Breakfast with a Botanist

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 11 NOV 11AM – 12.30PM

As part of our Not Niwe, Not Nieuw, Not Neu exhibition program, join botanist David Mabberley and exhibition curator Micheal Do as they delve into the world of botanicals and art over breakfast in the heart of bustling Chinatown.

About David Mabberley
Professor David J. Mabberley AM is a British-born, Australian educator and author. He was consecutively Director of the University of Washington Botanic Gardens (Seattle, USA), Keeper of the Herbarium, Library, Art and Archives at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew (United Kingdom) and Executive Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney. He is now an Emeritus Fellow, Wadham College, University of Oxford (United Kingdom), Professor Extraordinary, University of Leiden (The Netherlands) and Adjunct Professor, Macquarie University, Sydney. Among his varied academic interests are the taxonomy of tropical trees, notably citrus, and the history of science and botanical art. Internationally he is perhaps best known as author of the award-winning Mabberley’s plant-book: a portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses, now in its fourth edition (2017). Of his six books on botanical art, Joseph Banks; Florilegium (Thames & Hudson) and Painting by Numbers: the life and art of Ferdinand Bauer (NewSouth) are also published this year.

Image courtesy The Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford.

Please Explain: The artist and flower: Responding to Banks and Botanicals

SYDNEY. WEDNESDAY 15 NOV 6 – 8PM.

As part of our Please Explain talks series, join Not Niwe, Not Nieuw, Not Neu exhibition artist James Tylor and expert historians and botanists in a discussion of the work of Sir Joseph Banks and how artists are working to respond with and against this colonial science, history and legacy.

Speakers’ Biographies: 

Ann Elias

Ann Elias is Associate Professor in Art History at the University of Sydney. Research interests include: camouflage as a military, social and aesthetic phenomenon; flowers and their cultural history; coral reef imagery of the underwater realm. Books include Camouflage Australia: art, nature, science and war (2011), Useless Beauty: flowers and Australian art (2015), and Coral Empire (in preparation for Duke University Press) about photographic and cinematic representations of the underwater at the colonial tropics in the early twentieth century. She is a Key Researcher with the Sydney Environment Institute, a serving member of the International Committee of the College Art Association of America, and International Liaison for the Art Association of Australia and New Zealand.

David Mabberley

Professor David J. Mabberley AM is a British-born, Australian educator and author. He was consecutively Director of the University of Washington Botanic Gardens (Seattle, USA), Keeper of the Herbarium, Library, Art and Archives at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew (United Kingdom) and Executive Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney. He is now an Emeritus Fellow, Wadham College, University of Oxford (United Kingdom), Professor Extraordinary, University of Leiden (The Netherlands) and Adjunct Professor, Macquarie University, Sydney. Among his varied academic interests are the taxonomy of tropical trees, notably citrus, and the history of science and botanical art. Internationally he is perhaps best known as author of the award-winning Mabberley’s plant-book: a portable dictionary of plants,their classification and uses, now in its fourth edition (2017). Of his six books on botanical art, Joseph Banks; Florilegium (Thames & Hudson) and Painting by Numbers: the life and art of Ferdinand Bauer (NewSouth) are also published this year.

Richard Neville

Richard Neville is the Mitchell Librarian and Director of Education & Scholarship at the State Library of NSW. With a research background and acknowledged expertise in nineteenth Australian art and culture, he has published widely on colonial art and society, and curated numerous exhibitions focusing on these areas. He has also been extensively involved in the acquisition, arrangement, description and promotion of the Library’s renowned Australian research collections.

James Tylor

James’ artistic practice examines concepts around cultural identity in Australian contemporary society and social history. He explores Australian cultural representations through his multi-cultural heritage, which comprises Nunga (Kaurna), Māori (Te Arawa) and European (English, Scottish, Irish, Dutch, Iberian and Norwegian) Australian ancestry. James’ work focuses largely on the 19th century history of Australia and its continual effect on present day issues surrounding cultural identity in Australia.

About Please Explain:

4A’s new series Please Explain invites presenters to rethink, recharge and reimagine contemporary issues through the arts and academia.

Image credit: Sir Joseph Banks, Florilegium: Plate 63 (detail), 1980 – 1990, copperplate engraving. Image courtesy Angela Tandoori, Melbourne.

Political Practice: Independent spaces and projects in the Asia Pacific

SYDNEY — THURSDAY 23 NOVEMBER 2017 — 6.15PM

Join 4A for an evening discussion moderated by Kelly Doley.

This panel will focus on the role of independent grassroots spaces and projects in the Asia Pacific working together to support experimentation, political and critical practices and forge responsive conversations that larger institutions may not be able to provide. International panelists Anna Eschbach and Antonie Angerer discuss the complexities and successes of running one of Beijing’s first independent spaces alongside 4A’s Director Mikala Tai and Jeff Khan, the artistic director of Performance Space. Pondering questions of cross platform partnerships, transnational programming, methodologies for supporting experimental artistic practice and ideas of feminist performance practice this discussion will be robust and dynamic.

This event will be Auslan interpreted thanks to support from the Australia Council for the Arts. 

 

Speakers:

Kelly Doley, independent artist and curator (Feminist South project)

Anna Eschbach and Antonie Angerer, Directors of i:project space, Beijing China

Jeff Khan, Artistic Director, Performance Space and curator of Liveworks Festival

Mikala Tai, Director, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

4A x Para Site at VOLUME 2017 | Another Art Book Fair

Friday 13 – Sunday 15 October, 2017
VOLUME 2017 | Another Art Book Fair
Artspace

Artspace, in partnership with Printed Matter, Inc., New York and Perimeter Books, Melbourne, presents VOLUME 2017 | Another Art Book Fair. The second edition of this biennial event will take place from 13 – 15 October at Artspace.

Artspace will welcome 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art x Para Site, alongside over 70 fellow exhibitors from across Australia and the world, including Amsterdam, Hong Kong, South Korea, Colombia, France and the United States. In addition to an international line up of publishers, artists, collectives, galleries and distributors, there will be a free program of talks, artist-led workshops, book launches, readings and performances.

Fair Dates & Hours
Friday 13 October | Doors Open 3pm; Launch 6 – 9pm
Saturday 14 & Sunday 15 October | 11am – 6pm

Para Site is Hong Kong’s leading contemporary art centre and one of the oldest and most active independent art institutions in Asia. It produces exhibitions, publications, discursive, and educational projects aimed at forging a critical understanding of local and international phenomena in art and society.

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (4A) is an independent not-for-profit organisation based in Sydney, Australia. 4A fosters excellence and innovation in contemporary culture through the commissioning, presentation, documentation and research of contemporary art. Our program is presented throughout Australia and Asia , where we ensure that contemporary art plays a central role in understanding and developing the dynamic relationship between Australia and the wider Asian region.

Feminist South September Reading Group

  • 6.00PM – 7.00PM, Thursday 28 September 2017
  • ‘Feminism is a Western Concept: a reading group’
  • 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
  • 181-187 Hay St, Haymarket NSW

In partnership with Feminist South, 4A is pleased to host the monthly Feminist South reading group on the last Thursday of the month. This reading group is Phase 1 of the Feminist South research and curatorial project led by Kelly Doley and i:project space, Beijing.

Feminist South is a curatorial project and research platform spanning across 2017-2019 that aims to generate critical dialogue around contemporary feminist performance practice in the context of the Asia Pacific.

Rather than attempting to fit Western feminist theories and movements onto the multiplicities that make up practice in the Asia Pacific, the project seeks to create its own terms of reference in order to decentre and disrupt the conventional understandings of feminist art and create new narratives for practices that are located in the here and now.

All welcome, please join the discussion. Email kellydoley@gmail.com to join the Feminist South mailing list and RSVP.

 

Readings for September:

Lo, Jacqueline. “Australia’s Other Asia in the Asian Century.” In Contemporary Asian Art and Exhibitions: Connectivities and World-making, by Antoinette Michelle and Turner Caroline, 219-32. ANU Press, 2014.
http://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt13wwv81.15?refreqid=excelsior%3Ad6002aceba5aed334054e299781ab4f4&seq=3#page_scan_tab_contents

Erickson, Britta. ‘The Rise of a Feminist Spirit in Contemporary Chinese Art’, Art AsiaPacific, Issue 31, 2001, 65–71

https://library.artasiapacific.com/articles/1956

NIGHT CAP WITH HAHAN X 4A: VVVVVVVVVIP PARTY FOR EVERYONE

FRIDAY 8 SEPTEMBER
9:00 PM – 12:00 AM

Sydney Contemporary ticket holders
Location: The Old Clare Hotel, Chippendale

Where you will you will party like a VIP

Step through the velvet ropes and into the Old Clare

At this party hosted by international speculative superstar Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, you’ll be showered in gold, mix with the glitterati, and drink only the finest.

Secret password required.

 

Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition has been co-commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Project 11. 4A would like to thank Project 11 for their generous support of this project.

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Congee Breakfast Tour – I don’t want to be there when it happens

SYDNEY – 7 OCTOBER – 10.30AM – 12.30PM

Join 4A Assistant Curator Micheal Do for a tour of I don’t want to be there when it happens, followed by a congee breakfast.

