Tane Andrews botanical illustration workshop

SYD CHINESE GARDEN OF FRIENDSHIP.  3.00 – 5.00PM, SAT 30 NOV 2019.

This summer at the Chinese Garden of Friendship, join 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Sydney artist Tane Andrews for a special one-off botanical workshop – over drinks and snacks!

In making artworks, Tane works with perishable organic materials including; flowers, living cocoons, wood, and water, as well as more durable products such as pearls, marble and bronze.

In this workshop, small groups of participants will work with Tane to go on an adventure through the Chinese Garden of Friendship and select and sketch inspiration from the Garden. Learn about the skills used by Tane – including botanical identification, sketching and colour – to re-create nature and create your own botanical illustration to take home, all over drinks and snacks at the Gardens by Lotus.

This special one-off event has limited places available, with a drink on arrival and all supplies included – and is free with entry to the Chinese Garden of Friendship.

Sat 30th Nov, 3pm-5pm, Chinese Garden of Friendship, Pier St, Darling Harbour

This workshop has been produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art for The Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour.

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Exhibition opening: On the Move: The Dion Family

WOLLONGONG ART GALLERY

46 Burelli St, Wollongong NSW 2500

1.30-3.30PM

1 DECEMBER 2019

Delving through more than a century of the Dion family, an indelible part of the Illawarra’s social fabric as members of the Chinese diaspora and operators of the region’s bus services, On the Move tells a story of migration, survival, acceptance and community spirit of a remarkable family through archival material and responses from contemporary artists.

Exhibition artists: Matt Chun, Pia Johnson and Naomi Segal.

Curator: Mikala Tai

On the Move: The Dion Family is exhibited at Wollongong Art Gallery from 1 December 2019 – 26 February 2020. The exhibition is produced and presented by Wollongong Art Gallery in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art with support from The Dion Family.

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Family Ties: tracing a legacy through art

WOLLONGONG. WED 4 DECEMBER, 1.00 PM – 2.00 PM 

 

Join curator Mikala Tai and artist Naomi Segal as they discuss the process of approaching a family legacy through the lens of contemporary art.

Wednesday 4 December

Free, all welcome. 

This program is part of the exhibition On The Move: The Dion Family.

Produced and presented by Wollongong Art Gallery in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art with support from The Dion Family.

 

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Please Explain: who is picking the fruit?

4A’s series Please Explain invites presenters to rethink, recharge and reimagine contemporary issues through the arts and academia. In this edition of Please Explain, as part of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art exhibition John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back? speakers discuss the realities and unrepresented stories in contemporary globalised era migrant labour, which emerged as a key indicator of regional socio-economic relationships between Australia, New Zealand and many Pacific nations.

Taking the words of Australian deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack – who echoed the title of Vea’s exhibition when he came under fire for claiming the Pacific Islands will survive climate change because their workers come here to “pick our fruit”, following the August 2019 Pacific Island Forum in Tuvalu – as a starting point, this discussion will question such preconceptions about temporary migrant labour, and discuss the lived experience of the migrant worker.

Framed by Vea’s 2015 text The Emic Avenue; art through Talanoa and the concept of talanoa (a process of inclusive, participatory and transparent dialogue) as research method, speakers Christine Afoa, Malaemie Fruean, Leo Tanoi  and John Vea, with moderator Micheal Do, will discuss the stories, experiences and representations of Pacific migrant workers and the role art and storytelling can play in reframing and challenging the ideas of equality and validity of a global workforce.

Moderator: Micheal Do, 4A Assistant Curator and John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back? curator with Dr Mikala Tai.

Speakers:

Christine Afoa is a Samoan-Australian writer born and raised in the Bankstown area. She is undertaking a creative writing degree at the University of Technology. Christine has performed poetry for SoFar Sounds Lounge and Bankstown Poetry Slam and her short stories have been published in UTS Writers’ Anthology 2018: Light Borrowers, 2019: Infinite Threads and Sweatshop Women: Volume One. Christine is a member of Sweatshop: Western Sydney Literacy Movement.

Malaemie Fruean is Chair, NSW Council for Pacific Communities. Established in 2003, the organisation was established to create opportunities and lend support to Pacific Communities in New South Wales, Fruean has led the organisation since its inception. Prior to this Fruean worked in community, cultural development for over two decades with experience as an educator and community liaison and leader.

Leo Tanoi is a creative producer specialising in Pacific contemporary arts practice. With over two decades of experience, Tanoi has held a number of roles and worked with artists including Greg Semu, Shigeyuki Kihara, Angela Tiatia and Michel Tufferey. From 2010 – 2015, Tanoi was the Creative Producer, Pacific Programs at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre. In this time, he developed a number of projects including ‘Body Pacifica’ (2010) which won the Museums & Galleries NSW’s Imagine Award for Best Exhibition and Public Engagement Program. Prior to this, Tanoi contributed to ‘Edge of Elsewhere’ as a community and cultural advisor on ‘Edge of Elsewhere’ (2010 – 2012), 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Campbelltown Arts Centre. Tanoi currently is a freelance Creative Producer in the arts & culture sector and has been a peer assessor for Create NSW from 2016-2019. He is also an aspiring visual artist.

John Vea is an Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland) based artist who works with sculpture, video and performance art. Vea works with tropes of migration and gentrification that exist within Moana Nui a Kiwa (the Pacific Ocean). By enacting stories that have been collected through everyday interactions with people, both in his home community and abroad, with a journalistic sensibility he offers a sometimes humorous and always powerfully symbolic emic viewpoint to the Western meta narrative.

Listen to a recording of the event below:

WORKSHOP // Botanical Textile Workshops with Victoria Garcia

Victoria Garcia is a Filipino-Australian artist and textile designer based in Sydney. Through drawing, textile design and interactive installations, Victoria creates heavily patterned, immersive environments which both question and reenact her Filipino Australian identity, narratives of colonialism, and her deep connection to the landscape. Victoria has been commissioned by major brands and companies including Warner Brothers Productions, Microsoft and Sass and Bide.

For the September/October School Holidays at the Chinese Garden of Friendship, join Sydney artist and designer Victoria Garcia for a special series of textile art workshops. In this workshop, small groups of participants will work with Victoria to learn the basics of botanical illustration, taking the surrounds of the Chinese Garden of Friendship as inspiration. Then, work with Victoria to turn your illustration into a piece of textile art, illustrating a fabric artwork that you can take home.

For participants aged between 7-18 years, accompanied by a responsible adult. All materials provided, with bookings online encouraged to ensure all participants get to complete their take-home artwork.

About the artist: Victoria Garcia is a Filipino-Australian artist and textile designer based in Sydney. Through drawing, textile design and interactive installations, Garcia creates heavily patterned, immersive environments which both question and reenact her Filipino Australian identity, narratives of colonialism, and her deep connection to the landscape. Garcia has been commissioned by major brands and companies including Warner Brothers Productions, Microsoft and Sass and Bide, and has produced large-scale public artworks for Wollongong Central and Ambush Gallery (2017), Broadway Shopping Centre (2016) and Oxford Art Factory (2013). In 2017 Garcia was awarded the Southlands Breakthrough Emerging Artist Award from Penrith Performing and Visual Arts and a Summer Studio Residency with Penrith Regional Gallery. Her work has been featured in ‘PATTERNBOX’ curated by The Textile Art Centre New York, and published by Princeton Architectural Press.

With a strong background in design and visual art, she works across fashion textiles and illustration, homewares, interiors, and costume/film. Victoria’s approach to art and design has been heavily influenced by her illustrative work and she specializes in creating hand drawn imagery and pattern. She is currently represented by illustration agency International Rescue.

Victoria Garcia’s Textile Art Workshops are produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art in partnership with the Chinese Garden of Friendship for the September/October 2019 school holidays program. 4A’s artist-led workshops throughout 2019 are supported by Create NSW’s Audience Development Fund, a devolved funding program administered by Museums & Galleries of NSW on behalf of the NSW Government.

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All Aboard! The moving tale of Dion’s Bus Service workshops

WOLLONGONG. TUES 3 and THURS 5 DECEMBER 2019, 10AM – 12PM

All Aboard! The moving tale of Dion’s Bus Service Celebration of Abilities Week workshops with Angie Cass. Make a collage of a bus and make it travel from Austinmer to Kiama using the magic of stop motion animation. You’ll use photos and colourful printed paper to recreate the routes of the Dions’ buses in the Illawarra.

Free, bookings and enquires email vvidulich@wollongong.nsw.gov.au or phone 02 4227 850

This program is part of the exhibition On The Move: The Dion Family.

Produced and presented by Wollongong Art Gallery in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art with support from The Dion Family.

 

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John Birchmeier in-conversation with Les Dion

WOLLONGONG. WED 4 DECEMBER, 11.00 AM – 12.00 PM 

Representing the third generation of the Dion family, Les Dion together with family historian John Birchmeier will present an overview of the family background; the arrival of the first generation in Wollongong in 1907 to take up market gardening and development from 1923 of new business interests including bus services under the second generation.

Free, all welcome. 

This program is part of the exhibition On The Move: The Dion Family.

Produced and presented by Wollongong Art Gallery in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art with support from The Dion Family.

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Please Explain: Do colonial objects still hold power?

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 24 AUGUST 2019.

Program Moderator: Dr Mikala Tai

Program Speakers: Damian McDonald, Nusra Latif Qureshi, Professor Mary Roberts

4A’s series Please Explain invites presenters to rethink, recharge and reimagine contemporary issues through the arts and academia. In this edition of Please Explain, as part of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art exhibition Nusra Latif Qureshi: Strategies of Intentspeakers discuss the mobility of meaning and challenges presented by historical objects and imagery in a post-Orientalist world. Taking the work of artist Nusra Latif Qureshi and the text Networked Objects (2013) by Mary Roberts as a starting point, this discussion will ask whether Colonial objects still hold potency today in institutions and artistic practice; and investigate how artists and curators can work to challenge and engage with constructed histories of objects in shifting contexts.

Reading Recommendation: Mary Roberts, Networked Objects, 2013, Department of Art History and Film Studies, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.

Speaker Profiles:

| Moderator: 
| Dr Mikala Tai is the director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney. As a curator, researcher, and academic specialising in contemporary Asian art, she has collaborated with local, national, and international organisations to strengthen ties between Australia and Asia. Recent curatorial projects at 4A include “The Burrangong Affray” (co-curated with Micheal Do, 2018), “Before the Rain” (2017); “I don’t want to be there when it happens” (co-curated with Kate Warren and expanded at Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts with Eugenio Viola, 2017); and “Jogja Calling” (2016). She received critical acclaim for her organization of the performance program at Art Central Hong Kong (2016 -2018). Her independent curatorial projects include “Trompe-l’œil” (Sullivan + Strumpf Singapore, 2018) “Abdullah M.I. Syed: Diving Economy—Structures” (Aicon Gallery, New York, 2017), “Closing the Gap: Contemporary Indonesian Art” (Melbourne International Fine Art, 2011), and “Yang Yongliang: On the Quiet Water” (Fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne, 2009). Tai has taught at Monash University, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT), and the University of Melbourne in both undergraduate and postgraduate programs. Tai’s writing can be found in several exhibition catalogues in addition to periodicals such as Broadsheet Journal, Art Monthly Australiasia, Photofile, Vault, and Ocula. In 2015, Tai received her PhD, focusing on the influence of the global city on China’s local art infrastructure.

| Damian McDonald’s principal research areas are firearms and edged weapons, and how they are influenced by, and influence culture, as well as their design. He is interested in health and medicine, particularly the history of the material culture of the discipline, and the ways society’s notions around health and medicine change under the continuing advances in this area. His interests also include music and musical instruments, particularly rock music and the Australian underground music scene, subcultures of the 1970s and 80s and their influences on contemporary youth culture, and the material culture of computer technology.

| Nusra Latif Qureshi (b. Lahore, Pakistan, lives and works in Melbourne, Australia) attended the National College of Arts, Lahore and completed her Masters of Fine Art at the University of Melbourne. Qureshi’s practices engages with the visual histories of the South Asian region and Australian culture, questioning conventional interpretations, pulling apart and reconfiguring the found patterns to construct new narratives. Her work has been exhibited widely in Austria, Germany, New Zealand, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Afghanistan, Italy, India, Japan, France, Switzerland, Finland and her home countries of Pakistan and Australia. Most recently she was exhibited at the Kunst Historisches Museum, Vienna, Austria as well as Brisbane’s QAG/GOMA. Her work has been collected widely including the British Museum, London, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney and the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. Qureshi is represented by Sutton Gallery, Melbourne and is currently the artist in residence at the Lyceum Club, Melbourne.

| Professor Mary Roberts is the John Schaeffer Professor of Art History. She specializes in nineteenth-century British and Ottoman art with particular expertise in Orientalism, the history of artistic exchanges between the Ottoman Empire and Europe and the culture of travel. Her books include: Istanbul Exchanges. Ottomans, Orientalists and Nineteenth-century visual culture (University of California Press, 2015), Intimate Outsiders. The Harem in Ottoman and Orientalist Art and Travel Literature (Duke, 2007) and four co-edited books: The Poetics and Politics of Place. Ottoman Istanbul and British Orientalism (Pera Museum and University of Washington Press, 2011) Edges of Empire. Orientalism and Visual Culture (Blackwells, 2005), Orientalism’s Interlocutors, (Duke, 2002) and Refracting Vision. Essays on the Writings of Michael Fried (Power Publications, 2000/2012).

