All posts by contemporary

Lito (Calm), 2017

New International artists now exclusively represented in Australia by .M Contemporary


Maxim Wakultschik alters and reinterprets images that he comes upon or creates himself. Devoted to portraiture that is rooted in the aesthetic traditions of Renaissance Italy, he, at the same time, takes artistic techniques originally developed by artists Georges Seurat or Paul Signac in 19th century France to the next level. His artworks are both haptic objects and sensory play of deception. Three-dimensional Pointillism –- a continuous invitation to a sensual, visual skimming of the surface. With every changing angle of incidence, every alteration in position, the viewer experiences stunningly diverse perspectives. Wakultschik’s works are never static, but elementally vigorous, leading a life of their own. Born in Byelorussia, Wakultschik lives and works in Dusseldorf, Germany.

MaximW_Paloma #02


Intrigued by light and the mystery of darkness Nemo Jantzen plays with focus creating a sense of depth and connecting the image and viewer through the inclusion of the optical vocabulary of cinematography and the allusion to the constraints of the instant polaroid. Thus bringing into question the act of voyeurism and the anticlimactic and revelatory nature of privacy. Jantzen is a Dutch artist living and working in Spain and the United States.



Galia Gluckman produces large-scale multi-faceted artworks in her medium of choice: pigment ink on cotton paper and collage. Reflecting varied contemporary concerns, Gluckman highlights ongoing creative and social conversations through her exploration of atmospheric and emotive themes. Wide ranging in their hybrid of environmental and social references, they draw upon contemporary notions of the passage of time, referencing the mixture of creative subcultures that ebb and flow through the limitless global community. Gluckman lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa. 

Lito (Calm)


Jordan Sweke’s practice is concerned with an extensive and ongoing exploration of oil paint as a medium. His work is primarily influenced by the connection between humans and the natural world and focuses on natural South African landscapes and indigenous wildlife. All of Sweke’s reference photography is captured by the artist himself. Sweke’s main concerns are to bring immersive natural landscapes into urban spaces and to urge the public to reconnect with their natural heritage. Originally from Johannesburg, Sweke currently lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa.

Fragmentary Void no. 18, 2016


Born in 1985, Justin Southey graduated Cum Laude from Stellenbosch Academy of Graphic Design and Photography (2007), with a BA in Applied Design, South Africa.

“Southey creates an immediate abstract language which serves to explore the emotive interplay between the fixed and the transient. Free floating and often in sublime blackened spaces, ‘hills’ and ‘deep ravines’ jostle with the seemingly tectonic, scratched surfaces. Bold, layered planes of colour serve as contrasting richly animated moments as Southey’s paintings pull and push across the surfaces. With a mixture of both melancholy and exuberance, Justin Southey’s ‘landscapes’ refer to unconscious’ visual rhymes’ and all appear to converge from various internal landscapes in the artists mind.” – Emma Van Der Merwe


Paul Simon Richards for Live from Frieze Art Fair this is LuckyPDFTV 
Featuring: Paul Simon Richards
Commissioned and produced by Frieze Foundation for Frieze Projects 2011
Frieze Art Fair 2011
Photo by Polly Braden
Courtesy of Polly Braden/ Frieze

5 Don’ts for Artists at an Art Fair

Paul Simon Richards for Live from Frieze Art Fair this is LuckyPDFTV  Featuring: Paul Simon Richards Commissioned and produced by Frieze Foundation for Frieze Projects 2011 Frieze Art Fair 2011 Photo by Polly Braden Courtesy of Polly Braden/ FriezePaul Simon Richards for Live from Frieze Art Fair this is LuckyPDFTV, Frieze Art Fair 2011, Photo by Polly Braden, Courtesy of Polly Braden/ Frieze

1. Don’t bring your work to the fair and expect galleries or curators to spend time looking at it. The same goes for art dealers, do not approach them with your CV / Portfolio or try talk to them about your work, it is not the time nor the place.

2. Don’t give other artists advice on how to make their work better.

3. Don’t hand out your business cards to galleries. If you want to contact them get their card, or look them up and contact them in normal working hours. Better yet, go to the gallery in person.

4. Don’t be a repeat offender and put on performances that have already been done.

5. If you are represented by a gallery and you are there to talk about your work don’t have too much to drink. You want to be coherent and clear.



Sydney Contemporary 2017:

.M Contemporary is thrilled to announce that there will be an interview between Mehwish Iqbal and Barry Keldoulis and a performance by Garth Knight at Sydney Contemporary.


Petaluma presents Meticulous: Artist conversation with Barry Keldoulis

Sunday 10 September, 1:30 – 2:00pm

Location: Petaluma Wine Bar

Click here for more info


Garth Knight ‘Effloresce’ Performance, 

7 September, 5:00 – 9:00pm

8 – 10 September, 12:30 – 4:30pm

Location: Next to D01

Click here for more info

To view Garth Knight’s available works click here.

Visiting with Children, Art Basel

5 Things Not To Say at an Art Fair

Visiting with Children, Art Basel

Visiting with Children, Art Basel


1. I reckon I could do that.

2. Looks like my four-year-old did that!

3. Who would buy that?

4. Is there a discount on weekends?

5. Why am I not a VIP?



Sydney Contemporary 2017:

.M Contemporary is thrilled to announce that there will be an interview between Mehwish Iqbal and Barry Keldoulis and a performance by Garth Knight at Sydney Contemporary.


Petaluma presents Meticulous: Artist conversation with Barry Keldoulis

Sunday 10 September, 1:30 – 2:00pm

Location: Petaluma Wine Bar

Click here for more info


Garth Knight ‘Effloresce’ Performance, 

7 September, 5:00 – 9:00pm

8 – 10 September, 12:30 – 4:30pm

Location: Next to D01

Click here for more info

To view Garth Knight’s available works click here.

Canada (New York), Frieze New York 2016

5 Do’s & Don’ts for Visitors at an Art Fair

Canada (New York), Frieze New York 2016

Canada (New York), Frieze New York 2016 


5 Do’s for Visitors:

1. Go to the preview if you get a VIP invitation. It gives you early access and you get to have drinks and nibbles with a range of people in and connected to the art industry.

2. Ask questions, no one minds, they love their jobs.

3. Focus on what you like, if you love it and can afford it, buy it.

4. Dress up. It makes it all seem so much more of an event. Yet wear comfortable footwear. You will be on your toes and walking a lot.

5. Have fun! You do not need to know a thing about art per se, but be open to learning, listening and soaking up the creative, passionate atmosphere.


5 Don’ts for Visitors:

1. Call or text when at the booths, unless you want to talk about the art or artists.

2. Bring a large bag or suitcase. The booths have limited space and the exhibitors are too busy to be minding your goods. Travel light.

3. Reserve art and then change your mind after the fair. Be sure about your purchase and your budget.

4. Been offered a discount? Great. Be discreet.

5. Get drunk, bump into an artwork, touch an artwork or use a plinth holding an artwork to rest your empty wine glass on.


We will leave you if one final tip from art journalist and author, Anthony Haden-Guest: Do not think the ‘VIP’ on a VIP card necessarily means a ‘Very Important Person.’ It can as easily mean ‘Vague and Ill-Defined Person,’ ‘Vastly Implausible Person,’ or a whole lot of other things. Such as ‘Very Inquisitive Presshound.



Sydney Contemporary 2017:

.M Contemporary is thrilled to announce that there will be an interview between Mehwish Iqbal and Barry Keldoulis and a performance by Garth Knight at Sydney Contemporary.


Petaluma presents Meticulous: Artist conversation with Barry Keldoulis

Sunday 10 September, 1:30 – 2:00pm

Location: Petaluma Wine Bar

Click here for more info


Garth Knight ‘Effloresce’ Performance, 

7 September, 5:00 – 9:00pm

8 – 10 September, 12:30 – 4:30pm

Location: Next to D01

Click here for more info

To view Garth Knight’s available works click here.


5 Jaw Dropping Light Installations in Public Spaces

Bruce Munro, Field of Light

1. Bruce Munro, The Field of Light, 2016, 50,000 light bulbs, Uluru, Australia


LEO VILLAREAL, TheBay Lights, JamesEwin2. Leo Villareal, The Bay of Lights, 2016, 25,000 lights, Bay Bridge, San Francisco


Paul Cocksedge, Bourrasque

3. Paul Cocksedge, Bourrasque, 2011, 200 electrical sheets, City Hall Courtyard, Lyon


Olafur Eliasson, The Weather Project

4. Olafur Eliasson, The Weather Project, 2003, monofrequency lights, projection foil, haze machines, mirror foil, aluminium, scaffolding, Turbine Hall, Tate Modern, London



5. Chris Burden, Urban Light, 2008, 202 restored cast iron antique street lamps, BP Pavilion, Los Angeles


5 Museums with Great Light Installations In Their Collections

Yayoi Kusama - MOMA

1. Museum of Modern Art, Louisiana
Yayoi Kusama, Gleaming Lights of the Souls, 2008, mixed media installation


James Turrell, Aten Reign (2013)

2. Guggenheim Museum, New York
James Turrell, Aten Reign, 2013, daylight and LED light


Leo Villareal, Cosmos3. Johnson Museum of Art, New York
Leo Villareal, Cosmos, 2012, 12,000 LED lights


Cloud4. Nuit Blanche Calgary, Canada
Caitlind r.c. Brown & Wayne Garrett, Cloud, 2012, 6,000 incandescent light bulbs


Lotus Shadow5. Centre for International Light Art, Unna, Germany
Rebecca Horn, Lotus Shadow, 2006, copper, glass, steel, light


5 Light Artists You Should Know


1. Dan Flavin (1933 – 1996)

Dan Flavin was an innovative minimalist and Op artist of the 20th century well known for his signature practice working exclusively with fluorescent lights. His medium, which was commercially available to him as readymades, consisted of four standard lengths of fluorescent tube in ten colours with four variations of whites. With his practice Flavin focused on light not just as a medium but also as the artwork itself by observing its affect and how it transforms space.


James Turrell

2. James Turrell (b. 1943)

James Turrell’s artistic practice with light explores its interplay with colour, space and our perception. Through natural and artificial light his practice has developed a focus towards site-specific light installations that interact with its surrounding space. One of his most iconic site-specific works was done in 2013 at the Guggenheim, New York where he transformed the museum’s rotunda into a voluminous space of shifting lights.



3. Tracey Emin (b. 1963)

Tracey Emin molds neon lights in the form of hand written text illuminating her thoughts and feelings. The neon writing, which mimics the artists own hand writing expresses, among other sentiments, passions, love declarations, and disappointments. The subject of these creations are typically of Tracey Emin herself as she places her life at the focus of her art.



4. Leo Villareal (b. 1967)

Leo Villareal’s practice is focused on the elements and foundations of systems that underlie their structures. Simple forms and lowest common denominators like pixels, zeros and binary code are central elements and concepts to the artist’s practice. Villareal begins his work by using these simple forms within a framework to eventually build his masterpiece. It is within this practice that the physical, spatial and temporal dimensions of his artwork are revealed.


Olafur Eliasson, portrait.© 2015 Olafur EliassonPhoto: Heike Göttert 2013

5. Olafur Eliasson (b. 1967)

Taking a different turn to the practices of other artists mentioned is Olafur Eliasson’s artistic practice which focuses on perception, movement and experience. His practice, which extends beyond the sole use of light to sculpture, painting, photography, film and other forms of installation beholds universal relevance where immersive environments inform and affect our perception. His work is made more relevant as it brings about a greater awareness of the way we engage with the world.


5 Things To Consider When Installing Light Works In Your Home


1. When purchasing a light work consider what, if any, artificial and natural light sources in your home will affect the display of the work. If you have a light installation by a window be conscious of any external light coming into your home at night. If you intend to have a light work on throughout the day perhaps consider the best location for it away from the exposure of natural light so that it can maintain it’s full affect. 


2. With most light installations comes electrical wiring, which needs to be considered when purchasing the work. There are ways you can hide the electrical wiring not just for the visual enhancement of the work but also for adherence to safety compliances. Apart from hiding the wiring by threading it through your wall you can hide them in tubes attached to your wall. By painting the tubes in the same colour as your wall you will minimize the visibility of the wiring. 


3. Consider your intentions for the longevity your light work will be kept on for. If it is a light work that will never be turned off then consider the best place for its installation in your home so that it does not affect your sleep or that of others. 


4. When installing your light work it is important to test the shadows it will cast in its space not only from the light it projects at night but also in the shadow of its casting in the sunlight during the day. 


5. Consider how the light installation will affect other artworks in the room. If the light work projects variations of colour then consider how that will reflect off and affect a painting. Also consider what kind of light is used in the artwork to ensure that it does not fade colours of a painting


5 Light Festivals Around the World You Do Not Want To Miss

Vivid Sydney

1. Vivid, Sydney

Every year from May to June Sydney hosts a light festival that transforms and illuminates the city at night. The festival brings together the latest light technology and creative practitioners to create a unique experience to Sydney. The festival also incorporates music and ideas as two other components to the experience. While Vivid Ideas schedules a series of workshops and talks from artists and organizers Vivid Music puts on concerts by renowned musicians, to be enjoyed in the heart of the Sydney Harbor’s immersive light installations.


La Fete des Lumires, Lyon_2

2. La Fete des Lumires, Lyon

La Fete des Lumires in Lyon is held annually in December. The festival initially began in the late 19th century to celebrate a statue of the Virgin Mary in the Chapel on the Fourviere Hill. Today the event has developed into a celebration of the people’s unity. For four nights every year the people of Lyon light up their windows and balconies with thousands of lights and candles while artists from around the world contribute their unique light installations and performances.



Kobe Luminarie, Japan

3. Kobe Luminarie, Japan

Kobe Luminarie is an annual light festival held in memory of victims of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake, which devastated the southern region of Hyogo Prefecture in 1995. After the earthquake hit Kobe it took out all electricity leaving the city in darkness. As a way to commemorate the people who had lost their lives and to give the people of Kobe hope the light festival was established in December of that year. The Italian government donated hand painted lights produced by Italian designer, Valerio Festi and Kobe native, Hirokazu Imaoka. Now in it’s 21st year the two-week festival has developed into a spectacular display of lights attracting over three million visitors each year.



Festival of Light Berlin

4. Festival of Lights, Berlin

The ten-day light festival in Berlin is held annually in October. Throughout the city, light art is projected onto buildings such as Brandenburg Gate, Fernsehturm, Berlin Victory Column and Berlin Cathedral transforming the city’s historical attractions into festive light artworks.



Luma, Queenstown

5. LUMA Southern Light Project, Queenstown

Held in June annually and now in it’s third year running LUMA is an arts and culture festival in Queenstown. The first of it’s kind in the Southern Island the festival illuminates the lakefront gardens with light art and sculpture. Creative locals who wanted to celebrate the creativity of their community through art, technology, light and design established LUMA after they launched a pilot project in the 2015 Winter Festival.


Tiny Turrel

Chasing Light

James Turrell, Raemar pink white, 1969. Shallow space construction: fluorescent light, 440 x 1070 x 300 cm. Kayne Griffin Corcoran, Los Angeles, California.

James Turrell, Raemar pink white, 1969. Shallow space construction: fluorescent light, 440 x 1070 x 300 cm. Kayne Griffin Corcoran, Los Angeles, California.


Light has long been chased by visual artists. Seeking to represent its myriad effects on volume, form and space, light is the elusive poem that illuminates the tenderness of an outstretched hand, the warm enveloping glow of atmosphere, the harsh glare of exposure. Light is chased across disciplines, as when a sculptor chisels stone away and light enters, when a painter brushes mists of chiaroscuro to deepen distance, or when splinters of light are carved and chipped from a woodblock bringing shards of light into the darkness of ink. Quite apart from representing light however is light art, in which the element of light is everywhere: light is the medium, sometimes the object, often even the self-reflective subject of the work. The lines are blurred in light art where light is the phenomenon, the medium and the technology, all at once. This blurring was evident in the Vivid festival in Sydney recently, which celebrated the architectural spaces of the city by night through a series of visually stunning and technically proficient light displays by a number of contemporary light artists.


In seeking to nominate the few most influential light artists of today though, the work of James Turrell comes to mind immediately. Turrell’s light art is based in phenomenology and the mystery of perception. His installations offer an intense and often personal encounter with what seems to be a rarefied and purified form of light, enhanced by the viewing (or experiential) space. Every aspect of these spaces, whether an open-sky observatory, like the permanently installed skyspace Within Without at the NGA or the coffin-like chambers of Perceptual Cells are crafted and tuned to heighten the human sensation of receiving light. There is a psycho-physical, even mystical dimension to the experience, as the characteristics of light, colour and space are felt, rather than observed. Viewers are carefully led and subtly guided into states of disorientation and weightlessness, left only to see, and as Turrell has described it,


There’s a sweet deliciousness to seeing yourself seeing.” James Turrell[i]


As immaterial sensate perception – a behind the eye seeing[ii] is the aim of Turell’s installations, the technology creating these sophisticated and subtle lighting effects are hidden from view, so as not to distract the viewer. At the other end of the light-as-material spectrum then is light artist Dan Flavin, a contemporary of Turrell. Flavin works with the brute visual fact of light as a designed container source of illumination – definitely a front of the eye seeing.


Flavin’s works are instantly recognisable through his signature use of industrially mass-produced fluorescent light tubes to transform architectural space. This is a light that is ready-made, standardised and generic. It brings with it an everyday material facticity, available only in limited sizes and colours. Fluorescent light is harsh and unforgiving, a practical light for working under and yet … when placed in a gallery or museum context, Flavin’s serially modular placement and repetition of fluoro tube lights somehow transform the site, dematerialising the very material elements (nothing is hidden here) and proportions of the space. Never a romantic, Flavin preferred to use the terms light ‘situations’ or ‘propositions’ over ‘sculptures’.


Dan Flavin, an artificial barrier of blue, red and blue fluorescent light (to Flavin Starbuck Judd), 1968, blue and red fluorescent light

Dan Flavin, an artificial barrier of blue, red and blue fluorescent light (to Flavin Starbuck Judd), 1968, blue and red fluorescent light


It is an austere light art, resolutely factual and framed in the structural language of in-situ Minimalism. One of Flavin’s oft-quoted aphorisms sums up his approach;


“It is what it is and it ain’t nothing else.” Dan Flavin[iii]


It is interesting to note that these pioneering and lauded light artists both made works that reference the influence of the Russian Constructivists and non-objective movements. Turrell’s Ganzfelds[iv] function as a complete colour-field, enveloping viewers in a gradual loss of depth-perception. Presented as a 3-dimensional space of pure colour contained within a geometric boundary it feels like entering a Josef Albers painting. Dan Flavin acknowledged the historical influence with his long-running series of Monuments to V. Tatlin (1964-1990), a rendition in light of a never-built building, and again in Greens crossing greens (to Piet Mondrian who lacked green) (1966).


Perhaps more interesting than the issue of influence is the question of how earlier light art makes us look at contemporary light art in a new way. Significantly, the rise of early light art coincided with the formulation of non-objective art and the pursuit of abstraction – signalling the break with representation, painting and the past. The abstract geometric language of form, movement and structure in space were intrinsic to early modern light works. Artists associated with Suprematism, Constructivism and the Bauhaus school experimented with the use of light as an active material element in their work. As we know, the history of Modernism and the plurality of manifesto-driven art movement –isms coincided with the increasing ubiquity and integration of developments in light into daily life. Art after each war was characterised by cyclical dystopic – utopic approaches and the latter, brimming with the promise of change made use of the technology of the time, including lighting.


El Lissitszky,[v] a mentee of Kazimir Malevich, may have presented the first abstract geometric installation to use lighting elements in Proun Room (1923, Berlin). In an exhibition space of less than 3m3, light sources and effects were used, together with abstract forms to create an integrated spatial and temporal experience different from the passive experience of observing a painting[vi]. Indeed, the effect seems to be that of entering the pictorial space described by a Constructivist painting as it enables a negotiation between real and illusory space.


Within the same decade, Moholy-Nagy[vii], who was to become influential within the Bauhaus and later, Black Mountain College had developed the fantastically nicknamed kinetic work, the Light-Space Modulator (1930, Paris). The device projected white and coloured light through mechanised, reflective metal and glass components to create moving shadows and reflections in space. Moholy-Nagy used light as a medium but also saw light, shade and texture itself as subject.


I became interested in painting with light, not only on the surface of canvas but directly on to space’. László Moholy-Nagy [viii]


Lissitszky’s modest installation and Moholy-Nagy’s machine are the precursors of today’s light art. In the wake of these early models, light works came to increasingly focus on the perceptual processes of a viewer, and the notion that an embodied viewer in space was a necessary element to complete the work. This was a fundamental shift on many levels, from artist to viewer, from passive to active, from seeing to perceiving, from front of the eye to behind the eye.


The power of light as a medium is intrinsically linked to seeing, and from seeing to the phenomena of memory, association and emotion. Poets have long recognised this facility and long before electric light, or James Turrell, William Wordsworth described his memory of a field of yellow daffodils in terms of light, as a “flash upon the inward eye, which is the bliss of solitude”.[ix] The inward eye is often called upon in interpreting contemporary light art.


Lisa Sharp
July 2017



[i] James Turrell, American, b.1943
[ii] ‘Behind the eye seeing’ is a term used by James Turrell.
[iii] Dan Flavin, American, 1933-1996
[iv] “Ganzfeld” is a German word meaning “total field” and describing the total loss of depth perception.
[v] Lazar Markovich Lissitszky (known as El Lissitszky), Russian, 1890-1941
[vi] Éva Forgács “Definitive Space: The Many Utopias of El Lissitzky’s Proun Room” in Situating El Lissitzky: Vitebsk, Berlin, Moscow, Eds. Nancy Perloff and Brian Reed, 2003, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, 50
[vii] László Moholy-Nagy, Hungarian, 1895-1946
[viii] A Memory of Moholy-Nagy, 1990, video, Dan Spegel prod. Published on Youtube Dec 11, 2011
[ix] William Wordsworth, extract from I wandered, lonely as a cloud, 1802.

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5 Exhibitions You Should See This Winter

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1.Jenny Watson – The Fantasy of Fabric


5TH July – 2nd Oct


Jenny Watson is a leading Australian artist whose conceptual painting practice spans more than four decades. Curated by MCA Curator Anna Davis this survey exhibition features works from the 1970s to the present, including examples of Watson’s early realist paintings and drawings, and a number of key series of works on fabric.


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2. Bayanihan Philippine Art Project


24TH June


The Bayanihan Philippine Art Project is one of the most significant explorations of Filipino art ever presented in Australia. Over a four-month period, a series of exhibitions, performances, creative writing and community programs will be on offer in Sydney at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Blacktown Arts Centre, Mosman Art Gallery, Peacock Gallery (Auburn) and Campbelltown Arts Centre in association with Museums & Galleries of NSW.


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3. The Dark Matter (last chance)

In its final week at White Rabbit gallery.


Black had always been the colour of mystery, night, the void. The better the artists got to know black ink, the more superficial, even gaudy, colour seemed. As the Daoist  philosopher Laozi declared: “Colours cause the eye to go blind.” Black—utterly simple yet infinitely subtle—allowed one to see the truth. White Rabbit.


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4. Dysfunctional

First Draft

5th July – 28th July


Dysfunctional, the exhibition, presents as a series of trials that use conventional ceramic techniques and materials subversively in order to destroy the idea of the functional vessel. Obsolescence of function is realised by uncoiling the vessel, cutting into and away at its form, pummeling it out flat. The vessel departs the plinth, and is relocated on the wall, suspended from the ceiling, and relegated to the floor. As the clay object is deconstructed the focus shifts from form to medium, eluding definitions such as ‘bowl’, ‘vase’ or ‘cup’. Theatrical small-scale installations use humour and the absurd as exuberant strategies to implicate the vessel in its own reimagining.


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5. LOCAL MILAN: An Australian in Milan

Australian Design Center

15TH June – 9th August


During this year’s Milan Design Week LOCAL DESIGN, under the guidance of designer, stylist, creative director and curator Emma Elizabeth, transformed the historic Oratorio della Passione at Piazza Sant’Ambrogio within the 5 Vie district scenography into a strong stylish statement for a range of eleven Australian designers to exhibit the Australian aesthetic. On returning to Australia LOCAL DESIGN is showcasing LOCAL MILAN within the Australian Design Centre, featuring a mixture of memories and Milano moments, accompanied by sounds by Australian artist Tash Sultana and with the scents of Aesop.



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5 Must See Contemproary Art Films

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1.  Peggy Guggenheim – Art Addict

“I first met Jackson Pollock when he was working as a carpenter in my uncle’s museum, I rescued him from that” Peggy Guggenheim

This film directed by Lisa Immordino Vreeland delves into the life of Peggy Guggenheim, examining her role as a 20th century art collector, curator and socialite. This documentary is for anyone who loves modern art and gossip. In this insightful documentary, Lisa Immordino Vreeland interviews the likes of Marina Ambramovic and Robert De Nero.  The film features work from art world GIANTS Mark Rothko, Vasily Kandinsky and Alberto Giacometti. As Peggy once said “ It’s all about art and love”

Check this one out!