I don’t want to be there when it happens brings together artists who explore the psychology of contemporary trauma. Recent works by Raj Kumar, Sonia Leber & David Chesworth and Adeela Suleman all confront the larger socio-political realities of Pakistan in the era of contemporary warfare. Through video and installation, the artists address the experience of the individual in the midst of a continuous state of war. By scanning the landscape with nonsensical logic, futilely seeking to document destruction, and questioning the appropriation of religion, the artworks in the exhibition avoid resolution and closure. Instead, they highlight the individual’s inability to comprehend the expansive uncertainty of combat, and the impossibilities of representing the trauma of conflict.

Please Explain: Fear of small numbers and the geography of anger

SYDNEY
Tue 19 September 2017
6-8PM
4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
Free
Moderator: Associate Professor Phillip GEORGE
Speakers: Abdul Rahman ABDULLAH, Mehwish IQBAL, Khaled SABSABI and Nur SHEKEMBI.

 Join 4A for the first event in 4A’s new series Please Explain that invite presenters to rethink, recharge and reimagine contemporary issues through the arts and academia. In the inaugural series, co-curated by Nur Shkembi and Mikala Tai, the Australian Muslim experience is front and centre with thought provoking discussions on feminism, fantasy, politics and racism and features members of the collective Eleven.

The first panel, Please Explain: Fear of small numbers and the geography of anger, brings together artists Abdul Rahman Abdullah, Khaled Sabsabi and Mehwish Iqbal with academics and curators Nur Shkembi and Associate Professor Philip George. Taking cues from Arjun Appadurai’s Fear of Small Numbers. An Essay on the Geography of Anger, artistic practice and academic work are considered in light of the questions Appadurai raises about the darker side of globalisation and multiculturalism.

Feminist South July Reading Group

  • 5.30PM – 6.30PM, Thursday 27 July 2017
  • ‘Feminism is a Western Concept: a reading group’
  • 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
  • 181-187 Hay St, Haymarket NSW

In partnership with Feminist South, 4A is pleased to host the monthly Feminist South reading group on the last Thursday of the month. This reading group is Phase 1 of the Feminist South research and curatorial project led by Kelly Doley and i:project space, Beijing.

Feminist South is a curatorial project and research platform spanning across 2017-2019 that aims to generate critical dialogue around contemporary feminist performance practice in the context of the Asia Pacific.

Rather than attempting to fit Western feminist theories and movements onto the multiplicities that make up practice in the Asia Pacific, the project seeks to create its own terms of reference in order to decentre and disrupt the conventional understandings of feminist art and create new narratives for practices that are located in the here and now.

All welcome, please join the discussion. Email kellydoley@gmail.com to join the Feminist South mailing list and RSVP.

The Feminist South reading for July is:

  • Article complicating the narrative that contemporary art was bestowed upon China by the West: Carol Yinghua Lu, ‘Accidental Conceptualism’, eflux Journal #01 – December 2008

http://www.e-flux.com/journal/70/60556/from-the-anxiety-of-participation-to-the-process-of-de-internationalization/

  • Wu Tsang discussing working in Asia as a queer trans identified artist and the use of ‘Western’ terms: ‘Wu Tsang A Life in Process’, Leap Magazine, No. 38 19 May 2016 by Stephanie Bailey

http://www.leapleapleap.com/2016/05/wu-tsang-a-life-in-process/

  • Bringing it back to the Australian context: ‘Does feminism speak for all women?’, Lia Incognita, 23 July 2013, Peril Asian Australian Arts and Culture

http://peril.com.au/topics/politics/does-feminism-speak-for-all-women/

Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition

Presented as part of Sydney Contemporary – 7 – 10 September 2017 

Is there something truly universal nowadays, when human conception about value has been influenced by many factors and layered dimensions? What is more valuable when all of this factors and dimensions are detached? The answer then refers to “time”. Hahan observes that human’s process, actions, opportunities, predictions, and hopes cannot be separated from time.

Join 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Hahan at Sydney Contemporary 2017 for your chance to become part of an experimental art market in Speculative Entertainment No. 1 Sydney Edition.

Speculative Entertainment No.1” is an ongoing project that developed from Hahan’s experiments about time and privilege, as well as an interest to experiment with the art market and use it as medium. This work is intended to hack the art market, and particularly to hack the artwork collecting system which usually limited. This work was initially exhibited during ARTJOG 9 (2016), an annual artist-based art fair in Yogyakarta, and has also been presented in conjunction with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian art at Art Central Hong Kong (2017).

This work consists of a 7.5 m x 2.6 m painting which is divided into 1,619 square lots. Each lot is sized 10 cm square and the price for each lot is twice the entrance fee of the art fair. During the exhibition period at scheduled time, the audience can become “collectors” with the same opportunities, hopes, privileges, and speculations by choosing any lot they want at the venue. The audience members who purchase the lot(s) are encouraged to speculate by re-selling it according to their own speculative price and Hahan, as the artist, will charge 10% commission from the selling.

 

About the artist:

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan (1983, Kebumen, Indonesia) lives and works in Jogjakarta, Indonesia. Hahan’s art making is concerned with the tussle between ‘high art’ and ‘low art’, blurring realism with decoration. Hahan incorporates film, music and street culture into a distinct visual language, creating a sense of movement and spontaneity in what can be described as a topsy-turvy reality steeped in satirical humor. In recent years, he attempts to display an art with the concept that emphasises the interaction with the visitors and relate it with the development of art in global as well as its society. He also one of the founders of Ace House Collective, a young artists’ collective and initiative space based in Yogyakarta which trying to capture the culture of Indonesian contemporary society through multidiscipline work process, collaboration, and research.His works have been collected by several art museum including Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) Brisbane, Australia and National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) Melbourne, Australia.

 

Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition has been co-commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Project 11. 4A would like to thank Project 11 for their generous support of this project.

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Documentation:

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_03

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_06

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_15

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_20

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_17

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

4a17_scaf_hahan_21

Uji Handoko Eko Saputro aka Hahan, Speculative Entertainment No.1 Sydney Edition (performance documentation), Sydney
Contemporary Art Fair 2017, Carriageworks, Sydney.

 

Symposium – When South is North: contemporary art and culture in South Asia and Australia

SYDNEY. 16 AUG 2017.

 

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, in association with the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University, presents:

When South is North:  contemporary art and culture in South Asia and Australia

Wednesday 16th August, 2017

1 PSQ (1 Parramatta Square), Western Sydney University
169 Macquarie Street,
Parramatta City

Free, registrations required.

 

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University invite you to join us for 4A’s 2017 symposium, When South is North: contemporary art and culture in South Asia and Australia.

With local and international speakers drawn from all over South Asia, this symposium is led by artists, cultural commentators, scholars and grass-roots workers who understand the real issues which affect art and culture from the region.  With keynote presentations from artists Adeela Suleman (Pakistan) and Reena Kallat (India) and curator and Director Vidya Shivadas (India)– plus a wide range of Australian-based artists, academics, politicians, community workers and more – When South is North aims to build dialogue around South Asia and Australia in a contemporary arts context.

The focus of the day will be on question-making, debate and discussion – focusing on the hows and whys within the region’s contemporary art and cultural landscapes.

 

A day-long symposium, this event is free to attend, but RSVPs are required as catering will be included for all registered attendees.

 

When South is North – Symposium Schedule:


9.00 – 10.00    Registration 


10.00 – 10.15  Welcome

| Prof. Paul JAMES, Western Sydney University, Director, Institute of Society and Culture

| Dr. Mikala TAI, Director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art


10.00 – 10.30  Opening Presentation

 | Speaker: Associate Professor Devleena GHOSH

| Associate Professor Devleena Ghosh of the University of Technology, Sydney, sets the tone for the day, discussing her fields of research in colonial, postcolonial, environmental and global studies, specifically in the Indian Ocean region.


10.30AM – 11.30AM Focus Presentation

 | Speaker: Reena KALLAT (India)

Session supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.

| Reena Kallat’s practice spans drawing, photography, sculpture and video and engages diverse materials, imbued with conceptual underpinnings. She has widely exhibited at institutions across the world such as Museum of Modern Art (MOMA), New York; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; Vancouver Art Gallery; Saatchi Gallery, London;  Helsinki City Art Museum, Finland; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; Casa Asia, Madrid and Barcelona; Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney;  Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai;  amongst many others.  Here, Kallat discusses her practice and experiences of working across cultural boundaries.


11.30AM – 1.00PM Panel 1 – Art in, of, from, South Asia? Artists working across cultures and geographies.

 | Moderator: Pedro DE ALMEIDA

| Speakers: Reena KALLAT (India), Ramesh Mario NITHIYENDRAN, Nusra Latif QURESHI, Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan) and Abdullah M.I SYED

Session supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.

| The politics and geography of South Asia are neither neutral or exact. Artists from this region continue to undergo post-colonial cultural and political processes of national building, whereby issues of freedom of speech, national identity-making and economic forces continue to revise and re-invent art making practices and art historical study. Drawing together artists from across Australia and South Asia, this panel discusses artists’ experiences working within and outside South Asian contexts in contemporary art.