In Conversation: FX Harsono x Ida Lawrence

FAIRFIELD CITY MUSEUM & GALLERY – Saturday 13 July – Saturday 12 October 2019.

Join us to celebrate the opening of In Conversation: FX Harsono x Ida Lawrence, a cross-generational and cross-cultural dialogue between internationally renowned Indonesian artist FX Harsono and Australian-Indonesian artist Ida Lawrence.

Curated by Emily Rolfe and Bianca Winataputri, the exhibition presents a new body of work by Ida Lawrence alongside the seminal work, Writing in the Rain, 2011, by FX Harsono.
The exhibition is the result of a partnership between Fairfield City Museum & Gallery and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art through the 4A Curators’ Intensive Program, 2018.

WORKSHOP // Zine-making with Lee Tran Lam at the Chinese Garden of Friendship

Lee Tran Lam is a journalist and zine-maker based in Sydney. Her writing has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, Gourmet Traveller, Time Out Sydney, Rolling Stone, The Big Issue and even Turkish Vogue. She’s been making zines for more than 20 years (often about food and places) and they’ve featured in local exhibitions, libraries in Australia and the US, and Ebony Bizys’ Hello Tokyo book. She also hosts The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry podcast and Local Fidelity on FBi Radio.

This July school holidays, join Lee Tran for a special (and free!) zine-making workshop series at the Chinese Garden of Friendship, from July 8 – 19. In this workshop, small groups of participants will go on an adventure through the Chinese Garden of Friendship and visit in-house restaurant The Gardens by Lotus with Lee Tran. Capturing the journey with Polaroid pictures, participants will learn about what makes food fun.

Then, work with Lee Tran to turn this journey into a zine – a self-made magazine – that you can take home.

For participants aged between 6-15 years, accompanied by a responsible adult. All materials provided, with bookings online encouraged to ensure all participants get to complete their take-home artwork. Entry to all workshops in this series is free with entry to the Chinese Garden of Friendship. Book here!

 

Artist Biography:

Lee Tran Lam. Photo: Will Reichelt
Lee Tran Lam. Photo: Will Reichelt

Lee Tran Lam is a Sydney based writer, radio producer, editor and creator who works across publishing, podcasting, zine making and much more. Lam has written for The Sydney Morning Herald, Gourmet Traveller, Time Out Sydney, Rolling Stone, Good Food Guide, Good Weekend, The Lifted Brow, The Big Issue and even Turkish Vogue magazine. She has worked full-time in editorial positions for 14 years – most recently as managing editor of Inside Out and a writer and producer at the Good Food website. Lam has been presenting Local Fidelity on FBi radio since 2007. In her spare time, she runs The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry blog and podcast. The blog was singled out as one of the city’s best in “The Foodie’s Guide To Sydney” and the podcast was picked as a “Podcast We Love” by SBS (and a “Chef’s Favourite” by Bon Appétit) and chosen to be archived by the National Library.

Lam has also appeared on ABC radio, been a guest speaker at various festivals (such as Audiocraft, Vivid, Food and Words, National Young Writers Festival), hosted Q&As for institutions like Kinokuniya and Sydney Living Museums, featured work in several exhibitions, plus curated the food program at Underbelly Arts festival.

 

 

This workshop has been produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art for The Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour.

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The Invisible Hand – Deep Dive Discussions

SYDNEY. SATURDAY JUNE 29 2.30 PM – 3.30 PM

As part of the public programming for The Invisible Hand, 4A presents a continuation of discussion after our ‘Please Explain‘ panel, with two additional deep dive discussions highlighting the most pressing issues facing users and consumers of technology and media in the Asia-Pacific. 

Data Practice: an in-conversation with Andrea Lau and Mitchell Whitelaw

2.00 PM – 3.00 PM

Data has been called ‘the new oil’ — a valuable resource that is getting increasing attention from business, government, communities and citizens. But how might we work with data from a practical, critical and creative standpoint? Andrea Lau talks with Mitchell Whitelaw about the emerging contours of ‘data practice’, touching on models of independent practice, engaging with government and business, poetry vs functionality and cross-cultural perspectives.

About the Speakers: 

Mitchell Whitelaw is an academic, writer and practitioner with interests in digital art, design and culture, especially generative systems, data-aesthetics, and digital cultural collections. His work has appeared in journals including Leonardo, Digital Creativity, Fibreculture, and Senses and Society. His current work spans materiality, data and culture, with a practical focus on creating “generous interfaces” for digital heritage. He has worked with institutions including the State Library of NSW, the National Archives, and the National Gallery of Australia, developing innovative interfaces to their digital collections. Mitchell is currently an Associate Professor in the School of Art and Design at the Australian National University.

Andrea Lau is a data visualisation designer and co-founder and director at Small Multiples. In her role, Andrea leads the user experience and delivery of projects for Small Multiples’ government, media and innovative ASX-listed clients. She is responsible for spearheading business development, providing data visualisation direction, and educating organisations on the value of communicating stories through data. Andrea brings over ten years’ experience in digital services having worked at the ABC, Interaction Consortium and MediaSmart. With a particular interest in educating others on the power of data visualisation, she has been an instructor at General Assembly, Masterclass Tutor at Guardian News and Tutor/Lecturer at the University of Sydney. 

Designing a Participatory Economy with Cameron Tonkinwise 

3.00 PM – 4.00 PM

Interaction Design has helped create platforms that appear to seamlessly match supply-and-demand. Marketed as liberatory, these platforms have become exploitative ‘gig economies.’ It is nevertheless possible to redirect these platforms to promote more local, fairer ways of cooperatively providing services. This talk explores some of the interaction design patterns that could help establish ‘platform cooperatives.’

About the Speaker: 

Cameron Tonkinwise is a Professor, School of Design at the University of Technology, Sydney. Prior to this, he was Director of Design Studies and Doctoral Studies at the Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Design. He has previously held the role of Associate Dean Sustainability at Parsons The New School for Design and was co-Chair of the Tishman Environment and Design Center at the New School in New York, United States of America. 

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Please Explain: Are We Our Gadgets?

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 29 June 2019. 

“If you can have a conversation with a simulated person presented by an AI program, can you tell how far you’ve let your sense of personhood degrade in order to make the illusion work for you?” Jaron Lanier, You are Not a Gadget (2010)

Responding to The Invisible Handan exhibition that considers how digital platform technologies are exploiting technological convenience to co-opt personal data in an uncertain zero-sum game, this edition of Please Explain will be moderated by Ariel Bogle, Technology Reporter for The ABC, and include panelists David Vaile, stream leader for the Allens Hub for Technology, Law & Innovation at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Faculty of Law, and Prof. Bronwen Morgan, Professor, School of Law, University of New South Wales (UNSW), alongside The Invisible Hand exhibiting artists Sunwoo Hoon and Mijoon Pak (Korea).

There is no area in life, business or society that has not been upended and rethought through platform technology companies. Nowhere is this more prevalent than the region of East Asia with the likes of Facebook and Google and their East Asian counterparts Naver, Tencent and Rakuten. It presents as no surprise that many people are anxious about our individual and collective futures and feel that as a society, we have little agency in how it is unfolding. Responding to 4A exhibition The Invisible Hand, this edition of Please Explain will focus on the writing of controversial computer philosophy writer, Jaron Lanier and his work ‘You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto‘ (2010), and our speakers will unpack the impact of platform technology companies in East Asia. The talk will explore the nature of platform technology companies, how these companies are destabilising the nature of democracy and governance, how data is being logged and co-opted by these companies and the possibilities for the future of our digital landscape.

Speakers: David Vaile, Bronwen Morgan, Sunwoo Hoon + Mijoon Pak
Moderator: Ariel Bogle 

Missed the event? Listen to the audio recording below:

Following Please Explain, 4A presents two deep dive discussions that highlight some of the most pressing issues facing users and consumers of technology and media in the Asia-Pacific. 

The Invisible Hand is produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and has been supported by the Korean Cultural Centre and was assisted by The Freedman Foundation International Scholarship for Curators. The program is administered by the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA). 

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Byungjun Kwon: This Is Me

SYDNEY. Wednesday 26 June 6.00PM – 7:30PM 

Byungjun Kwon (권 병준), This Is Me (이것이 나다)

Coinciding with the exhibition opening of The Invisible Hand, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art presents Korean musician and performance artist Byungjun Kwon’s (권 병준) ‘This Is Me’. 

Beginning with a single whistle, Byungjun Kwon’s This Is Me is an experimental electroacoustic improvisational performance involving multiple layers of reverberated and looped sounds accompanied by an interactive video programmed projection. Sonically comprising of sounds made by the artist orally and simple percussive bells, the piece is an exercise in the electronic manipulation of live recorded sound. Kwon’s performance is created concurrently with a piece of video recording and face recognition software developed by Junghoon Ha. The artist is seated at a table while a camera scans his face and others drawn on paper throughout the performance while the software recognises these images as base data for face mapping. As the piece progresses, several famous faces of actors, politicians and artists are mapped to Kwon’s face via a projector, erasing the artist as if wearing a mask. In contrast to the self-assured title, This Is Me reflects on the inherent anonymity of our current digital era where our personal identity can be endlessly manipulated to erase all traditional conceptions of self. A study of an identity crisis in real time, the work is meditative in concept with the artist adopting famous visages all while toying with the automated software. Faces such as George Bush, Marilyn Monroe and Nam June Paik are twisted and contorted at Kwon’s whim all while creating a symbiotic relationship between the artist, the camera, the software and projector, underscored by transformed man-made sounds. 

This Is Me was first performed on 10 August 2013 at Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburg for the 2013 Edinburgh International Festival and has since been performed at the Nam June Paik Art Centre, Gyeonggi, South Korea and Blockhaus DY10, Nantes, France (2015).

ABOUT THE ARTIST:

Byungjun Kwon (b. 1971, Seoul, South Korea, lives and works in Seoul) is a musician and performance artist and pioneering figure of South Korea’s underground music scene. Beginning his career in the early 1990s as a singer/songwriter, Kwon released seven albums prior to relocating to Amsterdam, The Netherlands to study sonology and work for STEIM as a hardware engineer, a centre for the research and development of new electronic musical instruments. Since returning to Korea in 2011 he has expanded his practice into contemporary performance art, composing and performing experimental audio-visual works. His prior work in rock music, dance music, original film soundtracks, theatre scores and fashion runway soundtracking form an unconventional basis for his approach to creating and manipulating sound to form complex pieces. Recent projects include This Is Me, Edinburg International Festival 2013, Edinburgh, Scotland (2013); Artificial Garden, Mediacity Seoul 2012: Spell on You, Seoul, South Korea (2012); and My Instrument My Sound, Culture Station Seoul 284, Seoul, South Korea (2012), alongside several electronic instrument projects at various workshops.

This performance is presented in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, The Korean Cultural Centre, Australia and the Kim Kim Gallery, and sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism with support from the Korean Foundation for International Cultural Exchange (KOFICE) as part of the Traveling Korean Arts Project ‘Take ( ) at face value’.

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Minja Gu: Pasta Nowadays

SYDNEY. 4A CENTRE FOR CONTEMPORARY ASIAN ART. Saturday 29 June 2019. 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM

Minja Gu, Pasta Nowadays

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art presents Minja Gu’s (Korea) Pasta NowadaysMinja Gu’s works explore the cyclical forces of consumerism in society. Using durational performance, Gu facilitates contexts that transform everyday occurrences into ceremonies and rituals. In a performance lasting approximately two hours, Gu will use the ubiquitous act of making pasta as a relational act that encourages pause, reflection and communication among her participants. The noodles are made from diverse brands and flavors of flour from diverse origins and participants are welcome to wander in and out of the performance as they wish.

