Issue 31:4 | December 2011 | Phenomena
Issue 31:4 | December 2011
Issue 25:1 | March 2005 | Handmade: The New Labour
Handmade: The New Labour
Issue 25:1 | March 2005
Issue 21:3 | September 2001 | E-volution of New Media
E-volution of New Media
Issue 21:3 | September 2001
Issue 17:1 | March 1997 | Australian Design
Australian Design
Issue 17:1 | March 1997


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 Sounds of Silence
Through traditional method, an explicit residue of manual labour, and a constructed subject, Ricky Swallows wooden work suggests a past tense, which leads the viewer backwards through the material history of the work. The Defining aspects of Swallows approach are distinctly framed in the western tradition of the artisan and the language of figuration.
The Art of Outsourcing
While our romantic inheritance imagines artists working in isolation, this is changing. Increasingly, successful artists are working with teams of technicians who contribute precious amounts of skill, time and experience to the final work. Harvey looks at the relationships between artists, apprentices and their creations within the realm of tactile, three-dimensional art and some of the apparent concerns associated.
It's Not You, It's Me - I Just Don't, You Know, Think We're Compatible
"It should go without saying that our responses to the handmade, the mass-produced and techno gadgetry are principally structured within and by fantasy worlds. Cook explores peoples relationships to objects in a world that is perpetually developing and enhancing itself materially, or so it seems.
I Came to Japan Because of the Chopstick
Timms' account of a personal journey through Japan and South Korea and the traditional history of fine pottery crafts that accounts for a large degree of Eastern culture. He here explores the distinctions and connections between Eastern and Western material culture as exemplified through the life and role of the chopstick.
Getting Off Your Face With a Destructive Character
Christian Capurros Another Misspent Portrait of Etienne de Silhouette documents the act of erasure over a period of five years, with the artist asking family, friends, artists and others to each erase a page from the male fashion rag Vogue Hommes. Each rubber was asked to record how long it took them to rub out their page, the results were then tallied.
The Darkroom in the Age of Post-Film Photography
In both amateur and professional photography the few multinational corporations that control the industry have collectively marshalled their marketing strategies to capitalise on recent advances in digital technology. Jolly looks at the shifting photographic trends, their viability and the increasing loss of intimate image-making.
Pixel Perfect: The Craft of Photography in the Age of Digital Reproduction.
Walkling proclaims that something is being mourned that has to do with the physical object and its associated labour, in the meantime the distinction between amateur and professional photographer is lessening as this particular creative niche is becoming more automated.
Australian Drawing Now: Labouring Lightly
The on again/off again love affair between drawing and contemporary art practice seems to have been going on ad nauseam. From the sixties through to the present day, ongoing tensions between the apparent values of traditional and conceptual art have resulted in much of today's appreciation for the reworking of both aesthetics in what has become a new labour of love.
Nurturing the Handmade
In interacting with an object, its physical properties are paramount; as a result, the power of objects to affect us becomes identified with their physical attributes, leading to an emphasis on making, and so linking making with authorship. Sorzano explores the process of object-making as the work in our minds, the work in our hands, and the work as a result....
The Hand in Making
The Tamworth Fibre Textile Biennial began in 1975 and every two years a collection of contemporary fibre textile work tours nationally to metropolitan and regional audiences. For Attiwill, guest curator of the 16th Biennial, the spark for the exhibition A Matter of Time came from Sue Rowleys wisdom: it is useful to think of craft in terms of multiple temporalities, A Matter of Time is an exploration of this usefulness.
Bush TV's: Piliyi - Good One
Nyinkka Nyunyu is an art and culture centre located on Warumungu land in Tennant Creek, right in the middle of the Northern Territory. From the time the idea came up to build something alongside the sacred site of Nyinkka Nyunya, art was always going to be an integral part of the project. The result of many brainstorming sessions amongst traditional owners of the land on which Tennant Creek stands was the idea of dioramas, or Bush TVs to provide the means to present history and contemporary life through art to a diverse audience.
Hand to Mouse: Design and the Handmade
There have always been cycles in the making of what we describe as art, crafts and design, where surges of new ideas have been followed by revivals of earlier values or reform movements that challenge both. The Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, is working on an exhibition for late 2006, on the interface between art, design, industry and the values of the handmade. Cochranes hope is that it will challenge audiences to look closely at some of the exciting working relationships that are possible.
In the Wake of Gesture: Architecture and the Handmade
Architecture has long since surrendered the tactile in favour of grander visions. Through an examination of Sandra Seligs recent work Synthetic Infinite at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney and the unique responses to architecture and the handmade that this work displays, Murray attempts to question how we might then consider architecture and our relationship with built matter to restore a direct connection with human experience.