1.00PM – 2.30PM Lunch Break/Networking/Parramatta Artist Studios Visit

Thanks to the generous support of the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney, lunch will be provided for all registered attendees from 1PM. From 1.30PM, attendees are invited to attend our optional Parramatta Artists Studios tour:

1.30 – 2.30pm: Parramatta Artists Studios: Open Studios
2 Minute Walk from PS1
Level 1 & 2, 68 Macquarie St, Parramatta
Tour and artist talks with Marikit Santiago and Kalanjay Dhir begins at 1.45pm
Meet Parramatta Artists Studios artists and see works in progress from artists working across artistic disciplines. 2017 artists include Khadim Ali, Kate Beckingham, Penelope Cain, Emma Fielden, Annie McKinnon, Salote Tawale, Hannah Toohey, Cigdem Aydemir, Harriet Body, Kalanjay Dhir, Caroline Garcia, Anna McMahon, Marikit Santiago, Shireen Taweel and Garry Trinh.


2.30PM – 3.30PM Focus Presentation

 | Speaker: Vidya SHIVADAS (India)

|  Vidya Shivadas is the Director of the Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, and a curator based in New Delhi. After her Bachelors in Sociology from Delhi University and a Masters in Art Criticism from Faculty of Fine Arts, MS University of Baroda, she joined Vadehra Art Gallery in 2002. She has curated exhibitions at the Gallery which include Something I’ve been meaning to tell you (with Sunil Gupta), April 2011; Faiza Butt, Ruby Chishti, Masooma Syed (three Pakistani women artists), April 2009; Fluid Structures: Gender and Abstraction in India, April 2008; among others. In 2009, she was a guest curator at Devi Art Foundation and worked on the solo exhibition of Bangladeshi artist Mahbubur Rahman. In 2007, she was invited to participate in the educational programming for Documenta 12 from May to September 2007 in Kassel, Germany.


3.30PM – 5.00PM Panel 2 – Situating South Asian arts and culture in Australia

 | Moderator: Dr Mehreen FARUQI

| Speakers: Sunil BADAMI, Melanie EASTBURN, Amrit GILL, Gary PARAMANATHAN, S. SHAKTHIDHARAN

Through census data, in 2011, close to 1 million Australians identified as of South Asian background. This panel will explore the work of prominent organisations and institutions who have made significant impacts on South Asian art and culture in Australia. Our panelists, with backgrounds encompassing policy-making, community arts, literature and media, will unpack what guides cultural decision making and how these decisions impact history, artistic output and authenticity.


5.00PM – 6.00PM Networking drinks

Thanks to the generous support of the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney, drinks will be provided for all registered attendees.


6.00PM – 6.45PM Keynote Presentation

 | Speaker: Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan)

With an introduction from Phillip KEIR. The Keir Foundation has co-commissioned Adeela’s work as part of 4A’s associated exhibition, I don’t want to be there when it happens.

| Internationally regarded artist, coordinator of Vasl Artists’ Collective in Karachi, and Associate Professor and Head of the Fine Art Department at Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Adeela Suleman is a force to be reckoned with. In this keynote presentation, Suleman will discuss her experience as an artist, educator in Karachi, Pakistan and the violence and censorship she has encountered in her work.


 

6.45PM – 7.00PM Questions from the audience and concluding remarks

 | Speakers: Distinguished Professor Ien ANG, Western Sydney University, with Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan)

| Questions from the audience to Adeela Suleman will be moderated by and followed with concluding remarks and thank you from Distinguished Professor Ien Ang, Western Sydney University

 


SPEAKER LIST 

 | Professor Ien Ang

| Distinguished Professor Ien Ang is a Professor of Cultural Studies and was the founding Director of the Institute for Culture and Society. She is one of the leaders in cultural studies worldwide, with interdisciplinary work spanning many areas of the humanities and social sciences. Her books, including Watching Dallas, Desperately seeking the audience and On not speaking Chinese, are recognised as classics in the field and her work has been translated into many languages. Her current ARC research project is entitled Sydney’s Chinatown in the Asian Century: from Ethnic Enclave to Global Hub (with Donald McNeill and Kay Anderson in collaboration with the City of Sydney). She currently chairs an Expert Working Group on Asia Literacy: Language and Beyond, for the Australian Council of Learned Academies’ Securing Australia’s Future program. She complted her PhD, 1990, Social and Cultural Sciences, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, a Doctorandus/Mphil, 1982, Mass Communication, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Kandidaats/BA, 1977, Psychology, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

 | Sunil Badami

| Sunil Badami is a bon vivant, raconteur and flâneur. He’s also a writer, performer, academic and broadcaster. He’s written for publications including The Sydney Morning Herald, Good Weekend, The Australian, The Monthly, The New Daily, The Australian Literary Review, Australian Gourmet Traveller, Art and Australia, Seizure, Southerly, Westerly, Island and Meanjin, and his work has been published in anthologies in Australia and overseas, including in Best Australian Stories and Best Australian Essays.  In addition to regularly chairing and hosting launches, events and festivals, he’s appeared on stage at the Sydney and Melbourne Writers’ Festivals and the Belvoir Street and Griffin Theatres. He presented the national ABC Local Radio show Sunday Takeaway, and continues to appear regularly on ABC TV, ABC Local Radio, Double J and Radio National, where his documentary Riddle. Mystery. Enigma was nominated for the prestigious Prix Marulić. He was also the final Grand Champion of the long-running TV quiz show Sale of the Century. He’s currently editing his novel for publication.

 | Pedro de Almeida

| Pedro de Almeida has been program manager at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art since 2012. Pedro’s critical writing on art is published regularly, appearing in ArtAsiaPacific, Art Monthly Australasia, Broadsheet Journal, LEAP, Photofile and un Magazine among others. He is editor of 4A Papers, a newly established online platform for writing on contemporary art and culture in the Asia Pacific region, and is a member of Broadsheet Journal’s international editorial advisory board. Pedro recently participated in the Experimenter Curators’ Hub 2017, Kolkata, an annual platform for developing and sustaining discourse on curatorial practice and exhibition making through critical discussion and debate.

 | Melanie Eastburn

| Melanie Eastburn is Senior Curator of Asian art at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. From 2004 until 2016 she was Curator of Asian art at the National Gallery of Australia. Melanie has also worked at the National Museum of Cambodia in Phnom Penh, 2003-2004, and the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney 2001-2003. She was closely involved in negotiating the long-term loans to the NGA from the National Museum of Cambodia and has curated a number of exhibitions including: Glorious: earthly pleasures and heavenly realms, AGNSW, from May 2017; Time, light, Japan, AGNSW, December 2016 – May 2017; The story of Rama: Indian miniatures from the National Museum, New Delhi (coordinating curator; curator: Dr Vijay Mathur), NGA, 2015; Divine worlds: Indian painting, NGA, 2012; Black robe, white mist: art of the Japanese Buddhist nun Rengetsu, NGA, 2007; Fruits: Tokyo street style, Powerhouse Museum, 2002
  | Dr Mehreen Faruqi

| Dr Mehreen Faruqi joined the NSW Legislative Council in June 2013 and is the first Muslim woman elected to any Parliament in Australia. Prior to this she was the Director of the Institute of Environmental Studies at University of NSW and an Associate Professor in Business and Sustainability. She is a civil and environmental engineer with a PHD in Environmental Engineering. Since migrating from Pakistan to Australia in 1992, with her young family, Mehreen’s work has focused on developing real solutions to social and environmental challenges.

 | Amrit Gill

| Amrit Gill is Senior Manager, International Projects at the Australia Council for the Arts. Amrit has over 10 years’ experience in the Australian arts sector in community arts and cultural development, social enterprise, and international cultural relations. At the Australia Council she has managed the review of international residencies programs as well as the implementation of the Council’s first international arts strategy. Prior to joining the Australia Council, Amrit worked at Milk Crate Theatre, the British Council, and Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE). She holds a Bachelor of Art Theory/Arts from the University of New South Wales.

 | Devleena Ghosh

| Devleena Ghosh teaches in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Technology Sydney. She has researched and published widely on the cultural and political relationships between the British colonies of India and Australia in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries as well as on coal and climate change in India and Australia. She is the recipient of the WangGung Wu Award for best article (“Burma-Bengal Crossings: Intercolonial Relationships in Pre-Independence India”) in the Asian Studies Review in 2016.

 | Professor Paul James

| Professor Paul James is a professor of Globalisation and Cultural Diversity at Western Sydney University, and has been the Director of the Institute for Culture and Society since 2014. He is a social theorist and writes on topics related to globalisation, sustainability, social change and the human condition. Paul James has been an editor and author of roughly thirty books, most importantly he brought out a 16 volume series called ‘Central Currents in Globalization’, which maps all the older disciplnes in the social sciences and humanities. He is the Research Director for the international organisation Global Reconcilliation. He is on the Council of the Institute of Postcolonial Studies, Honary Professor at King’s College London, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts (London). He is editor of Arena Journal, as well as an editor/board-member of nine other international journals, including Globalizations and Global Governance. He completed his PhD, 1991, Ashworth Social Theory Centre, Department of History and Philosophy Science, University of Melbourne, and his BA (Hons), 1981, Department of Political Science, University of Melbourne.