ABOUT THE ARTIST:

Minja Gu (b. 1977, Daejeon, South Korea, lives and works in Seoul) is an artist working predominantly in performance and video exploring ideas related to universal objects of human experience such as labour, time and love. Her works often deconstruct everyday actions and occurrences into ceremonies and rituals, emphasising the irreversibility of time and the permanence of action. Gu’s key recent exhibition history includes works at Performance x 4A, Art Central, Hong Kong (2018); The Korea Artist Prize, National Museum of Modern And Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea (2018); Impakt Festival – FotoDok, Utrecht, The Netherlands (2016); And No Matter What the Phone Rings – The 6th Moscow Biennale, Moscow, Russia (2015); Our Hesitant Dialogues, Art Sonje Centre, Seoul, South Korea (2013); and the 08 Taipei Biennale, Taipei Fine Art Museum, Taiwan (2008). Gu received the award of excellence in the SongEun Art Award in 2010.

This performance is presented in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, West Space, The Korean Cultural Centre, Australia and the Kim Kim Gallery, and sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism with support from the Korean Foundation for International Cultural  Exchange (KOFICE) as part of the Traveling Korean Arts Project ‘Take ( ) at face value’.
 

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Rui Ho, Jale, Papaphilia x Mossy 333, Ham Laosethakul, RHunter

LIQUID ARCHITECTURE and 4A CENTRE FOR CONTEMPORARY ASIAN ART present a night of splayed club influences via Chinese producer RUI HO. Known for her work on Shanghai label Genome 6.66 MBP and her genre-defying live performances, RUI HO makes her Melbourne debut alongside JALE’s fine mesh of synthetic textures and a new performance by PAPAPHILIA x MOSSY 333, HAM LAOSETHAKUL’s oscillating explorations and the data smearing AI of RHUNTER.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS: 

RUI HO: A genre-blending tour de force, Berlin-based non-binary Chinese producer and artist RUI HO makes electronic music that infuses modern club music with traditional Chinese sounds, described as “a loose narrative of ancient warfare and imaginary events”. 戰記 is RUI HO’s debut EP, and their second release on Genome 6.66 Mbp. From grimy drums to epic soaring trance, their sound combines the intensity of the club with sweet and refreshing melodies from their past and present.

JALE is a DJ and irrepressible energy-source. She has cemented her place in the Melbourne club scene, creating sets featuring new sounds from around the world intended to disrupt and reimagine the idea of contemporary club music. JALE trades strict loyalty to any sub-genre for a free-wheeling mix of moods and tempos that subverts overly-familiar clubbing soundscapes.

RHUNTER constructs huge spectralist panoramas, held together at the seams by precise percussion that flickers between creaky electroacoustics and punchy HD SFX. His treatment of sound material is like hearing the hallucinatory product from a noise removal algorithm pushed beyond its intended domain; something uncompromisingly sharp, rippling, ringing, totally embracing its own digitality. But this digitality is not a cold digitality, finding its counterpoint in various organic interventions ranging from liquid bass stabs to autotuned lamentations to the occasional oceanic drum kit adventure. This translates into variously-sized tension-release-structures, keeping the material constantly breathing and moving. Crisp samples and smeared tones lose and regain assumed form, the density of the discrete sound components always inviting new permutations.

HAM LAOSETHAKUL is a Thai born Melbourne based DJ. His exploratory sets – voyage through codes and data of sound where oscillations of noise pulses in and out of life – represent his personal experience from the confines of his worldly walls. He employs linear narrative to construct a visual palette of his escapades which he expresses through a sonic exploration: takes mind through a vastly hypnotic and romantically awkward journey, allowing curiosity to be understood through uninhibited and experiential means.

Together PAPAPHILIA x MOSSY 333 imagine the connectivity between music and the body through movement – exposing the shared quality of poetics.

MOSSY 333: is a multi-disciplinary artist focused on painting, music, and performance. Her stage work evokes insight to the subjectivity of her trans feminine experiences regarding body and movement, casting a critical gaze on heteronormative cis-gendered conditioning. Her performances demystify the often essentialised idea of a trans woman, to remind people that “trans women are women with autonomy and complexities”.

PAPAPHILIA aurally interrogates the aesthetics of political representation, exploring how sensorial disorientation informs collective belonging. She blends the poetics of exaltation and sorrow from 90s dance music, RnB, disco, pop and traditional pop standards, into an electronic palette drawn from the dystopian poetics of contemporary technological disposability. Slopped pop samples morph into the stoned rhythms of backwashed synths that ebb from the rhythmic flow of acid techno to deep house.

Curated by Mat Spisbah

Video by Benjamin Portas

Presented by Liquid Architecture and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

Supported by City of Melbourne

Angel Music Bar is not a wheelchair-accessible venue

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri, Boonwurrung, Taungurong, Dja Dja Wurrung and the Wathaurung people of the Kulin Nation as the custodians of the land in which this event takes place, and we recognise that sovereignty was never ceded. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and becoming.

Congee Breakfast Tour: The Invisible Hand

SYDNEY. 20 JUL 2019, 11.00AM – 12.30PM

Join The Invisible Hand exhibiting artist Baden Pailthorpe and exhibition curator Micheal Do for a traditional Chinatown breakfast at a much-loved local eatery followed by a walkthrough of the exhibition and a discussion of some of the stories and ideas behind the artists’ works and the themes explored in The Invisible Hand.

The Invisible Hand considers how digital platform technologies are exploiting technological convenience to co-opt personal data in an uncertain zero-sum game. With work from Australia, New Zealand, Korea and Japan, this exhibition explores current and projected complications and contradictions in the digital realm that increasingly oscillate between technological evangelism and scepticism.

$25.00 +bf, includes breakfast. This program is included as part of our public programs for The Invisible Hand, book here 

Congee Breakfast Tour: By All Estimates

SYDNEY. 18 MAY 2019, 10.30AM – 12.30PM

Come aboard for a typical Chinatown breakfast at a much-loved local eatery with By All Estimates exhibiting artist Jessica Bradford and exhibition curator Pedro de Almeida, followed by a walk through of the exhibition and discussion of some of the stories and ideas behind the artists’ works.

Taking Singapore as a locus of multiple regional identities, By All Estimates brings together works by artists that give form to narratives obscured by the city-state’s rapid urban and social development and the coexistence of competing projections of cultural inheritance and recognition. Over the past decade especially, Singapore’s investment in cultural institutions has been seen as an attempt to position the nation as a beacon of cultural capital in Southeast Asia. Underpinning this expansion lies an ever evolving matrix of received and contested narratives that within certain contemporary public realms—from the streets of the city to the corridors of the museum—jostle, overlap or otherwise mingle in approximations of the influence of multiple ethnic representations and economic imperatives. This exhibition presents works by Kolkata-based artist Rathin Barman, Singapore-born Sydney-based artist Jessica Bradford, Singaporean London-based artist Erika Tan, and Singapore-based artist Moses Tan.

 

Jessica Bradford (b. 1987, Singapore) is a multidisciplinary artist based in Sydney. Her work explores her mixed race heritage by questioning stereotypical representations of cultural or national identity. She has held solo exhibitions at Firstdraft, MOP Projects and Galerie Pompom, and is a 2018 Parramatta Artists Studios resident. Bradford’s work has been included in curated group shows at Delmar Gallery (2017), Bathurst Regional Art Gallery (2015), Fairfield Museum & Gallery (2014) and Penrith Regional Gallery & The Lewers Bequest (2013). Bradford holds an MFA by Research from Sydney College of the Arts, and was a recipient of the Australian Postgraduate Award.  She has been a finalist in the John Fries Memorial Prize, the Tim Olsen Drawing Prize, and the Jenny Birt Award. Bradford is represented by Gallerie pompom, Sydney.

By All Estimates is produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and supported by the British Council and Singapore Tourism Board.

4A X NGV ART BOOK FAIR

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art is back again at the NGV’s Melbourne Art Book Fair. Join us to find a range of 4A supported and commissioned publications, artist prints, designs and fashion. Artists featured this year include: Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook, FX Harsono, Jason Wing, Shen Shaomin, Reko Rennie, Jason Phu, Chris Yee, and more.

4A is proud to be launching Eugenia Lim: The Ambassador at the Fair in conjunction with the national tour of Lim’s exhibition The Ambassador. Lim will be onsite and can personalise your copy of this limited print run. 

Since its launch in 2015, the annual Melbourne Art Book Fair has attracted more than 50,000 visitors annually, making it the most visited publishing event in the Asia-Pacific region.

The fifth Melbourne Art Book Fair in 2019 will see 4A join diverse emerging and established local and international publishers, artists and writers, across a four-day program of ideas, discussions and book launches at the National Gallery of Victoria. The 2019 program explores ideas around experimental and discursive publishing, challenging how we think about the publishing field.

Opening Night:

Thursday 15 March: 12:00pm – 5:00pm

Friday 16 March: 10am – 5pm and 6 – 9pm

Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 March: 10am – 5pm

Con-Yee HI MEDUSA! Exhibition Tour with dim sum and drinks

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Join artist Chris Yee and curator Con Gerakaris of 4A’s Lunar New Year exhibition HI MEDUSA! With a special Con-Yee Dumpling tour at The Chinese Garden of Friendship. Riffing off of 4A’s popular Congee Breakfast program, Chris and Con will give a guided tour of the exhibition throughout the gardens followed by an optional dim sum snacks and drinks at The Chinese Garden of Friendship’s new restaurant, The Gardens by Lotus.

Chris Yee: HI MEDUSA! is an exhibition that creates a tangible connection between the Chinese-Australian communities of Sydney and provides a unique opportunity for visitors to engage with the history of the Garden through neo-traditional artworks depicting modern and historical Lunar New Year cultural imagery.

Presenting twelve new and existing bespoke tapestries by emerging Sydney artist Chris Yee, visitors to the Chinese Garden of Friendship during Lunar New Year 2019 go on a journey through the Gardens, discovering detailed, beautiful and humorous images at every turn. Yee’s design work evokes the experiences and narratives of the Chinese diasporic communities of the city expressed through a graphic sensibility that echoes that architectural forms and decorative embellishments of the Chinese Garden of Friendship. Hand woven, the tapestries in this special exhibition, presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, compliment the natural flow of the venue, synthesising a harmonious environment of traditional and contemporary artistic expression.

Chris Yee (b. 1989, Sydney) is an East Ryde (Sydney) based artist, illustrator and designer who specialises in traditional “pen and paper” methodologies. Chris’ main influences stem and vary from 90’s post-apocalyptic manga, rap and punk aesthet- ics. Through his imagery he constructs narratives ranging from the humorous to the monstrous and macabre. Chris’ solo exhibitions include Mad Love, 2015, Japan Foundation, Sydney; Panorama, 2015, Kind Of- Gallery, Sydney; and has par- ticipated in group and collaborative exhibitions including No Más (with Andrew Yee), 2018, Wedge Gallery, Sydney; SOFT, 2016, Superchief Gallery, Los Angeles; and Goliath Ballroom (with James Jirat Patradoon), 2015, Goodspace, Sydney. Out- side his art practice, Chris is a designer who has produced work for some of Australia’s best-known brands, including VIVID Festival Sydney, Sony Australia, Samsung – Opera House, Vans, Red Bull and Gelato Messina.

2-3 PM EXHIBITION TOUR ONLY: $5.00 +BF
2-4 PM EXHIBITION TOUR + AFTERNOON TEA AT LOTUS: $25.00 +BF

BOOK HERE

Chris Yee: HI MEDUSA! has been commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney, Australia and produced for The Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁: 语嘿

SYDNEY. 19 JANUARY – 24 MARCH 2019.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿 is the first retrospective of leading contemporary Chinese artist Xiao Lu. The exhibition is anchored by Xiao Lu’s performance work Dialogue from the landmark China/Avant-Garde exhibition at the National Art Gallery, Beijing, in February 1989. This work, in which the artist fires a gun at her own art installation, is a milestone in the development of contemporary art in China. It has also has been read as a critical turning point in China’s recent history. While Dialogue remains an iconic work of that era, it is also one of the most misunderstood pieces of contemporary Chinese art. Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿  examines Xiao Lu’s creative interest in deep emotion, extreme action, and chance. Spanning a period of 30 years, the exhibition presents significant performance works by Xiao Lu including a new commission that explores the artist’s ongoing connection to Australia.