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2. Down Town 81

Staring the prolific American artist, Jean Michel Basquiat, this art film traces the day of a starving artist as he navigates 1980’s New York.

“New York is my kind of town….. if you could make it there you could sell people your unwanted hair…. I was off to be the wizard” Basquiat

Originally shot in early 1980 the film was not released until 2000. The film provides a rare glimpse of life during one of the most exciting periods in American culture. This exciting film is grimy, fast paced and dripping in Basquiat’s imaginative orchestral idiom.

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3. Marina Abramovic – The Artist is Present

“Performance is all about state on mind, the hardest thing is to do something close to nothing because it is demanding of all of yourself”
Marina Ambramovic

This documentary follows the Serbian performance artist as she prepares for her retrospective show at MOMA in 2010. The aim of the documentary is to give an inside look into the inner workings of MOMA and Ambramovic’s art practice. The film touches on Ambramovic’s long career as a performance artist and reveals the emotional and physical toll her work can take.

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4. Andy Warhol – A Documentary Film

A four hour long behemoth. Directed by Ric Burns who uses this film to argue that Andy Warhol was the greatest artist of the 20th century. This film offers a riveting and deeply moving portrait of the famously controversial artist and explores 5 decades of Warhol’s astonishing artistic output. The documentary is loaded with interviews and commentary from art critics, historians and friends of Warhol’s, as well as unique archival footage of the genius himself. If you love Andy as much as we do, treat yourself!

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5. Pollock

“How do you know when you are finished with a painting?”……….”how do you know when you are finished making love?” Ed Harris as Jackson Pollock.

Released in 2000, this feature film starring Ed Harris and Marcia Gay Harden portrays the life of Jackson Pollock with shocking accuracy. This bio picture focuses on the specifics of Pollock’s art practice as well as his personal life. This is why is why it is great for art lovers.

The film is based on Pollock’s biography and is sure to please any fan of abstract expressionism.

M Contemporary

Where does art stop and design start?

April 8

Marc Newson, Lockheed Lounge, Courtesy of the Art Gallery of NSW

Have art and design finally fused? Some days it feels like the border between the two is slipping away. Technology has made the world of images and design so accessible one could be guilty of blaming technology for driving art and design into the same box.

For artists who are working today, it’s hard to know where art stops and design starts. Or if they should choose one discipline over another. This month we ask if art and design can coexist in one practice and what it takes to straddle both worlds successfully?

To unpack the cross over we caught up with art dealer Michael Reid. Michael has a broad business perspective. He’s presented both types of work in his gallery and during his prodigious career worked for Christies in London and Sydney; for The Australian as a business writer and he’s helped to launch the career of many Australian artists as owner of his own gallery over 13 years.


Question: What’s driven the fusion of art and design?

Michael Reid: We have the most visually literate people who have ever walked the planet. The information super highway is essentially a highway where information is conveyed by images and not words. We are becoming visually literate at the expense of literature.

There are so many factors, but the fact that every person as a device in their bag or on their person, is a big factor shaping in the visual culture.


Piet Mondrian, Composition II in Red, Blue, and Yellow, 1930
Bauhaus, was a German art school operational from 1919 to 1933 that combined crafts and the fine arts. It had a strong emphasis on an aesthetic approach to design. 


Have art and design always been separate disciplines in your mind?

I am historian, so I tend to think a little longer term. I think where we have arrived at today is where the arts and craft movement wanted us to be 100 years ago. That whole school, believed that beauty was in everything we did and everywhere.

Thirty years ago I think we were in a stage where design was put in a box and used industrially. So there was industrial design – where things were made by machines and things were made, that were easy to use and were industrially made.

And we have now moved to artistic, creative and aesthetic design were things made for every day use can also be beautiful.

I think the rise of some major designers in the last 20 years – like Marc Newson was a classic example – where you have the notion that functionality and beauty were actually one and the same thing.


What other factors are influencing the fusion of art and design?

There has been an implosion of high and low art. That old notion that artists must paint, and designers must work in metal. When all that explodes inward, but what we can do thanks to technology explodes outward, you’ve got artists now that are working with textiles and materials in way they were not 10 years ago, because it was not possible.

Soon everyone will have 3D printers in their homes and our relationship to design will change again.


The Art Gallery of NSW’s recent exhibition Adman: Warhol before pop examined Warhol’s career in advertising and graphic design before he entered the  art world. 


Should artists straddle design and art in their careers?

My advice to artists is be professional. Brett Whitely worked in advertising, Norman Lindsay worked for the Bulletin. Artists have traditionally always worked. This idea that all artists can support themselves with their practice is veneer thin.

Not many can. Gaugin was a bank teller. If you are going to do both you need to separate your practice out and have a different brand for it. For example you might take photos professionally under one name and have a brand for that.

A lot of photographers who are world class and major now, were actually involved in fashion or photo journalism. Many, many photographers came from being photojournalists like Narelle Autio and Trent Parke for example. Artists that have to work, are more interesting because they have to engage and become professional. They have to navigate deadlines and outcomes.

New_Press release_Helmut Newton_Permanent Loan Selection_Helmut

Photographer Helmut Newton, worked predominately in fashion. Through his experimentation in the field he developed a new aesthetic movement of erotica that went on to earn him great acclaim in the art world. 


Has your gallery changed to reflect changing times?

I have shown furniture in the gallery by Khai Liew. Alesandro Ljubicic has done perfume to match paintings. Our business today is really to be an art hub. Most of our engagement is digital, but I offer a physical space as an arts hub. It’s an art hub for education, it’s an arts hub for advice, it’s an arts hub for a whole range of artist management practices, it is not just about selling stuff on walls.


What are the pitfalls for artists moving into design?

With our artists we say “no” a lot. That’s our job to filter stuff, all the time. With Alesandro Ljubicic I say no nine times out of ten and with all my artists we say no a lot of the time but every now and then if the artist wants to do it then we won’t necessarily curb their enthusiasm. We just manage it. It’s all on contracts. We limit the copyright.

Do artists make mistakes when they venture into design? Absolutely. Do artists get it wrong from time to time? Absolutely. But I think we are more forgiving, you learn a lesson and you move on.


Do galleries and artists have to be more entrepreneurial? Like musicians have?

You do realise, that every day there are less and less art dealers, we cannot represent even a fraction of the talent out there. We want artists to explore alternative methods of promotion and practice. We want artists that have a level of professionalism and business nous about them – we want artists with ideas that can actually put themselves on the radar because then we can work with them better.

Damien Hirst

Damien Hirst’s, Treasures From The Wreck Of The Unbelievable, 2017 installation view at Palazzo Grassi

In today’s art market we can see the borders between art and design have blurred. Where as designed historically solved a problem and art raised a question, the two have now have significant overlap. As the digital space grows, the visual literacy of the audience allows  artists to take more risks both aesthetically and conceptually. However designers are still required to maintain a sense of functionality within their work. 

The upcoming Den Fair will present both designers and artists side by side bringing the two disciplines together simultaneously. 

.M Contemporary at Stand no. G18. Denfair is happening 8-10 June Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Convention Centre Pl, South Wharf VIC 3006.

April 5

5 artists who take commissions at .M Contemporary

April 5

1. Isobel Rayson
Commission rhythmic wood-block carvings
Through intricate wood block carvings, recent ANU graduate, Isobel Rayson explores mark making as a means to investigate and document ideas of presence and trace. The creation of her latest works involves completing daily rituals and routines based on physical mark making that follow a series of directives, these include varying time parameters, established prior to commencing each work. The final works become relics that document these routines. With this research she hopes to examine how her ephemeral presence might be preserved through these traces.
To view Isobel Rayson’s work and CV click here


2. Lyndi Sales
Commission warm mix-media abstractions
Lyndi Sales is an artist who explores themes of perception and vision as well as connectivity. She strives to create in the audience a corporeal response – a feeling of being in one’s own body, to “bring people to their senses”. In her work Sales is invested in driving into the present, seeing it as a mysterious, elusive and mutable idea. Sales works with forms of paper to create elaborate and detailed figurative depictions. She is an artist based in Cape Town, South Africa and in 2011 she was chosen to represent her country at the Venice Biennale. 
To view Lyndi Sales’ work and CV click here


3. Hannah Quinlivan
Commission immersive sculptural forms
Hannah Quinlivan’s practice is concerned with materializing structures of feeling. Her work explores processes of remembering and forgetting, and attempts to understand how affect holds together and functions. Quinlivan’s practice spans multiple media and materials, and interrogates how our individual, internal processes of feeling and remembering are related to broader social moods or atmospheres.

Quinlivan is currently pursuing doctoral research in visual arts at The Australian National University and was a visiting artist at Colorado State University in April-May 2017. In 2017, she held major exhibitions at the Centre for Art and Urbanistics in Berlin, Canberra Museum and Art Gallery, The National Portrait Gallery of Australia, Deakin University and Hong Kong Art Central. In the last five years, she has exhibited in Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, United Kingdom and Germany. 
To view Hannah Quinlivan’s work and CV click here


4. Meaghan Potter
Commission Native Birds
Meaghan’s artistic practice is about taking familiar elements of art and nature and revealing their complexities. She is intrigued and inspired by the colour and pattern of fur, feathers, scales and all animal coats. Using animals as the subject matter Meaghan is exploring their coats as a means to an abstract language in her art.

By composing purposely-obscured images she creates a dissonance between the artist and the animal in subject in order to reveal the abstract, strange and phenomenal truth of the visual world. 
The drawings speak of both a complex biological evolution within animal patterning and colour as well as the pareidolia effect in the human brain; that is the ability to envisage a familiar image within an environment where it does not exist.

Meaghan Potter is an Australian artist who recently completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Ceramics) followed by an Honours in Fine Arts (Drawing) at the National Art School in Sydney. She resides in the Blue Mountains where she has lived since birth.
To view Meaghan Potter’s work and CV click here


5. Aly Indermuhle
Commission a light installation
Indermühle’s twenty-year career has spanned multiple elements of film and television production, to include 3D animation, artistic creation, sculpture, lighting, texturing and theme park design. Indermühle created and operated the Untied States Air Force’s first full functional Animation Studio and worked for MTV Productions Switzerland. She now exclusively focuses on Light Art Installations in her artistic practice and is finalizing her MFA at the National Art School in Sydney, Australia.

Aly Indermühle’s artistic explorations encompass sculpture, light, and digital technologies. She seeks to combine the structure of the real world with the beauty of sublime elements and energies, which are both intangible and ephemeral. Her installation works utilise form, light, and atmosphere to enliven constructed environments. Each artwork is about the viewer’s experience, a relatable and wonder filled dream state world where the mind is released to explore light, shape, colours, and the play of shadow on form. Two of her light installations were selected to be part of VIVID 2016.
To view Aly Indermuhle’s work and CV click here

April 4

5 steps to consider when commissioning an artwork

April 4


1. Choose the right space
Make sure the space you have chosen is suitable for the artwork you have in mind so that there is no high risk of it getting damaged. For site-specific commissions you need to know all the parameters that you will be working with; What are the limitations of the space? What are the dimensions and angles you have to work with? How high or low would you like it to be positioned? You want to make sure that all these practicalities are not forgotten in later stages of the commission’s development.


2. Find the right artist
Find the work of an artist that you really like when considering a commission from them. Know as much as you can about the artist and what materials they use and how they use them. Make sure to think about these things in relation to the space you want the artwork for. Lastly, and arguably most importantly, you want your ideas to be compatible with the artist, and their aesthetic and medium in order for the final outcome to meet your expectations.


3. Contact the art gallery
Contact the art gallery representing your artist of interest about their work and if they do commissions. Art galleries can take different approaches to commissions while some can charge extra for them others simply require a deposit. Galleries are also always happy to assist and be involved in the installation process to help make sure it runs smoothly especially for complicated artworks..


4. What are you looking for in your commissioned work?
If you have something particular in mind for a commission then think what the requirements are. Think about the areas of a work you would like to address with the artist for your commission: what colour palettes can you choose from? Can you choose a different form of hanging? Can you change the shape of the work? To get a better sense of the commission invite the artist and the gallery to have a look at your space so that they can use their experience and suggest what might and might not work.


5. Receiving the commission
Once your set of criteria is discussed and confirmed the artist will get to work on producing your artwork tailored to your requests. Depending on the scale of the artwork commissions could take up to weeks so you just need to sit back and wait for it to be delivered. Once your work is received and your payment complete your work will be installed in the place you commissioned it for. Ask the gallery you purchased the work from to recommend an installer; they will be able to recommend someone that is trustworthy with experience and insurance.

April 3

5 practical things to consider when installing art in your home


April 3


1. In what lighting does your artwork look best?

It is important to have the right lighting for your artwork to be set specifically for the artwork. Depending on what the artwork is and whether is has dark or light colours in it will effect the kind of light chosen. If unsure it is helpful to ask the gallery about what light they think will be most effective. Any light, especially sunlight has the ability to damage an artwork over a long period of time, so it is important to make sure that you use the best possible lighting. Different light options to consider include:

Wall mounted spot lights, more common in brass and used in traditional homes or offices are a good way to illuminate smaller works as the wall mounted light does not have the distance from the wall to illuminate a large area. They are good at creating a mood around an artwork and inviting the viewer in to look closer at the work.  Traditional brass wall mounted lights adds to the overall aesthetic and mood of the work

Ceiling-mounted spotlights are one of the best ways to draw attention and illuminate a specific artwork, they allow for the light to be adjusted and the beam to illuminate the entire artwork. Place the light so it hits the center of the artwork at around a 30-degree angle. Going too close will create a shadow and going too far will result in a reflective glare on the work.

– A track lighting system comes in many different designs to suit many aesthetics and interiors. They work in a very similar way to the ceiling mounted light, they do however give you additional features once installed as they are easier to move and adjust. It is easier to add additional lights to the track if you want to light a large artwork if one light is not enough. However, you do have a track sitting on your ceiling and aesthetically it will take away from any other feature lights or chandeliers in the room. 

– Many houses are fitted with ceiling mounted down lights that are mounted flush with the ceiling but have the ability to bere- directed at a specific place on the wall. They are a good alternative and less intrusive, however the light will not be as good as ceiling mounted track lighting.

Wall washers are used to light the entire wall and the light is normally installed either on the wall, ceiling or floors it washes the entire wall in the same amount of light.  It is not as specific as the other lighting but gives a very contemporary feeling and suits contemporary art.  Wall washers are often used when lighting corporate collections.

– Use LED bulbs wherever possible as they do not give off any UV light or heat and will not damage the artwork. You can place UV filters on all halogen lamps but make sure to not put them too close to the artwork.


2. Consider how much an artwork weighs
The weight of an artwork will determine how the work is installed.  Heavy works might need additional reinforcement to secure them to a wall. When heavy works are placed on a plinth it is important to reinforce the plinth to prevent it from toppling over, this can be done by screwing a footing into the floor the plinth sits over or by building a larger base on the foot of the plinth to balance the weight. Large outdoor sculptures also need to be secured for security and safety reasons.


3. Choosing the right form of hanging
It is preferred that any hooks attached to the frame should be done by the framer to avoid any damage to the artwork, if you have to add the hooks yourself it is important to measure the frame to avoid screwing the hook straight through the frame and damaging the artwork.

Some forms of hanging to consider include:

– D-Rings are available in a variety of sizes, which makes them suitable for a variety of frame sizes and also able to bear different weights.  For framed artworks D-Rings are the preferred option, they should be screwed about ¼ of the way down from the top of the frame, make sure they are placed in exactly the same spot on the back of the frame, the artwork can then hang onto hooks or nails screwed into the wall.  This might take longer than the wire and one screw option but it is much more secure and especially suitable for installing heavy artworks.

– Wire can also be placed between the two D-Rings and then only one screw or hook is placed on the wall, these works will not sit flush against the wall and will droop slightly forward. This method is not suitable for heavy works and is not as secure as two screws described above. Also think twice before using a wire for works on canvas as the nail sticking out of the wall can easily damage the canvas.

– Never use screw eyes because they can easily pull out of the artwork, they protrude and can scratch the frames or press into other frames when stacked in storage.

When installing the work into the wall the best option is a tempered steel nail going into the wall at a downward angle.  Tempered steel nails are thin and will leave minimal damage to the wall if the work needs to be moved. Do not re-use the nails, as they can be damaged and not as strong.

There are a variety of hooks that can be attached into the wall and they are particularly suitable for heavy works as one hook can be attached with two screws and then the D-Ring will be hooked into the hook.

  French cleats are an overlapping design where you have a fixture with a 30-35 degree angle placed on the wall the artwork then hooks onto the cleat, this the ideal way to hang very large heavy work, or long artworks. 

– Hanging Track is an art hanging system that offers an alternative system and consists of a track that can be either ceiling or wall mounted, there are several systems available with a variety of hook and cable options and it depends on the usage and look you are after.


4. Book an Installer for completed hangs
When booking an installer give them as much information as you can so they can come prepared. It’s important that they know the artwork’s dimensions and weight as well as the parameters of the space where it will be installed. If you bought the work from the gallery they will be able to recommend and brief an installer. You can also request the artist to install the work but not all artists have insurance or are technically trained to install artworks. It is however very nice to have the artist present when installing the work. Many collectors will have friends over and make a little event of the installation, celebrating it with the artist as a fantastic way to welcome the new piece into your home. Galleries are always happy to accompany an installer to help make sure the installation runs smoothly, especially for complicated artworks.


5. What about Sculptures?
Installing sculptures can be very complicated get clear instructions from the artist on how the work needs to be installed and supported to prevent the work being at risk of being damaged or hurting anyone. Outdoor sculptures should be secured to the ground or wall to prevent movement in heavy storms and possibility of public liability. It is important to check with the artist if the works are suitable to be outside, what temperature changes the material can handle, how to care for the work and if any damage occurs how to best repair the work.

April 2

5 ways to determine the value of an artwork

April 2

1. The artist
When determining value we would look at the artist’s career, how long they have been a practicing artist, whether or not they have a large body of work, determine what it is that they are trying to draw our attention to and if they are succeeding at grabbing our attention and changing our view. Artists today have a much larger reach, they have websites, social media followers and at the same time there is also much more competition as artists now are competing on a worldwide scale.

So when looking at an artist consider where they are in their career, look at their CV and Bio, work out if they are an emerging, mid-career or established artist. An emerging artist is generally seen as an artist within the first five years of their career; a mid-career artist is when the artist is represented by one or more galleries, locally and internationally, they have had several solo and group exhibitions, and have created a significant body of work.  Mid career artists would have had numerous exhibitions, been finalists or winners of several art prizes and been in regional exhibitions; established artists are artists who are at a mature stage of their career, they are nationally and internationally recognized not only for their work but also their contribution to art. They have produced extensive bodies of work, have shown in museums, regional galleries and are represented internationally by several galleries.

The artist Bio and CV will give you a good indication of the span of their artistic career.  There you will be able to find how long they have been an artist for, where they graduated from, how many solo or group exhibitions they have had and if they are in any major collections.


2. The artwork
When determining the value of an artwork look at it’s size, medium, it’s message, whether it has any art-historical significance, and whether it is an edition. The cost of the material used for the work does not normally influence the price of the work unless it is an installation or sculptural work with high material costs like bronze.

When an artist produces multiple editions of an artwork it will affect the price of the work. Normally the first few editions will be less than later editions because the sale of the earlier works increases the demand for the artist’s work and therein value. 


3. The gallery and their standing
A good art dealer and gallery can have a big effect on an artist’s reputation and the value of their work. The more respected the gallery and their curatorial opinion the better the artist they will represent and the more valuable the artist’s work.  This will also influence the career of the emerging artist even if the work is not highly priced; if they show with a respected gallery and in the company of respected artists the chances are the artist is a good investment.  The dealer will also often decide who gets to buy an artwork, the first priority would be to sell the work to a public institution.  The public institutions often do not have the funding of the private sector so the work will be sold to them at a reduced rate but as we mentioned above it is good for everyone, for the gallery, artist and collector if the artist’s work is included in a public institution.  The dealer will often vet the buyers especially if an artist is established and there is a high demand for their work. They don’t want the work to be bought by speculators or art “flippers” who buy the art and soon after place it for sale on the secondary market, at auction, it is not good for the provenance of the work.  The galleries therefore have a huge effect on the reputation of the artist and it is their “job” to build and manage the career of the artists.


4. The Collectors, Curators, Museums, Institutions, biennales and other non-commercial exhibitions.
Museums are still considered the gatekeepers of the art world. The role of the curators are to constantly look for artists and artworks that are current and reflect society at this time, their role is to identify what will become historically significant and preserve what is culturally important. The artworks we see in museums today have been carefully considered at galleries, art fairs, sales, private views and favourable critics and writers.  The curators have almost taken over the role of the critics, as they have a tremendous influence on an artist’s career in positioning them in highly regarded exhibitions like Venice Biennale or Documenta in Kassel, Germany. Similarly to curators, collectors have a significant influence in raising the value of an artist’s work. Positioning an artist in their private collection in turn brings them wider recognition and a position of status.


5. The Secondary Art Market
When determining the value of an artwork from an established artist the secondary art market is another factor to consider. An established artist will be at a stage in their career where their artworks are already well in circulation of the secondary art market. With established artists there is a higher demand for their work, they have built a large following and their works have a rich provenance making their work a valuable consignment for auction houses. If there is an established artist you follow it is always worth having a look at what the value of their work is on the secondary market, particularly if you have an artwork from that artist and wanted some insight into it’s value at a later stage.


5 things to consider when styling your home with art


1.Buy art tailored to your taste
There is so much more to an artwork than just the colours, so before buying an artwork there are some key questions to ask yourself. What do I like about this work? Does it continue to interest me? Is it intellectually inspiring? Does it promote thought and discussion?  The last thing you want to do is end up with a lot of sub standard art that you bought because it matched your sofa.  Then of course there are more practical questions like, can I afford it? And, if it is for my business, does it reflect the company’s mission?


2. Location
Selecting where to place an artwork is a personal decision and there is no right or wrong way about it, but there are some practical facts to take into account. The interior and the use of the space will influence where the work is displayed. In areas with a lot of foot traffic or small children it’s important to leave enough space for movement without touching the artwork.  Take into consideration what artworks to place on stairwells as bags or backpacks can scratch the service or what artworks need to be securely fastened to prevent them from being knocked down.

Kitchens that are enclosed and not well ventilated are not suitable for most artworks as there is a lot of temperature fluctuations and cooking vapors, place face mounted artworks or sculptures that can easily be cleaned in a kitchen.

Bathrooms are also problematic especially if there is a lot of moisture and steam in the bathroom, place works that are not easily affected, face mounted work is most suited to bathrooms.

Fireplaces can be problematic, depending on how old the fireplace is the wall above the fireplace can become hot or smoke residue can damage the work, this can lead to paintings flaking and the wood frames warping. 


3. Consider how much sunlight your home gets
You want to choose walls that don’t get any sunlight to hang your art. Sunlight can be one of the most damaging causes to artworks even if its for 10 minutes a day, over a long period it adds up and can cause permanent damage. Framing the work using UV glass that is 99% proof is the best way to protect your artwork, keeping in mind that UV glass is twice as expensive but well worth it if you will prevent your artwork from fading. 


4. Keep a record of the artworks you have collected
One of the most important parts of any collection, weather it is stamps or art is to keep track of who the work is by, where and how you acquired the pieces.  It is therefore a good idea to start a filing system where you keep all the receipts, catalogues and certificates of authentication for your art collection.  This record is not only good for insurance purposes but also important in providing the provenance for your artwork. The provenance or history of the work is important because is shows the authenticity of the work.


5. Insure your artworks
General home or business insurance will cover some artwork, but as the collection grows it would be wise to get separate art insurance.  Art insurance takes into account the unique nature of art that includes installation, transportation and restoration requirements specific to an artwork. It is also important to re-value the collection every few years to ensure that the artwork is valued at the current market value.


How to place Australian art in the hands of important international collectors

The art world is tough. Insuring and freighting Australian artists to important International Art Fairs is risky, time consuming and expensive for local galleries.

Last week at one of Asia’s hottest fairs, a prominent Hong Kong business tycoon and high profile Belgium collector collected works by Australian emerging artists who are represented by .M Contemporary from Woollahra, NSW.

From day one the Australian gallery was noticed. .M Contemporary was voted in the top 10 stands at the fair, and their installation by artist Hannah Quinlivan also made waves for them in The PROJECT sector.


.M Contemporary’s approach was to present three very different contemporary artists of including; Pakistan born Australian artist Mehwish Iqbal, installation artist Hannah Quinlivan and one of South Africa’s leading artists, the painter and sculptor Lionel Smit.