Domestic Arts in the White Cube
There exists an increasing number of artists - mostly women - creating art using what have been known, somewhat disparagingly, as domestic arts: knitting, crochet, sewing, tatting, embroidery. For many of these artists the choice of method is integral to what the work is saying, the making - the journey - as important as the result, even if that journey is not immediately obvious to the viewer.
Parallel Universe: The Gray St. Workshops @ 20
Gray Street Workshop, which is this year celebrating its twentieth anniversary, has pursued a creative work ethic closely aligned to values of the handmade, not as an end per se but as a means to evolve a creative language grounded in the interplay between ideas and practice.
Patrick Hall's Cabinets of Everyday Curiosities
For Hughes, Patrick Halls cabinets recall the great elaborately decorated cabinets of the 17th century. Rather than mere decoration, Halls cabinets express a poetry of the everyday that is neither a condescending celebration nor a critical analysis but a deeply personal response to his materiel.
Unpacking 'Il Cretino Veloci' or 'The Fast Idiot'
Thomson pays tribute to an increasing minority of Australians devalued for getting their hands in the mucky stuff. As he proclaims ...people who make things with their hands for a living are seen as a hopeless anachronism rooted to the ground. In an age where the majority of the Australian population now work in what are termed the service industries, the ability to apply ones motor skills are making for a society who rarely needs to use those funny slabs of flesh at the end of our arms.
Life is Very Long
Yarra Sculpture Space, Melbourne 28 August - 12 September 2004
Batik and Kris: Duality of the Javanese Cosmos
Perc Tucker Regional Gallery 10 September - 7 November 2004
Living Together is Easy
National Gallery of Victoria: Ian Potter Centre, Melbourne 27 August - 7 November 2004 Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito, Japan 24 January - 28 March 2004 Curated by Jason Smith and Eriko Osaka
For Nothing
The Bank, Midland, WA 26 November - 14 January 2005
Mary Scott - Skirted
Criterion Gallery, Hobart 28 October - 23 November 2004
Disorientate: Colour, Geometry and the Body
John Aslanidis, Paul Boam, John Dunkley-Smith, NeilHaddon, John Plapp, Wilma Tabacco Plimsoll Gallery, University of Tasmania, Hobart 15 October - 7 November 2004
Artifically Reconstructed Habitats: Finola Jones
Canberra Contemporary Art Space 13 August - 25 September 2004 Gertrude Contemporary Spaces, Melbourne 29 October - 20 November 2004
Vivienne Westwood
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 12 November 2004 - 30 January 2005
Fine Art Graduate and Honours Exhibitions Beyond
Griffith University, Queensland College of Art 24 - 27 November 2004 GraduArt 2004 Toowoomba Regional Gallery 27 November 2004 - 30 January 2005 modus vivendi Queensland University of Technology 3 - 5 November 2004
Christian de Vietri: The Nature of Things
Goddard de Fiddes Gallery, Perth 27 November - 18 December 2004
Petrified Nature: Julia Robinson and Morgan Allender, Birds and Bees, Louise Flaherty
Downtown Art Space, Adelaide 28 October - 6 November 2004 The Project Space, CACSA, Adelaide 29 October - 5 December 2004
Everyone Lives Downstream: James Darling and Lesley Forwood
Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide
24 November – 19 December 2004
Polemic: An Allergic Reaction - The eminence grise in our Art Schools

Artist/academic Pat Hoffie has been brooding on the rise and rise of the éminence grise in our teaching institutions and warns of the perils of giving in and being swept along by the current of the times. She is not the only commentator to observe that the visual arts created an irritating skin condition for itself in the eighties when, in search of institutional support, it mimicked the language of professionalism and thus unwittingly exposed itself to the corrosive influence of bureaucracy. This is here discussed.

Australian New Media: An Active Circuit
Through a process of active lobbying by various people around the country in the mid-eighties, the funding and institutional support for art and technology practice in Australia began to materialise. Some key figures in this push were Stephanie Britton, Louise Dauth and Gary Warner who saw the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT) come into existence. The progress of the Australian new media arts scene is here documented from these early years and the various initiatives and supportive programs and events through to what is now the fundamental arts and cultural practice of the twentieth century. Artists Maria Miranda, Norie Neumark and Mari Velonaki are featured.