Xiao Lu (born 1962, Hangzhou) works with performance and installation. She is a graduate of the Subsidiary School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts (China Academy of Art), Hangzhou. Her graduation work Dialogue was included in the China/Avant-Garde exhibition in Beijing in 1989 and became famous after she fired a gun at it, which led to her temporary arrest and an extended period of residence in Sydney. Xiao Lu’s fictional memoir Dialogue《对话》, published in Chinese and English in 2010, exposed powerful forces affecting women artists in contemporary China. Xiao Lu’s work has been included in important international exhibitions, most recently Performer and Participant, Tate, London (2018) and Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New York (2017), and been collected by public and private institutions including the Tate, London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Taikang Insurance Group Art Collection, Beijing; and White Rabbit Collection, Sydney. Xiao Lu lives and works in Beijing and Australia.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

肖鲁:语嘿 是中国当代著名艺术家肖鲁的首次回顾展。展览从肖鲁1989年2月在北京中国美术馆内举办的,具有里程碑意义的中国现代艺术展上的装置行为作品《对话》——艺术家对着自己的装置开枪开始。这件作品在中国当代艺术发展中具有重要意义,被普遍认为是中国现代历史转折的文化信号,但它也成为当代中国艺术中最容易被误解的作品之一。 “肖鲁:语嘿”展示了艺术家对深层情感、极端行动和不同语境的创造发挥,同时也显示艺术家作品的鲜明特质。展览的作品跨越肖鲁30年艺术发展过程,包括一个全新的与悉尼相关的作品。通过这次回顾展,让观众探讨艺术家与澳大利亚的持续关系。

肖鲁(1962年生于杭州)从事行为表演和装置艺术。她毕业于北京的中央美术学院附属中学和杭州的浙江美术学院(中国美术学院)。她的毕业作品《对话》在1989年北京的中国现代艺术展览中展出,她在开枪后被临时拘捕,之后长期居住在悉尼。肖鲁的自传体小说《对话》中英版于2010年出版发行,此书揭露了影响当代中国女性艺术家的一股强大力量。肖鲁的作品已被选入重要的国际展览,近期包括:“表演者与参与者”,泰特,伦敦(2018年)和”1989年之后的艺术与中国:世界剧场”,纽约古根海姆博物馆(2017年)。其作品被公共和私人机构收藏,包括:伦敦泰特美术馆;纽约现代艺术博物馆;北京泰康保险集团艺术收藏;以及悉尼白兔收藏。肖鲁在北京和澳大利亚生活和工作。

“肖鲁:语嘿”由4A当代亚洲艺术中心制作和展出。本次展览及相关教育项目得到了澳大利亚政府,澳中理事会的支持、以及罗清奇博士主持的澳大利亚研究理事会(ARC)前程研究项目《重设世界:中国、艺术与动力 1900年至今》(FT140100743)和墨尔本大学文化与传播学院艺术系的支持。

Exhibition Documentation

All images: Kai Wasikowski

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Tables: China/Avant-Garde exhibition archival materials. Back: Xiao Lu, Dialogue (对话
), 1989, C-type print on vinyl, documentation of installation, and performance: 11.10am,
5 February 1989, China/Avant-Garde exhibition, National Art Gallery, Beijing. Reproduced courtesy Wen Pulin Archive of Chinese Avant-Garde Art and Xiao Lu. Projection: China/Avant-Garde exhibition, set of 210 archival 35mm colour transparency slides produced by Fine Arts Magazine, 1991. Private collection. Far Left: Wang Youshen, China/Avant-Garde exhibition. Before and after the ‘Shooting Incident’ (detail), 1989 – 2019, inkjet prints, dimensions variable, courtesy Wang Youshen. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu, Dialogue (对话
), 1989, single channel video, 2:04 minutes, documentation of installation and performance: 11.10 am, 5 February 1989, China/Avant-Garde exhibition National Art Gallery, Beijing. Reproduced courtesy Wen Pulin Archive of Chinese Avant-Garde Art and Xiao Lu. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Tables: China/Avant-Garde exhibition archival materials. Back: Wang Youshen, China/Avant-Garde exhibition. Before and after the ‘Shooting Incident’ (detail), 1989 – 2019, inkjet prints, dimensions variable, courtesy Wang Youshen. Bottom Right: China/Avant-Garde exhibition, set of 210 archival 35mm colour transparency slides produced by Fine Arts Magazine, 1991. Private collection. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. China/Avant-Garde exhibition archival materials. Image: Kai Wasikowski

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Left: Xiao Lu, Tides (絅蟙) (detail), documentation of performance, Sydney, 18 January 2019, installation: sand, bamboo poles. Commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, courtesy the artist. Right: Xiao Lu, Sperm (精子), 2006, C-type print, 120 x 160cm, edition 6/10, printed 2016, documentation of performance: 21-23 May 2006, Long March Project – Yan’an, Kangda Hotel, Yan’an. Courtesy Long March Space and the artist. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Xiao Lu, 15 Gunshots… From 1989 to 2003, (15枪…从1989 到 2003), 2003, 15 black and white digital prints, framed and then punctured by a bullet,
100 x 45 cm, printed 2018, edition 12/15,
photographs by Li Songsong. Courtesy the artist. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Left: Xiao Lu, Polar (极地) (detail), 2016,
C-type prints, 80 x 120 cm, editions 1/9 and 5/9, printed 2018, documentation of performance: 23 October 2016, Beijing Live 1, Danish Cultural Center, 798 Arts District, Beijing, China. Photographs by Yi Zhilei. Courtesy the artist. Right: Xiao Lu,
Polar (极地),
2016,
single channel video, 4:43 minutes,
documentation of performance: 23 October 2016, Beijing Live 1, Danish Cultural Center, 798, Beijing, China. Filmed by Zhang Zhiqiang and Li Kai, edited by Zhang Li and Xiao Lu. Courtesy the artist. Image: Kai Wasikowski.

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Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿 , detail installation view, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Left: Xiao Lu, Tides (絅蟙) (detail), documentation of performance, Sydney, 18 January 2019, installation: sand, bamboo poles. Commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, courtesy the artist. Centre: Xiao Lu,
One (合), 2015,
single channel video, 3:10 minutes,
documentation of performance: 5 September 2015, Live Action 10, Valand Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Filmed by Zhang Zhiqiang, edited by Xiao Lu. Courtesy the artist. Right: Xiao Lu, One, (合一) (detail), 2015,
C-type print, 120 x 80 cm, edition 6/10, printed 2017, documentation of performance: 5 September 2015, Live Action 10, Valand Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Photographs by Lin Qijian. Courtesy of the artist. Image: Kai Wasikowski

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Xiao Lu, Tides (弄潮), 18 January 2019, Sydney, sand and, bamboo, inkjet print on silk. Photograph by Jacquie Manning. Commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

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In Conversation, Xiao Lu

BRISBANE. 24 JAN 2019. 6.00PM – 8.00PM.

4A is pleased to present an in conversation with leading contemporary Chinese artist Xiao Lu, on the occasion of her first retrospective, Impossible Dialogue, at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney, at The Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane.  Xiao Lu will be in dialogue with two of the exhibition’s co-curators  Claire Roberts and Xu Hong to view and discuss videos of some of the artist’s recent performance works.

The conversation will focus on Xiao Lu’s ongoing creative interest in deep emotion, extreme action and chance, and connect with broader themes including art and gender, feminism, activism and the writing of art histories.

Presented by the School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney and the exhibition Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, in association with The IMA, Brisbane.


 Acknowledgements:

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now(FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

Header Image: Xiao Lu, One, performance, 5 September 2015, Valand Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Photograph by Lin Qijian, courtesy Xiao Lu.

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Exhibition opening: Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁: 语嘿

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 19 JAN 2019. 4.00PM

Edmund Capon AM, OBE, Chair of the Board of 4A, and

Mikala Tai, Director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
invite you to join us at the opening of: 

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿. 

Exhibition opening: 4-6PM, Saturday 19 January


Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿.  is the first retrospective of leading contemporary Chinese artist Xiao Lu. The exhibition is anchored by Xiao Lu’s performance work Dialogue from the landmark China/Avant-Garde exhibition at the National Art Gallery, Beijing, in February 1989. This work, in which the artist fires a gun at her own art installation, is a milestone in the development of contemporary art in China. It has also has been read as a critical turning point in China’s recent history. While Dialogue remains an iconic work of that era, it is also one of the most misunderstood pieces of contemporary Chinese art. Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿  examines Xiao Lu’s creative interest in deep emotion, extreme action, and chance. Spanning a period of 30 years, the exhibition presents significant performance works by Xiao Lu including a new commission that explores the artist’s ongoing connection to Australia.

Xiao Lu (born 1962, Hangzhou) works with performance and installation. She is a graduate of the Subsidiary School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts (China Academy of Art), Hangzhou. Her graduation work Dialogue was included in the China/Avant-Garde exhibition in Beijing in 1989 and became famous after she fired a gun at it, which led to her temporary arrest and an extended period of residence in Sydney. Xiao Lu’s fictional memoir Dialogue《对话》, published in Chinese and English in 2010, exposed powerful forces affecting women artists in contemporary China. Xiao Lu’s work has been included in important international exhibitions, most recently Performer and Participant, Tate, London (2018) and Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New York (2017), and been collected by public and private institutions including the Tate, London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Taikang Insurance Group Art Collection, Beijing; and White Rabbit Collection, Sydney. Xiao Lu lives and works in Beijing and Australia.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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Art and Activism: Changing the Conversation

SYDNEY. SUNDAY 20 JAN 2019. 12.00 – 2.00PM

Prominent Chinese artist Xiao Lu appears in conversation with Sydney Festival Director Wesley Enoch to discuss her solo exhibition Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿 . This talk focuses on how art can be a platform for championing important debate – ultimately, reframing conversation and changing minds. This event is part of the Sydney Festival program for 2019.

Xiao Lu (born 1962, Hangzhou) works with performance and installation. She is a graduate of the Subsidiary School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts (China Academy of Art), Hangzhou. Her graduation work Dialogue was included in the China/Avant-Garde exhibition in Beijing in 1989 and became famous after she fired a gun at it, which led to her temporary arrest and an extended period of residence in Sydney. Xiao Lu’s fictional memoir Dialogue《对话》, published in Chinese and English in 2010, exposed powerful forces affecting women artists in contemporary China. Xiao Lu’s work has been included in important international exhibitions, most recently Performer and Participant, Tate, London (2018) and Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New York (2017), and been collected by public and private institutions including the Tate, London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Taikang Insurance Group Art Collection, Beijing; and White Rabbit Collection, Sydney. Xiao Lu lives and works in Beijing and Australia.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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In Dialogue: Gender + Art in Asia

MELBOURNE. 30 JAN 2019. 2.00PM – 5.00PM

Presented by Buxton Contemporary and the School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne in association with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney and the exhibition Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿.


This international workshop moderated by Claire Roberts coincides with the exhibition Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue (4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney). It brings together artists, art critics and art historians to discuss the question of gender and art in China, as well as in Indonesia and Singapore. The workshop will begin with short presentations and the viewing videos and slides of performance art works by Xiao Lu, Arahmaiani, and Suzann Victor, followed by group discussion. Conversation will focus on the practice of these artists and their choice of medium as well as the reception of their work in local, regional and global contexts. Speakers will include Wulan Dirgantoro, Chloe Ho, Shao Yiyang, Xiao Lu and Xu Hong. People who wish to actively contribute to the workshop discussion or just be present are all welcome.


Moderator:

Claire Roberts is an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow and Associate Professor of Art History in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne. Her current ARC research project ‘Reconfiguring the World. China. Art. Agency 1900s to Now’ focuses on the international context of modern and contemporary Chinese art.

Speakers:

Wulan Dirgantoro is a McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne. Her research interests are gender and feminism, and trauma and memory in Indonesian modern and contemporary art. Her publications including Feminisms and Indonesian Contemporary Art: Defining Experiences (2017) and ‘Aesthetics of Silence: Exploring Trauma in Indonesian Painting 1970-1980’ in Ambitious Alignment: New Histories of Southeast Asian Art (2018). Prior to her current role she was a lecturer at the MA Asian Art Histories program at LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore (2014-2016) and research fellow of Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices 2016/2017 program (Forum Transregionale Studien) and Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Cultural Inquiry (ICI), Berlin.

Chloe Ho is a doctoral candidate in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne. Her interest is in twentieth and twenty-first century Singapore art, specifically in relation to performance, performance art, and art historiography. She investigates the place of performance in the transmission of art and the art historical in the Singapore context, looking at both artistic works and social phenomena and its relation to society. Her current research project attempts to contextualise the absence of university-level art historical studies in Singaporean universities and the absence of a formal canon for Singaporean art as a resistance toward Western structures of knowledge with artwork and events in Singapore from the late 1980s to the present.