“High profile collectors as well as curators, institutional directors, and renowned patrons all frequent Art Central. The Fair is important for developing a gallery’s network and recognition. We have successfully placed Hannah Quinlivan’s work, part of PROJECTS sector into the corporate collection of Gaw Capital, and we have sold the works of Mehwish Iqbal, presented for the first time in an international art fair in Asia, to an independent Belgian collector Alain Servais,” said Gallery Director and Founder Michelle Paterson.


According to Paterson, the work she selects for major art fairs, must fulfil two critical criteria. “Number one I look for artists who have a strong technical foundation in drawing, painting and sculpting. Then I look for artists, who really want to change the world with their work,” said Paterson following her successful week of selling.

Alain Servais who collected Mehwish’s work is a high profile collector for his family’s collection The Henri Servais Foundation. He was drawn to Mehwish’s work, because it is concerned with forced migration, the role of women in culture and the commodification of human agency. Servais is well known in both Hong Kong and Brussels and has previously stated his likes and dislikes in the BMW Art Guide recently.


“My still-growing knowledge of art history convinces me every day, that the art worth collecting, that the art people will want to see in 30 years time, is always closely related to the socio, politico economic context of the society it develops in.”

Tycoon Goodwin Gaw is a Stanford educated businessman and engineer, who is head of Gaw Capital Partners. Gaw Capital is a real estate private equity fund management company that focuses on markets in Greater China. The work he purchased from .M Contemporary at Art Central was an installation work made specifically for Fair. This piece was sold to Gaw corporate collection and will now be shown at his offices on Yee Wo Street in Causeway Bay. The installation will also be flanked by two new paintings Gaw has commissioned from Quinlivan.

.M Contemporary’s Australian artists, both in their thirties, were gushing after the Fair closed on Friday 25.

The first was Hannah Quinlivan an installation artist from Canberra, ACT. Her vast body of work explores the unsettled and transient flow of memories and the inescapably connection between memory and the real. For Quinlivan, artworks are the embodiment of transient memories and mental conceptions, making something real and lasting from the fleeting and endlessly pliable. This year at Art Central Quinlivan created a large wire sculpture, which was suspended from the ceiling and beneath which she created a live salt drawing to capture the dynamism of the fair.


The second was Mehwish Iqbal, an Australian, Pakistani artist. She studied painting at National College of Arts Pakistan, graduating in 2002 and lived in Dubai for three years before moving to Australia to do her Masters of Fine Arts – printmaking at University of New South Wales. Since finishing her studies she has been shown in a range of small galleries and artist run spaces locally and internationally. In 2016 she worked from The Parramatta Artist Studios and became a finalist in the 64th Blake Prize. At Art Central in Hong Kong she presented embroidered works on paper, small crocheted works and a set of porcelain sculptures. She was thrilled to see her work migrate to Brussels and she will now continue to show at oversea Fairs throughout the rest of 2017.

For more information visit .M Contemporary


Tax for serious art collectors


By Belinda Aucott

As John Maynard Keynes once said: the avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that still carries any reward. For this reason, we’re bringing you the good oil on tax relief, from deep within the art world. We’re prizing open the vault of knowledge to unlock methods with which you can use art to ease your tax bill.

This month we’ve compiled the best incentives from Australian-based art advisers, tax accountants and curators. For hard facts we’ve spoken to Michael Fox, a tax accountant from Melbourne who specialises in the arts. For more cultural insights we’ve consulted; Amanda Love an art adviser; Maria Poulos curator at Allens; Michelle Paterson Director of .M Contemporary and local collector and CEO of BresicWhitney, Shannan Whitney. 

What we’ve found out is that there are two distinct routes you can take to use art for some tax relief. You can collect privately or as part of your business.

If you go it alone, you can use part of your discretionary income to slowly amass a fantastic art collection with a view to one day donating that collection (or part thereof) to an institution. Or, you can use your role as a business owner, to buy art which you can deduct as a legitimate business expense.

Some are accidental philanthropists, while others set out to leave a legacy. Whichever camp you fall in, read on to ensure your tax return looks a little bit prettier this year.


Attached- Installation image Allens Sydney- King Hit by Lifelike Liquid 2016 Artist- Karla Dickens Karla Dicken,  Allens Sydney: King Hit by Lifelike 


Collect Museum Quality Art

The first tip is to collect museum quality art if you can.

Any fool can buy a piece of art. But buying work that is likely to line the walls of a public collection takes more skill.  A bit of research now, can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions of dollars later.

Tax Accountant Michael Fox says all collectors benefit from doing their homework.

“Initially it would be good if people just bought an artwork because they love it and they want to support the Australian art industry,” he says.

“You can buy very reasonably priced Australian work which will appreciate.” Still, like anything of value you choose to invest in, knowledge is power.

“The first distinction to make is whether you are going to collect privately with a view to donating later or whether you are going to collect on behalf of your business to foster a creative corporate culture,” he says.

The two methods produce different benefits so its best to know at the outset, which suits your purpose.   

Gallery Founder and Director of .M Contemporary Michelle Paterson says buying museum quality art is much easier than people think. She recommends finding a good fine art gallery with whom you feel you can develop a rapport. Paterson, who has an eye for picking emerging artists with big futures, says her criteria for exhibiting artists, is two fold.

“Number one is I look for artists who have a strong technical foundation in drawing, painting and sculpting. Then I look for artists, who really want to change the world,” says Paterson.

Art Adviser Amanda Love agrees buying museum quality art is a sound investment.

“I just think collecting art is another way to relate to the world. It is another tool in your arsenal for seeing the world, for relating to it and for moving around in it.

“Contemporary Art, is a vertically integrated, worldwide pursuit nowadays.

“So why not? It is like wine. It’s something that if you know enough about it, it becomes increasingly more interesting and the more you know about the past, the more the present is relevant and vice versa, says Love.

According to the experts, if you buy museum quality art today, and invest in a top pedigree of artists, then just a little dibble-dabble in the market today, can be transformed into pennies and pounds later.




Image courtesy of the BresicWhitney Collection 

Use Tony’s Tradies scheme

“The rules changed about two years ago regarding buying art for your business,” explains Michael Fox.  “Today in Australia it is much easier to gain tax breaks for buying works of under $20,000 than it ever was before,” he says.

Fox who helps people with their tax every day says one of the big loopholes people can exploit, is the “Tony’s Tradies” – a Small Business raft of tax measures, which allows small businesses to claim their expenses up to $20,000.

“If you have an ABN, then under the small business act you can claim the entire sum of that purchase up to the tune of $20,000 each; A small business meaning turnover of less than $2 million dollars annually.

“This rule means you can buy as many individual art works as you like worth just under $20,000 each and claim them as a legitimate business expense. For example if you wanted you could buy five artworks for $19,990 each and claim a tax write-off of close to $100,000 by buying those 5 works.

“I don’t think the government really intended it to be a tax break for the arts industry. At the time it was introduced so that tradespeople could claim the expense of a utility vehicle.

“It is not that widely understood,” Fox says.



Sol LeWitt, Wall drawing #1091: arcs, circles and bands (room), 2013



Know your Budget

Michelle Paterson from .M Contemporary says that while some people might be intimidated by going to a gallery and asking prices, new collectors should never be scared to talk about the budget they have in mind for buying art.

“We can guide people to incredibly collectible museum quality work for under $20,000. We often work to very tight briefs for offices, homes and new collectors. Interior designers and architects  for example will always come to us with a budget in mind, so we’re accustomed to taking clients through our stockroom to find the right thing,” Paterson says. 



Bresic Whitney 2

Image courtesy of the BresicWhitney Collection 


Develop a corporate culture

Running a business in a cut throat industry? Wanting to attract great clients and retain incredible staff? Then buy art. Not only will you claim the expense of making your office look cool, but if you are in charge, at the top end of town, you can curate a serious corporate collection.

Once you amass a cool art collection you can tour the work or open it to the public.

“At the top end of town the ultimate, is when these companies appoint someone as a curator and actually put together a decent collection. Then those sorts of exhibitions can go touring around the country,” says Michael Fox.  “Granted with the name of the company attached, but still, it’s a form or a good will and very clever marketing,” Fox says.

Overseas this is common practice. Here in Australia companies like Wesfarmers, BresicWhitney, Allens and SBS all have great corporate collections the public can visit.

Fox is  also quick to add that collecting art for your company isn’t just about tax savings or marketing.  “There have been several studies that show people who work in environments with nice artwork tend to be more productive,” he says.

Resident Curator at Allens Linklaters Maria Poulos can concur. Their collection was  formed under the direction of Hugh Jamieson, a former partner at Allens, who left a legacy of 900 modern paintings. When he retired in 1995 he left behind a collection that has become central to the company’s vision and values, a collection that has continued  to expand.

“The Collection represents an important part of Allens’ corporate identity and its connection to a much wider cultural world.  In another sense, it’s a sign of good citizenship and creates a ‘civilised workplace’,” Poulos explains.

Today, corporate collections are generally no longer seen simply as a way of decorating a company’s foyer, boardroom or offices.  Instead, they are seen as a marketing tool that assists in defining a corporation’s brand or reputation. 

“Many of the organisations that focus on collecting contemporary art are in competitive industries where it is necessary to project an image of being a forward thinking, dynamic and progressive market leader in order to attract the best staff and clients,” Poulos says.

Shannan Whitney who is the CEO and Founder of BresicWhitney has watched his corporate collection grow considerably since he purchased a Bill Henson for his office back in 2003.

“Art was introduced consciously quite early on. It was an important mechanism to connect customers with our brand within a physical space. It was also a nice connection piece for our staff,”  Whitney says.

Today he points out, that in all four of his offices, art plays a strong, but silent role.

“Firstly it’s unexpected which is great. Secondly like all art is supposed to do, it prompts a response and reaction, which is valuable and finally I think it has been affective in helping people connect our brand with our vision,” he says.

Maria Poulos echoes this sentiment at Allens, sighting the impact on staff as ‘positive’.

“Lawyers often comment on the art as a great conversation starter with new clients – a handy way to break the ice.  Even if someone remarks unfavourably, ‘How can you put up with that?’, art has stimulated discussion and a different way of looking at things,” she says. 


A14Instltn_Master600dpiTplate _1

Karla Dickens, King Hit by Lifelike Liquid 2016 Installation image Allens Sydney Project space 

Use the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program to solve a tax problem on the horizon

If you love art and you collect it, then there’s a high chance  you have enjoyed it being present in your life. You have amassed great stories from you travels and your deals collecting it. You have lived with it and now you want to share it with others.

If this is the case, or if you can simply foresee some heavy tax bills in the next five years, then brush up on the conditions under which public institutions accept big bequests. (See point 1 about collecting Museum Quality Art.)

“You can only donate artworks if you bought them privately. You cannot donate artworks if you bought them for your business,” says Fox.

“If you speak to an institution’s curators and what you own fits into their general collection, then you would just need to have two accredited evaluations and that’s pretty much it.  Once the valuation comes in and your donation is accepted, then you have five years to right-off the value of the artwork.

“You can then elect to a portion that figure in anyway you like, over the next five years. As long as you make the election of the percentage for each return before you put the return in, it will be valid,” Michael Fox says.

In Australia high profile people like Gene Sherman donated her collection of Japanese designer clothes to the Powerhouse museum a few years back, while John Kaldor also made an enormous bequest to the Art Gallery of NSW.  In fact the Kaldor benefaction is the most significant and influential the Gallery has received in its more than 140-year history.

The John Kaldor Family Collection comprised of over 200 works, includes in-depth representation of Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Jeff Koons, Sol LeWitt, Robert Rauschenberg and Ugo Rondinone, among others. Minimalism is a cornerstone of the collection with an impressive list of works by Donald Judd, Carl Andre and Frank Stella.  There is a strong performative element to his bequest, including works by Gilbert & George, Richard Long and Francis Alÿs and video art also that ranges from works by Nam June Paik and Bill Viola to a younger generation of Australians such as Shaun Gladwell.

You might not be rubbing shoulders with the world’s greatest artists right now, but if you aspire to collect, then art can be a gateway, not only to becoming a custodian of culture in this country but to being a law abiding tax payer who is trading incredible art for tax breaks!


5 Things to look for when building your collection


How to build a collection that you love now and will grow with you.

1. Avoid trends and artists of the moment.
Buying what is cool at that moment is an easy trap to fall into, however it may mean that you miss out on building a cohesive collection and developing your taste. Try to go with your gut instinct, if hyper colour is in fashion but you like darker colours, find darker works. 

2. Buy an artist and not just an individual artwork
When you purchase an artists work you are investing in their practice, as well as buying something for your collection. Try to buy works from artists who’s wider practice you’re interested in. If there’s an amazing performance artist who has an interesting ceramic practice,  buy one of their works. You’ll be amazing how much more the work means to you. 

3. When you have established the artist you are interested in try to  buy more than one work – buy from different bodies of work.
This will allow you to watch their development over time and make for a more rewarding collecting experience. 

4. Establish your own vision for your collection and stick to it.
This can involve collecting to a frame work, for instance collecting paintings or only collecting emerging artists. You might choose to collect within an aesthetic framework, collecting works that are darker in colour. Having a framework or vision to your collection makes it more cohesive, it also means it will be worth more, both monetarily and culturally. 

5. Concentrate on a strong collection rather than a large collection.
Less is more when it comes to most things, but especially art. It is always better to have 5 pieces you love then to have 10 pieces that you sort of like. Collecting with a less is more ethos also helps to avoid excess clutter. 


5 Tips for finding an art gallery you like


A great gallery will collaborate on your collection with you, help you discover a new artists, preview works early and meet artists and other collectors. 

1. Location  – it will be easier to build a relationship with a gallery in your city that way you can attend their exhibition openings and regularly visit the gallery have the opportunity to meet the artist and view the work in person

2. The gallery and they artist they represent is a reflection of the owners tastes so it’s a good idea to have a look at the websites of the galleries in your area, each gallery website will have an artist page, exhibition page and stock room page.

3. Once you have identified some artist you can take the time to visit the gallery and meet with the gallery owner or director, galleries might seem like intimidating places but they love talking about what they do and showing you around.

4. Galleries all have a framework and set of parameters they use when selecting artist for their stable so once you have identified a gallery with a similar aestetic to you sign up to their mailing list – you can do that on-line or in the gallery and you will receive all the invitations to exhibition openings, montly gallery newsletters and invitations to artist dinners and art fairs.

5 Social media –  follow the artist and the gallery on social media, Facebook and Instagram that way you develop a good visual diary


5 Art newsletters to keep you up to date



The subscriptions that keep art world updates coming straight to your inbox. 

1. Artsy’s ambition is to make art from around the world accessible to anyone with Internet. It keeps you updated on artists, artworks, shows, galleries, museums, fairs, auctions, magazines and more.

2. Sydney Contemporary is not just Australia’s premier contemporary art fair it is also a great subscription to keep you updated on upcoming cultural events in the lead up.

3. Art Money keeps you posted on stockrooms providing you with a list of artworks that are available for purchase with interest free loans from participating galleries.

4. Stay connected with the Australian arts industry with Arts Hub. They send you updates on arts jobs, news, grants, education, community, call outs and upcoming events.

5. Artnet news is a great way to stay connected to the international art market offering you updates on events, trends, and people that shape the art market and have an impact on the global industry.


5 Places to buy art


The primary market? Secondary market? Emerging? Established? Theres a lot of lingo surrounding art, but buying art doesn’t have to be that complicated.  


  1. 1. Art fairs offer the unique opportunity for you to buy art from around the world in the one place. You are able to compare and contrast the work  of artists showcased by galleries at the forefront of the contemporary art.  Upcoming art fairs you want to attend include Volta Basel (12 – 17 June 2017), Sydney Contemporary (7 – 10 September 2017), Art Brussels (21 – 23 April 2018) and Frieze New York (5 – 7 May, 2018)

  1. 2. Art galleries provide you with detailed information on the work of represented artists and update you on their upcoming exhibition openings allowing you to view and purchase artworks as soon as they become available.
  2. 3. Online platforms are very accessible ways to purchase art. Before buying make sure you know what you are getting by doing your research and ensuring the online site you are using is a trusted one. Two online platforms where you can buy art online include and

  3. 4. If you are looking to buy art on the secondary market you want to go to Art Auctions. Subscribing to auction houses is a great way stay updated with what art is available.

  4. 5. Purchasing art from emerging artists and to support the progress of their careers Artist Run Initiatives (ARIs) are the places to go. ARIs such as Alaska Projects, Firstdraft, 107 Projects and China Heights are just a few of the greats.



5 Things to know about Art Money


Banksy (B. 1974), Di-Faced Tenners 2004, offset lithograph in colours, printed on both sides of the sheet, 440 x 305 mm

  1. 1. Art Money makes buying art easy and affordable giving you the opportunity to pay for an artwork over 10 monthly instalments interest free. Loans are available from AUD$675 to AUD$50,000 so make sure your artwork loan fits within the threshold.


  2. 2. Once a minimum 10% deposit is made directly to the gallery you are purchasing from you can take your artwork home with you. From there Art Money will coordinate the settlement of your loan while you pay the remaining balance. Make sure the artwork you are purchasing is from a participating gallery nationally or internationally. You can view participating galleries here:


  3. 3. As your deposit is your first payment, over the next 9 months you can pay the remaining balance by logging into your Art Money account and determining for yourself how you will like to pay the remaining balance.


  4. 4. You can apply for Art Money credit at any time or apply for an Art Money loan on the spot at a participating gallery or fair, it only takes a few minutes. If you would like to apply for an interest free loan you can visit Art Money here:


  5. 5. If you subscribe to Art Money they will send you a stockroom list every month with a selection of artworks available to purchase with an interest free loan from galleries in New Zealand and Australia.
Art fair blog_3

The top 10 exhibitions and events to see in Hong Kong Arts Month

Originally posted on South China Morning Post

The Arts Month insanity is upon us once again. With literally hundreds of exhibitions in Wan Chai, Central and Wong Chuk Hang over the next fortnight, anyone with an interest in art can be forgiven for feeling a little overwhelmed. While commercial art is the order of the day, with at least three art fairs – Art Basel Hong Kong, Art Central and the Asia Contemporary Art Show – opening this month primarily for collectors, there are still plenty of shows and events out there for everyone to see and appreciate. Here are our picks:

Breathing Space: Contemporary Art from Hong Kong

Breathing space in Hong Kong, or the lack thereof, is the theme of this group show at the Asia Society. Eleven Hong Kong artists share their love, and their hate, of the city’s peculiarly squashed living environment. Don’t miss Chilai Howard’s video The Doors (2008) – a film that finds a joyful rhythm to living in a public housing estate – nor Cheuk Wing-nam’s hypnotic “sound sculpture” Avaritia – Silent Greed, comprising cut wine bottles hanging from the ceiling. Also, one of Antony Gormley’s Event Horizon naked-man statues has returned to the centre to cast an impassive stare over the business district.

Asia Society Hong Kong Centre, 9 Justice Drive, Admiralty, Tue-Sun, 11am-6pm. Until Jul 9.

 Julius Popp, Bit.Fall  

Seemingly random words, made of droplets, are each displayed for a fraction of a second in a nine-metre-tall curtain of flowing water, in this media installation by German media artist Julius Popp. He captures the fleeting world of digital information in an endless stream of buzzwords – such as “king”, “connect” and “Italian” – selected by an algorithm that searches newsfeeds in real time. Bit.Fall has appeared in New York’s Museum of Modern Art, as well as Australia’s Museum of Old and New Art, and will now be in a local shopping mall for all to see. 

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Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Daily. Until Apr 6.


Nonny de la Peña: Passage: The Life of a Wall on Lin He Road

In 1995, Chinese artist Lin Yilin built a concrete brick wall in the middle of Lin He Road in Guangzhou. As the wall got bigger, traffic worsened and drivers were forced to detour. That powerful study of an individual’s relationship with a fast-changing city is being recreated in virtual reality by Nonny de la Peña, who is known as an “immersive journalism pioneer” – she uses virtual-reality technology to create scenarios to help people get stories in the news. Her take on Lin’s Safely Manoeuvring Across Lin He Road is expected to pique curiosity.

L3 Concourse, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Mar 23-25 at select times. Details and registration at


Ambiguously Yours: Gender in Hong Kong Popular Culture

The term “gender fluidity” may have gained currency only in recent years, but the third exhibition of M+ Pavilion makes an intriguing observation: the heyday of Hong Kong pop culture coincided with the fact that gender fluidity was a common theme adopted by singers, actors and film directors. The museum’s first exhibition on Hong Kong pop culture gets its statement across by showing how local artists challenged traditional gender roles in the 1980s and 1990s, through costumes, film narratives, graphic designs and artworks.

M+ Pavilion, West Kowloon Cultural District, Wed-Sun, 11am-6pm. Until May 21.


HK Walls 2017

HK Walls, an annual street-art festival that brings together local and international artists, has returned with a programme in Wong Chuk Hang that features not only public mural paintings but also screenings and a face-off battle between street artists. Participants include Wong Ting-fung, Mauy Cola, Taka, Messy Desk and Abdulrashade. Some of their activities are also part of this year’s Art Day on March 23, organised by the South Island Cultural District.

Ovolo Southside, 64 Wong Chuk Hang Rd, various times. Until Mar 26.


Zaha Hadid: There should be no end to experimentation

This exhibition, which shines light onto Zaha Hadid’s creative process, was conceived in early 2016 by Hans Ulrich Obrist, the artistic director of London’s Serpentine Gallery, and the visionary architect herself. However, Obrist had to go it alone when Hadid died suddenly of a heart attack before the show got off the ground. The British-Iraqi architect’s early drawings and notebook sketches went on display at the Serpentine late last year as a tribute to her. Now it’s in Hong Kong with newly added exhibits.

ArtisTree, 1/F Cornwall House, Taikoo Place, Mon-Sun, 10am-6pm. Until Apr 6.


The title of this exhibition hints as to what it’s about. From social media to search engines to state control of the internet, the digital ecosystems of China and the West are conspicuously different. But how do they affect artistic practices? This project, co-presented by the K11 Art Foundation and MoMA PS1 (a contemporary art space affiliated with New York’s Museum of Modern Art), tries to answer this question by comparing the works of a dozen artists from across the world. Check out Chinese artist Li Ming’s Straight Line, Landscape (2014), which utilises 25 iPads to display his journey across the country.

K11 Art Foundation Pop-up Space, G/F Cosco Tower, 33 Wing Lok St, Sheung Wan, Daily, 10am-6pm. Until Apr 30.


Projects and The Skateroom

Both are highlights of this year’s Art Central, an annual art fair held on the Central Harbourfront that is in its third year. “Projects” showcases six large-scale installations, peppered throughout the fair, by artists Simon Pericich, Yu Yohan, Santi Wangchuan, Hannah Quinlivan, Tang Jie and Glen Hayward. Curated by Jims Lam Chi-hang, this collection sets out to explore how artists experiment with different types of raw materials, giving new meaning to everyday items.


On display at “The Skateroom” are works, printed on skateboards, by renowned contemporary artists such as Ai Weiwei and Jean-MichelBasquiat. One version features images of electric chairs by Andy Warhol. The Skateroom is a non-profit organisation that uses skateboarding, art and education to engage with youth.

Art Central, Central Harbourfront, HK$230. Until Mar 25.


An exposition, not an exhibition

For the past five years, independent cultural space Spring Workshop has dubbed itself a “hackerspace” for visual arts, but now it’s wrapping up its final year with music. “An exposition, not an exhibition” is presented by American composer and artist Ari Benjamin Meyers, who spent two seasons of residency at Spring Workshop. His new piece, as well as an array of works by local artists, will be performed in seven locations across Hong Kong. And, as is common at Spring Workshop, it will try to blur the boundaries between different artistic disciplines, and this time between performers, audiences and institutions.

Various locations, Thurs-Sun, 2pm-7pm. Until Apr 1.


(An)other-Half: Being a Wife/Mother and the Practices of the Self

Six female artists take an introspective look at their own experiences to address a tough question: how do you care for your family, fulfil your role as a mother and/or wife, and still maintain your individuality and solitude to create art? They show that none of these are more important than the others, and finding the perfect balance between them can be a lifelong journey for women.

Osage Gallery, 4/F Union Hing Yip Factory Building, 20 Hing Yip Street, Kwun Tong, Kowloon, Mon-Sat, 10.30am-6.30pm; Sun, 2:30pm-6:30pm. Until May 7.

This article appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition as:
Spate of the arts
Art fair blog_2

Art makes its mark – Asia Times

Eyes of the world turn to Asian financial hub for two major events – and a whole host of surprises

MARCH 20, 2017 10:28 AM (UTC+8)

The eyes of the international art world are on Hong Kong this week, according to Charles Ross. On Monday and Tuesday, two important fairs – Art Central then Art Basel – will open to visitors, kicking off one of the city’s most culturally vibrant and commercially feverish weeks of the year.

Ross is managing director of Art Central, which is now in its third edition with a new title sponsor, UOB. He promises a strong line-up of galleries, artworks and lifestyle content: “Everything has really moved on, and we’ve taken a big step up this year.”