| Reena Saini Kallat

| Reena Saini Kallat’s (b. 1973, Delhi, India) practice spans drawing, photography, sculpture and video engages diverse materials, imbued with conceptual underpinnings. She has widely exhibited at institutions across the world such as Museum of Modern Art (MOMA), New York; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; Kennedy Centre, Washington; Vancouver Art Gallery; Saatchi Gallery, London; SESC Pompeia and SESC Belenzino, Sao Paulo; Helsinki City Art Museum, Finland; Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Israel; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; Casa Asia, Madrid and Barcelona; ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany; Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney; Hangar Bicocca, Milan; Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai; Chicago Cultural Centre amongst many others.  Her works are part of several public and private collections including the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan; Vancouver Art Gallery, Canada; Initial Access (Frank Cohen Collection), UK; Fondazione Golinelli, Italy; Bhaudaji Lad Museum, Mumbai; National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi; Ermenegildo Zegna Group, Italy and Burger Collection, Hong Kong amongst others.

| Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran

| Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran (b. 1988 Colombo Sri-Lanka, Australia from 1989) Sri Lankan-born, Sydney-based artist Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran creates rough-edged, vibrant, new-age idols that are at once enticing and disquieting. He experiments with form and scale in the context of figurative sculpture to explore politics of sex, the monument, gender and religion. Formally trained in painting and drawing his practice has a sculptural emphasis which champions the physicality of art making. He has exhibited at various spaces and contexts including the Art Gallery of South Australia’s flagship exhibition, the 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art and The National: New Australian Art 2017. He has presented solo exhibitions at the National Gallery of Australia, The Ian Potter Museum of Art and the Shepparton Art Museum. In 2014, Nithiyendran was awarded the 2014 NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (emerging) administered through Artspace. In 2015, he was the winner of the 2015 Sidney Myer Fund Australian Ceramic Award, Australia’s richest and premier award for artists working in the medium of ceramics. Forthcoming exhibitions include a solo presentation at the 2018 Dhaka Art Summit. His work is held in various collections, including the National Gallery of Australia, the Art Gallery of South Australia, Artbank, The Ian Potter Museum of Art and the Shepparton Art Museum.

 | Gary Paramanathan

| Gary Paramanathan works at the intersection of arts, culture and community. Currently working at AFTRS, he has previously worked at Fairfield City Council, Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE) and collaborated with a number of arts and cultural organisations. Gary Paramanathan was born in Sri Lanka. His foray into arts comes after completing a Bachelor of Commerce at The University of Sydney, and finding nothing amusing about a nine to five job. Gary is the founder and director of Colourfest Film Festival (2010-2017). He holds a Masters of International Communication from Macquarie University and also writes for the South Asian Australian blog southerncrossings.com.au. He hopes to please his brown parents someday by making lots of money and procuring a Dr. in front of his name.

 | Nusra Latif Qureshi

| Nusra Latif Qureshi – 1973; arrived Melbourne 2001; lives and works Melbourne. Nusra Latif Qureshi trained in Lahore in the Mughal miniature painting tradition and has developed an extraordinary contemporary painting practice that engages with the rich, visual histories of South Asia. Qureshi is recognized as an important member of a generation of Pakistani artists who have revived and innovated the traditional art of Mughal miniature painting. Qureshi lectured at the National School of Art in Lahore from 1995 to 1999, and immigrated to Australia in 2001 to take up postgraduate study. She has shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions across Asia, the United States, Europe and Australia.

| S. Shakthidharan

| Shakthi is the founder and artistic director of Western Sydney arts company CuriousWorks. His current projects are in partnership with, or have appeared at, Sydney Film Festival, Belvoir Theatre and Streaming Museum (New York). Shakthi was Associate Artist at Carriageworks from 2013-2015. In 2015 he was awarded the Phillip Parson’s Playwright Award from Belvoir Theatre and in 2011 the Kirk Robson by Australia Council for the Arts, given to an artist for their work in relation to social justice and community cultural leadership.

| Vidya Shivadas

| Vidya Shivadas is the Director of the Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, and a curator based in New Delhi. After her Bachelors in Sociology from Delhi University and a Masters in Art Criticism from Faculty of Fine Arts, MS University of Baroda, she joined Vadehra Art Gallery in 2002. She has curated exhibitions at the Gallery which include Something I’ve been meaning to tell you (with Sunil Gupta), April 2011; Faiza Butt, Ruby Chishti, Masooma Syed (three Pakistani women artists), April 2009; Fluid Structures: Gender and Abstraction in India, April 2008; among others. In 2009, she was a guest curator at Devi Art Foundation and worked on the solo exhibition of Bangladeshi artist Mahbubur Rahman. In 2007, she was invited to participate in the educational programming for Documenta 12 from May to September 2007 in Kassel, Germany.

| Adeela Suleman

| Adeela Suleman – Born 1970 in Karachi, Pakistan. Suleman studied Sculpture at the Indus Valley School of Art and completed a Master’s degree in International Relations from the University of Karachi. She is currently the Coordinator of Vasl Artists’ Collective in Karachi, in addition to being Associate Professor and Head of the Fine Art Department at Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture. Suleman has participated extensively with group and solo exhibitions worldwide, including Phantoms of Asia at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, the 2013 Asian Art Biennial at the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art, Hanging Fire – Contemporary Art from Pakistan at The Asia Society, New York; Gallery Rohtas 2, Lahore; Canvas Gallery, Karachi; Aicon Gallery, New York; and, the International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Bologna, Italy (2008). Reviews and features of work appear in Artforum and the New York Times, among other publications. The artist lives and works in Karachi, Pakistan.

 | Dr. Abdullah M.I. Syed

| Dr. Abdullah M.I. Syed – (b. 1974, Karachi Pakistan) is a contemporary artist and designer working between Sydney, Karachi and New York. Trained in diverse disciplines, his art practice weaves religious, cultural and socio-political narratives of east and west, seamlessly knitting together art historical references and concerns from each. Syed holds a PhD in Art, Media and Design (2016) and a Master of Fine Arts (2009) from University of New South Wales, Sydney. Syed’s works have been featured in nine solo exhibitions and several national and international curated group exhibitions.

 | Dr. Mikala Tai

| Mikala Tai is a curator, researcher and academic specialising in contemporary Asian art and Australian design, who over the past decade has collaborated with local, national and international organisations to strengthen ties between Australia and Asia. Mikala currently sits on the board of BUS Projects, Melbourne. She is on the Chinese New Year Festival Advisory Panel, and is an Editorial Advisor for UnMagazine as well as a seasonal lecturer and tutor at The University of Melbourne. In 2006 Mikala completed her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) at the University of Melbourne and in early 2015 submitted her PhD at UNSW Art & Design examining the influence of the Global City on China’s local art infrastructure.

 

 

 

When South Is North would not be possible without the support of our project partners:

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When South is North: Contemporary Art and Culture in South Asia and Australia was a one-day symposium produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art in association with the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University. Presented at 1 Parramatta Square, Western Sydney University campus, Parramatta, on 16 August 2017. The symposium was assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body. Adeela Suleman’s participation in this symposium and 4A exhibition I don’t want to be there when it happens was supported by co-commissioning partner The Keir Foundation with further assistance from Sherman Foundation.

Symposium Documentation
All images: 4A’s Kai Wasikowski

 

| Prof. Paul JAMES, Western Sydney University, Director, Institute of Society and Culture

Prof. Paul JAMES, Western Sydney University, Director, Institute of Society and Culture

 

| Dr. Mikala TAI, Director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

Dr. Mikala TAI, Director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

 

 Associate Professor Devleena GHOSH

Associate Professor Devleena GHOSH

 

Reena KALLAT (India)

Reena KALLAT (India)

 

Reena KALLAT (India)

Reena KALLAT (India)

 

Panel 1 – Art in, of, from, South Asia? Artists working across cultures and geographies. | Moderator: Pedro DE ALMEIDA | Speakers: Reena KALLAT (India), Ramesh Mario NITHIYENDRAN, Nusra Latif QURESHI, Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan) and Abdullah M.I SYED

Panel 1 – Art in, of, from, South Asia? Artists working across cultures and geographies. | Moderator: Pedro DE ALMEIDA | Speakers:
Reena KALLAT (India), Ramesh Mario NITHIYENDRAN, Nusra Latif QURESHI, Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan) and Abdullah M.I SYED

 

Parramatta Artist Studios visit as part of When South Is North

Marikit Santiago in her studio at Parramatta Artist Studios. Visit as part of When South Is North.

 

Parramatta Artist Studios visit as part of When South Is North

Kalanjay Dhir in his studio at Parramatta Artist Studios. Visit as part of When South Is North.

 

Vidya SHIVADAS (India)

Vidya SHIVADAS (India)

 

Vidya SHIVADAS (India)

Vidya SHIVADAS (India)

 

Panel 2 – Situating South Asian arts and culture in Australia | Moderator: Dr Mehreen FARUQI | Speakers: Sunil BADAMI, Melanie EASTBURN, Amrit GILL, Gary PARAMANATHAN, S. SHAKTHIDHARAN

Panel 2 – Situating South Asian arts and culture in Australia | Moderator: Dr Mehreen FARUQI | Speakers: Sunil BADAMI,
Melanie EASTBURN, Amrit GILL, Gary PARAMANATHAN, S. SHAKTHIDHARAN

 

Panel 2 – Situating South Asian arts and culture in Australia | Moderator: Dr Mehreen FARUQI | Speakers: Sunil BADAMI, Melanie EASTBURN, Amrit GILL, Gary PARAMANATHAN, S. SHAKTHIDHARAN

Panel 2 – Situating South Asian arts and culture in Australia | Moderator: Dr Mehreen FARUQI | Speakers: Sunil BADAMI, 
Melanie EASTBURN, Amrit GILL, Gary PARAMANATHAN, S. SHAKTHIDHARAN

 

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Adeela SULEMAN (Pakistan)

 

 

 

 

 

Exhibition Opening: I don’t want to be there when it happens

Thursday, 17 August 2017

6.00pm to 8.00pm

SYDNEY.