SHAO Yiyang is a professor of Art history and Theory, deputy chair of School of Humanities at Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing. She received her Ph.D in 2003 from the Department of Art history and Theory at the University of Sydney. She has published widely in Chinese and English on modern and contemporary art and theory including most recently Modern and Contemporary Art in the 20th Century (2018), as well as “Whither Art History?”, Art Bulletin (June 2016), and “The International Identity of Chinese Art Theoretical Debates on Chinese Contemporary Art in the 1990s” in Jason C. Kuo ed,Contemporary Chinese Art and Film Theory Applied and Resisted (2013).

XIAO Lu (born 1962, Hangzhou) works with performance and installation. She is a graduate of the Subsidiary School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts (China Academy of Art), Hangzhou. Her graduation work Dialogue was included in the China/Avant-Garde exhibition in Beijing in 1989 and became famous after she fired a gun at it, which led to her temporary arrest and an extended period of residence in Sydney. Xiao Lu’s fictional memoir Dialogue《对话, published in Chinese and English in 2010, exposed powerful forces affecting women artists in contemporary China. Xiao Lu’s work has been included in important international exhibitions, most recently Performer and Participant, Tate London (2018) and Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New York (2017), and been collected by public and private institutions including the Tate, London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Taikang Insurance Group Art Collection, Beijing; and White Rabbit Collection, Sydney. Xiao Lu lives and works in Beijing and Australia.

XU Hong is a graduate of the Department of Art, Shanghai Normal University (1985) and the graduate art history program of the Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing (1992). She was Associate Researcher at the Shanghai Art Museum (1985-2000) where she was involved in editorial work, theoretical research, curatorial projects and artistic practice, and then Deputy Head of Research and Head of the No. 1 Academic Department at the National Art Museum of China (2001-2013). In 2005 she became a Senior Research Fellow and was named an ‘Outstanding Expert’. She was a visiting Professor at Tainan National University of the Arts, and is currently an expert advisor for the Tsinghua University Art Museum. She is a leading curator, art historian and critic. Her research focuses on modern and contemporary Chinese art and Chinese women’s art.


Acknowledgements:

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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Header Image: Xiao Lu, One, performance, 5 September 2015, Valand Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Photograph by Lin Qijian, courtesy Xiao Lu.

The China/Avant-garde Exhibition and Xiao Lu: 30 Years On

SYDNEY. FRIDAY 1 FEB 2019. 10.00AM – 5.00PM

Thirty years on, what is the significance of the China/ Avant-Garde exhibition which opened at the China National Art Gallery (National Art Museum of China), Beijing on 5 February 1989? Since the forced closure of the exhibition, after Xiao Lu fired a gun at her installation Dialogue and a subsequent ‘bomb threat’, no comparable exhibitions of Chinese experimental art have been held at China’s premier art gallery. What impact did the exhibition have on artists, the art scene in China generally, and the writing of art history within China and beyond? This day-long international workshop, coinciding with the exhibition Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿 , brings together a diverse group of speakers, including participating artists and individuals who viewed the exhibition, as well as art historians and informed commentators, to reflect on the exhibition and its legacy and the work of Xiao Lu during the period from 1989 to 2019.

Featuring speakers: John Clark, Paul Gladston, Nicholas Jose, Olivier Krischer, Li Yu-Chieh, Archibald McKenzie, Claire Roberts, Sang Ye, Shao Yiyang, Mikala Tai, Xu Hong.

Download the program schedule here.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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Please Explain: Gender + Art in China

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 2 FEB 2019. 2.00PM – 3.30PM

The first Please Explain panel for 2019 reflects on Xiao Lu’s practice and examines the representation and misrepresentation of gender in contemporary Chinese art. Considering exhibition histories both nationally within China and internationally as part of the wider art community the panel will debate and dissect how museological and curatorial structures have contributed to how gender has been portrayed in contemporary art from China. This event is part of our public programming for Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, part of Sydney Festival 2019.

Speakers:  Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, Kelly Doley (moderator), Luise Guest, Shao Yiyang and Xiao Lu.

Join us from 1.30PM at 4A for a special pre-exhibition tour conducted by visiting Beijing-based curator Alia Lin.

Speaker Profiles: 

| Moderator: Kelly DOLEY

| Kelly Doley is a Scottish-Australian artist and curator living and working on Gadigal land (Sydney). She is currently Deputy Director, UNSW Galleries and member of artist collective Barbara Cleveland.

| Chun Yin Rainbow CHAN
| Chun Yin Rainbow Chan works across music, performance and installation. Born in
Hong Kong and raised in Sydney, Rainbow is interested in mistranslations, diaspora
and the effects of globalisation on modern Chinese society. 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
Rainbow’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.
Tying together her works across installation and pop music is the relationship
between nostalgia, migration and identity. She released her debut record Spacings
(Silo Arts & Records) in 2016, which was feature album on FBi Radio, Radio Adelaide & RTRFM. She’s been nominated for numerous awards including FBi SMAC 2016 for
Best Live Act, Record of the Year, and AIR 2017 Best Dance/Electronica Album. Her
stunning single “Let Me” won SMAC Best Song of 2017.

Rainbow has performed extensively including live appearances at Sydney Opera
House, Museum of Contemporary Art, Gallery of Modern Art, Art Gallery of New South
Wales, Museum of Old and New Art, Iceland Airwaves and National Taiwan Museum of
Fine Arts. Her installations have been exhibited with Firstdraft Gallery, Liquid
Architecture, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Longli International New
Media Arts Festival, China.

| Luise GUEST
| Luise Guest is the Manager of Research for the White Rabbit Collection, currently the
largest ongoing collection of contemporary Chinese art internationally. A writer,
researcher and art educator – and a very bad student of Chinese – Luise writes
regularly about Chinese art for The Art Life. Her book Half the Sky: Conversations
with Women Artists in China was published by Piper Press in 2016. Luise’s current
research project examines Chinese women artists whose work subverts and reinvents
traditions of ink painting.

| SHAO Yiyang 
| SHAO Yiyang is a professor of Art history and theory, deputy chair of School of
Humanities at Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing. She received her Ph.D in 2003
from the Department of Art history and Theory at the University of Sydney. She has
published widely on modern and contemporary art and theory including most
recently in Chinese, Global Perspectives in Contemporary Art (2019), Modern and
Contemporary Art in the 20th Century (2018), as well as ‘Whither Art History?’. Art
Bulletin (June 2016), and ‘The Inernational Identity of Chinese Art Theoretical
Debates on Chinese Contemporary Art in the 1990s’ in Jason C. Kuo
ed, Contemporary Chinese Art and Film: Theory Applied and Resisted (2013).

| Alia LIN 

Alia Lin was born in Hohhot, China in 1990. She graduated from Parsons the New School for Design in 2015 with a BFA in Architectural Design. From 2015 to 2016, Lin interned at the Design Department of the Metropolitan Museum, where she worked on the exhibition design of many projects. In 2017, she graduated from University College London with a master’s degree in History of Art. In 2018, Lin worked as a curator at Zhuzhong Art Museum in Beijing. She curated and designed the exhibition “Her Kind 创” (2018) which included Xiao Lu, Zhao Yin’ou and Cao Yu.

| XIAO Lu

| XIAO Lu (Born 1962, Hangxhou) works with performance and installation. She is a
graduate of the Subsidiary School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing and
Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts (China Academy of Art), Hangzhou. Her graduation
work Dialogue was included in the China/Avant-Garde exhibition in Beijing in 1989
and became famous after she fired a guna t it, which led her to temporary arrest and
an extended period of residence in Sydney. Xiao Lu’s fictional memoir Dialogue 《对
话, published in Chinese and English in 2010, exposed powerful forces affecting
women artists in contemporary China. Xiao Lu’s work has been included in important
international exhibitions, most recently Performer and Participant, Tate London (2018)
and Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World, Guggenheim Museum, New york
(2017), and been collected by public and private institutions including the Tate,
London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Taikand Insurance Group Art Collection,
Beijing; and White Rabbit Collection, Sydney. Xiao Lu lives and works in Beijing and
Australia.

 

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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Congee Breakfast Tour: Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 9 FEB 2019. 10.00AM – 12.30PM

Join curator Mikala Tai and academic Paul Gladston for a tour of Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿 followed by a congee breakfast at a local Haymarket restaurant.

This event is part of our public programming for Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue 肖鲁:语嘿, part of Sydney Festival 2019.

Xiao Lu: Impossible Dialogue is produced and presented by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This exhibition and associated programming are supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-China Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship project led by Dr Claire Roberts Reconfiguring the World: China. Art. Agency. 1900s to Now (FT140100743), and the Faculty of Arts, School of Culture and Communication, The University of Melbourne.

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Exhibition opening: By All Estimates

SYDNEY. THURSDAY 11 APR 2019. 6.00 – 8.00PM

A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
invites you to join us at the opening of: 

 By All Estimates

Exhibition opening: 6.00-8.00PM, Thursday 11 April

RSVP here.


 

Artists: Rathin Barman, Jessica Bradford, Erika Tan and Moses Tan

Taking Singapore as a locus of multiple regional identities, By All Estimates brings together works by artists that give form to narratives obscured by the city-state’s rapid urban and social development and the coexistence of competing projections of cultural inheritance and recognition. Over the past decade especially, Singapore’s investment in cultural institutions has been seen as an attempt to position the nation as a beacon of cultural capital in Southeast Asia. Underpinning this expansion lies an ever evolving matrix of received and contested narratives that within certain contemporary public realms—from the streets of the city to the corridors of the museum—jostle, overlap or otherwise mingle in approximations of the influence of multiple ethnic representations and economic imperatives. This exhibition presents works by Singapore-born Sydney-based artist Jessica Bradford alongside Singaporean London-based artist Erika Tan, among others.

Jessica Bradford’s ongoing historical and present-day research around Singapore’s Haw Par Villa underpins her most recent body of work spanning painting, ceramics, video and installation. Formerly known as Tiger Balm Garden, Haw Par Villa’s website describes the site as ‘an 8.5-hectare Asian cultural park, the last of its kind in the world … The eclectic park is a treasure trove of Asian culture, history, philosophy and religion—quirky yet enlightening, at the same time.’ Established in 1937 by Burmese-Chinese brothers Aw Boon Haw and Aw Boon Par, the developers of the famous Tiger Balm medicinal ointment, the park has was intended as a both an educational and entertaining experience that offered hundreds of statues and giant dioramas based on Chinese folk history, mythology and morality. In the 1980s, a period coinciding with Bradford’s early memories of visiting with her family as a child, the park was acquired by the Singaporean Government during a period of concentrated governmental debate around national identity marked by a renewed focus on ‘Asian values’. Over the years, sculptures have been added or removed, modified or relocated by various involved parties, often altering the intended symbolism or meaning of the statues, dioramas and the park itself. In her work, Bradford seeks to simultaneously excavate and further obfuscate Haw Par Villa’s layered representations of the intertwined projections of cultural and national identities and the forms they take within changing regional and global ideological and economic contexts alongside competing ideas around tradition and its processes of inheritance.

Erika Tan’s Repatriating The Object With No Shadow: Along, Against, Within and Through (2013–14) takes the structure of an A to Z (a ‘gesture’ towards the encyclopaedic or comprehensive), to approach a glossary of terms, events, artefacts and personal accounts which connect us to the historical through the specifics and the context of the colonial museum in Malaya. Beginning with ‘A is for adventure, advantage and advocate’, Tan’s video work employs archival anthropological films of indigenous tribes of the Malay peninsula, tracking shots of museum displays, animations of collection objects backed by green screens, and a voiceover narration that hovers between pedagogical lecture and fictional fable, among other audio-visual material, to create a mesmeric filmic montage that challenges past paradigms of ethnographic commission and omission, inclusion and exclusion, with broader contemporary resonances and implications.

 

Artists:

Rathin Barman (b. 1981, Tripura, India) is an artist based in Kolkata, India, who is interested in interventions in urban spaces. His sculptures, drawings and installations seek to redefine space and investigate the city as a spatial and political phenomenon, reflecting many ideologies and different socio-political points of view. Recent solo exhibitions include I Wish to Let You Fall Out of My Hands (Chapter II) (2017) and No…I Remember It Well (2015), Experimenter, Kolkata, and A Goldfish Bowl (2014), GALLERYSKE, Bangalore. Group exhibitions include Art Basel 2018, Basel; Rendez-vous/13 Biennale de Lyon (2015), Institut de’Art Contemporain, Lyon; Land of No Horizon(2014)Nature Morte, New Delhi;  Dhaka Art Summit (2014); Edge Effect, Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014, Kochi; Midnight’s Grandchildren, Studio X (2014), Mumbai; Art Dubai (2013); India Art Fair, New Delhi (2012–2014); nd Frieze New York Sculpture Park (2012); Barman’s work is in the collections of Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, Devi Art Foundation, New Delhi; Coimbatore Center for Contemporary Art (CoCCA), Coimbatore, among other important collections. He is represented by Experimenter, Kolkata.