Highlights include a Projects sector dealing with large-scale installations and curated by Jims Lam Chi Hang, an honoree of Forbes’ inaugural 30 under 30 Asia list; a collaboration with Swarovski and sound artist Yuri Suzuki; and a bespoke on-site restaurant from Michelin-starred chef Philippe Orrico. Art Central will also launch its first community outreach program, targeting underprivileged youth in Hong Kong.

The fair, held in purpose-built tents on the Central Harborfront, is often seen as a satellite offering to establishment giant Art Basel, although no official partnership exists between the two. “Our aim was to do anything but overlap,” explains Ross. “We’re trying to create our own niche that is younger and edgier. It’s a different experience and a voyage of discovery.”

A notable focus of Art Central 2017 is on non-traditional categories of contemporary art such as performance, moving image and sound. “[Galleries have] become braver in terms of introducing more and more different art forms to Hong Kong,” Ross observes, adding that back in 2008, it was a challenge even to sell photography in a market raised on traditional painting and sculpture.

Art Central 2016 drew crowds to the Central Harbourfront. Photo: Art Central

Art Central 2016 drew crowds to the Central Harbourfront. Photo: Art Central

Mikala Tai, director of 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, a Sydney-based non-profit that has helped to develop the fair’s first dedicated performance schedule, describes Art Central’s ethos as “risk-taking, engaged and forward thinking.”

Tai says, “For many people, the art fairs in Hong Kong may be the only time they interact with contemporary art. It’s most likely these people would never seek out a performance piece so, by working with Art Central, we’re able to work with new audiences.”

4A will showcase pieces by five of the region’s most compelling artists, including Cambodian provocateur Anida Youe Ali, whose Red Chador marches will explore themes of otherness and civil disobedience in light of recent political events.

Hannah Quinlivan State of Suspension (with artist), 2015. Steel, PVC, nylon, salt and shadow. Photo: Art Central

Hannah Quinlivan State of Suspension (with artist), 2015. Steel, PVC, nylon, salt and shadow. Photo: Art Central

Art Central’s moving image sector, titled MEDIA X MUMM, is curated by Linda C.H. Lai, who is an associate professor of intermedia arts at the City University of Hong Kong’s School of Creative Media.

Lai explains that her platform will focus on single-channel video works, drawing on Hong Kong’s rich history in experimental cinema and “celebrating exploration within the digital realm.” She has also selected a program of film and photography works by British artists Guy Sherwin and Lynn Loo.

Ross was part of the team that set up Hong Kong’s first art fair, ART HK, in 2008. Its success led Art Basel to acquire a majority stake in 2011, completing the buyout in 2014.

The heavyweight brand, which also holds annual events in Basel, Switzerland and Miami Beach, launched its first Hong Kong edition in 2013. Post-acquisition, says Ross, the idea had always been to return to Hong Kong with a parallel fair.

Glen Hayward, Everyday People PROJECTS 17 ACHK V4. Photo: Art Central

Glen Hayward, Everyday People PROJECTS 17 ACHK V4. Photo: Art Central

In 2015, Art Central arrived with its white marquees and street-food stalls offering a fresher, hipper take on the art fair experience as a whole. Of last year’s 100-plus participating galleries, 75% were from the Asia-Pacific region and the event welcomed more than 32,000 collectors, curators and art enthusiasts.

Ross expects to surpass that number this year, with a fair he describes as “the best yet. Full stop.”

Art fair blog

The 10 Best Booths at Art Central Hong Kon

Originally posted on  ARTSY 
By Vivienne Chow
March 21ST, 2017 

Art Central Hong Kong opened to VIPs on Monday, kicking off the city’s busy art week. Now in its third year, the fair brings some 100 galleries, 75 percent of which hail from Asia Pacific, to a 10,000-square-meter tent by Victoria Harbour. Newcomers at this year’s edition include Tokyo’s Art Front Gallery, Sydney’s Artereal Gallery, Taipei’s GALERIE OVO, Copenhagen’s In The Gallery, and De Buck Gallery of New York, Antwerp, and Saint Paul de Vence.

Judging by Monday’s bustling preview, the gloomy economic outlook that has affected fairs in the region recently did not seem to have an impact on Art Central. International and local collectors mixed with artists and young professionals looking to buy their first piece of art. Galleries, however, appear to be cautious in their choice of presentations, evidenced by a wealth of paintings on view across the fair, though some galleries did still manage to push the envelope with their presentations. Below, we bring you the 10 strongest booths at this year’s fair.

MuMu Gallery


Installation view of MuMu Gallery’s booth at Art Central Hong, 2017. Photo courtesy of MuMu Gallery.

In its first foray at Art Central, the Taiwan gallery participates in the fair’s Rise sector, which features solo booths by galleries and art spaces launched over the past six years. The gallery presents the work of Huang Bo-Hao, a young Taiwanese artist whose minimalist works on paper draw inspiration from Chinese ink painting and are made using natural minerals.

.M Contemporary


Installation view of .M Contemporary’s booth at Art Central Hong Kong, 2017. Photo courtesy of .M Contemporary.

Sydney’s .M Contemporary presents a two-person booth of South African artist Lionel Smit and Pakistan-born, Australia-based artist Mehwish Iqbal, with Smit’s striking portraits and sculptures providing a nice contrast to Iqbal’s works on paper and installations. The latter’s Home Away From Home (2016) consists of small crocheted sculptures, and Last Prayer (2016) is comprised of hand-etched porcelain date seeds. The gallery also presents Estuary (2017), a delicate yet powerful installation by Hannah Quinlivan, in the fair’s Projects section.

Bluerider ART


Jonathan Rosen
Love, 2016
Bluerider ARTJonathan Rosen
Power, 2016
Bluerider ART

In one of the most buzzed-about booths during the VIP preview, Taiwanese gallery Bluerider ART presents Sex Sells (2015), a video sculpture by Swiss artist MARCK, and text-based wall works by New York-based artist Jonathan Rosen, among others. Works from Rosen’s “I WANT”series became instant crowd favorites, offering many the perfect excuse for a selfie.

Art Experience Gallery

Unfolding 《拆・拆》, 2015
Art Experience Gallery

Hong Kong’s Art Experience Gallery presents works by three mainland Chinese artists and one from South Korea. While on the booth’s exteriors walls, the gallery has hung loud, striking paintings by Hye Kyoung Kwon, including the bright-yellow Container B-2 (2013), inside, viewers encounter works that embody a zen ambience. This includes elegant prints by Xiao Yu, like There is a Leopard Inside Everyone of Us (2017), and Ye Sen’s serene sculpture made from interlocking pieces of elm wood, tiled Unfolding (2015).

Gallery SoSo


In Kyum Kim
Space-Less 2016 L 12-03, 2016
Gallery SoSo

Jung Uk Yang
Signboard for some of store (No.9), 2017
Gallery SoSo

This South Korean gallery presents a harmonious, multi-generational presentation of Korean artists. Fairgoers are greeted by Kim In Kyum’s heavy stainless steel sculpture Space Less (2015), which guards the entrance to the booth, and Yang Jung Uk’s mesmerizing installation Signboard for some of store (No.9) (2017), which is hung on the adjacent wall. Other highlights include Chung Seung Un’s installation Skyline 160917 and works on paper by Yoon Sang-Yuel.

Rén Space


Installation view of Rén Space’s booth at Art Central Hong Kong, 2017.

This elegant booth by the Shanghai-based gallery mingles emerging Chinese artists with some of the biggest names in the contemporary Chinese art scene. Yu Youhan’s latest piece, a triptych titled Abstract (2017), and Zhang Peili’s new graphic works are among the booth’s most compelling works, though pieces by young artists—such as Deng Yuejun’s mechanical installation Somniloquy – Mechanical Butterfly (2014), and Zhang Liaoyuan’s conceptual light installation Between 0 ~ 255 (2015)—steal the show.

Contemporary by Angela Li


Li Hongbo
Fortune, 2016
Contemporary by Angela Li

Zhengyuan Lu
Light Grey 3.00 pm, 2016
Contemporary by Angela Li

Participating at the fair for the third time, the Hong Kong gallery presents a well-balanced group of artists based in China. Among the booth’s strongest works are two sculptures by Beijing-based artist Li Hongbo,which are created from thousands of stacked sheets of paper and can be pulled apart and folded like Slinkies. Other highlights include Shi Jindian’s delicate steel wire sculpture Changjiang 750 No. 2 (2006), and realist paintings from Lu Zhengyuan’s “The Vessels of Time” series (2012–present).




Art WeMe Contemporary Gallery


桃花园里 Peach-Blossom Spring, 2014
Art Weme Contemporary

Art WeMe Contemporary Gallery presents an array of paintings by Shanghai-based Chinese artist Sanzi and Malaysian-Chinese painter C.N. Liew. The gallery presents Sanzi’s muted landscape paintings, like Dawn (Sunflower) (2014), picturing a black-and-white field of glowing sunflowers, and 云漫 Moving Cloud (2014), which features two small figures on a cliff engulfed in a foreboding, grey sky.


Line Gallery


Installation view of Line Gallery’s booth at Art Central Hong Kong, 2017.

A wall installation by Chinese artist Yan Shilin, titled Growth (2016) and made of cast copper and chemical stain, will easily draw you into Line Gallery’s booth. Once inside, you’ll find vibrant, playful Chinese ink paintings by Li Jin, which are a nice contrast to Yin Zhaoyang’s powerful red painting Square.The 10-year-old Beijing gallery also presents a mechanical installation by Tang Jie in the fair’s Projects sector, titled Stone Story (2015), made with stones and a large drum.

Oh! Quadro Pop Up Gallery

Afonso Tostes
Contingente I – XII, 2014

Afonso Tostes
Fogo mensageiro – SC – “untitled No. II”, 2016

For its first showing at Art Central, the Hamburg gallery brings the work of Brazilian artist Afonso Tostes. The booth is a thoughtfully curated presentation of the artist’s oil paintings and sculptures, including work from the artist’s “Fogo mensageiro” series, comprised of woodworking tools that reference human history, suffering, and survival.

—Vivienne Chow


Keep an eye out for these artists at Art Central 2017

Originally posted on Lifestyle Asia

In its third iteration this year, Art Central 2017 officially opens on Tuesday, 21 March. As a main player fuelling the frenetic festivities throughout Hong Kong Art Week, it’s brought in more than 100 participating international galleries, with more than 75% based in the Asia-Pacific region. In other words, it’s a must-visit if you’re looking to adorn your living room (or Facebook) walls with some of the region’s best work. There’s plenty to see, but to get you started, here’s a primer on nine artists to look out for at this year’s fair.


Vivian Ho

Young Hong Kong painter Vivian Ho fills her canvases with captivating, cinematic scenes which combine Hong Kong stories, characters and places together with surreal additions of animals and nature. Since graduating from Wesleyan University in 2012, she has exhibited widely across the US, South Korea and Hong Kong, and is a recognised illustrator for public projects. A brand new pastel work of hers will be unveiled at A2Z Art Gallery’s booth.

Showing at: A2Z Art Gallery, Booth B21


Blast off into deep contemplation as you trace the lines of Vhils’ dramatic portraits, created by destroying materials — usually by cutting, drilling, corrosive acid or controlled explosives — and revealing the myriad layers beneath. The Portuguese street artist presented a show in Hong Kong last year with HOCA Foundation, and this year, his work is being shown by Hong Kong newcomer Over the Influence Gallery. Focusing on socio-political impacts on urban landscapes, the group presentation at Art Central will also feature works by other influential street artists such as Invader, Jerkface and more.

Showing at: Over The Influence Gallery, Booth D9

Yu Youhan

Considered one of the most important contemporary artists in China today, Yu Youhan’s works have shifted in shape and form over the years, tackling each wave of China’s societal changes over the past several decades. Apart from the gallery booth presentation, he’s also showing one large-scale mosaic installation as part of Art Central’s PROJECTS sector, curated by Hong Kong critic Jims Lam Chi-hang. Titled “Lost Circles,” the piece confronts the vandalism and disrespect to the arts throughout recent history. It also relates back to his lost piece, “Circles, 1987” which was once the largest pioneering artwork by the artist, and is a reiteration of the former using brand new technologies.

Showing at: Rén Space, Booth B09; PROJECTS sector

Lien Chien-hsing

As part of a curated presentation titled “Apocalyptic Nostalgia” at Taiwan’s Yuan Ru Gallery at Art Central, you’ll find three new master works by acclaimed magical realist painter Lien Chien-hsing. With intricate details and true-to-life manipulation of light and colour, his scenes of desolated landscapes inspired by his hometown will make you want to dive right into his surreal, storybook worlds.

Showing at: Yuan Ru Gallery, Booth F4

Martin Gremse

“It’s a bird, it’s a plane… it’s a Martin Gremse,” we can almost hear you exclaiming, as you check out the paintings by this German artist. Presented by Düsseldorf art space Schuebbe Inc, Gremse’s works are made up of psychedelic paint splatters creating unexpected patterns and textures (some, arguably, do look quite bird-like), which are then layered over with shimmering silver paint.

Showing at: Schuebbe Inc, Booth C3

Mehwish Iqbal

Pakistan-born and Sydney-based artist Mehwish Iqbal explores her cultural identity in complex embroidery and mixed media works, often resulting in buzzing tapestries illustrating fragments of her experience growing up and living in the two countries. The shapes, textures and colours of her works are surprisingly visceral, and you could stare at them all day and continue to discover new details.

Showing at: .M Contemporary, Booth B16

Hasanul Isyraf Idris

There’s plenty of amazing and exciting work by artists representing Malaysia at Richard Koh Fine Art. Start exploring with works by Penang-based Hasanul Isyraf Idris, who invents curious mystical characters as a form of contemporary storytelling about his personal struggles in the city. Interestingly, he uses visual language from regional myths and folklore and mixes this with the colours and stylings of street art.

Showing at: Richard Koh Fine Art, Booth C1

Na Wei

Amongst a stellar group presentation at Art Experience Gallery’s booth with works exploring the dialogue between eastern and western cultures, the disorienting works by Na Wei might be a good place to start. An ethnic minority born in a northern Chinese town, his earlier works were inspired by the look of traditional carpets. His recent works build on this with collages that aim to bring together the contradicting and harmonising cultures of the east and west.

Showing at: Art Experience Gallery, Booth F8

Jacky Tsai

Alongside a showcase of gallery stalwarts, Contemporary by Angela Li will be presenting the bold, cheeky works of Chinese pop artist Jacky Tsai, one of the most sought-after artists working within this space. There’ll be a range of pieces on show, from his paintings depicting American superhero characters in classic Chinese landscapes to his energetic stamp tributes to cities around the world.

Showing at: Contemporary by Angela Li, Booth A1


5 Art Fairs in March


Art Central Hong Kong
21 – 25 March 2017
Now in its third edition, Art Central is recognised as a place of discovery and a platform for museum quality artworks from more established names to be exhibited alongside cutting-edge works by emerging artists.



Art Basel  Hong Kong
23 – 25 March 2017
Art Basel stages the world’s premier Modern and contemporary art fairs, staged annually in Basel, Miami Beach, and Hong Kong.  It’s Hong Kong edition features, half of the participating galleries once again had exhibition spaces in Asia and Asia-Pacific. The show provided an in-depth overview of the region’s diversity through both historical material and cutting-edge works by established and emerging artists.



Art Dubai 2017
15 – 18 March 2017
Art Dubai has become one of the most globalised meeting points in the art world today – an essential gathering place for collectors, artists and art professionals from across the region and beyond.Besides the gallery halls, the fair’s extensive programme includes commissioned projects and performances, artists’ and curators’ residencies, educational workshops and the critically acclaimed Global Art Forum.



1 – 5 March 2017
VOLTA NY is the invitational fair of solo artist projects and is the American incarnation of the original Basel VOLTA show, which was founded in 2005 by three art dealers as a fair “by galleries, for galleries”.


The Armory Show
2 – 5 March 2017
The Armory Show is New York’s premier art fair and a definitive cultural destination for discovering and collecting the world’s most important 20th and 21st century artworks.


5 emerging painters to watch

John Morony

John Moroney
Moroney is a 2016 graduate from National Art School who specialises in both sculpture and painting. He was the recipient of the Bresic whitney Young Artist Initiative and recently showed in the .M Contemporary Bondi space.

Emilie Syme-Lamont

Kirrily Humphries
Humphries recently finished Honours at Australian National University School of Art. She has exhibited around Canberra and was recently shown in our emerging artist exhibition End of the World.


Meaghan Potter
Potter is graduated from National art school in 2013 and is currently based in the Blue Mountains. She works with water colours, pastels and Inks. She’s been showing with .M Contemporary since 2014 and has a solo show coming up this year.

Emilie Syme-Lamont_1

Emilie Syme-Lamont
Syme-Lamont is currently at National Art School completing her masters in painting. She was a finalist in the 2016 YAI show.

Max Callighan

Max Callighan
Max Callaghan is a graduate of the Adelaide Central School of Art. His abstract geometric paintings were recently shown in . M Contemporary’s End of the World exhibition.


5 art books you should be reading

Art book2

Collecting Contemporary Art
Adam Lindemann

Absolutely unique and incredibly insightful, through the process of interviewing, Lindemann takes us behind the scenes and into the minds of the worlds leading art experts; critics, dealers, collectors, consultants, auction house experts and Museum curators and Directors.  The book includes a timeline of the most important annual auctions, exhibitions and fairs from around the world and it includes a very helpful glossary of art terms for those new to the world of art.

 Art book1

Art of the Deal
Contemporary Art in a global financial market

Art today is defined by its relationship to money as never before. Prices have been driven to unprecedented heights, conventional boundaries within the art world have collapsed, and artists think ever more strategically about how to advance their careers. Art is no longer simply made, but packaged, sold, and branded. In Art of the Deal, Noah Horowitz exposes the inner workings of the contemporary art market, explaining how this unique economy came to be, how it works, and where it’s headed.

Art book5

What are you looking at
Will Gompertz

Every year, millions of museum and gallery visitors ponder the modern art on display and secretly ask themselves, “Is this art?” A former director at London’s Tate Gallery and now the BBC arts editor, Will Gompertz made it his mission to bring modern art’s exciting history alive for everyone, explaining why an unmade bed or a pickled shark can be art—and why a five-year-old couldn’t really do it. Rich with extraordinary tales and anecdotes, What Are You Looking At? entertains as it arms readers with the knowledge to truly understand and enjoy what it is they’re looking at. – Amazon

Art book3

Art Ad Therapy
by Alain Botton 

This passionate, thought-provoking, often funny, and always-accessible book proposes a new way of looking at art, suggesting that it can be useful, relevant, and therapeutic. Through practical examples, the world-renowned authors argue that certain great works of art have clues as to how to manage the tensions and confusions of modern life. Chapters on love, nature, money, and politics show how art can help with many common difficulties, from forging good relationships to coming to terms with mortality.

Art book4

Selling Contemporary Art
Edward Winkleman

A sophisticated examination of today’s contemporary art market from an art dealer’s point of view, this new book focuses on recent changes in the quickly evolving market. With an emphasis on how the market responded to the global recession that began in 2008, gallery owner Edward Winkleman moves from an examination of the factors beyond the individual dealer’s command to those that the dealer can control.


5 Art Month events you should attend


Japanese Ceramics: Traditionally Crafted Contemporary Art

Date: 3 March
Time: 6.30pm – 8pm
Cost: Free

Two members of the boundary-pushing Ikeyan group, Aoki and Yokoyama will discuss their practices and the culture of kogei (master artisan) in contemporary Japanese ceramics.

Japan Foundation Gallery
Level 4, Central Park, 28 Broadway, Chippendale, NSW 2008
view website

RSVP by emailing
Doors open at 6pm


North Sydney Art Prize

88 finalists exhibiting indoor and outdoor works on paper, scultpure and installation based works. A major biennial arts event showcasing some of the best in contemporary art with indoor and outdoor works by emerging, mid career and established artists from across Australia.

11 March – 26 March
10am – 5pm

North Sydney Art Prize 2017
The Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability, 2 Balls Head Drive, Waverton, NSW 2060
view website


Art at Night | Paddington & Woollahra

The neighborhoods of Paddington & Woollahra form one of Sydney’s original art precincts and Art Month Sydney is the perfect guide for discovering the galleries that call the area home. Come and visit us at .M Contemporary and see Mehwish Iqbal solo show Flux before heading down to the official Art Bar by Cake Wines and Concrete Playground Sydney at UNSW Art & Design, for drinks, music and performances from 7:30pm – 10pm.

Date: 15 March
Time: 6 pm – 10pm
Cost: Free–paddington-and-woollahra/

Cocktails & Crochet

Cocktails & Crochet

Chili Philly: Crochet Social

Join us in the gallery for an evening of creativity and cocktails. Artist Kirsten Fredricks and Phil Ferguson (Chili Philly) share 101 crochet skills whilst discussing their inspiration and crochet adventures.

Date: 2 March
Time: 6-8pm
Cost: $31.59

Australian Design Centre
101-115 William Street, Darlinghurst, NSW 2010

Cost: $30 inc beverages

collectorsspace_588182691dd00 (1)

Collectors’ Space

Explore museum quality artworks never seen together in public before… or ever again. The Collectors’ Space, an annual exhibition that celebrates private art collections, and in 2017, the Collector’s Space exhibition will be curated by Max Germanos of 3:33 Art Projects. Max is both an avid collector and a curator.  He has curated exhibitions for some of Australia’s leading artists including Dale Frank, Ken Whisson, Noel McKenna, Euan MacLeod, Lucy Culliton, Joanna Braithwaite, Ben Quilty, and Neil Frazer.

Date: 1 March – 16 March
Time: Tuesday – Saturday 11-5pm

Cost: Free
Collectors’ Space
8 Soudan Lane (Ground Floor), Paddington, NSW 2021

Laundromat, Ai Wei Wei installation at Jeffrey Deitch

From Studio to Study

Laundromat, Ai Wei Wei installation at Jeffrey Deitch  X 2

Ai Wei Wei, Laundromat, installation at Jeffrey Deitch, New York 

Painting and sculpture are the traditional foundations of any artist’s career. Yet in an era where technology is so pervasive, how important will these hands-on skills be to future artists? Will we always be drawn to works showing the physical touch an artist’s hand?

To answer these questions, we asked art adviser Amanda Love as well as gallery owners Michelle Paterson from .M Contemporary and Roslyn Oxley from Roslyn Oxley9. We also sat down with Dr. Gene Sherman, from Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation to get her insights. What we discovered is that the world of art has been irrevocably changed.

antony-gormley-at-barrington-court-238Antony Gormley at Barrington Court, Somerset, England 

“Artists now move from the studio to the study. This is a very shorthand way of explaining it,” says Gene Sherman.

“Art has moved from the hands-on practice to conceptual practice in some art schools, but not all.”

Gene says Sydney’s art schools, as just one example, provide a range of options catering to individual tastes. But she believes the hands-on skills, do give artists important knowledge.

“Anything worthwhile is learnt,” says Gene. “I think the foundational skills are important to have, and then you can reject them.

“There’s a French phrase, en connaissance de cause and it cannot be directly translated, but it means you have knowledge of what you reject,” she says.


Shaun Gladwell, Lacrima Chair, photo still of film, for Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation 2015

As a concrete example, later this year Gene will develop a Shaun Gladwell show at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.(

It references a historic horse battle that took place in British Palestine, when The Ottoman Empire was crumbling. Shaun Gladwell’s piece references The Charge of the Australian Fourth Horse Brigade on 31 October 1917. In this project Shaun will take the point of view of the horse, to build a two room installation.

First two filmic works will be ‘hung’ on either wall of the gallery. Then in the middle of the room, there will be a large Roman sculpture, of a soldier on a horse recreated from a photograph, using 3D printing techniques.
In the second room, there will be a set of Virtual Reality helmets, so visitors can experience the battle more directly.

“Shaun Gladwell is a moving image artist. He has brilliant drawing skills and painting skills. He was the first moving image artist to be sent by The Australian War Memorial to Afghanistan and Iraq. When he came back, he did a lot of moving image work, he did quite a lot of drawings and a few paintings,” she says.

Gene who purchased one of the paintings, says Shaun is great example of an artist who’s chosen to tell his stories in a way that suits him.

Gene freely admits she loves paintings.

Forced to Feel This Way, Tracey Emin, 2014_sml

Tracey Emin, Forced to Feel This Way, 2014

“I like the hands on skills, I do. It is certainly my generation. But we are all different, and it is important to remember, that right now is a moment of great discovery in the technological world.”

Early career artists can simply be drawn away from the atelier based practise sooner in their career.

“Artists who went to art school used to choose more directly. They chose print making or sculpture or drawing or painting. Then they focused a bit in other areas, as a subsidiary. Looking at art from a structuralist point of view, there was a kind of a strong pathway, you would have to decide on straight away.