Exhibition runs: 18 AUGUST – 8 OCTOBER 2017

I don’t want to be there when it happens brings together artists who explore the psychology of contemporary trauma. Recent works by Raj KumarSonia Leber & David Chesworth and Adeela Suleman all confront the larger socio-political realities of Pakistan in the era of contemporary warfare. Through video and installation, the artists address the experience of the individual in the midst of a continuous state of war. By scanning the landscape with nonsensical logic, futilely seeking to document destruction, and questioning the appropriation of religion, the artworks in the exhibition avoid resolution and closure. Instead, they highlight the individual’s inability to comprehend the expansive uncertainty of combat, and the impossibilities of representing the trauma of conflict.

I don’t want to be there when it happens presents truth as a precarious oscillation between fiction and reality. The artists resist literal or documentary approaches to their subjects, relying instead on speculative, symbolic, ambiguous and unstable modes of representation. In doing so, they emphasise how the individual’s attempts to understand and comprehend the reality of contemporary conflict are equally characterised by uncertainty and irresolvability. I don’t want to be there when it happens also seeks to acknowledge and present a multiplicity of perspectives on the ongoing conflicts in Pakistan and its region—perspectives which are all too easily overlooked or obscured by Western media and political interests.

 

Curated by Kate Warren and Mikala Tai.

 

Image: Adeela Suleman (2017) I don’t want to be there when it happens. Courtesy the artist.

 

Adeela Suleman’s work to be shown in I don’t want to be there when it happens has been co-commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and The Keir Foundation.

Presented in collaboration with:

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Feminist South June Reading Group

  • 6.00PM – 7.30PM, Thursday 29 June 2017
  • ‘Feminism is a Western Concept: a reading group’
  • 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
  • 181-187 Hay St, Haymarket NSW

In partnership with Feminist South, 4A is pleased to host the monthly Feminist South reading group on the last Thursday of the month. This reading group is Phase 1 of the Feminist South research and curatorial project led by Kelly Doley and i:project space, Beijing.

Feminist South is a curatorial project and research platform spanning across 2017-2019 that aims to generate critical dialogue around contemporary feminist performance practice in the context of the Asia Pacific.

Rather than attempting to fit Western feminist theories and movements onto the multiplicities that make up practice in the Asia Pacific, the project seeks to create its own terms of reference in order to decentre and disrupt the conventional understandings of feminist art and create new narratives for practices that are located in the here and now.

All welcome, please join the discussion. Email kellydoley@gmail.com to join the Feminist South mailing list and RSVP.

 

The Feminist South reading for June is: Introduction and Chapter One, The Birth of Chinese Feminism: Essential Texts in Transnational Theory, Edited by Lydia H. Liu, Rebecca E. Karl, and Dorothy Ko, Columbia 2013
https://cup.columbia.edu/book/the-birth-of-chinese-feminism/9780231162906 If you cannot get a copy yourself please get in touch. June’s Feminist South session will start with a quick discussion of the May text that we missed having a group chat about, Aileen Moreton-Robinson, Talkin’ up to the White Woman : Aboriginal Women and Feminism, 2000.

Congee Lunch Tour: Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far

SYDNEY – 12PM – 2PM Saturday 1 July 2017
Departing: 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, 181-187 Hay St, Haymarket, NSW.
Join 4A’s Pedro de Almeida, for a lunchtime tour of Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far and get a taste of Haymarket with lunchtime congee, and an opportunity to meet artist Dacchi Dang and see his performance Et in Arcadia Ego.

Places for this special tour are limited and this event is presented as part of our June exhibition, Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far.

 

Congee and associated snacks are included in your ticket price.

Publication Launch – Our Issue: Curatorial actions shaping a discourse about Asia from Asia

Publication launch

Our Issue: Curatorial actions shaping a discourse about Asia from Asia 

4A is pleased to host the Sydney launch of Anabelle Lacroix’s recent publication at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

5.30PM, Thursday May 25 2017, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. 181-187 Hay Street, Haymarket, Sydney

The publication will be launched by writer and curator Anabelle Lacroix in conversation with Luise Guest from White Rabbit.

About Our Issue:

After several continuous waves of European, Japanese and Chinese colonisation, Taiwan is now seeking to create a clear political and cultural identity of its own. Informed by its unique history Taiwan is home to a thriving and engaged contemporary art scene that is increasingly active. Our Issue is a new publication that captures a growing section of Taiwanese contemporary art.

In 2016 Taiwan has three major biennales running concurrently and a host of other cultural events offering a plethora of diverse contemporary offerings. It brought to the fore the strengthening of a discourse about ‘Asia from Asia’—from within, as opposed to a Western one—with ideas of decolonisation and ‘de-cold War’ at its centre. This essay sheds light, and discusses the growth of curatorial projects from within Asia that seek to profile a shifting discourse in the region. Examining major biennales, museum exhibitions as well as independent spaces and artist-run initiatives, Lacroix’s new publication considers emerging perspectives of contemporary Asian art in Taiwan.

This bilingual English – Chinese publication was published by the Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts following Anabelle Lacroix’s curatorial residency at the museum. This residency is a reciprocal exchange between RMIT University and Taipei National University of the Arts (TNUA).

Biographies:

Anabelle Lacroix is a curator based in Melbourne, currently working as a research assistant at the VCA, University of Melbourne on a project on Artist Run Initiatives in Australia and the Asia-Pacific, and produces the visual arts program of the Melbourne Festival. Prior to her Taipei residency she took part in the 2016 4A Curators’ Intensive, and is now co-curating an upcoming 2017 Liquid Architecture project in Taiwan.

Luise Guest is Director of Education and Research for the White Rabbit Collection of Contemporary Chinese Art. With a background in art education and freelance writing focused on China, Luise’s art writing has been published in a range of online and print journals. Her book, ‘Half the Sky: Conversations with Women Artists in China’ was published by Piper Press in 2016, and she curated exhibitions in Hong Kong and Beijing to coincide with its launch in China. Luise’s current research focuses on contemporary female artists who subvert the conventions of ink painting and calligraphy. She blogs at www.anartteacherinchina.blogspot.com

BOOK NOW

This launch is held in conjunction with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art’s Australian premier screenings of He Xiangyu’s The Swim which will begin at 6.3opm. You are welcome to attend.

Sydney Information Night: 4A Emerging Writers’ Program 2017

4A invites interested applicants to join us on May 25 in Sydney to meet with 4A staff to learn more about the 4A Emerging Writers’ Program, and ask any questions you may have about the Program.

Applications are now open and close 5.00PM Friday 30 June 2017.

Sydney Info Night with 4A Papers Editor Pedro de Almeida- RSVP here.
Guest Speaker: 2016 Emerging Writer Minerva Inwald
5.30PM – 6.30PM, Friday 25 May
4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, 181-187 Hay St Haymarket, Sydney.

Followed by a screening of He Xiangyu’s The Swim.

The 4A Emerging Writer’s Program is open to Australian students currently undertaking a degree at honours or postgraduate level in art, history or related fields of study at an Australian tertiary institution. This program will be rigorous and is specifically designed for tertiary students with a keen interest in fieldwork research in art and culture, and someone who can demonstrate a flair and passion for writing.

The selected writer will undertake a one-week research trip to a Pacific nation in September 2017. Facilitated by 4A and its networks, the writer will be asked to conceive and deliver two writing outcomes for publication in 4A Papers and Program supporter Art Monthly Australasia. This may include a critical essay, historical research, interview, review, profile, or feature with accompanying online audio-visual content.

The writer will be supported by the team at 4A and in particular by Pedro de Almeida, Editor, 4A Papers and Michael Fitzgerald, Editor, Art Monthly Australasia.

The 4A Emerging Writer’s Program has been developed as part of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art’s broader professional development program for early career arts professionals. Together with the annual 4A Beijing Studio Program and the biannual 4A Curators’ Intensive, the 4A Emerging Writer’s Program supports emerging Australian talent to work within the Asia-Pacific region.

Applications will be assessed by a panel and the selected writer notified within two weeks following the submission deadline.

 

If you have any questions in relation to the program or how to apply please contact Pedro de Almeida on (02) 9212 0380 or pedro.de-almeida@4a.com.au

 

The 4A Emerging Writer’s Program is supported by Art Monthly Australasia.

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Familiar Stranger

SYDNEY. 7 APRIL – 21 MAY 2017.

Artists: Shumon Ahmed, Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, Bashir Makhoul, Veer Munshi, Shireen Taweel and Curtis Taylor.

The reconciliation between memory and reality plagues the act of returning. There is no resolution between the two. Memories are etched into the psyche hinged on topographical monuments, whispered words and subconscious everyday patterns while reality erases such symbology through the passing of time. Familiar Stranger examines this third, non-existent space that plagues the returnee as they seek to retrace their memories in places that have been rebuilt or reinscribed. With familiarity reduced to invisible archaeological sites the returnee searches for recognition and legitimacy in a now unacquainted geography.