Jessica Bradford (b. 1987, Singapore) is a multidisciplinary artist based in Sydney. Her work explores her mixed race heritage by questioning stereotypical representations of cultural or national identity. She has held solo exhibitions at Firstdraft, MOP Projects and Galerie Pompom, and is a 2018 Parramatta Artists Studios resident. Bradford’s work has been included in curated group shows at Delmar Gallery (2017), Bathurst Regional Art Gallery (2015), Fairfield Museum & Gallery (2014) and Penrith Regional Gallery & The Lewers Bequest (2013). Bradford holds an MFA by Research from Sydney College of the Arts, and was a recipient of the Australian Postgraduate Award.  She has been a finalist in the John Fries Memorial Prize, the Tim Olsen Drawing Prize, and the Jenny Birt Award.

Erika Tan (b. 1967, Singapore) is an artist and curator based in London. Her work evolves from an extensive process of research focused on interests in received narratives, contested heritage, subjugated voices and the transnational movements of ideas, people and things. Solo exhibitions include APA JIKA, The Mis-Placed Comma, National Gallery Singapore ‘Uncommissioned’ tablet platform (2017-2020); Come Cannibalise Us, Why Don’t You? (Sila Mengkanibalkan Kami, Mahu Tak?), a major exhibition, symposium and artist book project presented at NUS Museum, Singapore, and Central Saint Martins School of Art, London (2014-2016), and Persistent Visions, Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester (2005), NUS Museum, Singapore (2010) and Vargas Museum, Manila (2010). Group exhibitions include Diaspora Pavilion, 57th Venice Biennale (2017); On Attachments and Unknowns, SA SA BASSAC, Phnom Penh (2017); Double Visions, He Xiangning Museum of Art, Shenzen (2014); Camping and Tramping Through The Colonial Archive: The Museum in Malaya, NUS Museum, Singapore (2011–2013); Thermocline of Art, ZKM, Germany (2007); Around The World in Eighty Days, South London Gallery/ICA (2007); the inaugural Singapore Biennale (2006); Cities on the Move, Hayward Gallery, London (1999). Tan studied Social Anthropology and Archaeology at Kings College, Cambridge; Film Directing at The Beijing Film Academy, followed by an MA in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins School of Art, London. She currently teaches Fine Art at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, was awarded the Stanley Picker Fine Art Fellowship 2018-2020, and is a founding member of Asia-Art-Activism, Raven Row, London.

Moses Tan (b. 1986, Singapore) is a Singapore-based artist whose work explores histories that intersect with queer theory and politics while looking at melancholia and shame as points of departure. Working with drawing, video and installation, his interest lies in the use of subtlety and codes in the articulation of narratives. He graduated from LASALLE College of the Arts with a BA(Hons) in Fine Arts and a BA(Hons) in Chemistry and Biological Chemistry from Nanyang Technological University. He was awarded the Noise Singapore Award for Art and Design in 2014, Winston Oh Travel Research Grant in 2016, and the LASALLE Award for Academic Excellence in 2016. He has shown in Grey Projects (SG), Hidden Space (HK), Indiana University (US), Sabanci University (TR), Kunst Im Dialog (DE) and also recently completed a residency in Santa Fe Art Institute (US).

Header image: Jessica Bradford, Haw Par Villa #4 (Swans), 2016, pastel and liquid pencil on primed aluminium  sheet on top of underglazed earthenware. Courtesy the artist and Galerie pompom, Sydney.
Feature image: Jessica Bradford, Haw Par Villa Rock Study #22, 2018,bisque fired underglazed porcelain, approx. 11.5x20x7.5cm. Courtesy the artist and Galerie pompom, Sydney.
By All Estimates is produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and supported by the British Council and Singapore Tourism Board.
Erika Tan’s work and participation in public programs has been supported by the British Council.

Please Explain: The Rise of New Asia Is Not the End of the World

SYDNEY. SATURDAY 13 APRIL 2019.

2.00PM – 3.30PM

4A’s series Please Explain invites presenters to rethink, recharge and reimagine contemporary issues through the arts, academia, journalism and related fields. Responding to By All Estimates presented at 4A, an exhibition that brings together works by artists that give form to narratives often obscured by the Singapore’s rapid urban and social development, this edition of Please Explain will feature exhibiting artists Erika Tan (UK) and Moses Tan (Singapore) alongside academic Dr Yvonne Low (Power Institute, The University of Sydney) and Ursula Sullivan, co-owner of Sullivan+Strumpf, the first Australian gallery to establish a presence in Singapore at Gillman Barracks.

Taking the seminal essay Authenticity, Reflexivity, and Spectacle; or, The Rise of New Asia is Not the End of the World (2004) by prominent Singaporean art critic and curator Lee Weng Choy as a key reference for discussion, speakers will explore a range of ideas and relate their own experiences concerning Lee’s central premise that “Singapore imagines itself not just as taking the best from the East and the West—as the inheritor of the great traditions and the latest technologies—but, by offering itself as the paradigm of New Asia, Singapore also stakes a claim as part of the avant-garde of the next stage of global capitalism.”  This Please Explain will ask: How has his contention may have further evolved over the past fifteen years? How does the construct of ‘New Asia’ play out in the contemporary arts scene and global imagination? How have past and present institutional and national agendas influenced the way local artists and art markets operate? What is the democratic role of the arts in public discourse? And what role do artists play within Singapore’s investment in its rise as a global knowledge-based economy in the twenty-first century?

Missed the event? Listen to the audio recording below:


Speakers: 

Dr Yvonne Low, Erika Tan, Moses Tan, Ursula Sullivan

Moderator: Pedro de Almeida, 4A

Speaker Profiles: 

|  Dr Yvonne Low 
Dr Yvonne Low specialises in the modern and contemporary arts of Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Her research interests include colonial histories, cultural politics of art development, women artists and feminist art history, and digital art history. Yvonne has published widely, and is on the editorial committee of Southeast of Now: Directions in Contemporary and Modern Art in Asia and Ambitious Alignments: New Histories of Southeast Asian Art. She holds degrees majoring in Art History from the University of Sydney and the University of Melbourne and has taught part-time at Nanyang Technological University, the University of New South Wales, and is currently a Lecturer in Asian Art at the University’s Power Institute. She is also the project coordinator for Site and Space in Southeast Asia, and co-convenor of Gender in Southeast Asian Art Histories 2019.

|  Ursula Sullivan 

Ursula Sullivan is co-owner of Sullivan+Strumpf. Established in 2005, Sullivan+Strumpf presents the work of established and emerging artists at the forefront of contemporary art in the Asia-Pacific region. The gallery has spaces in Sydney’s Zetland and Singapore’s Gillman Barracks. Alongside co-owner Joanna Strumpf, Ursula has helped foster the careers of some of the most exciting artists working in the region today.
|  June Yap 
Dr June Yap is Curatorial Director at Singapore Art Museum, Singapore. Dr Yap previously served as a curator at SAM, in 2003 and 2004. She has also served as curator at the Institute of Contemporary Arts Singapore and at the Solomon R Guggenheim Museum under the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative, where she presented the well-received exhibition on South and Southeast Asian Art titled No Country. In 2011, she served as the curator for the Singapore Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.

|  Erika Tan 

Erika Tan is an artist and curator based in London. Her work evolves from an extensive process of research focused on interests in received narratives, contested heritage, subjugated voices and the transnational movements of ideas, people and things. Solo exhibitions include APA JIKA, The Mis-Placed Comma, National Gallery Singapore ‘Uncommissioned’ tablet platform (2017-2020); Come Cannibalise Us, Why Don’t You? (Sila Mengkanibalkan Kami, Mahu Tak?), a major exhibition, symposium and artist book project presented at NUS Museum, Singapore, and Central Saint Martins School of Art, London (2014-2016), and Persistent Visions, Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester (2005), NUS Museum, Singapore (2010) and Vargas Museum, Manila (2010). Group exhibitions include Diaspora Pavilion, 57th Venice Biennale (2017); On Attachments and Unknowns, SA SA BASSAC, Phnom Penh (2017); Double Visions, He Xiangning Museum of Art, Shenzen (2014); Camping and Tramping Through The Colonial Archive: The Museum in Malaya, NUS Museum, Singapore (2011–2013); Thermocline of Art, ZKM, Germany (2007); Around The World in Eighty Days, South London Gallery/ICA (2007); the inaugural Singapore Biennale (2006); Cities on the Move, Hayward Gallery, London (1999). Tan studied Social Anthropology and Archaeology at Kings College, Cambridge; Film Directing at The Beijing Film Academy, followed by an MA in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins School of Art, London. She currently teaches Fine Art at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, was awarded the Stanley Picker Fine Art Fellowship 2018-2020, and is a founding member of Asia-Art-Activism, Raven Row, London.

 

|  Moses Tan

Moses Tan is a Singapore-based artist whose work explores histories that intersect with queer theory and politics while looking at melancholia and shame as points of departure. Working with drawing, video and installation, his interest lies in the use of subtlety and codes in the articulation of narratives. He graduated from LASALLE College of the Arts with a BA(Hons) in Fine Arts and a BA(Hons) in Chemistry and Biological Chemistry from Nanyang Technological University. He was awarded the Noise Singapore Award for Art and Design in 2014, Winston Oh Travel Research Grant in 2016, and the LASALLE Award for Academic Excellence in 2016. He has shown in Grey Projects (SG), Hidden Space (HK), Indiana University (US), Sabanci University (TR), Kunst Im Dialog (DE) and also recently completed a residency in Santa Fe Art Institute (US).

| Moderator: Pedro de Almeida 

Pedro is Business Manager at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and exhibition curator of By All Estimates.


By All Estimates is produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and supported by the British Council and the Singapore Tourism Board.
Erika Tan’s work and participation in public programs has been supported by the British Council.
Image above: Jessica Bradford, Haw Par Villa #4 (Swans), 2016. Image courtesy the artist and Galerie pompom, Sydney.

Exhibition curator: Pedro de Almeida

Assistant curator: Janet Jin, who has assisted on development of this Please Explain discussion.

WORKSHOP // Hanging Out: create an illustrated wall hanging with artist Chris Yee

SYDNEY. 15 – 18 APRIL, 2019.

10.00 AM – 12.00 PM

For the April School Holidays at the Chinese Garden of Friendship, join Sydney artist Chris Yee for a special series of free illustration workshops.

Chris Yee (b. 1989, Sydney) is an East Ryde (Sydney) based artist, illustrator and designer who specialises in traditional “pen and paper” methodologies. Chris’ main influences stem and vary from manga, to rap and punk aesthetics, while also expressing a traditional graphic sensibility that echoes that architectural forms and decorative embellishments of the Chinese Garden of Friendship.

Following from Chris’ recent exhibition at the Gardens, Chris Yee: HI MEDUSA!, which presented twelve bespoke tapestries that took visitors to the Chinese Garden of Friendship during Lunar New Year 2019 on a journey through the Gardens, discovering detailed, beautiful and humorous images at every turn.

In this workshop, small groups of participants will work with ink and marker pens to learn how to create their own motifs that reflect their interests and the imagery of the Gardens, working with templates and techniques to create their own take-home wall hanging.

For participants aged between 6-15 years, accompanied by a responsible adult.

Each workshop is free, and has all materials provided, with bookings online encouraged to ensure all participants get to complete their take-home artwork. 

Artist Biography:
Chris Yee (b. 1989, Sydney) is an East Ryde (Sydney) based artist, illustrator and designer who specialises in traditional “pen and paper” methodologies. Chris’ main influences stem and vary from 90’s post- apocalyptic manga, rap and punk aesthet- ics. Through his imagery he constructs narratives ranging from the humorous to the monstrous and macabre. Chris’ solo exhibitions include Mad Love, 2015, Japan Foundation, Sydney; Panorama, 2015, Kind Of- Gallery, Sydney; and has participated in group and collaborative exhibitions including No Más (with Andrew Yee), 2018, Wedge Gallery, Sydney; SOFT, 2016, Superchief Gallery, Los Angeles; and Goliath Ballroom (with James Jirat Patradoon), 2015, Goodspace, Sydney. Outside his art practice, Chris is a designer who has produced work for some of Australia’s best-known brands, including VIVID Festival Sydney, Sony Australia, Samsung – Opera House, Vans, Red Bull and Gelato Messina.

Chris Yee: HI MEDUSA! was commissioned by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney, Australia, curated by Con Gerakaris, and produced for The Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour for Lunar New Year 2019.

This workshop has been produced by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art for The Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour.