Interfacing Art, Science and New Media
Among the current metaphors used to describe the unfolding relations between art and science, the two ascriptions that have held sway most recently have been those of collaboration and/or intersection. Both art and science have sent out sets of feelers towards each others cultures which has in turn produced an overlapping sphere of cultural and intellectual activity. Following Lisa Jardine's argument, Munster tentatively proposes that we think through these connections as a process of hybridisation performed by the work of the technical-aesthetic objects themselves rather than to declare a glorious new age of harmony, unity and productivity between the two. Artists Oron Catts, Ionat Zurr, Guy Ben-Ary, Justine Cooper, Michele Barker and Patricia Piccinini are in reference.
Melinda Rackham's Online Installations
Time is the key. They say that the only law of physics that absolutely requires time is the second law of thermodynamics, the law that says systems tend towards entropy. That tendency is time's arrow, the ineluctable winding down of the universe. Except, of course, for life.
Jon McCormack's Evolving Ethics
Most readers would probably have noticed that talk about A-life technology (or any technology for that matter) has a definite shelf life. Liminal Product [LP] quizzed internationally acclaimed computer artist Jon McCormack, whose paper [Re]Designing Nature given at dLux media arts FutureScreen symposium on Artificial Life in October 2000, and recent piece, Eden exhibited at Cyber Cultures, Casula Powerhouse, in the same year, articulate many of the concerns about A-Life that Australian artists grapple with.
Is Any Body Really There? Hybrid/Performance Arts
In a work that refuses language and conventional psychologising, Mary Moores production Exile, which opened at the Sydney Spring International Festival of New Music at The Studio, Sydney Opera House in 2000, the ascribed meaning is an experience rich in identification. This is pleasurably disorienting theatre that says it all about the immersive experience from 3D to Cinemascope to TODD-AO to Cinema to VR. Other new media performance and installation works are brought into focus such as the Melbourne-based Company in Space work Trial by Video (1997), Liquid Gold by Lisa O'Neill, that of Queensland media artist Keith Armstrong and the Melbourne performance company The Men Who Knew Too Much.
Digital Drawing: The Same But Different
Drawing - the use of line and tone - is at the other end of a technology timeline currently unravelling in the digital age of information. The theory and practice of drawing ranges from a tool for honing perceptual disciplines to one that permits the free-flow of the obsessive-compulsive component of our personalities. Leggett looks at the works of artists Paul Thomas, Maria Miranda, Harriet Birks, Alyssa Rothwell, Mr Snow, Peter Callas, Simon Biggs and Damien Everett and the various digital tools they employ to assist in the documenting and drawing out of their individual ideas.
Fresh Portals for the Caravanserai: art and new media in India and Australia
In Delhi early in 2001, a new media research and development program Sarai: The New Media Initiative was launched carrying the energy and quality of intellectual exchange embedded within the history of the caravanserai, translated through the colourful codes, cants and images of public urban life within India's cities. Sarai is a bold initiative facilitating formal and informal partnerships within India and internationally between the likes of hackers, philosophers, artists, media theorists, graphic designers, anthropologists, filmmakers and software developers. Some of the names which appear in this article include Meena Nanji, Rehan Ansari, Graham Harwood, Monica Narula, Sarah Neville, Mari Velonaki and Mukhul Kesevan.
The A-gender of Cute Capital
One the one hand the notion of the cute is seemingly universal and yet it is marked by specific cultural indices and contextual factors. The possible modes of employing the cute is evidenced by the practices of Australian artists Martine Corompt and Kate Beynon. Both artists have a strong interest in character culture (ie. comics, cartoons) and their associated vernaculars; in turn they explore and outline different types of cute landscapes. Both artists use ambiguity in the case of gender representation and utilise aspects of eastern and western contexts and character traits to create works which reinforce and subvert the constructions of gender, class and culture within the universal graphic language.
Do Art-droids Dream Of Electric Sheep?
Peter Robinson and Jacqueline Fraser were the first two New Zealand artists ever to be included in the Venice Biennale. Both were chosen as a result of their work, rich in conceptual layering and with roots in Maori culture, but wrapped in appealingly conventional presentation styles with plenty of hooks for an international audience. This fact leads Butt to the discussion surrounding the support for New Zealand's arts and culture sectors, pointing to a few examples such as Cuckoo, The Physics Room web project series and artists such as Sean Kerr and Warren Olds.