The exhibiting artists examine the negation and erasure of familiarity by presenting place as a space defined by uncertainty. There is a continue shift between points of view that begets the collapse of spatial certainty and becomes defined by its own instability. For the migrant the idea of returning becomes an implicit part of their identity; the constant oscillation between the possibility and impossibility of return a daily taunt. In Familiar Stranger the moment of return is the focal point where, for some, it is a wistful hope and for others a violent decimation of expectancy. Resisting melodrama, the artists turn to the familial archive and the personal memorial to bring form to the constant internal struggle between what is and what was.

 

About the artists:

Bashir Makhoul (b. 1963, Galilee, Palestine, lives and works in Birmingham, United Kingdom) is a Palestinian artist born in Galilee in 1963. He has been based in the United Kingdom for the past 22 years. During this time he has produced a body of work, based on repeated motifs, which can be characterized by their power of aesthetic seduction. Once drawn into the work however, viewers find themselves engaged with something far more complicated than a beautiful pattern. Economics, nationalism, war and torture are frequently woven into the layers of Makhoul’s work and often the more explicit the material, the more seductive the surface.

Makhoul completed his PhD in 1995 at Manchester Metropolitan University in the UK. He has exhibited his work widely in Britain and internationally, including the Hayward Gallery, London, Tate Liverpool, Harris Museum, Preston, Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, the Liverpool Biennial, Jordan National Museum, NCA Gallery Lahore Pakistan, the Florence Biennial, Haus am Lutzowplatz Berlin, UTS Gallery, Sydney, Australia, Elga Wimmer Gallery, New York, Changshu Art Museum, Suzhou Art Museum, Shenzhen Art Museum in China, 798 Yang Gallery Beijing and many others. In 2013, he  presented his work at the Venice Biennial in Italy and Aichi Biennial in Japan. He will show at the Asian Triennial in Manchester UK in 2014.

Curtis Taylor (b. Broome, Western Australia, Australia, lives and works in Perth, Australia) is a filmmaker, screen artist, actor and a young Martu leader. Growing up in remote Martu desert communities and in the city, Curtis has both traditional Martu knowledge and a non-Aboriginal education. After finishing school in 2008 Curtis worked as Community Coordinator and Youth Development Officer at Martu Media (a division of Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa), where he also spent 18 months working on the major Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route project as a filmmaker and youth ambassador. Curtis was the recipient of the 2011 Western Australian Youth Art Award and Wesfarmers Youth Scholarship. His screen work including the acclaimed short film ‘Mamu’ has been shown in international film festivals from Brazil to Nepal. Curtis has almost completed his film and media studies at Murdoch University. He was the Director’s Attachment and is the Narrator of ‘Collisions’.

Chun Yin Rainbow Chan ( b. 1990, Hong Kong, lives and works in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia) is a multidisciplinary artist who works across sound, performance and installation. Born in Hong Kong and raised in Sydney, she is interested in duality, diaspora and the effects of globalisation on modern Chinese society. Chan often evokes traditional Chinese methods or styles and represents them in uncanny ways. Her research engages with the authentic and the copy, exploring sites of exchange and desire which complicate Western notions of originality and “appropriate” consumption.

Central to Chan’s work is the circulation of knock-off objects, sounds and images in global media. Her work positions the fake as a complex sign that shapes new myths, values and contemporary commodity production. Sustained by a parasitic relationship to the original, the counterfeit interacts with the world in unpredictable ways. Chan investigates how these mimetic symbols, such as bootlegs or fake luxury goods, problematise the socially-regulated impulse of consumerist desire.

Tying together her works across installation and pop music is the relationship between nostalgia, migration and identity. Since winning FBi Radio’s Northern Lights Competition in 2011, Chan has been building a reputation as one of the most innovative artists in Australia with her highly personal, experimental pop music. She recently released her debut album Spacings (Silo Arts & Records) which was met with critical acclaim, handpicked as the feature album on FBi Radio, Radio Adelaide, RTRFM and scoring 4 stars from Rolling Stone. Under her techno project, Chunyin, Chan released Code Switch EP on UK label, Off Out, in September.

Chan has performed extensively with notable performances at the Sydney Opera House, Museum of Contemporary Art, Gallery of Modern Art, Art Gallery of New South Wales and Iceland Airwaves Festival. She has exhibited works at Firstdraft Gallery, Liquid Architecture and Squiggle Space. In October 2016, she was invited by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art to participate in the inaugural Longli International New Media Arts Festival in Guizhou Province, China. Chan has collaborated with choreographer Ivey Wawn for Out of The Studio, presented by DirtyFeet, and soundtracked ABC web-series The Glass Bedroom, directed by Kate Blackmore.

Shumon Ahmed  (b. 1977, Bangladesh, lives and works in Dhaka, Bangladesh) is a Dhaka-based poet and an artist who explores the fusion between video, photography, Sound, text and performance, creating stories that while seemingly contradictory, are private yet collective. His work with the camera and film has also been likened to abstract painting due to his experimental processing techniques with unpredictable results that yield the melancholic.

Ahmed studied photography at the South Asian Media Academy, Dhaka, Bangladesh (2006- 2009) & at The Danish school of Media and Journalism, Arhus, Denmark (2008).

His work has been previously exhibited in various galleries, festivals and screenings around the world including the 2014 Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India, Dhaka Art Summit, Bangladesh (2012, 2014, 2016), Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK (2010), Fotomuseum, Winterthur, Switzerland (2010), Art science museum, Singapore (2016), Krinzinger Projekete, Austria (2016) and a recent solo exhibition at Project88, Mumbai, India (2015).

In April, Shumon will take part in Familiar Stranger, a group exhibition at 4A Centre for Contemporary Art, Sydney.

Veer Munshi (b. 1955, Kashmir, India, lives and works in Dehli, India), a Kashmiri artist who now lives in Delhi has consistently used his art to reflect his anguish at the situation in his home state, his pain and struggle spilling over onto his canvass. Making a human rights statement rather than a political one, he has constantly sought to highlight the turmoil that comes  with his separation from his heritage, and to highlight the increasingly the narrow space that exists for culture and art in his state. He is also convinced that art. Because of its universal nature, can play a significant role in the resolution of the Kashmir situation. Unlike other contemporary artists, though, viewing pleasure is no motivator for veer in the creation of his art,rather it is about sharing a personally-felt experience as a ‘refugee’. His paintings and installations reflect a Kashmir that is in the context of the Kashmir.

Shireen Taweel (b. 1990, Bankstown, New South Wales, Australia, lives and works in Sydney, Australia) is currently practicing at the Parramatta Artist Studios in Sydney.  Much of Taweel’s practice is informed by her identity connected to the Middle East as her heritage further inspires her creative exploration through the refined processes in metallurgy. The nature of the relationship of her forms sit in a space between jewellery and sculpture, where her techniques of making takes the traditional art of copper-smithing into a contemporary context.

The works partake in a cross-cultural discourse, while the sense of the arcane and shifted structures opens dialogue between shared histories and relations between communities of fluid identities.

Taweel is a current Kickstart Helix Next Wave participant. Her recent solo shows include fractured//fluid terrains at SEVENTH Gallery, Melbourne (2017), translated roots at Verge Gallery, Sydney (2017) tomorrow, InshAllah at 55 Sydenham RD Marrickville, Sydney (2016) rhythms of the ritualistic at Gaffa Gallery, Sydney (2016) and promised denial at 146 ArtSpace, Hobart (2016).  Taweel is also a nominee of The Jameel Art Prize (2018) at Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

 

Exhibition Documentation
All images: Document Photography

 

Left: Installation view at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art: Bashir Makhoul, Wounds, 2007 – 2008, lenticular print,
400 x 200cm. Courtesy the artist. Image: Document Photography. Right: Installation view at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian
Art: Veer Munshi, Leaves like hands of flame, 2010 – 2012, two channel video, 5: 32. Courtesy the artist and Latitude 28, New
Delhi, India.


Left: Installation view at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art: Shumon Ahmed, What I have forgotten could fill an ocean,
what is not real never lived, 2013, polaroid photographs, analogue phone set, original sarod score composed by Yusuf Khan and
poetry recited by Nader Salam, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist, Samdani Art Foundation, Dhaka, Bangladesh &
Project88, Mumbai, India. Image: Document Photography Right: Installation view at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art:
Bashir Makhoul, Wounds, 2007 – 2008, lenticular print, 400 x 200cm. Courtesy the artist.


Installation view at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art: Shumon Ahmed, What I have forgotten could fill an ocean, what is
not real never lived, 2013, polaroid photographs, analogue phone set, original sarod score composed by Yusuf Khan and poetry
recited by Nader Salam, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist, Samdani Art Foundation, Dhaka, Bangladesh & Project88,
Mumbai, India.