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UNSW Art & Design presents at 4A: ‘Post-Colonial Wild Rhizome: Contemporary Art in Taiwan and Its Ruptures’

PLEASE NOTE THE LOCATION FOR THIS TALK HAS BEEN UPDATED:

Lecture Theatre EG02

UNSW  | Art & Design

UNSW Sydney

Paddington campus

Cnr Oxford St & Greens Rd,

Paddington, NSW 2021

 

SYDNEY. 2 MAY 2019. 6-8PM

Dr. Jow-Jiun Gong, Associate Professor and Director Doctoral Program, Art Theory and Practice, Tainan National University of the Arts (TNNUA), Tainan City, Taiwan

Moderator: Dr Veronica Tello (UNSW Art & Design)  

In this discussion, Dr. Jow-Jiun Gong will analyse the ruptures in contemporary Taiwanese art among the paradigms of European, Japanese and Chinese art histories:

“Using artworks I selected for the 2018 Taiwan Biennale as examples, I argue that the works not only reflect the logic of post-colonial thoughts in Taiwan, but they form a phenomenon which I call ‘wild rhizome’: a self-initiated, grass-root approach of the artist community to build and connect their practices outside institutions. The transformations of artists’ organizations and their diverse types of mimicry parallel the natural environment and complex historical context where these works emerge. In addition, the numerous high mountains which are the backbone of the island, as well as the oceans surrounding it, fostered the cultural diversity and possible ways of amending the colonial ruptures and trauma.”

 

Presented by UNSW | Art & Design in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

Series organisers: Prof. Paul Gladston and Dr Yu-Chieh Li.

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Image: Jun-Honn KAO, Apparatus of Topa, 2018. Image courtesy of the artist.

Exhibition opening: The Invisible Hand

SYDNEY. THURSDAY 27 JUNE 2019. 6.00 – 8.00PM.

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
invites you to join us at the opening of: 

The Invisible Hand

Exhibition opening: 6.00-8.00PM, Thursday 27 June.

RSVP here.


Artists: Baden Pailthorpe, Exonemo, Simon Denny, Sunwoo Hoon, Mijoon Pak

The Invisible Hand considers how digital platform technologies are exploiting technological convenience to co-opt personal data in an uncertain zero-sum game. With work from Australia, New Zealand, Korea and Japan, this exhibition explores current and projected complications and contradictions in the digital realm that increasingly oscillate between technological evangelism and scepticism.

In 1991, the World Wide Web creator, Tim Berners-Lee, developed the first website at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland. Since then, over one billion websites have proliferated across the globe, with 2.5 trillion Internet searches made every year. Everyday our connected devices generate some 2.5 quintillion bytes of data, creating a rapidly expanding field of human communication and providing unparalleled insights into our lives. The rise of global platform companies—Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Rakuten, Tencent and Naver among others—are largely underpinning this mass connectivity, with Facebook alone weaving together over 700 billion friendships across the globe.

However, from search results to self-publishing platforms, these global corporate powers are logging every digital click, like, share and scroll made on these supposedly free services—selling on this consumer information to third parties and advertisers. While this business model has produced mass convenience, connectivity and information sharing, a closer examination reveals a vast information inequity between users and these providers. Nowhere are these invisible computing forces more present than in the hyper connected East Asia region, where household internet penetration and use is at its global highest. In this region, platform technology companies have the power to alter the course of history, in the same way recent technologically-led scandals like Cambridge Analytica have manipulated contemporary politics in America, Thailand and India, and the coordinated cyber-attacks of public health records loom over Singapore.

Against this dystopic information landscape, The Invisible Hand examines our ever evolving digital realm with careful focus on the East Asia region, a place at the bleeding edge of this technological frontier. Exploring the existential threat of Big Tech through a series of commissioned and recent works the artists each untangle the networked rhythms of our age, with careful allusion to science, public policy, economics and share price. Through these meditations The Invisible Hand presents artistic agitation to the arena of public debate—providing new perspectives, understandings and predications that enable us to better understand our place in this newly formed digital battleground.

Artists: 

Simon Denny: Born 1982, Auckland, New Zealand, lives and works in Berlin, Germany. Drawing upon research into the practices and aesthetics of technology companies, Simon Denny creates artworks that interrogate the implications of big data in our contemporary age. Denny represented New Zealand at the 56th Venice Biennale (2015). His work was included in Manifesta 11 (2016), 9th Berlin Biennale (2016), 6th Moscow Biennale (2015), 13th Biennale de Lyon (2015), La Biennale de Montreal (2014), the 55th Venice Biennale (2013), 1st Brussels Biennial (2008), and the 16th Biennale of Sydney (2008). His work has been included in exhibitions at museums and institutions throughout Europe and the United States, and has recently been the subject of solo exhibitions at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2017); BOZAR, Brussels (2017); the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, Wellington (2016); Wiels, Brussels (2016); Serpentine Gallery, London (2015-2016); MoMA PS1, New York (2015); Portikus, Frankfurt (2014); Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig MUMOK, Vienna (2013); and Kunstverein München, Munich (2013).

Exonemo: Formed 1996, Tokyo, Japan. The artists live and work in New York, New York, United States of America.
Artist unit, Exonemo formed in 1996 with key members Sembo Kensuke and Akaiwa Yae. Exonemo create experiments that explore the boundaries of the internet and internet culture. Critical to this examination are the exploration of digital paradoxes and the divide between analog, digital and real life. Exonemo’s exhibitions include: Baruch College Library, New York, U.S.A 2018; Plg.in, Basel, Switzerland, 2008, Whitney Museum, New York, 2019; Jogja National Museum, Jog Jakarta, Indonesia, 2018, New Museum, New York, USA; Art Tower Mito, Ibaraki, Japan, 2018. Since 2012 they have organized the ‘Internet Yami-Ichi’, a large flea market that has taken place in Tokyo and New York and which makes the often immaterial flotsam of cyberspace tangible in online-themed objects.

Sunwoo Hoon: Born 1989, Seoul, South Korea, lives and works in Seoul, South Korea. Sunwoo Hoon translates key socio-political moments from history into isometric 8 bit ‘digital drawings’ loaded with intense meaning and narrative. His key exhibitions include the Daum, online web-portal, 2015 – 2017, Foundation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, 2017 and Gwangju Biennale, 2018. His work is collected by Foundation Cartier pour l’art contemporain and in 2015, he won the Emerging Artist
Award from the Seoul International Cartoon and Animation Festival (SICAF). From 2016 – 2017, he was Editor-in-chief of Yourmana.

Mijoon Pak: Born 1978, Seoul, South Korea, lives and works in Seoul, South Korea. Mijoon Pak is long-term collaborator with Sunwoo Hoon. Since meeting fellow artist Sunwoo Hoon, she has been critical to the development of their collaborative practice as a storyteller. Prior to this, Mijoon has had a corporate career at large multinational firms including Google, Bloomberg, Oracle, SAP, and Samsung.

Baden Pailthorpe: Born 1984 Canberra, Australia. Baden Pailthorpe lives and works in Sydney, Australia. Baden Pailthorpe’s work explores the spatiality of power, politics and the cultures of late Capitalism through hyper-real animation, video and sculpture. His key exhibitions include UTS Art Gallery, Sydney (2018); Sullivan+Strumpf, Sydney & Singapore (2017); 21st Triennale di Milano, Milan (2016); Newcastle Art Gallery, Newcastle (2015); Casula Powerhouse, Sydney (2015); Artspace, Sydney (2014) & CACSA, Adelaide (2015); Hors Pistes, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2014); Westspace (2014); La Gaîté Lyrique, Paris (2013); and Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2012).

Header image: Baden Pailthorpe (with GGF LAN Party), Pitch Deck (detail)2017 (custom dual PC): ASRock X299 Taichi; Intel i9 7900X; 64GB G.Skill Trident Z RGB; Zotac GTX 1080 10th Anniversary Edition; Intel 600P 512GB M.2 SSD; Thermaltake 1000W RGB Toughpower PSU; Thermaltake LCS; CableMod Sleeved Cables. Build: Stuart Tonks, GGF LAN Party. Image courtesy the artist and Sullivan+Strumpf, Sydney.

UNSW Art & Design presents at 4A: ‘Memes, Myth and Meaning in 21st Century Chinese Visual Culture’

SYDNEY. 18 JULY, 2019, 6.00 – 8.00PM

Dr. Justine Poplin (Victoria University Melbourne)

Moderator: Dr. Yu-Chieh Li (UNSW Art & Design)

With the expansion of our social networks and access to information through freely available online sources, the internet can provide an inspiring and highly educational method of working, communicating and researching. Yet not all people have unfettered connection to the global community as mediated through online sources, but instead are constrained by online and offline environments created by political entities.

This presentation outlines the background surrounding internet censorship in mainland China and explores significant expressions of identity through visual culture that proliferate despite censorship. Notwithstanding the restrictions on speech and expression of ideas that are divergent to the harmonious society, the online ecology lends itself to creative pathways to circumnavigate and attain information. The practice of using online visual metaphors is an alternative way to communicate to a like-minded community, simultaneously connecting to the subculture through codes, that were initially created to be read by people in that community. Focussing on the emergence of the Grass Mud Horse phenomenon in 2009, this particular symbol is used to explain how the internet can be driver for new forms of visual culture; outlining how, through online communities new heroic icons emerge. Poplin further claims that due to internet censorship, symbols are created by anonymous online users to circumnavigate the restrictions of internet censorship.

The discussion explores the capacity for understanding this contemporary and unique online visual phenomenon, also demonstrating how it manifests, drives and creates new forms of visual culture with a world spirit in mainland China and beyond. By giving examples of how creativity and online identities manifest and thrive through online communities using coded visual metaphors, the creation and use of the symbolism signifies an ideological departure from accepted and acknowledged Chinese values and belief systems through mimetic usage in art and design.

 

Presented by UNSW | Art & Design in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

Series organisers: Prof. Paul Gladston and Dr Yu-Chieh Li

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Exhibiton opening: Nusra Latif Qureshi: Strategies of Intent

SYDNEY. THURSDAY 22 AUGUST 2019. 6.00 – 8.00PM.

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
invites you to join us at the opening of: 

Nursa Latif Qureshi: Strategies of Intent

Exhibition opening: 6.00-8.00PM, Thursday 22 August

Exhibition to be opened with an address from artist, filmmaker and academic Helen Grace.

RSVP here.


Nusra Latif Qureshi’s first solo Australian institutional exhibition presents her ongoing investigation into the symbolism and assumptions embedded in art history. Reflecting on almost two decades of practice Qureshi’s attempts to undermine, shift and negate historical imagery reads as a warning for the contemporary age, where assumed realities can be little more than constructed visions.

Qureshi’s practice is characterised by meticulous layering, fragmentation, erasure and juxtaposition of visual material. Through such intervention, she investigates little known histories of colonial eras, questions established narratives and engages with the politics of representation. Through an examination of the visual histories of the South Asian region Qureshi has developed a new visual vernacular in which to examine and interrogate the act of historicisation.

Strategies of Intent brings together key works from Qureshi’s oeuvre as well as a series of new commissions by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. These commissions are Qureshi’s most ambitious to date and include a series of installations that draw on key colonial imagery, engage with the reverence of weaponry and critique the museological convention of collecting and ownership.


About the artist:
Nusra Latif Qureshi (b. Lahore, Pakistan, lives and works in Melbourne, Australia) attended the National College of Arts, Lahore and completed her Masters of Fine Art at the University of Melbourne. Qureshi’s practices engages with the visual histories of the South Asian region and Australian culture, questioning conventional interpretations, pulling apart and reconfiguring the found patterns to construct new narratives. Her work has been exhibited widely in Austria, Germany, New Zealand, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Afghanistan, Italy, India, Japan, France, Switzerland, Finland and her home countries of Pakistan and Australia. Most recently she was exhibited at the Kunst Historisches Museum, Vienna, Austria as well as Brisbane’s QAG/GOMA. Her work has been collected widely including the British Museum, London, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney and the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. Qureshi is represented by Sutton Gallery, Melbourne and is currently the artist in residence at the Lyceum Club, Melbourne.

About our opening speaker:
Helen Grace is a new media artist, filmmaker, writer and academic interested in the nexus between art & politics, memory and history. Her work has played an active role in the development of art, cinema, photography, cultural studies and education in Australia and regionally for 30 years. Grace’s work is in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide; and has been exhibited internationally in Hong Kong, the US, the UK, France, Spain and Finland. She recently completed a major new video installation, entitled The Housing Question in collaboration with Narelle Jubelin.  The work is currently exhibited at Penrith Regional Gallery, Home of the Lewers Bequest.