An Ecology of OZ Mutant Media
Wade Marynowsky, aka Spanky is a software engineer who has coded a new program which allows audio-video samples to be collated for the live performance of a particular song, triggered live through a preferably loud sound system and video projector. This innovation marks a step forward in the realm of audio-video intersection and hybridisation. The recent emergence of VJ's (Vidi-yo Jockeys), artists who combine computer and VHS source materials to play with visual rhythms, create atmospheres, tell stories, respond to the music and provide visual stimulus also play a crucial role in this new media arena. Other new media collectives such as Shut up & Shop, Kraftwerk, the Distributed Audio Sequencer Environment crew and Labrat are here discussed.
Inframedia Audio: Glitches and Tape Hiss
This article focuses on that which is known as sound art, new media art or if a label is required the best might be simply audio. It is not so much a sound as a transparent substrate for organised expression but rather sound being mediated, synthesised, generated, collaged. Furthermore this article looks at the in-between sounds - the glitches, clicks, pops, and CD-skips - with many artists drawing on these entropic internal workings of audio processing systems. Artists include Nam June Paik, Minit, David Haines, Vicky Browne, Andrew Gadow and Netochka Nezvanova.
Out of Australia: International Exposure
This article poses the question of what new media art exhibitions, as international exports, can offer to us as a nation, as a new media community and as individual artists, and of how they can function in terms of the transmission and propagation of certain ideas and images into what might be called the world brain. To discuss this Wallace looks at the structure and outcomes of PROBE, the first large-scale exhibition of contemporary, new media art ever held in Beijing which featured the work of Patricia Piccinini, Justine Cooper, Leon Cmielewski/Josephine Starrs, Brenda L. Croft, Zen Yipu and Jen Seevink, as well as including a range of internet sites.
Storming the Reality Studio
Tofts attempts to redefine that which is commonly known as new media art, as he believes it is out of touch with what's actually going on in digital culture. He refers to a range of contemporary Australian artists utilising digital media to explore some of the ways old material is appropriated and remediated to present works that are new and unique. Amongst those are Josephine Starrs and Leon Cmielewski, Murray McKeich, Ian Haig, Nicholas Negroponte, David Carson, James Widdowson, Gregory Baldwin, Elena Popa, Greg O'Connor, Troy Innocent, Rebecca Young, Andrew Trevillian and Tina Gonsalvas.
Writing on the Net: Nodes and Hypertext
Many new media works contribute to the field of hypertext despite not being concerned with the literary. Corroli refers to Adrian Miles who likes to 'think of hypertext as being primarily about links and nodes and their relations, which may or may not privilege words'. This topic is examined using examples where hypertext has become a primary focus such as the partnering of eWRe, trAce Online Writing Centre and ANAT who developed a series of online writing residencies in the late 1990s. Artists also discussed: Anne Walton, Francesca da Rimini, Sally Pryor, Diane Caney and Robin Petterd.
Digital Luggage and Meaningful Relationships
Machan turns the light on and examines the fears associated with technology - mystical secret language, complex software, indecipherable code - and furthermore those associated when art is involved. She proposes that the use of technology in everyday life be an experimental process, more aligned to the ways it is used in an art-based contexts. She states that:  through risk taking with fragile technologies we not only accelerate our knowledge but also accelerate relationships formed from the very human experience with technology.
Howard Taylor
Howard Taylor 1918 – 2001 WA
The & of Art & Design
Australian Design
The New Ecodesign: Sceptics Beware!
Whilst on a global scale Australia still dawdles on ecodesign, pockets of cutting-edge research and design are moving ahead with international recognition. Overview of events. In 1991 RMIT in Melbourne hosted the EcoDesign 1 Conference 1989-1992 Designers for the Planet, Perth WA Society for Responsible Design (1990 - ) NSW Re-Design Group Melbourne, Victoria (1991-93).
Australian Design
The Domestic Companion: Taking Stock of Furniture Futures
In 1990/91 the author was commissioned to research and develop a national furniture industry strategy. Examines domestic furniture futures, the concept of home, flexibility, transverse use, product families, trends and future furniture companions.
Australian Design
Exhibiting Furniture
The exhibiting and collecting of contemporary Australian furniture design is a telling indicator of how we as a society regard design. Australian furniture has been seen at SOFA (Sculpture, Objects and Functional Art - Gallery Trade Fair Chicago USA) since 1993.
Australian Design
Lighting Design
Market size in Australia is the main hurdle to successful lighting however there are designers who are making inroads with Australian lighting design.
Australian Design
A Touching Story
Sydney's Powerhouse Museum began collecting artefacts relating to industrial design in the late 1980s. Since then a number of designers and consultancies have been represented in the collection. The author, curator of Industrial Design, Innovation and Marketing at the Powerhouse tells the story of these unsung heros and heroines of the everyday.
Australian Design
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