“What often happens now, is that they have an idea and then they decide should they do a film, a painting, a sculpture.”

That is a major change.

Gene says our palette for moving image artwork is not as developed, as it is for say painting, purely because we are less used to seeing it.

As she points out there has always been ‘good paintings and shocking paintings’, but we are keener to point out what we hate in new media. We are much quicker to reject them.

Roslyn Oxley agrees that a trained eye can decipher good art from bad, no matter what the medium. She says what unites all artists is their passion and will to communicate their point of view.

“At the moment I think there are only very few, really good painters around. We all want good painters,” she says.

Michelle Paterson loves good painters too. She scours the earth for them and has just returned from India on a trip to source fresh talent.


John Moroney, Against Nature, sculpture and oil painting  2016 

“In the digital age, collectors seem to be reverting back to paintings, drawings and artwork with a strong presence of the artist’s hand.  Collectors like to be able to see the artist’s process,” Michelle says.

Amanda Love believes foundational skills in sculpting, painting, drawing are really important to an artist’s longevity and their late career.

Amanda says it’s somewhere just on the other side of mid-career that things get really interesting.

“I find it fascinating with mid-career artists, that after all that striving, there comes a time when (seemingly) suddenly they have an added level of understanding about what they are dealing with in their work and how they are doing it. When they are technically and financially more able to set themselves up, often using scale, but not exclusively, they can push their practice to another level.”

“Especially at the highest level. To witness an artist’s will and drive to express themselves is breathtaking. They strive to create a world in their own terms, a world that responds to the way they see it, in which is a much needed counterpoint to business for example, which so often strives to conform to or accommodate the world. Some of the best artists are utterly driven by this impulse,” Amanda says.

She says it’s in the mid to established career phase, that the stakes really change for artists. This, she says, is often a time of major reinvention, when an artist might change course… move into using technology for instance or completely revert to drawing and painting: skills generally learned, in early career. Artists like everyone, she says, need to grow, and the best artists force themselves and their practices to grow in an outwardly dynamic, but internally consistent manner.

“The alternative is to succumb to the dull and formulaic, where a practice becomes bloodless and disengaged. Reinvention keeps the spirit alive and engagement is the lifeblood of reinvention ,” she says.

“There are different ways of expressing oneself – one does not preclude the other,” she says.

Our discovery in chatting to people is that this debate is not a conservative versus radical debate. Neither is it an old world versus, new world debate. The desire for handmade, soulful art is a long standing one, there will always be floors and walls to be covered with art – but because the way we absorb art and media is changing, our palette for technologically driven work is also maturing albeit at a snail’s pace.


5 Art Documentaries You Should Be Watching


1. Le mystère Picasso (1956)

This sensational film documents Pablo Picasso’s creative process. Using specially designed transparent canvas, the camera traces the master’s every move, giving viewers insight into the painting technique of one of the most renowned artists of the 20th century.


2. The Cool School (2008)

Narrated by Jeff bridges, the film examines the rise of the Los Angeles art scene which developed as a counterculture rebelling against the Abstract Expressionist art movement championed in New York. It profiles the influential Ferus Gallery and its owners Walter Hopps and Irving Blum and tells the story of how a small group of artists such as Ed Kienholz, Larry Bell, Ed Ruscha, John Altoon, and Billy Al Bengston transformed American art.


3. Guest of Cindy Sherman (2008)

Filmmaker Paul Hasegawa-Overacker, known for his Gallery Beat reviews of New York art shows in the 1990s, was invited to interview the reclusive photographer Cindy Sherman in her studio. After several interviews the filmmaker and the photographer fall in love and embark on a romantic relationship. This film offers viewers remarkably intimate, one-of-a-kind insight into the life of a notoriously camera-shy artist from the perspective of Hasegawa-Overacker, who struggles to come to terms with Sherman’s celebrity.


4. National Gallery (2014)

A fly-on-the-wall account of the National Gallery, London, one of the world’s most renowned museums with a stunning collection of canvasses by Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Turner and others. Filmmaker Frederick Wiseman explores the inner workings of modern cultural institutions, documenting the National Gallery’s administrative meetings, conservation, restoration and educational functions.



7. Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present (2012)

The documentary follows the renowned performance artist Marina Abramovic as she prepares for her retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The film explores how the Serbian national redefined the understanding of what art is.

Courtesy of Artsy Read more here….


Continue reading


5 People you should know



Michael Findlay

Michael Findlay was a pioneer of the Soho Gallery scene in New York City, before joining Christies as an art dealer. He then moved to Acquavella Galleries which sells 19th and 20th Century Masters. He wrote a very insightful book called The Value of Art which was published in 2004 and now deals with great artist’s work  from Picasso and Matisse to Cy Twombley and Andy Warhol.

Amanda Love

Amanda Love is an professional art adviser with offices in New York and in Sydney. She worked as an intellectual property lawyer in Hong Kong, before moving into advising art in the late 90’s. Amanda Love has recently advised the QTHotel Groups on their corporate collection and is working with collectors both corporate and private to acquire museum quality, contemporary art.

Shannan Whitney

Shannan Whitney started collecting art in 2002. He has amassed both a corporate and private collection in the last 15 years which has evolved featuring just Australian artists, to include more international work, from video artists and sculptors, to photographers and installation artists. His vision to align a real estate brand with art has revolutionised his business into a design and lifestyle brand.

Ruba Katrib

Syrian Born artist Ruba Katrib was hired as the curator for SculptureCenter in New York City in early 2012.

This year she has been named curatorial advisor for the Focus section at its annual London fair FREIZE happening in October 2017. In her latest role she is responsible for choosing the emergent artists and emerging galleries to be featured in the art fair’s FOCUS quadrant.

Mehwish Iqbal.

Mehwish Iqbal is an Australian artist. She studied painting at National College of Arts Pakistan, graduating in 2002 and lived in Dubai for three years before moving to Australia to do her Masters of Fine Arts (printmaking) at University of New South Wales. In 2016 she won a residency at Parramatta Artist’s Studio and became a finalist in 64th Blake Prize. She has previously shown work at the Istanbul Contemporary Art Fair and will this year be taken to Art Central Hong Kong ahead of her solo show opening 9 March 2017 at of .M Contemporary who represent her in Australia.


The Hidden Value of Art

Top 5 articles you should be reading

Top 5 exhibitions M contemporary staff are excited for summer


The Hidden Value of Art

The Hidden Value of Art

7 things you don’t know about collecting art by Belinda Aucott

The art world is a thumping global business. In 2015 alone, the global art market achieved total sales of $63.8 billion. Contemporary art fairs now cover the world and arts events fill the calendar from January to December. Circa 2017 it seems everyone wants piece of the contemporary art world, from fashion labels to great cities. But beyond going to glittering gallery openings,  meeting eccentric artists and owning priceless works of art, what does collecting art really offer you?

This month we caught up with art advisers and collectors Mark Hughes and Amanda Love to discuss their thoughts. We also sat down with Lawrence Smith and Shannan Whitney to hear about their experiences buying art. We talked not about the investment in art but the emotional and social components to collecting. One-by-one they told us what first got them hooked and what they now get from art, that they can’t get anywhere else.

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Fondazione Prada, Theaster-Gates

01. Art is emotional

Everyone agrees, that art inspires strong love hate polarities, from the primitive to the sublime.

Art Adviser Amanda Love is a business woman, with an impressive private collection. One of the things she loves most about collecting art is how art can divide a room.  Her very first significant piece was a Rosalie Gascoigne work called ‘Top Brass’ which she purchased from Roslyn Oxley in the late 1990’s. 

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Rosalie Gascoigne Top Brass, 1990 retro-reflective road signs on plywood 142 × 141cm.

“When I first started collecting people would come to the house and say, “Oh you have paintings, ” and then people would look at Rosalie work and say: “That work actually makes me want to vomit on the floor, it’s so horrible,’” Love says.

Still Amanda was undeterred by people’s ignorance of contemporary art. What she has on her walls today she calls ‘a snap shot of the last 30 years’.  She has works by Caroline Rothwell, Theaster Gates, Isaac Julien and Tracey Emin in her home. The Rosalie work now hangs in her husband’s study.

Fellow art adviser Mark Hughes agrees with Amanda that it is these strong emotional polarities that make art so unique. “You might hate it, that’s an emotional engagement, you could feel frustrated by it and not be able to understand it, or you could fall in love with it; those instincts are the bottom line,” Hughes says.

Mark says collecting art helps expand your mind and acts differently on a person’s personal development to the collecting furniture for example.

02. Art enriches your life, helps your mind expand

Collectors who live with works of art have the possibility of engaging with them deeply and constantly over years.

CEO of BresicWhitney Shannan Whitney started his corporate collection with the help of Art Adviser Mark Hughes in 2002. He purchased a Bill Henson painting for his Hunter’s Hill office and immediately got the bug.  Now he co-owns a successful real estate brand, that has aligned itself through art and their corporate collection.


Bill Henson, Untitled 35 courtesy of the BresicWhitney Collection

“I hadn’t really had any real interests in my life outside of business and I think art has been a really important outlet for me in terms of my personal development,” he says.

“Without that, my life experience wouldn’t be as rich. So I am eternally grateful that it happened and I have found working with my art adviser Mark Hughes enormously valuable.”

Shannan’s collection has moved from being just Australian art by Adam Cullen, Shaun Gladwell and Rover Thomas to include works by international artists, sculptors and video artists. Some of his offices feature photographs by Ori Gersht and Richard Moss. 

03. Art is about the hunt


Acquavella Galleries New York

It follows then, that if art is an enriching experience, attached to overseas trips and mind expanding emotional experiences, that art acquisition is often the proud focus of collectors.

“In someways you’re always looking forward to the next adventure or the next unknown; the next surprise and really the emotional bit,” says Shannan Whitney. “You know that there is always going to be another great surprise there is always going to be another experience out there,” he says.

Shannan loves going to galleries like Stuart Shave Modern Art in Islington, London. He find the aesthetic there resonates with him. He says that since he starting collecting his new hobby has encouraged many overseas trips and many incredible new moments.

04. Art educates you and pushes you

Fellow business owner Lawrence Smith is a benefactor to the Sydney Biennale and a hobbyist art collector. He describes buying art as both euphoric and educational.

“Everything I acquire has had significance for me at the time, even if it tells me that I’m stupid and need more education,” he says.

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David Noonan, Untitled, 2013, silkscreen on linen collage, framed, 213.5 x 303.5 cm, 84 1/8 x 119 1/2 ins Courtesy of  Stuart Shave Modern Art

Lawrence is a disarmingly funny man who runs a media agency in Surry Hills. His first significant purchase was a Phillip Hunter landscape painting that he saw in catalogue when it came in the post.

He finds collecting to be a very satisfying journey and calls it ‘a real process’.

“Art can be very complicated and it requires effort. It requires intrigue and humility. Let’s face it, many serious artists are very bright, we are lucky if we can enter their world, for more meaning about our own,” he says. “Art is completely absorbing and a complete way of life,” says Amanda Love.

“If you view art rigorously, art enables you to see things that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to see, both about the world and about yourself,” she says.

“Museum quality contemporary art is part of a historical conversation and I think the best art is always a conversation between the artist and themselves anyway.  So if you are able to eavesdrop in on that conversation, by being a collector or a connoisseur of art, then that is such a privilege,” says Love.

With her home laid out like a gallery it is pretty clear where her priorities lie. Even her outdoor pool presided over by a neon work set into a perfectly clipped hedge.

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Jodie Clark drawing, L: Unknown man, Amanda Love and Tracey Emin at .M Contemporary

Opening at M Contemporary

05. Art collecting provides you with artist access


For Amanda Love who counts people like Isaac Julien and Tracey Emin as close personal friends, meeting artists has provided her with deeper insight into the life of mid-career and established artists.

“You understand the singular drive and dedication that has to accompany talent to achieve success and that sheer, often relentless will, to have your voice heard and to be understood and express yourself in your own terms. That never ceases to amaze me. It continually amazes me,” she says.

Lawrence Smith says he loves the social side or art as much as the intellectual side.

“The art world has completely opened up society and the world to me, it’s amazing how very connected it all is. I tend to meet all the artists I buy, except I have a Picasso ceramic. Artists love it when you tell them you own their work, it’s a kind of validation,” he says.

06. Art can help you in your relationships

Art is not just for the office or the gallery context either. It can also be a good bonding ritual for couples according to collectors.

“Art has helped me enormously in my personal life,” says Lawrence Smith .

“My wife, Anthea Williamson, is a photographer, she has a great way of capturing structural elements in her images. We go to a lot of shows and look at a lot of work together. It’s where the communication is at its best.”

Amanda Love says she always advises couples to use their collection to unite them and to use the buying opportunity to open a running dialogue.

“There are enough things in life to divide you without your art collection doing it. I always advise couples to agree on a piece before buying it,” Love says.

Mark Hughes describe art as being quite like human life – full of risks and joys, ups and downs.

07. Art can aid your corporate brand

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Works by Ori Gersht (left) and Richard Moss (right)courtesy of the BresicWhitney Collection

Corporate Collections not only add colour to office walls and act as a tax deduction, they can also reflect the mission of the company.

“Art was never introduced to provide new business opportunities,” says Shannan Whitney about the start of his corporate collection for BresicWhitney.

“But it was in a sense a strategic decision to align ourselves with everything that art creates,” says Whitney.

He admits that buying art is much like buying a home, because the more you see the more educated you become and the better decisions you will ultimately make.

“Art was really supportive of what I thought a real estate brand could be.

I suspect that it has helped my business but I have no proof. It has been synonymous with the brand from the start and I think that more directly art has been a great enabler for many relationships.

“It probably provides us with a really great audience in terms of how people view our business and the association,” he says. 

Lawrence Smith says he also finds that art alters people’s perception.

“My office is full of artwork, I can see how it challenges people that come and visit. I like seeing the discomfort this causes. It’s great when people start asking questions or are enthusiastic about a piece they know nothing about.

“I have a giant work by Trent Parke in my office, everyone comments on it, I like telling them the story of why I bought it and what the work is about. I have another piece by Todd MacMillan that says ‘We Cannot Fail’,” says Smith.

“Work is obscure, it’s there to make us think. The Art has set us apart slightly as a business,” he says.

What we can all take from collecting art, is that it’s a personal journey that enriches and colours one’s surroundings. But it is also another tool in your arsenal for seeing the world and relating to it.


Teaching art or teaching to think like an artist?

Top 5 exhibitions M contemporary staff are excited for summer

5 People you should know


Top 5 articles you should be reading


1) Inside the mind of a million dollar art Bidder.
The New Yorker
Following the record breaking $87 million sale of Monet’s Grain stack’s, The New Yorker has seen fit to ask what the value of an artwork what really is and what drives these exclusive prices higher and higher. This insightful article takes a microscope and examines the Auction format. Offering a detailed explanation from auction adrenalin rush to art world politics, why and how the art market works.
Read more here…


2) The Bitter legal Battle over Peggy Guggenheims Blockbuster Art collection
Vanity Fair
Peggy Guggenheim was one of the 21st centuries most influential art collectors and patrons. Her persona was famously fashionable and seductive. This modern woman amassed an extensive and layered art collection throughout the coarse of her life, that after her death was left the Guggenheim foundation. Many of Peggy’s descendants now feel the Guggenheim Foundation has been miss treating the collection, starting an intensely personal legal battle concerning control and trusteeship. This article gives a fascinating insight into the life, times and turmoils of the 21st century enigma and her legacy.
Read more here…

articles23) A brief history of women in video art
Video art has never been a medium dominated by men. In the 1960’s pioneering women like Valerie Export and Joan Jonas paved the way for an entire future repertoire of women video artist. This Feature takes a look at how and why women became leading innovators of the digital medium. Offering a unique chance to view the video work referenced this feature is inspiring and fascinating, an online exhibition, celebrating women in art.
Read more here…


4) Diverse Indigenous voice heard in US Exhibition,’Everywhen’
Art Monthly
It is always exciting to hear about Australia art ventures overseas. This feature in art monthly is a heart-warming reminder of the diverse pool of artistic expression Australian culturally has to offer. Stephen Gilchrist Australian Studies lecturer at the University of Sydney has curated an exhibition at the Harvard Art Museum. Artist includes Vernon Ah Khee, Emily Kame and Judy Watson. Acknowledgment of country is explored in the exhibition a largely foreign idea for an American audience.
Read more here…

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5) NGA director Jackson Pollock sale ‘Ludicrous’
ABC Arts
“It’s a fantastic thing that the National Gallery of Australia, the people of Australia, own one of the greatest pictures in the world and certainly perhaps the greatest American picture of the 20th century.” Dr Gerard Vaughan Director of the NGV speaking about the $350 million Jackson Pollack painting owned by all Australians. Learn about the history behind this modern artwork and the controversy surrounding it. Should this National Treasure be sold?
Read more here…


The Hidden Value of Art


5 Art Podcasts .M Contemporary Staff Are Listening To


Top 5 exhibitions M contemporary staff are excited for summer


Top 5 exhibitions M contemporary staff are excited for summer


1) The Origin of Art

Probably Australia’s most exciting and mysterious art museums MONA in Hobart has curated a show discussing how art works for the maker and the viewer in a biological sense? This is a philosophical exhibition with a little bit of Sci-fi thrown in. Artist include Patricia Piccinini, Vernon Ah Khee and Yayoi Kusama
Visit: The origin of Art, MONA, 5 Nov 2016 -17 Apr 2017

2) Nude

In collaboration with the TATE in London this summer showcase at the Art Gallery of NSW is a presentation of the persistent yet changing representation the nude in art. Nude offers an enticing chronological tour through many major art movements, including romanticism, cubism, surrealism and feminism. This exhibition is seductive and diverse and offering something for every art connoisseur.
Visit: AGNSW between 5 Nov 2016 – 5 Feb 2017


3) Coincidences
Nishi gallery is a small contemporary art space in Canberra’s New Acton Art precinct. This month they are holding a photographic exhibition in collaboration with John Wardle Architects interrogating the boundaries between public and private space. If you are a fan of good design and beautiful visual essays coincidences is the show for you.
Visit: coincidences, Nishi Gallery, until the 17 Feb


4) Tatsuo Miyajima
Miyajima is one of japans most respected artists, The MCA in Sydney has put together astonishing retrospective show displaying decades of work from an artist obsessed with digital technology, numerals and the passage of time. This is the first time a major retrospective of Miyajima’s work has been shown in the southern hemisphere
Visit: Tatsuo Miyajima, MCA, until the 5 March


5) Sugar Spin
With the weather so fine GOMA Queensland Gallery Of Modern Art is well on our radar. This summer GOMA presents Sugar Spin, an exhibition sweetly reflecting on connections between humanity and the natural world. Sugar spin features over 250 contemporary artworks exploring light, space, architecture and the senses. Sweet!
Visit: Sugar Spin, GOMA, 3 Dec 2016 – 17 Apr 2017


Mehwish Iqbal Announced as Finalist for Paramor Prize 2017

Gallery artist Mehwish Iqbal has been announced as a finalist for the 2017 Paramor Prize: Art + Innovation held at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre.


Mehwish Iqbal portrait

Iqbal is an exciting up and comer in the Australian Art World. She has been a finalist in the Fisher Ghost Art Prize 2015 and 2016 as well as being featured in a Diaspora-Making Machines exhibition at Blacktown Arts Centre. 

We will be featuring her work in an upcoming solo exhibition this March and taking her work to Art Central art fair Hong Kong. 


Mehwish Iqbal with leg 

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Teaching art or teaching to think like an artist?

What is the purpose and value of Art education in the 21st Century? Foley makes the case the Art’s critical value is to develop learners that think like Artists which means learners who are creative, curious, that seek questions, develop ideas, and play. For that to happen society will need to stop the pervasive, problematic and cliché messaging that implies that creativity is somehow defined as artistic skill. This shift in perception will give educators the courage to teach for creativity, by focusing on three critical habits that artist employ, 1. Comfort with Ambiguity, 2. Idea Generation, and 3. Transdisciplinary Research. This change can make way for Center’s for Creativity in our schools and museums where ideas are king and curiosity reigns.


New Standardized Test Measures Artistic Ability


Top 5 exhibitions M contemporary staff are excited for summer

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5 Art Podcasts .M Contemporary Staff Are Listening To

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  2. 1. Artsy

    The ARTSY podcast is probably the best podcast about the global art world, featuring news, history lessons and insider tips. The best episodes to start with are No. 17 What’s in a Frame?,  No. 4 What is an Emerging Artist Anyway? and the Special Edition: Art Basel in Miami. Available on iTunes



    2. CANVAS (FBi Radio)

    Canvas is a radio show, hosted by three Sydney based artists Abdul Abdullah, Nat Randall and David Capra. It is all about the emerging and cutting edge in Sydney. Tune in for unique critical conversations on contemporary art, document Australian practice and promote exciting local projects. You can listen to it on the FBi Radio website.



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  5. 3. 99% Invisible

    So technically this one is more about design then art, but it’s so good we just had to put it in. This podcast talks about everything from where the NBC Chime sound came from, to how people forecast fashion trends. All the episodes are great so just jump right in. Available on iTunes



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  7. 4. The Modern Art Notes Podcast

    By Tyler Green this weekly podcast interviews artists, curators, & art historians on the hows & whys of creating art. It also has a pretty awesome blog. This podcast is great if you always want to know more about the artist, their process and their thoughts on the work. Available on iTunes


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  9. 5. Art Marketing Action Podcasts

    This podcast is by art-marketing and artist career consultant Alyson B. Stanfield.   It offers bite-sized and insightful tips on how to market yourself, your work or your gallery in the art world. This is a must listen for anyone wanting to work in art. It was discontinued in 2010, but nearly 200 episodes are still available on iTunes.

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L.A.’s Is Getting A New Art Museum

Los Angeles’ ever-expanding museum landscape spreads a little farther come spring with the opening of the Marciano Art Foundation.

The contemporary art museum from Guess co-founders Paul and Maurice Marciano will show painting, sculpture and photography along with installation, performance and multimedia works in a renovated former Scottish Rite Masonic Temple on Wilshire Boulevard near Koreatown. 

The big question: Just how hungry is Los Angeles for contemporary art? 

The Broad museum, which has been populating its Grand Avenue sidewalk with standby lines since opening a little more than a year ago, sits across the street from the Museum of Contemporary Art. And the former Santa Monica Museum of Art will reopen in the downtown Arts District this fall as the newly renamed Institute of Contemporary Art Los Angeles. It’s not far from Hauser Wirth & Schimmel, the gallery with museum-quality exhibitions and events curated by former MOCA staffer Paul Schimmel. Meanwhile, the non-collecting Main Museum made a soft debut in downtown’s Old Bank District in October.

“The way I see it, L.A. is probably the major contemporary art center in the world, not just in museums but also — and more importantly — because of all the artists living here and moving to L.A.,” said Maurice, currently co-chair of the MOCA board. “I believe the more museums there will be, the more every museum will be successful in having a lot of visitors because more and more people will come to L.A. to visit them.”

Maurice, who’s been on MOCA’s board since 2012, said his forthcoming institution is intended to function as a foundation, not a big museum. “It’s gonna be much more groundbreaking, unconventional,” he said. “You’ll see artists that you already know, but a lot of really young artists who are not shown in museums yet.”

Read more at the L.A. Times 

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New Standardized Test Measures Artistic Ability



“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up,” Pablo Picasso once famously mused. These words are emblazoned on the arts education webpage of the New Hampshire Department of Education, a leader in the charge to reduce the rush of high-stakes standardized testing in schools. Any way you score them, those bubble sheets can’t capture the potential young artists and creatives hold. This spring, the state put forth a pilot arts testing program cultivating alternative ways to measure creative learning, following its similar programs already in place for math, science, and language arts. But can these reimagined assessments (say drawing and reflecting on a self-portrait) actually push forward teaching and learning in the arts—and aspiring Picassos into careers?

The initiative is the latest step in a new model for education that moves away from standardardized tests as a sole measure of accountability and instead focuses on measuring students’ abilities in ways more akin to how they will eventually be measured in the real world. (New Hampshire is one of a small number of states, including Michigan and Florida, exploring this method for the arts.) The arts tests were developed by a cadre of teachers across the state. They score students through a series of tasks that more clearly map onto the actual process of arts disciplines.

Higher Education in Art Is in Crisis—Now’s the Time to Reform It

“It sits much better with art than a multiple choice test, because that can only give you a small slice of information about what students can do,” says Marcia McCaffrey, an arts consultant for the New Hampshire Department of Education. “Those are really about what they know, and not what they can do.” In a 21st century armed with iPhones and computers that can answer our every question, memorizing knowledge solely for test-taking is already deemed by some an outmoded skill. But for fields in which creative problem-solving, never mind artistic expression itself, are most highly valued, it’s downright antithetical.

Original Source ARTSY 

How to buy prints

What New Collectors Need to Know about Buying Prints


Jenny Holzer, Conclusion (2016), three of a set of six aquatint and white ground etchings. Available from Pace Prints at IFPDA Print Fair 2016.