Grace is the author of Culture, Aesthetics and Affect in Ubiquitous Media: The Prosaic Image, (Routledge, 2014) and she co-edited (with Amy Chan Kit-Sze and Wong Kin Yuen) Technovisuality: Cultural Re-Enchantment and the Experience of Technology (IB Tauris, 2016). She was Founding Director of the MA Programme in Visual Culture Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and is now Adjunct Professor in the Department of Cultural and Religious Studies at CUHK and an associate in the Department of Gender and Cultural Studies, at the University of Sydney. She is a member of the Film Advisory Panel of Sydney International Film Festival, where she focuses on Asian and independent cinema.

#StrategiesofIntent @4a_Aus
www.4a.com.au


 

Exhibition opening: John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back?

SYDNEY. THURSDAY 24 OCTOBER, 2019. 6.00 – 8.00PM.

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
invites you to join us at the opening of: 

John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back?

Exhibition opening: 6.00-8.00PM, Thursday 24 October.
RSVP here


John Vea’s Australian debut examines the complex labour flow throughout our region. Continuing his exploration of pacific migrant workers his practice is anchored by his signature wit and humour that challenges viewers to consider the equality and validity of a global workforce.

Vea’s practice has been defined by a journalist-like investigation into how workers from Moana Nui a Kiwa (the Pacific Ocean) have been co-opted as labour for both Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia. Anchored by a series of talanoa (conversations) Vea’s work prefaces the voice and lived experience of the migrant worker employed within dominant and authoritative social structures. These discussions inform how Vea scaffolds his practice and locates his work as a means to examine the overlooked and the underrepresented.

In the contemporary globalised era migrant labour has emerged as a key indicator of regional socio-economic relationships.  Labourers from Moana Nui a Kiwa have been subordinated by both Australia and New Zealand to support both agricultural production and urban development. Specific schemes such as Recognised Seasonal Employment (RSE) in New Zealand grants season migrant workers temporary entry to plant, harvest and pack crops in exchanged for minimum wage. On completion of the designated work they are immediately returned home; their contributions to the success and prosperity of New Zealand’s economy barely noticed or acknowledged. Vea uses polices such as the RSE as a basis from which to work, his crafted responses are sometimes humorous but always compelling counterpoints to dominant perspectives and the status quo.

If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back? is John Vea’s first comprehensive international solo exhibition presenting recent significant works alongside a new commission from 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. This commission will be developed as a reflection of a year-long research project into the history of 4A’s locale in Haymarket, Sydney. As a site for trade and exchange on the banks of the harbor, the area now known as Haymarket has played an important role for the communities that have resided here for centuries.

 

 

 

John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back? includes new performance and installation works commissioned by Performance Space and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

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John Vea: If I pick your fruit, will you put mine back?  is powered by Lūpa, a media player for art galleries. More information at lupaplayer.com 

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Performance x 4A 2019

HONG KONG. 26 – 31 MARCH 2019.

Venue: Art Central Hong Kong, Central Harbourfront Event Space, 9 Lung Wo Road, Central, Hong Kong.

Artists: Bettina Fung, Brian Fuata, Minja Gu and Ko Siu Lan.

Building upon its critically acclaimed performance programme, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (4A) returns to Hong Kong’s Art Central for a fourth year with Performance x 4A: a series of interactive live works examining ideas of time and duration that question the futility and fruits of human endeavour. Featuring over 100 leading international galleries in 2019, the 2018 edition of Art Central had its highest ever attendance, welcoming over 39,000 international collectors, curators and art enthusiasts.

In partnership with Art Central, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art will continue to push the boundaries of durational performance art in 2019 by commissioning four artists from the Asia Pacific who will transform the fair experience. Bettina Fung’s | 馮允珊 (Hong Kong/United Kingdom) I am tired with you uses the traditions of printmaking to create a collective mind-map of the audience’s reflections on fatigue, labour relations and possibilities of ‘non doing’. Brian Fuata’s (Australia/Samoa) Care disfigurements (other men’s flowers) crosses emotional, artistic and entertainment spectrums and will traverse the fair from booth to booth with a combination of performance exercises, deadpan humour, bed sheets and mineral water. Minja Gu’s (Korea) The Authentic Quality: HK will set up a restaurant-cum-exhibition-cum-relational-aesthetics project in a fair booth, prompting audiences to re-evaluate cycles of consumerism through the ubiquitous three-minute noodle packet and Siu Lan Ko’s (Hong Kong/Canada) New Territories Old Territories will ask audiences to consider their ideas of Hong Kong now and into the future through interactive sculpture works examining ideas of space, geography, and nationhood.

Art Central will showcase over 100 leading galleries alongside a dynamic program of ambitious installations, engaging panel discussions and experimental film. As Art Central’s exclusive performance partner, the performance works presented by 4A seek the public’s participation with site-specific movement, activity and actions that encourage critical engagement.

About the artists:

Bettina Fung | 馮允珊 is best known for her performative drawing practice that invites collaboration. Drawn to the liminal space between nothing and existence that is potent with possibilities, Fung is interested in sharing process and allowing works to unfold over time before an audience. Fung’s key exhibition history includes works at Surface Gallery, Nottingham, UK, Spacex, Exeter, UK, Musee d’Art, Toulon, France and the One Billion Rising UK Art Festival.

Brian Fuata works in performance through live and mediated forms. He employs various modes of presentation within the framework of structured-improvisation. In Fuata’s works, the act of viewing is a reciprocating action between artist and audience and audience with each other. Fuata employs the ‘blank sheet’ as a recurring motif in his work, which transforms with different contexts into emails, paper, Word.Doc, google.doc, SMS text, concrete, film, and in the case of his 20-minute ghost performances, a white bedsheet. Major solo works include Placeholder, Enjoy Gallery, Christchurch (2016); All titles, Performa Biennial, New York (2015); Untitled (ghost machinery refit/letting go of the sheet), Chisenhale Gallery, London (2015); and nationally at the Close to the knives (one to five) email performances, Tarrawarra Biennale, Tarrawarra (2016); FIFO Ghost, Liquid Architecture at the National Gallery Victoria, Melbourne (2015); Apparitional Charlatan… Carriageworks (2016); Privilege (performance), Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney (2015); Points of Departure: one to three, email performance, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2014) He is one half of Wrong Solo a performace collaboration with artist Agatha Gothe-Snape since 2009.

Minja Gu’s performance works explore the cyclical forces of consumerism in society with durational pieces that turn everyday occurrences into ceremonies and rituals. Gu’s key recent exhibition history includes works in SPACE CROFT, Seoul, Arko Art Center, Seoul, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Gwacheon, and The Taipei Biennale, Taipei. She received the award of excellence in the Songeun Art Award in 2010 and in 2018 was one of the participants for the Korea Artist Prize.

Ko Siu Lan lives between Hong Kong and Toronto, and creates text based installations and durational performances that examine ideas and constructs of space, geography and identities. Ko’s art installations and performances have been shown internationally in Beijing, Brussels, Bangkok, Copenhagen, Hong Kong, Jerusalem, London, New York, Paris, Sao Paulo, Stockholm, Singapore, Tel Aviv, and Warsaw.

Documentation: 

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Bettina Fung | 馮允珊, I am Tired With You, Courtesy Art Central 2019.

Bettina Fung | 馮允珊, I am Tired With You, Courtesy Art Central 2019.
Bettina Fung | 馮允珊, I am Tired With You, Courtesy Art Central 2019.

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Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men’s flowers), Courtesy Art Central 2019. 

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Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men’s flowers), Courtesy Art Central 2019. 

Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men's flowers), Courtesy Art Central, 2019
Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men’s flowers), Courtesy Art Central, 2019
Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men's flowers), Courtesy Art Central, 2019
Brian Fuata, Care disfigurements (other men’s flowers), Courtesy Art Central, 2019

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Minja Gu, The Authentic Quality: HK, Courtesy Art Central, 2019. 

Siu Lan Ko, New Territories Old Territories, Courtesy Art Central, 2019
Siu Lan Ko, New Territories Old Territories, Courtesy Art Central, 2019

 

 

Club 4A 2019

SAT 25 MAY, 2019. DYNASTY KARAOKE, SYDNEY.

On May 25 2019, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art presents the second edition of Club 4A, leaving the confines of the white cube and taking performance art back to the club.

Curated by Mathew Spisbah and Rainbow Chan, Club 4A will host an evening of adventurous performance and audio visual art at Dynasty Karaoke, Chinatown. For the second event in this series, launched by 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art in 2018, we welcome the avant-garde club sounds of headlining Chinese artist Rui Ho.

Known for her work on Shanghai label Genome 6.66 MBP and her genre-defying live performances, Rui Ho will make her Australian debut at Club 4A. With a practice that bridges modern club influences with traditional Chinese sounds, her music fuses the tension of heritage, identity and modernity in a globalised world.

Club 4A will also feature new collaborative works from interdisciplinary artists Rainbow Chan x Marcus Whale, live electronic improvisations from Del Lumanta x Milkffish, the sensitive and brutal catharsis of Ptwiggs, Yumgod’s deconstructed footwork techniques and the debut performance of Wtychings.

Showcasing alongside these musicians, Club 4A presents new visual and 3D works from Hong Kong artist Harry Chan will create the LED backdrop for the evening, plus animated contributions by Sydney videos artists Kynan Tan and Craig Stubbs-Race.


ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

SOUND ARTISTS

Rui HO is a Berlin based Chinese artist making electronic music that bridges modern club influences with traditional Chinese sounds. Her music is inspired by a diverse range of club genres, Rui Ho combines the intensity these sounds with sweet and refreshing melodies from her past and present.

Rainbow Chan & Marcus Whale, Sydney based artists and musicians, collaborate to perform a new semi-imporvised piece, drawing on their mutual interests in identity and memory. Rainbow Chan is an interdisciplinary artist, performer and musician whose works engage with mistranslation, diaspora and globalisation. Marcus Whale similarly works across music, performance and text, focusing on the blurry, haunted intersection between desire and religion. In this joint performance the pair melds together voice, electronics, and marginalised narratives.

Del Lumanta & Milkffish bring together their distinctive musical voices through this collaborative performance.  Del Lumanta is an artist and musician from Western Sydney. Their ambient music is a meditation on modern restlessness. Their other music projects include GAS, Call Compatible, Video Ezy (Paradise Daily), Skyline (Nice Music) and Basic Human (Meatspin). Milkffish is an experimental noise-maker who blends digital sounds, field recordings, bass guitar and Filipino folkloric instruments.

Yumgod aka Neil Cabaingan, is a Filipino producer known for his deconstructed footwork techniques. Having worked with Pacifica rap crews such as Fanu Spa and being an integral part of TSV label in Melbourne, Yumgod’s output crosses juke, footwork, trap and hip-hop.

Ptwigg aka Pheobe Twiggs, is a Sydney based prodcuer who creates expansive, deconstructed bass productions; swerving between the sensitive and the brutal in the blink of an eye. Working with extended recording techniques, Twigg produces lustral, experimental club music as a form of catharsis. Her debut EP ‘Purge’ explores the eerie and unnerving, meticulously crafting each track whilst disregarding genre imposed boundaries.

VIDEO ARTISTS

Kynan Tan is interested in networks, data, relationality and digital systems of control, exploring these areas through digitally-derived artworks. These works engage with digital aesthetics, code and data, taking form as multi-channel audio-visual performances and installations, sculptures, sound, and 3D simulations of data processes and materials. These works collectively examine the affectivity and relationality of digital systems as they operate across (non)sensibility.

Harry Chan is a Hong Kong based artist working in photomedia. His works often reconfigure quotidian objects into humorous, poetic and absurd combinations. For Club 4A, Harry Chan’s new video work will be in dialogue with Rui Ho’s futuristic music by experimenting with VR footage of Hong Kong cityscapes. Follow him on @nth_hppns

Craig Stubbs-Race is a 3D designer/artist with a passion for typography, experimental shapes, and communicating succinct messages through motion. With a background in film-making, his work is inspired by a range of text-based graphics including interactive digital art, book covers, band posters and East Asian signage. See @craig_sr.


ABOUT 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art fosters excellence and innovation in contemporary Asian and Australian culture through research, documentation, development, discussion and presentation of contemporary visual art. We believe that Asian cultural thinking will have an important impact on the future. 4A’s aim is to ensure contemporary visual art plays a central role in understanding the dynamic relationship between Australia and the Asia-Pacific region. 4A has a distinctive approach to addressing Australia’s cultural diversity through a dynamic program including local and international exhibitions, public programs, workshops, seminars, symposiums and community activities. These have been recognised locally and internationally as having raised awareness of Asian-Australian art and culture and Australia’s place in the Asia-Pacific region.

Club 4A is presented by project partner 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art in Sydney, with support from project partner Liquid Architecture.

Header: Craig Stubbs-Race