Right: Installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art: Shireen Taweel, Al Nahas, 2015, etched copper, 90 x 40 x 30 cm.
Courtesy the artist. Shireen Taweel, Al Nahas, 2015, etched copper, 100 x 90 x 40. Courtesy the artist. Left: Installation view,
4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Curtis Taylor works as below. Curtis Taylor, Karlaya, 2014, video, 23 seconds.
Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Marlu, 2014, video, 42 seconds. Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Marrka Marrka – Mirage, 2017,
red dirt and animated projection, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Parnajarrpa, 2014, video, 29 seconds.
Courtesy the artist.


a4-april-web-33

Installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art: Chun Yin Rainbow Chan (陳雋然), To enclose one’s mouth, 2017, ink,
silk, wood, video loop, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist.


Left: Installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Curtis Taylor works as below. Curtis Taylor, Karlaya, 2014,
video, 23 seconds. Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Marlu, 2014, video, 42 seconds. Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Marrka
Marrka – Mirage, 2017, red dirt and animated projection, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist. Curtis Taylor, Parnajarrpa,
2014, video, 29 seconds. Courtesy the artist. Image, Document Photography. Right: Installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary
Asian Art: Shireen Taweel, Dome, 2015, etched copper, 90 x 40 x 30 cm. Courtesy the artist. Image, Document Photography. And
Shireen Taweel, Sophia, 2015, etched copper, 90 x 40 x 30 cm. Courtesy the artist.

An Omen Near and Far: Tour & Talk

SYDNEY, SAT 10 JUNE, 11.00AM – 12.30PM

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

Part of the public program for 4A’s exhibition Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far

 

Join 4A for an artist-led exhibition tour of Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far followed by a panel discussion centred on Dacchi Dang’s current production of a new body of work commissioned by the Australian War Memorial.

Showcasing work spanning three decades, Dacchi Dang: An Omen Near and Far is the first survey exhibition of one of the preeminent Vietnamese-Australian artists working today. Dang will lead a tour of the exhibition, offering insights into the evolution of his practice across photography, printmaking, and video, and discuss the development of his new installation work, specially commissioned by 4A for the exhibition, that has arisen from research undertaken during a return to Vietnam in 2017.

Following the tour, 4A hosts a panel discussion between the artist, Dr Anthea Gunn, Senior Curator of Art at the Australian War Memorial, and 4A Program Manager Pedro de Almeida centred upon Dacchi’s creation of a new body of work for the Australian War Memorial’s Gillespie Bequest commission (2016-2018).

In 2012 a bequest was left to the Australian War Memorial by the retired Major John Milton Gillespie, a Vietnam veteran and immigration consultant. In recognition of both this significant gift and Mr Gillespie’s life and work, the Memorial decided to use the bequest to commission work that explores the wartime experience of Vietnamese–Australians and its legacy today. Engaging Australian and Vietnamese–Australians military veterans of the Vietnam War – whom the artist has recorded interviews with around Australia – and engaging with the Memorial’s extensive collection and archives, Dang’s nationally significant commission will represent the first contribution from a Vietnamese–Australian artist to the Memorial’s art collection.

The exhibition tour led by Dacchi Dang will run for 30 minutes from 11.00am – 11.30am, followed by a 60-minute panel discussion from 11.30am – 12.30pm allowing time for audience questions.

Feminist South Reading Group – April 2017

‘Feminism is a Western Concept: a reading group’
6.00PM – 7.30PM, Thursday 27 April 2017

  • 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

181-187 Hay St, Haymarket NSW

From April, in partnership with Feminist South, 4A will host a a monthly Feminist South reading group on the last Thursday of the month beginning 27 April. This reading group is Phase 1 of the Feminist South research and curatorial project led by Kelly Doley and i:project space, Beijing.

Feminist South is a curatorial project and research platform spanning across 2017-2019 that aims to generate critical dialogue around contemporary feminist performance practice in the context of the Asia Pacific.

Rather than attempting to fit Western feminist theories and movements onto the multiplicities that make up practice in the Asia Pacific, the project seeks to create its own terms of reference in order to decentre and disrupt the conventional understandings of feminist art and create new narratives for practices that are located in the here and now.

All welcome, please join the discussion.

Readings for April are:

  • Chandra Talpade Mohanty, “‘Under Western Eyes’ Revisited: Feminist Solidarity through Anticapitalist Struggle,” in her Feminism Without Borders: Decolonizing Theory, Practicing Solidarity (Durham, N.C., and London: Duke University Press, 2003), pp.221-251
  • Maura Reilly, “Introduction: Toward Transnational Feminisms,” Global Feminisms: New Directions in Contemporary Art (London/New York: Merrell, 2007), pp. 14–45.

Participants will be provided with reading links upon RSVP.

Familiar Stranger – Chun Yin Rainbow Chan Performances

SYDNEY – AS PART OF FAMILIAR STRANGER – 7 APRIL – 21 MAY  2017.

Visit 4A at the following times to see Chun Yin Rainbow Chan perform as part of her Familiar Stranger work:

  • 11.30am Saturday 22 April
  • 2.00pm Saturday 29 April

Bookings are not required for these special performance events.

 

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Chun Yin Rainbow Chan perform as part of her Familiar Stranger work, 4A Centre For Contemporary Asian Art. Image: Document Photography.
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Chun Yin Rainbow Chan perform as part of her Familiar Stranger work, 4A Centre For Contemporary Asian Art. Image: Document Photography.

 

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Chun Yin Rainbow Chan perform as part of her Familiar Stranger work, 4A Centre For Contemporary Asian Art. Image: Document Photography.

Familiar Stranger – Cantonese Class

As part of the public program for Familiar Stranger, you are invited to join us for weekly Cantonese language classes on Thursday nights for the duration of the exhibition.

With a curriculum curated by Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, join us for these one-hour classes to either refresh or learn new language skills and gain a further insight into Chan’s work.

  • 6-7.30PM Thursday 20 April 2017
  • 6-7.30PM Thursday 27 April 2017
  • 6-7.30PM Thursday 4 May 2017
  • 6-7.30PM Thursday 11 May 2017
  • 6-7.30PM Thursday 18 May 2017

Bookings are open now.

4A Beijing Studio Program – 2017 call for applications

Applications have now closed for the 2017 edition of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art’s annual Beijing Studio Program.

 

DEADLINE:                5PM, Monday May 8 2017

TRAVEL DATES:      Tuesday, 12 September – Friday, 13 October, 2017

 

 

The program allows three early career artists will undertake a one month-long intensive studio program throughout September 2017 at the studios of internationally renowned Chinese-Australian, artist Shen Shaomin located in Huairou District on the outskirts of Beijing.

4A’s Beijing Studio Program provides a unique opportunity for these artists to research new projects, develop new professional networks and witness first-hand the changes occurring in one of the most vibrant cities in Asia. The program includes return airfares, accommodation, travel stipend and travel/medical insurance.

Applications have now closed and were due by 5PM AEST Monday May 8, 2017.

 

ABOUT SHEN SHAOMIN

Over the last twenty years Chinese-Australian artist Shen Shaomin has forged an important international career with an emphasis on experimental, conceptual and installation works. Based in Beijing, and having spent over a decade in Australia, Shen’s work spans a number of medium and explores individual and collective experiences of humanity and their impacts on our natural and constructed surroundings. Shen Shaomin has previously exhibited with 4A in The Floating Eye, Sydney Pavilion, 9th Shanghai Biennale (2012); and presented the solo exhibition, The Day After Tomorrow (2011). His work has been included in Liverpool Biennial (2006) and the 17th Biennale of Sydney (2010) and most recently featured as part of Busan Biennale 2016 and at Encounters, Art Basel Hong Kong 2017. In China he has exhibited at Today Art Museum, Beijing; Tang Contemporary, Beijing; Platform China, Beijing; Shanghai Zendai MoMA, Shanghai; and Osage Gallery, Hong Kong. Across Europe and North America selected exhibitions include, Groniger Museum, Holland; Urs Meile Gallery, Switzerland; ZKM Museum Karlrusche, Germany; Millennium Park, Chicago and Eli Klein Fine Art, New York.

The Program covers airfares, accommodation, daily meals, travel/medical insurance and a small stipend. Moreover, it will provide an ongoing professional mentorship, cross-cultural exchange and access to 4A’s networks in China.

 

Application Guidelines

ELIGIBILITY AND CRITERIA

Applications are open to visual artists who are Australian permanent residents. We are looking for strongly emerging or midcareer artists’ who will will benefit from the professional mentorship, dialogue and bonding between residents, cross cultural exchange and access to 4A’s networks in China.

Successful applicants will be chosen based on the quality of their past work, reasons for participation, viability of their participation and the potential benefits to the applicant’s artistic development.

Decisions will be made by an independent panel and all decisions are final.

Please submit support material which has been completed in the last two years.

 

PROGRAM PERIOD

Successful artists must be available for travel to Beijing, for one month beginning from Tuesday, 12 September – Friday, 13 October, 2017.  Dates are non-negotiable. All three selected artists will be travelling at the same time.

 

REQUIRED INFORMATION

To apply for the 4A Beijing Residency Program please download a copy of the application form and include the following:

  • A statement of interest detailing why you would like to participate in the Studio Program and how you will benefit from the experience. Maximum 1 page, 12 point font.
  • A current CV. Maximum 1 page.
  • Support material in the format of a PDF document with 10 images and captions. Please supply video content as a URL web link (10 minutes max).

Please do not send us original material as it will not be returned.

 

SUPPORT MATERIAL

Please supply images in PDF at 72-dpi res with your application. Please include captions and explanations where appropriate. Please do not send individual files.