One of the most common misconceptions about prints is that they are reproductions on paper of existing works of art. In fact, prints are original multiples; works of art in their own right that are conceived and executed by the artist in multiple in the medium of printmaking, which includes silkscreen, woodcut and linocut, etching, lithography, and digital printing, among other techniques. “They are not unique, but they are originals,” says Elizabeth Fodde-Reguer of Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl.

Because printmaking is a medium with unique strengths and limitations, and involves collaboration between the artist and printers, it often opens up new space for artists to explore. Fontaine says “our goal is for the artist to leave their experience in our studio with a new understanding of and approach to their own practice.” As Christina Graham of Pace Printsnotes, “the breadth of techniques used in printmaking and papermaking creates endlessly surprising results in the hands of different artists.”

While printmaking encompasses a diverse group of processes, all hold in common the use of a “matrix”—a plate, block, or other surface—that is incised or chemically altered so that an image can be printed from the matrix many times. Don’t picture a desktop printer or photocopier churning out pages, though! Fine art prints are constructed in layers, meaning that a multicolor image may require a dozen or more different plates or blocks to produce, and a dozen or more separate runs through the printing press.


Fragrance artist Anicka Yi wins major art prize

Contemporary art is littered with examples of artists who have created work out of unusual materials: Damien Hirst used pickled animals, Marc Quinn used his own blood and Helmut Lang used 6,000 pieces of his archive – shredded – but the winner of the 20th Hugo Boss Art Prize employs something perhaps even more unorthodox: smell.

South Korean artist Anicka Yi, who works predominantly with fragrance, makes art that can be enjoyed by our sense of smell, as well as sight. “Smell is a form of sculpture, because it has a lot of volume,” she is noted to have said. Her works include That Fork Feels Good Sliding in My Mouth which comprises of a canvas made from a scented soap.

In winning the Hugo Boss Art Prize 2016, Yi not only receives the hefty sum of $100,000 but also gets the opportunity to stage a solo exhibition at major New York gallery, the Guggenheim. Opening in April of next year, the exhibition will be the artist’s first big show on US soil.

“We are particularly compelled by the way Yi’s sculptures and installations make public and strange, and thus newly addressable, our deeply subjective corporeal realities,” read a statement from the jury. “We also admire the unique embrace of discomfort in her experiments with technology, science, and the plant and animal worlds, all of which push at the limits of perceptual experience in the ‘visual’ arts.”

To win over the jury, Yi fought off competition that included a host of international talents such as Tania Bruguera, Mark Leckey, Ralph Lemon, Laura Owens, and Wael Shawky. As for Hugo Boss, which has been partnering with the Guggenheim for two decades now, the prize represents a way for the German brand to foster emerging artistic talent.

“The Hugo Boss Prize marks a highlight in our partnership with the Guggenheim Museum and we are proud that it has now been at the core of our arts program for twenty years,” noted Mark Langer, Chairman and CEO, Hugo Boss. “We would like to extend our sincerest congratulations to the winner and express our gratitude to the jury and the Guggenheim Museum for their dedication and support.”

Originally posted on Dazed and Confused
To read more Click Here

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Blue Poles: National Gallery of Australia director Gerard Vaughan labels call to sell Jackson Pollock masterpiece ‘ludicrous’

Key points:

Earlier this month, Victorian Liberal Senator James Paterson said while Blue Poles had proved a very good investment, it was inappropriate for the Federal Government to retain one of the world’s most expensive artworks.

Speaking for the first time on the furore, NGA director Dr Gerard Vaughan said he had refused to comment publicly before because the suggestion was “such a ludicrous concept” and “manifestly absurd”.

“Blue Poles is one of the greatest pictures in the world,” he told Margaret Throsby’s Midday Interview.

Originally posted on ABC Arts

To read more Click Here


.M Contemporary opening in Bondi this summer!

This month .M Contemporary Woollahra expands its reach, opening Bondi’s first Fine Art gallery at The Pacific. From 4 November to end of February 2017 .M Contemporary will attract beachgoers with a vibrant gallery full of cutting-edge contemporary artists.

.M Contemporary Bondi will open with a group show of artists including photographers Justin Dingwall  and Simone Rosenbauer, plus works by light sculptor Aly Indermühle. Operating Wednesday to Sunday, the gallery is designed as a great summer holiday space for high-street consumers to explore.

Bondi Beach’s Gould Street, which runs parallel to Campbell Parade has recently welcomed a slew of hot new retail outlets indulging; Aesop, Jac + Jack, Totem Road, Venroy, and Saturdays NYC. These slick new operations further add to the lustre of the shopping precinct, which attracts upwardly mobile pleasure seekers from the Eastern Suburbs. Now .M Contemporary adds to this urban mix, by setting up Bondi’s first Fine Art gallery at the base of The Pacific Bondi Beach. The new site is easily accessible via the QT Hotel on Campbell Parade, or from the driveway next to Saturday’s NYC on Gould Street.

.M Contemporary Woollahra, is a cross-cultural art gallery that was established on Ocean Street in August 2013. .M Contemporary Bondi, is the second space for gallery Founder and Director Michelle Paterson who says her expansion, seeks to build on her well established client list, while capturing new collectors where they reside. She believes the pivot in Bondi Beach retail from Nandos and General Pants, to more refined and minimalist stores, reflects resident’s increasingly sophisticated tastes. Paterson sites Bondi’s rising property prices and the young professional audience, as some of the major changes she has witnessed in the area.

“Bondi is home to a rich tapestry of residents well versed in fine art photography, design and lifestyle luxury,” says .M Contemporary Founder and Director Michelle Paterson. “Residents are very well travelled home makers who appreciate the finer things in life. .M Contemporary Bondi offers them a choice of acclaimed artists to complement their tastes and to help them curate interiors in their homes and offices,” Paterson says.

The pop up will run alongside the full program of events at the first gallery in Woollahra.

For more information, please  visit: 

MEDIA EVENT: Courtyard Party 6-8pm Wednesday 9 November The Pacific Bondi Beach


Western Australia launches new vision for the arts

One of 51 sculptures by Anthony Gormley at Lake Ballard, near Kalgoorlie, WA. Image via Flickr.

Described as a ‘road map for the future’ for government, the arts sector, community and private enterprise, Strategic Directions 2016-2031 is Western Australia’s first long-term vision for the arts and culture sector.

The document was developed by advisory body the Arts Leadership Group (comprised of CEOs and directors-general from key government departments and industry and arts organisations including the Department of Culture and the Arts, Tourism WA, State Library of WA, WA Museum, Art Gallery of WA, ScreenWest, Perth International Arts Festival, and Chamber of Arts and Culture WA) in consultation with the sector.

Strategic Directions 2016-2031 was launched yesterday by Culture and the Arts Minister John Day, who said it outlined the Liberal National Government’s vision for the sector.

‘Its mission statement is clear – for WA to be the best place to live, work and play thanks to the contribution of its arts, culture and creative industries,’ he said.

‘We can look forward to a bigger and busier culture and arts sector that continuously creates new jobs and opportunities.

Originally posted on ArtsHub
To read more Click Here


Adelaide festival 2017 program: Cate Blanchett and Shakespeare get dark, weird and surreal

Canadian-American singer Rufus Wainwright, Australian theatre production The Secret River, Barrie Kosky’s production of Handel’s opera Saul and a film by artist Del Kathryn Barton starring Cate Blanchett mark the highlights of 2017’s Adelaide festival.

The March festival is the first under the co-artistic direction of Rachel Healy and Neil Armfield, who worked together for almost a decade at Sydney’s Belvoir St Theatre.

The program for the 2017 Adelaide festival, which is run concurrently with Adelaide fringe, Adelaide writers’ week and Womadelaide, is a celebration of the dark, weird and surreal. Thursday’s announcement also featured details of new festival hub the Riverbank Palais, which will float on the river Torrens throughout March.

Read more here


Gallery artist Hannah Quinlivan in Sculpture in the Vineyards

We are delighted that gallery artist Hannah Quinlivan will be taking place in the upcoming Sculpture in the Vineyards.

A month long festival of art and culture held across four boutique vineyards in the Wollombi Valley and at selected locations in the historic Wollombi Village.

Visitors to Sculpture in the Vineyards can enjoy the latest in contemporary outdoor sculpture by talented Australian artists and wander through the picturesque landscape of the Wollombi Valley. We provide a unique opportunity to sample premium wines and local produce as well as a bespoke range of public programmes for children and families, wine and art lovers or lovers in general. 

for more information:


SangHyun Lee: Colonisation, Consumerism and the Politics of Otherness

We are very excited about our current exhibition by renowned South Korean Artist, SangHyun Lee: ‘Colonisation, Consumerism and the Politics of Otherness.’

At SangHyun’s artist dinner, Anna Davies from the MCA spoke of SangHyun’s work, expressing that “It’s a really deep and complex practice that exists on a number of levels… [SangHyun Lee’s works] really draw on the history of both South and North Korean to depict what I would describe as a futuristic past, observed very much from the position of the other… [SangHyun Lee] uses collage, humor and satire to tackle quite complex issues based around ideas of artificiality and reality in contemporary Korea, but also criticizing what he might call a hyper-consumer, hyper-material, money-over-love mentality” (September 2nd, .M Contemporary Gallery).

In his work, there is a fusion of traditional art practice and modern day technology, many of the backgrounds are painted in traditional inks and take months to complete. This ancestral work is then montaged with modern computer generated images to create a new contemporary composition that questions today’s politics and policies.

There are three recurring theme’s in Lee’s work: the artist’s presence in each piece (SangHyun Lee places himself in each of his works), the fake peach blossoms, and the different womens faces in the works- a commentary on plastic surgery in Korea, where the practice is more popular than any other country.

The dichotomy of both past and present, artificiality and reality, east and west, depict to the audience notions of potential becomings, as these works challenge the course our future may take. As an artistic, insightful inventor, SangHyun Lee has created several possible futures.

‘Colonisation, Consumerism and the Politics of Otherness’ will be exhibited at .M Contemporary Gallery until September 8. Please send all enquires you might have to Pyongyang Gisaeng Dies to Save her Chastity Nostalgia Circle 1 Nostalgia Circle 2


.M Contemporary at 602 Art Fair Melbourne

.M Contemporary would like to thank visitors to 602, along with the City of Melbourne and the other galleries, Chares Nordum Gallery, Gallerysmith, Jacob Hoerner Galleries, Martin Browne Contemporary, Michael Reid, Olsen Irwin, Scott Livesey Galleries, Watters Gallery.

This edition of 602 highlighted both Australian and International contemporary artists in a fresh urbane experience for art lovers. unnamed (3)


Joy Ivill selected for the third Tamworth Textile Triennial

Congratulations to gallery artist Joy lvill for being selected for the third Tamworth Textile Triennial. The Triennial showcases the best of textile art from all across Australia, as well as engaging wide audiences and critical reviews. The Triennial strives to promote and sustain the unparalleled rich cultural heritage which is associated with both the history and technology of the textile practice. We wish Joy all the best! Joy’s stunning new works will be on exhibition at the gallery in August, please email for more information –

Joy Ivill_We're Cactus-website

Let’s Talk Art: .M Contemporary Art Discussion Series starting August 2nd

We’re excited to announce the .M Contemporary Let’s Talk Art series,  an enjoyable way to explore and learn more about contemporary art and art collecting. The discussions will be lead by renowned art collectors and art-world commentators! The first part of the series will take place in on Tuesday’s in August, from 9- 10am. Reservations are required as there are only 15 spaces available for each lecture- so do be sure to register ASAP. For more details do email us at


Gallery Artist Lee Sang Hyun featured in MCA show, New Romance

We are so proud to have the privilege to represent Sang Hyun Lee in Australia. Sang Hyun is an incredibly humble man, considering he is one of Korea’s most important contemporary artists. The exhibition New Romance: Art and the Posthuman will run from the 30th of June until the 3rd of September at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. We will be opening Sanghuyn’s solo exhibition at .M Contemporary on September 1st, with new work by the artist as well as special release AP’s from some of his most iconic pieces. 


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Top 10 Tips for New Art Collectors





After interviewing hundreds of experienced collectors, we believe this list is the most invaluable tool for a new art enthusiast


1. Do you have a visual reaction?

It has to catch your eye. When you first look at an artwork, it needs to visually stimulate you, not necessarily because it’s pretty or you like the colours the artist used, but it could be haunting, confronting or even disturbing. But you have to have a visual reaction to the work – it’s got to trigger something within you. A good exercise is to walk through the exhibition and after you’ve left the building, try and recall the artwork. If you can’t recall the artwork you spent time looking at, this is not a good sign. An artwork needs to speak to you, draw you in and make you want to go back and look again.


2. Does it provoke thought and discussion?

Remember, not all artwork will go in the dining room or the bedroom, so in other areas of the house, it’s often a good idea to install works that make you think, feel and contemplate, even if it comes down to difficult subjects. It makes for great conversation, reminds us to be tolerant, open minded and accepting. Art is of utmost importance to children and young adult development, as numerous studies have indicated. Children exposed to art are propelled forward intellectually. Research has shown they have stronger critical thinking skills and display higher levels of tolerance and empathy. It can be powerful and though provoking.


3. Does it intellectually stimulate you?

After having a visual and emotional reaction to an artwork you need to be able to also intellectually react to the work. You want to learn something from the work. This can be insight into something you knew nothing about or something far more personal. Artists’ are often referred to as our social conscience, where the world is reflected back to us through the artists’ interpretation. In general, art should give us greater understanding of a subject, an issue, a person, a place and so on.

4. Can you afford it?

Yes, that old foe, money, or lack thereof. Passionate collectors, however, will do just about anything to get their hands on a piece they love. But if you don’t fall into that category yet, it’s a good idea to come up with a plan and a budget. I would suggest allocating some funds towards more established artists with stronger CVs and keep some of your budget for investing in emerging artists. It’s a lot less stressful and you can watch their careers and achievements knowing that you helped them to continue their art practice. There are also assistant art buying finds like Art Money in Australia that offer easy-to-understand and completely above board interest-free loans.


5. Get out and visit the galleries

Take your time to visit galleries. Speak to the owner and directors ask about the gallery philosophy. Ask how long they have been operating. Build a good relationship with the gallery, tell them what artists you like, go on the mailing list and attend their previews, events or shows. This will not only give you first options on works but also access to artists and like-minded people.

6. Do your research

It’s important to look at where and with whom an artist exhibits. You can tell a lot by the company they keep. Look at the CV and BIO of the artist to see if they have been recognised by the market, won art prizes in major collections like museums, banks or institutions, have been included in exhibitions in state or regional galleries, or are collected by well-regarded collectors. It is all on the CV.


7. Choose the work, not the artist

Not all works by the same artist are considered equal. Even in the same exhibition, you will find some works are much stronger and garner more value for the artist. Unless you can get the work you respond to, don’t buy a work just because it is an artist you value. If you are buying for investment, it may not be worth as much as his or her other pieces, leaving you with a work you never loved and has not retained its value. Speak to the gallery, be patient and wait. Go on the waiting list for new works by the artist.


8. Don’t follow trends

Don’t buy work because others have collected the artist and he or she is deemed to be ‘the artist to have’. Authentic collectors don’t operate like that. They do their research, go out and look; they follow artists and are patient for the piece that speaks to them. They wait for the right piece and don’t place a high value on buying into something or someone based purely on popularity. Of course, it may be the works of the artist du jour is something you do love, so go for it. But keep the above warning in mind when making the purchase.


9. Don’t be intimidated when asking about art

The art market may seem like a foreign world when a new buyer first enters a gallery. A lack of knowledge about art may frighten even the most discerning eye. Yet the best thing about art is that there is no right or wrong. Ask the gallerists as many questions as you like – where does the artist live, how old is he/she, what is the theme of the work and why? How did they do the work? What is the meaning behind it? Gallerists love their job. They want to talk about the art. Remember: there are no stupid questions, only stupid answers.

10. Be informed on where and how to display your art

Many galleries can assist when it comes to hanging your new purchase. It’s not always easy to ascertain where works should go or how they should be displayed, especially if you’re moving into a larger space. The location and hanging style of an art work in your home can make or break its impact, so take up this offer if you’re unsure of how or where or how to place a new piece.  









1. Don’t go behind the gallery’s back to make a deal with the artist. Any reputable artist will tell the gallery, you will get blacklisted and can say goodbye to any previews of future works.

2. Don’t put a work on hold for the duration of the exhibition and then decide against it. If it’s on hold, make it short (a couple of days at most). The artist would have lost out on opportunities to sell the work.

3. Don’t ask for a discount. Collectors who ask for discounts will always be the last person the gallery contacts when a new opportunity arises.






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VIVID Festival

Indermühle + Indermühle 
Aly Indermühle (Australia) / Balthasar Indermühle (Australia)

27 May 18 Jun 18:00 – 23:00
Campbells Cove as part of VIVID Festival

explores the subtle interaction between audience, light and space, breaking down the viewing barriers of a sandstone wall to reveal a window into an alternative landscape. 

The installation presents as a painting of an arid central-desert landscape, reaching into the distance like a mirage. The sense of horizon is captured by a series of vertical lights, lined up along the wall and which graduate in colour from blue to reds and oranges. 

The sandstone blocks of the wall lend warm rich tones and texture and the illusion of a vibrant blue sky reaches deep into the night and reminds the viewer that there is a natural beauty to the unique light of this country.

As immigrants to Australia, the Indermühles have been greatly influenced by the natural beauty that exists in urban areas, the bush and outback regions. After living on a small farm deep in the heart of remote New South Wales for several years, their relocation to the city has left them with lasting memories of remarkable sunsets, sunrises, and skies so blue they never ceased to amaze.

Combining Aly’s artistic imagination and Balthasar’s scientific background, the pair have created a work that is aesthetically beautiful and seeks to accurately represent the wonder of the natural light that inspires them.

Country represented by installation: Australia


A small bay on the eastern shore of Sydney Cove, Campbell’s Cove is named after Robert Campbell, a Scottish merchant who arrived in Sydney in the late 1790s and established a highly successful import/export business operated out of storehouses and a jetty on its shores. See what else is happening in Campbell’s Cove


Buying Art with ArtMoney

Myth Number 1: You Can’t Afford To Buy Art.

When Kate Bridges turned 30, she decided it was time to buy a work of art she had spied every day for weeks.

Like many of us: “I had been buying clothes and bags and going on holidays – spending my salary like water on stuff that never held its value – since I’d started working as a graphic designer at 22,” says the former art student.

“But I realised not long after I got engaged that it was time to start making proper investments. As art was my first love, I looked into buying a beautiful contemporary portrait I’d seen when walking past a neighbourhood gallery on the way to work.”


But when she finally made the enquiry, the painting was double what Kate could afford in a one-off purchase.


“It was a real shame. I knew the artist was up and coming and the piece would be a fantastic investment,” she says. “But what could I do?”


Two days later, she came across a flyer on Art Money when waiting in a coffee shop. That was when the penny dropped.



Michael Schiavoni has a similar story. A corporate lawyer, Michael was burnt out at the age of 35. Both his parents had passed away within 12 months of each other and his long-term relationship had broken down six months after his mother died.


“I quit my job and started working in a café down the road from my home in Paddington,” says the now 40-year-old. “I had more time to look around me and notice small things in the area I’d never had the head space to look at.”


Within months, Michael had thrown out most of the items in his home that didn’t bring him any happiness, in a similar vein to the immensely popular book “The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo (Vermilion). “I then had this long white wall in my terrace just begging for some kind of art work,” he says. “But I’d given up my legal salary, paid off most of my mortgage and was now living on a much smaller income.”


Still, Michael had spied a large photograph in a gallery around the corner from his home. He stopped to look at it every morning and every afternoon for two weeks. One day, the owner came out and talked to him about it.


“He must’ve seen me staring at it,” he says, “so he asked if I was interested. I said I was, but that the timing was wrong. That was when he told me about Art Money.”


Art Money is a relatively new concept, having launched in April 2015, but since then, hundreds of people like Kate and Michael have used the service – and many are already repeat users.


So how does it work? At its core, Art Money provides interest free loans to buy art (and only art) at participating galleries. Loans are available from $750-$20,000. Payments are spread over 10 equal monthly payments. After you pay a 10 per cent deposit, you can take the artwork home and pay the remainder over nine months, interest free. So for example, a piece that is $1250 would cost you $125 per month over 10 months (with the first payment being the deposit).


For those wondering about how they can do the interest free part – participating galleries pay Art Money an equivalent to the standard interest charge that would otherwise be paid on your loan.


Paul Becker, the Founder and CEO of Art Money, says the business idea came from frustration that art was too hard to buy.


“I wanted to make it easier and more affordable,” says Becker in an interview with .M Contemporary.


“My business 10 Group has been creating ways to increase engagement with art for 25 years through publishing and events. People really do want to engage with and buy art, but sometimes they feel like they don’t quite know how/where/who.”

Paying upfront, he adds, is one of the barriers.


“So I thought I could do something about that.” After all, every other industry has worked how to do finance. Why not art?


Art, he concedes, can be a daunting buying prospect for many. They believe they can’t afford it because it has to be very expensive to be a worthwhile purchase.


But this is where Art Money hopes to break down those barriers. It allows a diverse range of people to have access to various styles and prices of art. This simultaneously supports the artistic community.


People taking advantage of Art Money range from “first time buyers to existing collectors. And across the demographics. Around 25 per cent are buying their first work of art – so we are growing the market”. 


Around half are regular collectors, he adds.


“Art Money gives them the ability to extend their budget and feel more responsible about the purchase. Paying off over 10 months is a more considered way to buy art – both emotionally and financially – and you get to take it home and enjoy it from day one.”


Currently, there are more than 120 galleries participating all over Australia.


For Kate, that dreamy portrait she now wakes up to every day makes her realise it was money well spent. “I’ve only got one more payment to make and the piece is paid off,” she says. “For once, I’ve bought something I know will retain its value and bring me plenty of happiness for a long time.”





William Kentridge Photo: Marc Shoul, courtesy of Berliner Festspiele

William Kentridge Slams European Leaders for Being Greedy and Selfish

William Kentridge Photo: Marc Shoul, courtesy of Berliner Festspiele

William Kentridge Photo: Marc Shoul, courtesy of Berliner Festspiele


The South African artist William Kentridge is the latest art world figure to criticize Europe’s refugee policy after he delivered a scathing condemnation of the migrant crisis.

Speaking to the German art and culture publication Art Magazin ahead of the opening of his museum survey at Berlin’s Martin Gropius Bau, the artist took a moment to address the hypocrisy of the European political elite.


“For 300 years Europe took everything it could get from its colonies and is directly responsible for the structures of these countries,” Kentridge said. “And now that these people knock on Europe’s door, it shuts down and behaves as if it were generous to let in a tiny, tiny part of this population to whom it inflicted such damage. It is not as if the population of Europe will suddenly grow by 20 or 30 percent, it is about a fraction of a percent. From the outside it looks like incredible greed and selfishness.”

Millions of refugees have fled the Middle East and North Africa to escape conflict and poverty. Photo: Hendrik Schmidt via Getty Images/AFP/

Millions of refugees have fled the Middle East and North Africa to escape conflict and poverty.
Photo: Hendrik Schmidt via Getty Images/AFP/



Kentridge joins a growing list of prominent artists who have spoken out against the ham-fisted handling of the migrant crisis.

Ai Weiwei has been one of the most vocal critics of European policy toward migrants and refugees. The Chinese artist has visited refugee camps in Lesbos and Idomeni in Greece to highlight the plight of displaced people.

Anish Kapoor organized a petition signed by leading British actors, musicians, and other cultural luminaries to urge the UK government to act on the European refugee crisis. He even bought a full-page advertisement in the Guardian to bring attention to the cause.

Ai Weiwei visits the Idomeni refugee camp, on the border of Greece and Macedonia, on March 11, 2016. Photo: Matt Cardy/Getty Images.

Ai Weiwei visits the Idomeni refugee camp, on the border of Greece and Macedonia, on March 11, 2016. Photo: Matt Cardy/Getty Images.



Olafur Eliasson has also spoken out against the European Union’s inadequate response. He organized a participation-based arts project in Vienna which was meant to eliminate hierarchies between the hosts and the refugees being hosted.

Meanwhile, the German photographer Wolfgang Tillmans is addressing the ongoing European migrant crisis at his Berlin-based project space, Between Bridges, which will host talks events and exhibitions regarding the humanitarian crisis until further notice.

Kentridge was in Berlin promoting his three shows in the city, at Martin Gropius Bau, Kewenig Galerie, and a lecture-performance taking place from July 5 -17 as part of the Foreign Affairs festival.



