An exhibition of works by Top End artists that caused a sensation in Indonesia will open in the Nan Giese Gallery at Charles Darwin University’s Casuarina campus on Friday March 23.
The “Here &/Or There: Art from Northern Australia” exhibition features a variety of paintings, graphics, sculptures and photos by 28 artists, most of whom are or were CDU students.
Lecturer in Studio Practice Dr Cornelius Delaney said it was a rich and interesting body of work that was reflective of Darwin’s vibrant arts community.
“It is a celebration of the diversity and multi ethnicity of this group of artists and evidence that the visual arts alumni is living, practising and making a valid contribution to the Darwin community,” he said.
“Some of the works have been influenced by Indigenous or Indonesian culture, or by tropical lifestyle, but as a collection they give emphasis to notions of cooperation, collaboration and blurred boundaries.”
Dr Delaney said the same works were featured in an exhibition in Jogjakarta during the Jogja Biennale Arts Festival late last year.
“A strong and excited crowd turned up for the opening, which was encouraging given that we were neither well known nor local.
“Many were curious about the co-existence of Indigenous and white culture in Australia and about the heterogeneity of the artists, which some in the audience seemed to find confronting.
“We were Europeans and Asians and Aboriginal, male and female, young and old, unknown and established, some with doctorates, others without high school.”
Dr Delaney said that while the primary purpose of the Jogjakarta exhibition was to share the work of Territory artists with the Indonesian arts community, it also served to raise the awareness of graphic arts as a stand-alone discipline.
“Some of the works were hung directly on the wall unframed, which challenged their sense of propriety for a gallery exhibition, so this both characterised the legitimacy of graphic arts and helped demonstrate that graphic arts can be viewed in conjunction with other disciplines.”
“Here &/Or There: Art from Northern Australia” will be exhibited in the Nan Giese Gallery, Orange 10, Casuarina Campus, from 5.30pm March 23 until April 5. Free entry.