Video material must be uploaded to a website and URL should be supplied for viewing.

 

AMENITIES

Accommodation and facilities are housed in Shen Shaomin’s studio, 52km from Beijing city center (approximately 60 mins drive). These are newly built residences. The studio will provide daily meals in addition to a program’s stipend. A driver/translator available for a limited number of days to explore surrounding artists’ studio, galleries and other locations.

Chinese language skills are not necessary.

 

TERMS & CONDITIONS

  • Artists are responsible for obtaining necessary visas for entry into China and appropriate travel/medical insurance.
  • Artists are responsible for any excess baggage or freight to/from the Studio Program.
  • Artists will be asked to sign an agreement that outlines the terms of the Program and their travel.
  • Upon returning, artists will be required to take part in a public discussion about their trips.

 

Enquiries and applications should be directed to:

Micheal Do

Assistant Curator

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

Phone: +61 2 9212 0380

Email:

m.do@4a.com.au

 

Studio Information Nights:

Join one of our Studio Information Nights to meet with 4A staff to learn more about the 4A Beijing Studio Program, and ask any questions you may have about the Program.

Sydney: 

6-7PM, Wednesday April 26

Guest speaker: Justin Shoulder

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, 181-187 Hay St Haymarket, Sydney. Click here to RSVP.

Melbourne

6.30-7.30PM, Thursday April 27

Guest speaker: Eugenia Lim

Bus Projects, Melbourne CBD. Click here to RSVP.

Perth 

6-7pm, Wednesday 3 May

Guest Speaker: Abdul Rahman Abdullah

Moana, Perth WA. Click here to RSVP. 

Rickshaw Tales – Family Program @ The Chinese Garden of Friendship

SYDNEY: CHINESE GARDEN OF FRIENDSHIP 4 February – 5 February 2017 | 12.30pm-3.30pm
In this free family program as part of the 2017 Chinese New Year celebrations, join 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art at the Chinese Garden of Friendship.

Decorate a life-size cardboard rickshaw with Chinese New Year motifs, and go on an artist-led story walk inspired by the work of Louise Zhang.

This event is held in partnership with and supported by the Chinese Garden of Friendship:

cgdh-lockup

 

 

 

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Cinema Alley: Ten Years

WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 1, SYDNEY. In 2017 4A’s beloved Cinema Alley returns with Ten Years. 

“If we can’t even see the storms in our future, how can we talk about hope? How can we find courage to change?”

As part of the exhibition Before the Rain five young Hong Kong directors consider the future of their city. Ten Years  (103 minutes, Cantonese drama, with Chinese and English subtitles), was one of the 2015 HKAFF Center-pieces, is a collection of five short stories; a prophecy, and a fable for Hong Kong. Through their films, the directors raise questions about the most central issues concerning our city, and the audience is invited to ponder together:

a Where will our terrorist attacks come from?

【 Extras (浮瓜) Directed by: Kwok Zune (郭臻) 】

b What is left for us to protect, when the awareness to preserve is at its end?

【Season of the End (冬蟬) Directed by: Wong Fei-Pang(黃飛鵬)】

c How does the fading of Cantonese affect the life of the people?

【Dialect (方言) Directed by: Jevons Au (歐文傑)】

d Will there be self-immolators in Hong Kong, ten years from now?

【Self-immolator (自焚者) Directed by: Chow Kwun-Wai (周冠威)】

e What is our next generation meant to learn?

【Local Egg (本地蛋) Directed by: Ng Ka-Leung (伍嘉良)】

All the stories are independent, yet at the same time, intricately related to one another. They are attempts to portray decisions and struggles of humanity in a dark age. Through films, they acknowledge a difficult future, and reflect upon the present.

The screening of Ten Years is complemented by the short film Miles to Go by HK URBEX. HK URBEX is a collective of visual storytellers from Hong Kong that explore the abandoned spaces of the megacity. In Miles to Go they appear in the main streets of the city during the Umbrella Movement of late 2014.

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Rickshaw Tales – Chinese New Year 2017

HAYMARKET – JANUARY 27 – FEBRUARY 14, 2017. 

Tickets on sale now – click here to make your booking. 

Jump aboard a customised, artist-commissioned rickshaw for curated local food tours throughout Haymarket as 4A celebrates Chinese New Year 2017.

4A’s Rickshaw Tales is a community-engaged program where people ride a customised, artist-commissioned rickshaw on curated tours through Haymarket.

Ride around the suburb on a rickshaw that has been customised by Sydney-based Chinese Australian artist Louise Zhang. Zhang’s lolly-esque globular painting style is evocative of the Asian sweets riders will get to sample as they learn about the stories behind the food at some of Haymarket’s most-loved snack stops. Participants will also be able to partake in a walking tour version of this program with a 4A staff member.Participants will also be able to partake in a walking tour version of this program with a 4A staff member.

Please note: this tour involves food sampling. While alternatives may be provided where possible, food intolerances and preferences are unable to be catered for. In the event of wet weather or extreme heat, refunds will be provided and alternative tour bookings offered where possible. 

 

 

On February 4-5, bring the whole family to our childrens’ program, produced in partnership with the Chinese Garden of Friendship. Rickshaw Tales has been made possible with major support from the City of Sydney and is part of the 2017 Sydney Chinese New Year Festival.

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Documentation:

 

Sydney - January 19, 2017: Chinese-Australian artist Louise Zhang (c) and 4A Gallery Director Mikaela Tai ride a rickshaw Louise decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year (photo by Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

Louise Zhang and 4A Gallery Director Mikala Tai ride a rickshaw Louise decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year (photo by
Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

 

Sydney - January 19, 2017: Chinese-Australian artist Louise Zhang with a rickshaw she decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year (photo by Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

Louise Zhang with a rickshaw she decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year  (photo by Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

 

Sydney - January 19, 2017: Chinese-Australian artist Louise Zhang with a rickshaw she decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year (photo by Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

Louise Zhang with a rickshaw she decorated to celebrate Chinese New Year  (photo by Jamie Williams/City of Sydney)

Exhibition Opening: Familiar Stranger

OPENING NIGHT: THURSDAY APRIL 6 2016.

Artists: Shumon Ahmed, Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, Bashir Makhoul, Veer Munshi, Shireen Taweel and Curtis Taylor.

The reconciliation between memory and reality plagues the act of returning. There is no resolution between the two. Memories are etched into the psyche hinged on topographical monuments, whispered words and subconscious everyday patterns while reality erases such symbology through the passing of time. Familiar Stranger examines this third, non-existent space that plagues the returnee as they seek to retrace their memories in places that have been rebuilt or reinscribed. With familiarity reduced to invisible archaeological sites the returnee searches for recognition and legitimacy in a now unacquainted geography.

The exhibiting artists examine the negation and erasure of familiarity by presenting place as a space defined by uncertainty. There is a continuing shift between points of view that begets the collapse of spatial certainty and becomes defined by its own instability. For the migrant the idea of returning becomes an implicit part of their identity; the constant oscillation between the possibility and impossibility of return a daily taunt. In Familiar Stranger the moment of return is the focal point where, for some, it is a wistful hope and for others a violent decimation of expectancy. Resisting melodrama, the artists turn to the familial archive and the personal memorial to bring form to the constant internal struggle between what is and what was.

 

This event starts at 6PM with drinks on arrival, followed by a brief opening address from Brendan O’Flynn, Human Rights Watch and 4A Director and curator Mikala Tai, and performance from Chun Yin Rainbow Chan from 7PM – 7.30PM.

Before the Rain – Exhibition Opening

Join us to celebrate the opening of Before the Rain, 4A’s first exhibition in 2017.

 

SYDNEY. 21 JANUARY – 19 MARCH 2017.

Luke Ching, Liu Ding, Yuan Goang-Ming, James Kong, Tang Kwok Hin, Sarah Lai, Swing Lam, Ellen Pau and Sampson Wong.

Before the onset of a downpour there is a moment of heavy humidity that hangs low in the air. Building over time it signals the inevitability of a deluge that will interrupt and intercept patterns of normality. For Hong Kong, a city defined by humidity, the deluge that began on September 28 2014 was the result of a long and steady buildup of uncertainty, anxiety and the long held need to articulate a cohesive identity for the city.  Before the Rain addresses the tensions that precipitated the recent political and civil urgency in Hong Kong and the city’s pressing need to reimagine its future.

The exhibiting artists frame the conversation from a multiplicity of perspectives presenting the complexity and concerns of a city facing a future planned by others. They approach the city with an intent to protect it; their works may appear as warnings but they are underpinned by a need to safeguard.  Commissioned for the exhibition is a new work by Samson Wong that transforms the entrance gallery into a narration of the Umbrella Movement. Ephemera taken from the streets, continuous loops of CCTV and news footage, blogs, tweets and newspapers will populate the gallery inviting the viewer to sift through the materials and navigate their own opinion of a city in flux. Before the Rain responds to a continuously evolving discourse thats shifts and tangents are proving to be one of the most critical events in South East Asia’s recent history.

 

This event starts at 4:00pm with drinks on arrival, followed by a brief opening address from Michael Lynch, CBE, AM; artist and artistic leader of the movement,Sampson Wong (HK); and 4A Director and curator Mikala Tai.