Original post by ARTNET


The Art Market, Explained


How did the art auctions business become a multi-billion-dollar industry? The first film in a series about the art market explores this question, leading viewers through the complex history of auctions, with specific attention to the last 20 years. The film unpacks record-breaking sales, like last week’s epic Jean-Michel Basquiat painting Untitled (1982), hammering in at $51 million, and anomalies such as Ai Weiwei’s Kui Hua Zi (Sunflower Seeds) (2010), which pop up at auction in countless different quantities, making the connection between the auction price and market value of art. Interviews with auction-house specialists, financial analysts, and art-world influencers like Adam Lindemann, Xin Li, Sarah Thornton, Josh Baer, and Don Thompson add personal insight and shape the narrative.

Auctions launches a four-part documentary series, followed by Galleries, Patrons, and Art Fairs, released weekly through mid-June. Together, the four segments will tell a comprehensive story about the art market’s history and cultural influence, providing an approachable yet nuanced introduction to a extraordinary subject.

originally published by ARTSY 
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Private Museums


At the Western end of a meandering Hong Kong road, the eye is undeniably drawn to a meticulously renovated building, tucked between trinket sellers, ubiquitous antique stores and herbal medicine shops.

At the unadorned entrance, we question: is it an exclusive hotel? A beautiful residential creation? Neither. This is the four-storey Liang Yi Museum – a private museum that houses not one, but two, of the world’s finest collections of Chinese antiques – and is a prime example of what private wealth can amass. We can’t go in because you need to pre-book and pay HK$200 (about AUD$36), which is what thousands have done since it opened in 2014.

Inside, tycoon Peter Fung displays his works in white-walled rooms, hushed and cool, a space that Wallpaper Magazine described as a “refuge” from the frantic streets. The collection’s seriousness is a reflection of his obsessive attention to detail. The New York Times said “eccentric” Mr Fung – who named the gallery after his two daughters – “(is) so particular in his collecting tastes that he has been known to chase a single chair through the antique market for years, just so it could be re-joined with its matching partner”.

Yet Mr Fung’s vision is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the recent global rise of the private museum, much of it in China (so much so that it has become known as the “museumification of China”). Reports say there are about 100 opening there per year, many of them private.

This shift to private museums is similarly reverberating around the world, including Australia, with lovingly restored or built structures housing exciting art works that lure thousands each year.

It is not a new concept, but one that has taken off in recent years, primarily due to tax breaks in the US, Europe and Australia (since 1999) for those who undertake such ventures. In fact, a Larry’s List private museum report found that 70 per cent of them were founded after 2000.

Yet for Centuries prior, the super rich in Europe and America, often families, poured money into private showings of their collections, the Medici’s, of course, being an obvious starting point.

Much later, the Rockefellers, the Guggenheims, Henry Clay Frick and the Gettys. In recent years, however, private newcomers in Europe and the US have surged. These include the Boros Collection in Berlin, opened in 2003 by a couple which lives above it, the Francois Pinault Foundation, Venice and The Brant Foundation Arts Study Centre in Connecticut.

The trend is gaining momentum around the world, partly because of the tax incentives (not in China), but also for altruistic and/or creative aspirations the wealthy can indulge. This can also fill the gap when museums, for example, decide to store a collection instead of display.

It helps there is intrigue for the visitor when it comes to the people bringing private passions to life. Add to this inspiring buildings restored or built and thousands are flocking annually to immerse themselves in these people’s seemingly exotic world.

This is gathering steam whether museum purists like it or not (many don’t, saying they are ego projects, that money cannot buy taste, or they believe museums are the history of mankind itself – not of one family’s whims – and wealthy collectors are not curators).

Yet in Australia, what we do have is being met with enthusiasm.

The Neilson Family’s White Rabbit Gallery in Sydney (which shows Chinese contemporary art and is funded by their own $30 million foundation. Admission is free), the Besen family’s TarraWarra Museum of Contemporary Art in Victoria, former gambler-turned collector David Walsh’s $75 million Museum of Old and New Art in Tasmania (MONA), Lyon Housemuseum in Kew, Victoria and the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation in Paddington, Sydney, are all hailed as world-class experiences.

A truly notable mention in New Zealand is Gibbs Farm, a sculpture collection on the Kaipara Harbour started with works collected by Jenny and Alan Gibbs over a space of 30 years.

It seems those involved gain an immense satisfaction from the process. As David Walsh told ABC news in 2014: “Prior to building MONA, I hadn’t done anything for the community to benefit that I could be proud of.”

Yet despite this robust shift to private museums and the ensuing enthusiasm for patronage in Australia, some believe much more could be done to increase similar art patronage – and not just by the very wealthy.

“Private Philanthropy is, to say the least, an underdeveloped idea in Australia,” says Barrister, human rights advocate and art enthusiast Julian Burnside in an online paper, Patronage of the Arts in Australia. “There are some notable exceptions. However, we have no cultural tradition of (this).”

Burnside says the government could start by encouraging Australians to shake off the shackles of thinking art patronage is ‘being elitist’.

When asked if he believes the moderately wealthy should aim to take a creative risk by also becoming patrons of the arts, potentially making the most of the tax breaks, he replied to us at .M Contemporary with an emphatic “yes”.

Others add to this argument that by utilising private money for artistic purposes, public money can be funnelled into other areas of the arts, in turn giving the government excess funds to divvy up more broadly.

Championing the depth of private museums in Australia is the editor of the National Gallery of Victoria Magazine, Margaret Barca, who says great alturism is here; it’s just that it’s a handful.

Maybe for now, anyway.

“Without the restrictions of government boards and public accountability, or the pressing need to make a profit, private museums and galleries can provide an insight into private aesthetics, additional outlets for artists and an extra dimension for the art-going public,” she wrote in an article for the Australian Decorative and Fine Arts Societies.

There is no doubt growth of private museums is a huge cultural shift, as exciting as it is controversial. It seems that a lovingly created private museum will be an exciting concept worth exploring for many years to come.

In fact, in a recent blog, Walsh wrote the simple words (related to his latest extension plans): “MONA is here for good.”

Let’s hope so.

The Future Of The Private Museum


Currently, Australia makes up only 1 per cent of the private museum landscape, according to the first private museum report from Larry’s List, the leading art market knowledge company providing data, research and access to contemporary art collectors.

Yet that could change as the concept becomes more embedded in the national psyche.

Here, a Larry’s List report from January, 2016, outlines the Global Outlook for private museums:


  • We will see more dynamic development in regard to new museum setups in regions such as China and the Middle East.
  • Private museums will continue to claim a dominant role in the museum landscape since their resources and funding do not rely on public money.
  • Visitor numbers of private museums will increase. As the interest of the public in contemporary art increases and museum founders have more financial resources to acquire top artworks, there will be more interest in their exhibitions.
  • Social media and a virtual footprint are crucial topics for brand-building and worldwide recognition of the institution.
  • In regard to the competition between private museums, we believe that competition does not in the first place rival but often creates that critical mass needed to attract visitors to places such as Berlin, New York, or the West Bund district of Shanghai due to its diverse offerings. This will ultimately attract more visitors and thus be beneficial for all museums.
  • Private museums will cooperate more with each other in the future. During recent years, networks have been founded to increase the number of partnerships between private museums. Such cooperative relations will consist of loaning artworks, presenting traveling exhibitions, and also sharing knowledge.


Artist interview

How did you begin your career as an artist?

I always made things simply because I had the urge to. I never considered making a career as an artist, let alone that such a profession even existed. So my career began with the support of the institution and all the people I met through my practice.


Which artist/s have had an influence on you?

I believe that all humans are born an artist in one sense and I am constantly influenced by everybody around me. However, I would especially like to mention all my teachers at the National Art School as their influence on my work has been direct and the most recent.


What is your creative process like?

I just live. I find the creative process the same as the other daily activities that we engage in, such as making our bed, brushing our teeth and even breathing (making art just happens to be one of my two favourites. The other one is swimming.) So my creative process exist in my “living”.


Why did you choose your specific medium?

I think I am choosing to work with clay, because I love so much of the things entailed in the process of creating a ceramic object. I like the way the medium feels in my hands, I like its nature, I like learning the skills and the science of it, I like the people who are also drawn to the medium and/or the finished object. Furthermore, long history of pottery/ceramic is found in cultures all around the world and that fascinates me.


What drew you to performance art?

In 2014, I felt cramped drawing for hours using just my hands, so I pinned my paper high up on the wall where I would need to extend my arm and stand on my toes to make a mark on it. I remember how that sensation of stretching satisfied my urge, so I made more works on fabric that I stapled vertically from ceiling to the floor.

There was another work I presented at the end of the year, which was a written brief of an installation that involved me sitting in a bone structure of a cube and making wire objects inside the space. My teacher told me that it was a performance art and encouraged me to do it. I remember thinking how silly and pointless the idea was at the time, but when I did it in front of an audience, something felt *right* and I haven’t stopped performing since. So as much as I am aware, my performance art is the result of my urge to stimulate my bodily senses and learning that is has a place in the fine arts.


Can you please detail the underlying themes or ideas in your work?

My ceramics and performance are both the constitute of the audience, the time, the place as well as everything that happens in the preparation leading up to their presentation and also how the object and/or the experience live in the future.


Does the audience play a large part in your art making practice or is it more a personal process?

Everything involved in the art making holds equal importance to me; the audience, the sound, the weather, the accidental or non-accidental happenings, the space, my physical and mental condition, how the object and the memories live after their presentations are some of the parts that make up my work.


How do you feel people react to your work?

I feel that people are reacting to my work carefully. I see the audience hold my Little ones in their hands like they are tiny chicks and I see people holding my cups with two hands when they drink their tea out of it. During my performance, I notice the audience stop speaking or they begin to speak softly as they walk closer to my work. And those who didn’t realize my presence until they came right next to me have hesitated and fell silent as soon as they find a body in situ.


How has your style/practice changed over the years? If so who/what has brought about the change?

Yes, all my work is constantly changing as I develop new skills and technique in my craft. Also as I become subjected to new ideas and experience in life I find myself making works in different spirit.


How did winning the Youth Artist Initiative Emerging Artist Award impact upon you?

I am very humbled to receive this award as I have been making art out of sheer desperation all my life… It has definitely lead me to wondering about my art is. I am feeling extremely supported and encouraged to continue creating, and these emotions will no doubt hold me strong during my career. Furthermore, the money I received will help me purchase tools and materials to make new works this year, and it will also allow me to explore different ways to create artistic dialogues with the community. Thank you.


What has been your biggest career highlight/achievement?

There are a lot of physical, mental, and emotional “things” that easily distract me from focusing on my art practice that the highlight of my career so far has been in finding ways to gaining self-discipline.


How do you see your practice evolving in the future?

I would definitely like to engage with a wider community through art. Perhaps in a way that everyone can have a lot of fun or perhaps in an exciting way.


What drives you to continue to produce work?

My main drive is the urge I get to make. But to make good quality work, I need the support from the community.


What are your plans for the upcoming year?

I’m going to focus on improving my skills in working with porcelain, and I am going to work hard to continue performing with honestly. I also plan to work with more people this year!

Art Central 2015

Behind The Scenes of An Art Fair

Art Central Fair Director Maree Di Pasquale is the person behind the scenes for this must-see event, opening in Hong Kong on March 23. Here, Maree gives us invaluable insights in to how to get the most from the fair (and where to eat), how she makes it work no matter what gets thrown their way, the ongoing boom of Asia as an important art hub and a few exhibits you simply can’t miss.



  • How would you advise a newcomer to an art fair to navigate the schedule of exhibitions and talks?

Prior to arriving, I would encourage you to take some time to plan your visit. Jump online and browse the galleries and program and identify the exhibitions and events that you think you might be interested in. However, we would also encourage both art enthusiasts and the more experienced collector to be somewhat fluid in their scheduling to leave themselves open to discovering new artists.


  • What would you say would be the four things not to do/say at an art fair?

I don’t think there are any strict rules about how one should act at an art fair. Art fairs are all about breaking down the barriers of the art world and encouraging a dialogue across a broad cross-section of society. Having said that, I would advise you not to talk about anyone in the industry in the VIP Lounge. You never know who is listening!


  • For our time poor visitors with only a day to enjoy it, how would you advise them to spend their time?

Dedicate enough time to experience the gallery exhibitions, at least once. This is important. With just over 100 exhibitors and all on one level, Art Central has a manageable size and conveys an intimacy that sometimes the larger fairs find hard to achieve so do take advantage.

Whilst its difficult to pick just a few gallery highlights to look out for, I would recommend sighting Locust Jones’ site-specific installation, Back to the Dark Ages, as part of the fair’s PROJECTS sector. Represented by DOMNIK MERSCH GALLERY (Sydney), Jones returns to Hong Kong after a solo show at ART HK in 2011, and this time to create an ambitious suspended installation; a large-scale scroll, with text-based imagery and expressive scrawled drawings in his usual free style. GALLERY HYUNDAI from Seoul is also one to see, with an impressive selection of Dansaekhwa Korean monochromatic paintings that include works by masters such as Chung Sang-Hwa, Park Seo Bo and Lee Ufan. While at home in Hong Kong Whitestone Gallery (Tokyo / Hong Kong) presents some of the best examples of the Japanese Gutai movement, including museum quality pieces by artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Kazuo Shiraga, and Atsuko Tanaka.

After a trip around the galleries, I would encourage fairgoers to enjoy a meal at the fair’s pop-up restaurant and bar Belon, helmed by well-known Australian chef James Henry, or take some time out harbor-side with a burger and beer in the outdoor Street Food area. I can confidently say that Art Central has the best Art Week eats in town!



  • How do you feel the Asian art fairs are developing compared to the European and American art fairs?

It is difficult to look at Asia as one entity as it is made up of many different cultures, markets and political and social structures. Yet Hong Kong is undoubtedly the international art hub of Asia.  The fact it has zero tax on the import and export of art, little censorship and such great infrastructure and no other city is able to rival this to the same standard. In the past 10 years, Hong Kong’s art scene has experienced incredible growth that is unmatched by the West. From the influx of galleries setting up shop here and the establishment of Hong Kong as the third largest auction market in the world, to the organic development of the not-for-profit scene with the addition of organisations such as the Asia Society Hong Kong Center and the plans for the new West Kowloon Cultural District, the Hong Kong art world is booming and moving fast… a lot faster than Europe or the US. This means that fairs in the region need to keep up with changing trends and maintain market relevancy. We are proud that Art Central now plays such a key role in this, bringing yet more world-class content to Hong Kong and further elevating its status to global arts destination.



  • In Asia, does the culture of asking for a discount influence the pricing of the galleries? Or do certain galleries refuse to give a discount?

It is common practice in Asia to ask for large discounts (up to 50 per cent or more), and this also applies to the art world. I encourage galleries to not be offended if they experience this. It is best to simply explain that the gallery business does not have high margins and that the money paid by the buyer is split between the gallery and the artist. The artist is why we do this after all! We have seen potential deals cut off from the start by a gallery and collector who find themselves at cultural odds on this point. However, we encourage our galleries to simply explain their position and get through this difficult conversation.


  • How important do you think it is to have the artist present at the fair? Is it common at all?

This entirely depends on the artist and their willingness to be present while dealers promote and sell their work. In my experience, this can be quite a difficult negotiation for an artist to observe or take an active role in, and they many choose not to be present. However we do see some galleries invite their artist onto the booth and, if the artist is comfortable with the commercial nature of the art business, play a major role in sales by helping the collectors to form a more personal connection with the work.


  • Is there a place for performance art at the art fair?

We are pleased to say that galleries within the main show sectors have taken more risks in providing experimental content this year and as a result have seen an increased number of performance and installation-based work.

In addition to these galleries, I would encourage you to look out for a new initiative for this year titled ROUNDTABLE X 4A, a collaboration with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and the organisation’s Director Mikala Tai. The program explores artistic and curatorial practices from across Asia and the Pacific specifically through performance and roundtable discussions and includes new performances by Frances Barrett, Abdullah M.I. Syed and Latai Taumoepea. Others to watch out for are Jack McLean with The Container (Tokyo) and Ting-Tong Chang represented by Christine Park Gallery (London).


  • Will you be moving in the direction of utilising visiting curators in future?

We have worked hard to create even stronger links with fair partners for programming and commissions this year, including non-profit organisations that work with their own visiting curators. We look to further expand on this for 2017.


  • In terms of exhibiting artists this year, are galleries moving towards emerging Asian art, or has it shifted to also include more established western artists?

We are proud to be hosting more than 100 galleries from 21 countries, with a strong representation from greater Asia at more than 75 per cent. This focus on the region was important to us in developing the fair, though we did not set any specific quota for our committee in terms of a ratio of galleries from Asia vs. the rest of the world. Inevitably a great majority of the work shown is by artists from or working within Asia.


  • Hong Kong is known as a city driven by commerce. Do you feel that the art sales are fundamentally market driven?

While it is true that Hong Kong benefits from an investor focused art market, in my view Hong Kong and indeed the region has a growing number of genuine art collectors who truly value art and acquire for a number of reasons that are not simply market dependent. Collectors, compared to investors, are more culturally and intellectually attuned to the artworks, doing research on the background of the art pieces they buy and making considered purchase decisions, which is a very positive thing for the art market.


  • It’s obviously a huge event and very well orchestrated, but have you had any behind the scene disasters that you had to overcome? Can you give us a brief insight?

When you collaborate with numerous people, things can go awry or change in an instant. The ability to be flexible and be quick to make a call, and the right call, is therefore one of the most important attributes of an art fair organiser. One of the biggest challenges we face is to create amazing visitor and gallery experiences despite constant deviations to the plan that are out of our control. But the trick is turning them into positives, as if they were always intended. I’ll never tell!


By Suzanne Harrison for .M Contemporary –


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Thomas Bucich – Artist Interview


My new works are a recent reflection on my connection with culture, self, society and the natural environment. Both observer and observed, perceptions of nature and man – the reciprocal impact each have on each other, simultaneously destructive and creative. My figures are most often nude, sometimes draped – depending on the piece. 

The real raw, somewhat visceral pieces are more naked rather than being politely nude. The muscle and flesh move beyond human form and take on the texture I find in the bark of trees and rock formations. This is where human form and nature become entwined and unified in my work.

My work is formed on two main elements: the human form and nature. We are all people living within a natural environment, although built up to varying degrees by man – we are simply humans living in nature. The direct connection is lost by many caught within the edifices of ‘progress’.

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Ryan Hewett – Artist Interview


Ryan Hewett’s influences

Edith Schiele

Edith Schiele was an Austrian painter who was a protégé of Gustav Klimt. Schiele was a major figurative painter of the early 20th century and his works were strongly influenced by Klimt style; hence, his works expressed fierce intensity and raw sexuality. Schiele’s paintings and drawings mark the artist as an early example of Expressionism. His works between 1907 and 1909 contain strong similarities with those of Klimt, as well as influences from Art Nouveau In 1910, Schiele began experimenting with nudes and created a definitive style featuring emaciated, sickly-coloured figures, often with strong sexual overtones. These works are, as we know it his most important and well-known works. His later works became more complex and thematic as he started dealing with themes such as death and rebirth, although female nudes remained his main focus. His wife Edith was the model for most of his female figures; he depicts not only motherhood as a subject matter but expresses some of the female form as fuller and others as a deliberate illustration of a lifeless appearance.


George Dyer

Throughout Francis Bacon’s lifetime he had many lovers, but it was George Dyer who became the dominating presence in Bacon’s work and personal life. Dyer became a devoted life partner to Bacon and admired his intellect, power and self-confidence; something Dyer lacked as he drifted in and out of juvenile detention centres and jail. Bacon was instantly attracted to Dyer’s vulnerability and trusting nature but the relationship was a troubled one that was often fraught with danger. Both Dyer and Bacon were boarder line alcoholics, chain smokers and obsessive with their appearance but this did not alter Dyer’s unwavering dedication, protection and love for Bacon. It was only later in their affair that Bacon decided he would no longer provide Dyer the means to stay permanently drunk and abusive, however, Dyer reacted by becoming more needy and dependent. This behaviour ultimately destroyed their relationship and was a clear indication of Dyer’s tortured and insecure personality. The art critic Michael Peppiatt described Dyer as having the air of a man who could “land a decisive punch”. By 1971, Dyer only saw Bacon on the odd occasion and led a lonely existence. In October 1971, Dyer accompanied Bacon to Paris for the opening of his retrospective at the Grand Palais. It was an important exhibition of Bacon’s work thus far in his artistic career and was indeed one that Bacon was excited to show. However, on the eve of the exhibition opening Dyer overdosed leaving Bacon to attend without him. Bacon was deeply affected by the loss of Dyer and he accumulated a sense of guilt and self-blame for his companion that his later works depicted death, disaster and loss.


Marie-Thérèse Walter

Marie-Thérèse Walter was the French mistress of Spanish artist Pablo Picasso from 1927 to 1935. The affair started while Picasso was still with his first wife Russian ballerina Olga Khokhlova with whom he had a child. Picasso’s affair with Marie-Thérèse was kept a secret from his wife. Marie-Thérèse was seventeen when the affair started while Picasso was forty-five. In July 1930, Picasso bought a castle in the Normandie area, this became his full time studio and Marie-Thérèse became his muse and model for his paintings and sculptures. In 1935, Marie became pregnant with Picasso’s daughter Maya and they stayed with Picasso in the South of France before retreating to Le Tremblay-sur-Mauldre where Picasso would visit on the weekends. In 1935, Picasso fell in love and moved onto his next mistress Dora Maar, a surrealist photographer and model; Marie-Thérèse became extremely jealous and ended the affair immediately. She moved to Paris where Picasso supported her and their daughter financially. In many of Picasso’s paintings he depicts Walter as a young blonde with a bright fun personality. This is in stark contrast to the paintings of Dora Maar who he paints as a dark tortured “weeping” woman. On 20 October 1977, Marie-Thérèse committed suicide by hanging herself in the garage.


The Girl of the Year (Edie Sedgwick)

Edie Sedgwick was born into a wealthy American family, she was a heiress, socialite, actress, and fashion model best known for being Andy Warhol’s muse during the height of the Pop Art movement. Sedgwick met artist and avant-garde filmmaker Andy Warhol at a dinner party in Manhattan. Warhol immediately drawn to Sedgwick’s beauty and talent started filming short movies in his studio (The Factory) he gave Sedgwick small cameo appearances in several films generating huge interest and success. In 1965, she became known to the world as “The Girl of the Year” after starring in most of Warhol’s short films. Warhol’s films were not commercially successful and rarely seen outside The Factory circle and underground film theaters, but Sedgwick became popular overnight and her fame grew amongst the New York elite. Mainstream media began reporting on her appearances in Warhol’s films and her unusual fashion sense became the talk of the town. Sedgwick developed a “look” that had never been seen before: black leotards, mini dresses, large chandelier earrings and short silver hair. Sedgwick was constantly photographed with Warhol at various social outings and he claimed her as his “superstar”. After an argument with Warhol in the late 60s about money, Sedgwick left Warhol and The Factory never to return. She began living in the Chelsea Hotel and became close friends with Bob Dylan. She tried to forge on with her acting career but her mental state and other influences impeded this from happening. After a tumultuous life with drug and alcohol abuse and years spent in psychiatric wards, Sedgwick died of a drug overdose on November 15, 1971 and was buried in California.


Hannah Quinlivan Opening

Hannah’s second solo exhibition Counter-Weight opened last week with a two-hour performance by Arrhythmia; a performance by Rachael Hilton, Sarah Hamilton, Louise Keast and Shikara Ringdahl. The gallery was transformed by the moving performance combining installation, classical vocals and the human body to celebrate Hannah’s site-specific spatio-temporal auditory drawing, painting and sculpture.
Hannah’s work is a reflection of memory, the act of memory that is more often than not triggered by something and at a particular moment. The works in this exhibition express the feelings associated when you remember those thoughts and how those layers can be transformed into one’s life.

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YAI – Young Artist Initiative

.M Contemporary is proud to present the BresicWhitney Emerging Artists Award. The BresicWhitney Emerging Artist Award supports newly graduated emerging artists with the annual YAI exhibition.

Supporting newly graduated emerging Australian artists 

YAI was founded in 2013 as an annual initiative that encourages and promotes newly graduated artists from UNSW Art and Design, The National Art School and Sydney College of the Arts. The exhibition gives selected artists the opportunity to exhibit their work in a commercial gallery and sell their work to collectors. They are eligible for the prestigious BresicWhitney Emerging Artist Award. This year the emerging artist award will consist of $5000 prize money for the winning artist and $2000 for a highly commended artist.

The exhibition will incorporate twenty artists from a wide range of disciplines; which include photography, video, painting, printmaking, installation and performance art.

