girl. Curator and writer Charity Bramwell interviewed all she could find of him.
Art and occupation: Raeda Saadeh
Raeda Saadeh is a Palestinian artist who was born in Umm Al-Fahem, a Muslim village (now a city) in the northern region of Haifa. She completed art studies at the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem, where she now lives. Her questioning of the forces of both political occupation of the Palestinian territories, and personal occupation by traditional cultural and social expectations, have inspired her to focus on her own body with performance and photography.
Choosing who will keep the stories strong
In early 2006, the renowned Liyagauwumirr painter Mickey Durrng Garrawurra died in his home on Milingimbi. For many years, Durrng (1940-2006) and his brother Tony Dhanyala (1935-2004) were the only people authorised to paint the Liyagauwumirr’s most important clan designs. Before his death, however, Durrng made the seemingly unorthodox decision to pass this knowledge and authority to his sister Ruth Nalmakarra (b.1954) and her family. What followed was a flowering of tradition, as Nalmakarra and her sisters used this broadened authority to instigate a cultural revival that united their community around these ancient designs.
Inside Sydney's new Outsider art centre
Outsider Art is enjoying increasing attention in Australia. STOARC – the Self-Taught and Outsider Art Research Collection – at the University of Sydney opened its public face at Callan Park Gallery in March 2009.
Len Lye: An Artist in Perpetual Motion
Len Lye: An Artist in Perpetual Motion Curators: Alessio Cavallaro and Tyler Cann ACMI, Melbourne 16 July – 11 October 2009
53rd Venice Biennale: Making Worlds
53rd Venice Biennale: Making Worlds Bantin Duniyan, Hacer Mundos Director: Daniel Birnbaum 7 June – 22 November 2009
Reconstruction Works: Paul Caporn
Reconstruction Works: Paul Caporn Turner Galleries, Perth 17 April – 16 May 2009
Nobody Likes a Show Off: Richard Lewer
Nobody Likes a Show Off: Richard Lewer Curator: Kirrily Hammond Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne 1 July – 5 September 2009
Not Absolute
Not Absolute Curator: Janice Lally Flinders University Art Museum, Adelaide 24 July – 27 September 2009
SRL: Stigma Research Laboratory
SRL: Stigma Research Laboratory Philippa Steele, John Vella, Scot Cotterell Moonah Arts Centre 8 May – 21 May 2009
A New Truth to Materials
A New Truth to Materials Boxcopy (Miles Hall, Chris Handran, Chloe Cogle, and Ross Manning) Curator: Raymonde Rajkowski Level 3 Metro Arts, Brisbane April 30 - May 30 2009
Sail Away: Ian North
Sail Away: Ian North Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide 1-26 April 2009
Drifting in My Own Land: Nalda Searles
Drifting in My Own Land: Nalda Searles John Curtin Gallery, Curtin University of Technology, Perth Touring Australia 2009 – 2013 19 June - 30 August 2009
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