This year the following emerging artists were selected to be represented in the YAI 2015 exhibition: 

  • Machiki Motoi (NAS) – Winner 
  • Annelies Jahn (NAS) – Special Commendation 
  • Syed Farrez Ali (NAS) 
  • Lisa Tolcher (NAS) 
  • Sean Wadey (NAS) 
  • Nadine Lee (SCA) 
  • Engry BirdZ (SCA) 
  • Daniel Grosz (SCA) 
  • Rebecca O’Callahan (SCA) 
  • Kai Wasikowski (SCA) 
  • Lisa McCleary (COFA) 
  • Jane Gutheleben (COFA) 
  • Jessic Barraket (COFA) 
  • Shilling Wu (COFA) 
  • Brendan Barnacle Duck (COFA) 
  • Lachlan Herd (COFA) 
  • Olivia Wilson (COFA)
  • David Yuan (COFA) 

“It’s also one of the only opportunities for students from all three universities to exhibit together. So I want them to meet each other, mingle because for artists your support once you leave uni are other artists”

– Michelle Paterson, Found and Director at .M Contemporary


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Hannah Quinlivin – Artist Interview

“Like rivers, memories flow. They are unsettled and mutable, transient and unstable, always en route to another destination, never fixed nor certain of themselves. Yet memories are inescapably connected to the real; they “take root in the concrete, in spaces, gestures, images and objects” and materialise themselves in things. Pierre Nora speaks of the importance of places where “memory crystallizes and secretes itself,” which he terms sites of memory. Via memory, the symbolic becomes palpable and geographic, like the banks of a river, strewn with the detritus of a passing flood.” 

“Artworks are thus the detritus of the mind, flotsam and jetsam on a stream of consciousness. They are the embodiment of transient memories and mental conceptions, making something real and lasting from the fleeting and endlessly pliable. Through making, memories take root and plant themselves in the real, bursting forth in the riparian zone between the mental and the material.”

Hannah Quinlivan is in a number of collections including the National Gallery of Australia, The Australian High Commission (Singapore), Deakin University Art Collection, KPMG Art Collection, The Australian National University and The Molonglo Group. Hannah graduated from ANU School of Art in 2011 and was the recipient of an impressive number of awards including the Peter and Lena Karmel Award for the highest honours grade. Hannah has been awarded the Cox Prize for Sculpture at Sculpture on the Edge 2013. She is a current recipient of two Australia Council’s grants that have allowed her to undertake a series of mentorships and artist residencies in Berlin.

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Marna Hattingh – Artist Interview

Hattingh’s work travels between a hybrid of fine art, literature and the complexities or contemporary life. She interrogates and articulates its collective emotions and the result is simultaneously humourous and serious, rendering it poignant and engaging.

Her finely drawn characters jump, dance and spin across timeless, colourful and patterned backgrounds, always clad in detailed outfits, tailor cut suits, flowing dresses, patterned stockings and white sneakers. She finds inspiration within her immediate society, often drawing from an eclectic range of sources including media, fashion, history and fictional novels. These intricately worked paintings, each containing it own complex narrative, have an immediacy that is difficult to ignore.

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Lyndi Sales – Artist Interview

Lyndi Sales is a South African artist who explores themes of perception and vision as well as connectivity. She strives to create in the audience a corporeal response – a feeling of being in one’s own body, to “bring people to their senses”.

In her current work, Sales is invested in driving into the present, seeing it as a mysterious, elusive and mutable idea. Inhabiting the present seems to be so curiously difficult, she says, and yet somehow also regenerative, transformative and rewarding.

Her current body of work titled, Moth To A Flame evokes a kite. This work is a metaphor of the flight and the journey – the Bardo*: In Buddhist theories a word that describes the period during which the soul travels for the 49 days following death before reincarnating in another form. This work is closely linked to Sales’ research on near death experiences, those attempts to apprehend and transcends death in various ways i.e. by meditation or the use of drugs. Moth To A Flame takes inspiration from the idea of a light at the end of the tunnel that is mentioned in the testimony of people who have had this kind of experience.

*Bardo: *This piece is a derivative of two works I made a few years back (titled Inbound and Outbound), which was inspired by the Buddhist theory known as Bardo. This theory is believed to be a time period that a soul travels through after death. (“Intermediate state”—also translated as “transitional state” or “in-between state” or “liminal state”)

Sales was selected as one of the representing South African artists at the Venice Biennale in 2011. She has held solo shows internationally at Galerie Maria Lund in Paris and Toomey Tourell in San Francisco. In South Africa she has exhibited at the Goodman Gallery, Bell-Roberts Contemporary, Joao Ferreria and Gallery Momo galleries.

Sales received both her BFA (1995) and MFA (2000) from University of Cape Town, both with distinction. Sales was a merit award winner in the ABSA Atelier, a recipient of the Vermont Studio Centre grant and participated in residencies at the Vermont studio center as well as the Frans Masereel Center in Belgium.


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Joy Ivill – Artist Interview

Joy’s works at times are amusing but simultaneously emanating an intensely emotional and vulnerable side. Her works raw openness, immediacy, and sexually provocative and witty attitude fascinate the viewer. She reveals intimate details of her life in a powerful and confronting way.

Homesick, a multi-disciplinary and recent body of work incorporates embroidery, appliqué and painting to tell Joy’s stories. She pairs unexpected images and humorous text and re-imagines her needlework. Her approach to portraiture, as an art genre, is somewhat unconventional as she explores the potential for modern portraiture to encapsulate the biographical and autobiographical context of the artist.

 Joy’s work she states “is a form of confessional art”. She celebrates the power of catharsis and the psychological experience of confessing childhood stories through art making. In depicting these childhood experiences, Joy examines the affect they have on adult development and the importance of being able to express lessons learned. Joy is influenced and inspired by artists such as Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin.

Joy’s work is reflected through common themes from both artists. Bourgeois explores a variety of themes such as the family, sexuality and the body. Emin’s work is autobiographical where her subject matter emulates her traumas and triumphs. Her works are confessional acts where she records and performs her life stories and sexual experiences. This is much like Joy’s works where they project events in her life that have profoundly impacted on her decision making and the consequences from that.

Bourgeois’ works can also be seen as autobiographical as she draws works from her childhood experiences, yet affirms that it is not necessarily important to understand that in her works. She often talked about her childhood experiences and how they deeply affected her. Joy also makes the imperative point that her works transcend a deeper meaning than just pretty embroideries, they tell her story, the pain, the love, the absurd and the past.

Joy finds art making a therapeutic process like Bourgeois and Emin. They transform their experiences into a highly personal visual language through the use of imagery, beauty, objects and colour. The interplay between innocence and sex is evident and reshapes the female image.  

Joy Ivill has spent most of life in Sydney and practicing her art making every day. Last year she attended artist residences across the UK, Paris, Berlin, Venice and France, and most recently Beijing. Joy lives and works in Sydney.



YAI 15

Congratulations to all of the chosen artists selected to exhibit in YAI this year, an extraordinary achievement each of you should be very proud of!

A big congratulations to Machiko Matoi for being awarded this years BresicWhitney Emerging Artists Award and Annelies Jahn whose work was Highly Commended.

The .M Contemporary YAI initiative gives artists the opportunity to exhibit in a commercial gallery space, providing them with an insight into both the requirements and expectations of commercial art gallery and collectors.

This is the third year that we have run the initiative and we now represent several of the artists that have taken part. Joy Ivill was selected for the first YAI in 2013 and is now a represented gallery artist with  strong collector base. Following her tremendous success at last year’s art fair at Carriageworks, Joy will be represented by .M Contemporary at this year’s Art Central art fair in Hong Kong.

Thank you to everyone who came out on Saturday for the opening to support the artists.

Photography by Rhiannon Hopley


Collector Evening with Joy Ivill

Vivid stories and misadventures of travel are always a crowd pleaser! Last night a selection of .M Contemporary collectors were invited to preview the latest instalment of Joy Ivill’s Homesick series.

Guests were treated to some quality time with Joy herself as stories of travel and adventure where exchanged. Each tale of Joy’s gave collectors a glimpse into the colourful life she leads and the wonderful journey she been on.

The Homesick story has been one that we have watched closely here at .M Contemporary. Joy has travelled the globe with artist residences, UK, Paris, Berlin, France and Beijing, and once a piece is complete she has sent them home to us, here at the gallery. We feel as though we have been a part of her travels from afar!

Joy’s work will be on show until December 23, make sure you pop by the gallery to have a little giggle and a chance to reflect on your own travel stories.

Click here to view the catalogue of current work.

Photography on the night by: Rhiannon Hopley 


Lionel Smit

After sold out exhibitions in South Africa, London and Hong Kong, Lionel Smit’s first solo exhibition in Australia took place at .M Contemporary on Friday night. Over the past 10 years Smit has established himself as one of South Africa’s most exciting and respected artists of his generation. His international following of collectors made for a successful exhibition and for the first time allowed the Australian audience to become a part of his world. Lionel executes variations of Malay women through portraiture and uses monumental canvasses and sculptures to create visual and tactile explorations of hybrid identity. Smit’s contemporary portraiture details the ever changing and emerging nature within South Africa’s psycho-social landscape. Smit is currently exhibiting at art fairs in Amsterdam, Germany, India, Miami, Monaco, London and Hong Kong. His Australian exhibition has proved to be just as successful as our international counterparts with a new base of collectors; we will continue to exhibit his works until the 14th November 2015.

Photography by Rhiannon Hopley


Sydney Contemporary

A big thank you! Thank you for visiting us at Sydney Contemporary Art Fair . We would like to thank all our artists, established and emerging, Australian and international, without whom we would not have had such a successful fair. We would also like to thank our collectors, old and new for their ongoing support. .M Contemporary is a gallery space that aims to create a cross-cultural conversation through exhibiting and supporting emerging and established artists from around the world. We aim to foster a strong appreciation for a new generation of both Australian and international artists and to expose them to a diverse audience. We have a strong focus on supporting our artists’ ongoing presence through regular exhibitions and participating in international and local art fairs.

Photography by Rhiannon Hopley

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Australian Pavilion Officially Opened

The new Australian pavilion has officially been opened ahead of the 56th Venice Biennale’s commencement on 9 May. ABC Arts’ Carlo Zeccola was at the unveiling and got an advance look at exhibiting artist Fiona Hall’s installation Wrong Way Time as well as speaking to Minister for the Arts George Brandis, Venice Commissioner Simon Mordant and donor to the pavilion, actor Cate Blanchett.

Read more and watch the video here

Art Money CEO Paul Becker, right, with gallerist Joanna Strumpf. Photo: Dallas Kilponen

Art Money launches

The art world can be an intimidating place – a land of hushed galleries, record-setting auctions and, for those who brave its borders, frequent “sticker shock”. That it is considered a “world” at all suggests just how isolating it can be to some of those who live outside of it.

Paul Becker, chief executive of 10 Group and the just-launched Art Money, is seeking to change that with a new scheme that will allow people to put artworks on a kind of layby.

From today, prospective art buyers can take out an interest-free loan facilitated by Art Money for works priced from $750 to $20,000 – they put at least 10 per cent down to secure the artwork ($2000 on a $20,000 work, for example, or $75 on a $750 piece) and then pay the rest off in nine equal monthly instalments. The buyer gets to keep the work from the moment they make their first payment.

“Sticker shock is a big barrier to people buying art, engaging with art and enjoying it,” Becker says. “There is this huge up-front cost that people perceive and it’s not an issue with other industries. This is solving the issue in a transparent way – making it easier for the buyer and the gallery.”

Art Money’s loans are streamlined so as to be as simple as possible, Becker says: buyers apply for a loan online at home or at the gallery itself (you may apply for a $5000 loan before heading out to shop or do it on the spot on a gallery iPad if a work catches your eye); you then choose the artwork you want to purchase (the loan is valid at participating galleries for 30 days); and then complete your loan application in person at the gallery.

More than 25 galleries have already signed up to Art Money, which was inspired by similar government-funded schemes in Britain and the Netherlands, and by Tasmania’s COLLECT Art Purchases Scheme.

Nowhere Song II, 2015

Marna Hattingh

M CONTEMPORARY is excited to welcome back to the gallery, South African artist Marna Hattingh after her first sell out show with us back in 2013.

Hattingh is exhibiting a series of new work as part of the group show Memories in Motion, which runs until April 5th.

Hatting’s work explores the complexities of contemporary life with a distinctive graphic style that is deeply layered and functions as a hyper-textual visual language. She finds inspiration within her immediate society, often drawing from an eclectic range of sources including media, fashion, history and fictional novels. These intricately worked paintings, each containing it’s own complex narrative, have an immediacy that is difficult to ignore.


Memories In Motion

Last Saturday marked another great opening at M Contemporary. Memories in Motion is a group show that explores ideas of line, motion, rhythm, repetition and the varying art methodologies of pencil, charcoal, ink and paper.

The exhibition featured Australians Adam Cusack, Paul Kaptein and Tane Andrews alongside international artists Marna Hattingh (South Africa), Laura Ellenberger (South Africa/UK) and Jaanika Peerna (Estonia/New York) who treated guests to a live drawing performance in the front gallery window.

Photos: Kai Wasikowski

Hong Kong’s Art Basel

The establishment of a satellite fair is good news for Australian galleries, not all of which are accepted by Art Basel. Those hosting stands at Art Central this year included M Contemporary, Metro Gallery and Connie Dietzschold.

As someone who spent 18 years living in Asia before moving to Australia and opening her Sydney gallery in 2013, M Contemporary owner Michelle Paterson sees attending such fairs as mandatory. “We need to make our artists internationally known, Australia is too small a market,” she says.

Read the rest of the article here


Art Central, Hong Kong

Last week M Contemporary took part in the inaugural Art Central fair during Hong Kong Art Weekend. The satellite fair welcomed almost 30,000 local and international art collectors, buyers and art lovers, quickly establishing itself as the must-see fresh event amongst the usual draw cards.

Art Central took place at the new Central Harbourfront in a 10,000 square metre architecturally designed temporary structure with 77 galleries exhibiting work by more than 400 artists. With Art Week’s hottest pop-up restaurant The Continental along with street eats, an engaging educational program of talks and tours, Hong Kong graffiti art and ambitious installations, it proved to be an important and relevant addition to Hong Kong’s booming art scene.

Our carefully selected group of artists included both established and emerging, Australian and international artists, allowing us to exhibit a range of works that reflected our ethos as a gallery. Artists included were Lynne Roberts-Goodwin (AUS), Simone Rosenbauer (Germany/AUS), Jacqueline Ball (AUS), Garth Knight (AUS), Jaanika Peerna (Estonia/US), Hannah Quinlivan (AUS), Sophie Penkethman-Young (AUS), Alex Karaconji (AUS) and CJ Taylor (AUS).

Joel Crosswell takes Tidal Art Prize for 2014

Joel Crosswell has taken out the $15,000 acquisitive, national prize at the Tidal: City of Devonport Art Awards. His works Galaxias won the major prize, with the judges saying that the works were “strong and unforgettable.”

The biennial award provides a contemporary platform for artists to reflect upon the tidal theme by experimenting across mediums with 2-dimensional works. The tidal theme reflects the perspectives and challenges within the connection between the natural, cultural, personal or political concerns related to the sea and land.

In 2015, Joel will take up a 3-month residency at the Cite Internationale des Arts in Paris.

Check out these articles from the Tidal Prize:

Click through to see the ABC Series on The Skullbone Experiment, 2013:



Young Artist’s Initiative 2014

.M Contemporary presents the second instalment of the Young Artists Initiative group exhibition featuring selected artwork by students from Sydney College of the Arts, UNSW Art & Design and The National Art School. This year the exhibition was judged by Shannon Whitney from BresicWhitney and prominent art consultant Mark Hughes who awarded THE BRESIC WHITNEY EMERGING ARTIST award valued at $1500 to UNSW student Jodi Clarke for her drawing installation You must be this tall to ride. Clark’s work is based within the narrative of feminism, aiming to challenge stereotypes, subvert assumptions, point out hypocrisies, and reclaim the overt consumption of women’s bodies and sexualities. Clark deconstructs and reconstructs existing images, experimenting with how their meanings become re-authored in new contexts. Through the exploration of line, the composite images evolve, becoming distorted and decontextualized, rendering new forms that resist categorization or traditional standards. Highly commended prizes valued at $1000 were awarded to NAS student Candice Towne for her oil painting Use By 2030 and recent SCA graduate Sophie Penkethman-Young. Additonally, Penkethman-Young received the People’s Choice Award of $500, kindly donated by Kaye King Concepts for her animated video work A Sea of Stories. Over 200 people, including the distinguished British artist and Turner Prize nominee, Tracey Emin, attended the opening event on Sunday afternoon. Emin’s work has been of particular influence to YAI ’14 winner Jodi Clark who had the chance to chat with about her practice.

Hannah Quinlivan Opening


.M Contemporary presents Hannah Quinlivan and Imperfect Translations. The opening featured performance drawing by dancers Rachael Hilton and Sarah Hamilton. Quinlivan’s exhibition is an exploration of two and three- dimensional works focusing on the ideas of motion, rhythm, dance, repetition and the unfolding paths of memory:

Memory moves and has rhythm all of its own. Even in the stillness, the pulse of rhythm is ever present, a murmur of breath in the darkness. Recurrence and motion are entangled in a dialectical dance, always unfolding, always becoming. A motive force and vestigial trace, recollection and remembrance look not just back but forward, tracing and retracing a path between the present and the past. This temporal oscillation describes a mode of motion, reprising that which is never the same. Memory rushes forth toward a destination that is always out of reach, not in motion but motion itself. Repetition, return and difference, these are the elements that comprise the transient rhythm of recollection, imperfect translations of the infinite.


.M Contemporary celebrated the third opening of our Australian Emerging Artist Exhibition. Artists included: Anna Cuthill, Kai Wasikowski, Sarah Field, Tamara Mendels, Tanya Dyhin and Tom Blake. The exhibition runs until the 23 November 2014.



Showcasing works from Australian Emerging Artists.

.M Contemporary is thrilled to present our second exhibition EVOKE showcasing the talents of Emerging Australian artists that explore a range of ideas in various mediums.

On a rainy, wet afternoon we had yet another fantastic crowd supporting these young artists. Artists included in this exhibition are: Freya Pitt, Cathy Drew, Donna Feneley, Hana Hoogedeure, Marnie Ross, Jacobus Capone, Eloise Cato and Joy Ivill Confessional Box that will be there for the next six months.

The exhibition will run in the upstairs gallery space until 12 October 2014. Make sure you come and see the exhibition and support our young artists.



Lynne Roberts-Goodwin
Opening address by Rachel Kent, Chief Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia

Distinguished guests and art lovers attended the opening and book launch of MORE THAN EVER, an exhibition showcasing new works by celebrated Australian artist Lynne Roberts-Goodwin. The night also marked the one year anniversary of .M Contemporary, we would like to thank the artists and collectors for their ongoing support and encouragement.


Engage – Australian Emerging Artists

. M Contemporary is very excited to announce the launch of our new emerging Australian artists space with the first show, Engage, which opened last week in spectacular fashion.

The opening celebrations began on Friday night with an artist dinner where artists invited special guests to have a preview of the show and join them for an evening of art, food and wine.

The following afternoon we had a fantastic turn out for the official opening, which kicked off with Adrian Clement’s Zen inspired performance piece The Arrangement. Despite the dreary winter weather, guests were kept warm with some help from our brewing friends at Young Henry’s who provided freshly poured ale.

The emerging artists space in the upstairs gallery will work on a 6-week cycle, where we will showcase the work of recent art school graduates whose work is of extraordinary talent. The first group of emerging artists participating in Engage are Joy Ivill, Will Cooke, Adrian Clement, Jacobus Capone, Amanda Ryan, Laura E. Kennedy, Gillian Lavery and Eloise Cato. Each of these artist’ body of work explore various themes across a range of different mediums. Their work will be exhibited in the main downstairs gallery for 3 weeks before being moved it into the emerging artists space.

Make sure to come check out Engage in the main gallery until 24 August and don’t forget the new emerging artists space that will be continuously updated with exciting work from young artists.

Second Nature VI, 2008

Annual Winter Group Show

Annual Winter Group Show
Photography Exhibition
14 June 2014 – 13 July 2014

The opening of the winter group exhibition presents a range of Australian and International photographers. Australian artists are Catherine Nelson, Lynne Roberts-Goodwin, Garth Knight and Hayden Fowler and our International artists are Barbara Wildenboer, Brent Meistre, Lee Sang Hyun, Melanie Cleary and Slinkachu. The exhibition will run till the 13 July.


Conrad Botes Opening

Conrad Botes Opening
1 May 2014

South-African artist Conrad Botes was in Sydney to open his solo exhibition On Earth as it is in Heaven. He produced an installation live in the gallery a week prior to the opening by creating a mural for the front gallery. The work was an incorporation of hand painted figures and framed reverse glass paintings.

The exhibition showcases a retrospective of his past and present work exploring themes of politics, violence, race, religion and gender. It presents Conrad’s various formal practices of acrylic, reverse glass painting and lithographs. Conrad’s works mostly look at the beauty and horror of life and the situations people are faced with. The vibrant colours manifest the subject matter, which at times can be seen as sad and disturbing.

Conrad states: “A theme that I explore in my works is violence and its disturbing relationship between race and gender, growing up during Apartheid South Africa, this theme holds the potential for exploring the intricacies of guilt and complicity while still being a fundamental issue in today’s society”.

Come and visit the gallery to see Conrad’s mural.
The exhibition runs from 1 May- 8 June 2014


From the Streets Opening

Our From the Streets opening proved to be a wonderful success as people enjoyed the live performances of graffiti art by Adnate, Beastman and Shannon Crees. The silent auction started on the opening and will end on the last day of the exhibition on the 27 April. The exhibition is a celebration of raw creativity and craftsmanship of great street art from around the world and Australia. It presents some of the most exciting artists making art on and off gallery walls.

The exhibition included leading street artists: Mademoisselle Maurice (Paris), Chris Uphues (New York), Morley (LA), Jef Aerosol (Lille), Jaz (Buenos Aires), Slinkachu (UK) and Ever (Buenos Aires), as well as renowned Australian street artists Adnate, Beastman, Shannon Crees and Will Coles.

We would like to say a big thank you to Bill and John at Ambush for co-curating this event with our Australian collective artists Adnate, Beastman and Shannon Crees. To Dr. David Chong for speaking on behalf of Operation Smile, it was a pleasure to have your support and we hope that the funds raised from this exhibition will help support thousands of children in underprivileged areas of the world to smile again. To Adnate who travelled from Melbourne to be here, Beastman and Shannon Crees for your time, effort and support of this wonderful project, we can’t thank you enough. Lastly, a big thank you to Young Henry’s and Mexican Cantina for the food and cider.


Art Month Artist Talk

[Sebastian Goldspink and Michelle Paterson in Conversation ]

On a cold and wet Sunday afternoon a group of passionate and enthusiastic art lovers braved the weather to do a bus tour of the Paddington and Woollahra galleries in Sydney.

In conjunction with Art Month Sydney, Sebastian Goldspink the Creative Producer led the tour and talk by showing our current exhibition Michael Taylor and our South African Group Show as well as taking them upstairs to visit our Stockroom.

The talk was a fantastic opportunity from the public to engage in new works and learn about different artists. The group then enjoyed some wine and cheese before heading off to the next gallery. 



Young Artist’s Initiative

An exhibition for graduating students

For three days .M Contemporary hosted Young Artists Initiative, an exhibition showcasing graduate students of 2013 from COFA (College of Fine Arts), NAS (National Art School) and SCA (Sydney College of the Arts).

The exhibition incorporated twenty artists from a wide range of disciplines, including photography, video, painting, printmaking, installation and performance art.Graduates were selected by a judging panel comprising of Sydney Contemporary Art Fair director Barry Keldoulis,

established Sydney artist Joan Ross, co-founder and managing director of ARTCELL Lisa Corsi, Sydney gallery owner Michael Reid, art editor Prue Gibson, director of ALASKA Projects Sebastian Goldspink and .M Contemporary’s director and manager Michelle Paterson and Louise Rush.

Nowhere Song II, 2015

Doris Lessing

The English author Doris Lessing passed away on November 18th at home with her family in London. She was the inspiration behind Marna Hattingh’s recent show
Each their own Wilderness” in which the artist drew on Lessing’s view of society, blurring humour and social commentary.

Lessing was one of the few women to win the Noble Peace Prize and will be missed by many.

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Artist and Curator Talks

Lee Sang Hyun and Georgie Bruce

On both days, guest curator Georgie Bruce and artist Lee Sang Hyun presented a packed audience with informative talks about the critical and artistic approaches towards Lee’s work .The audience was delighted to hear from the artist about his practice and the way in which he creates the digitally montaged images. Audiences also acquired knowledge about the Korean history entwined through his work as well as the diplomatic ties Korea has with western nations such as America, Canada and Australia. Guests were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to speak with Lee about his works after the talk.


Sang Hyun Lee Opening

Lee Sang Hyun Opening
Broken Blossom

The exhibition “Broken Blossom” by South Korean artist Lee Sang Hyun was a break through cultural initiative and the first of its kind in Sydney. M Contemporary was delighted to host Lee Sang Hyun’s first solo exhibition in Australia. The event was curated by art consultant and specialist Georgie Bruce and was officiated by the New South Wales Consul General, Mr Whie Jin Lee.

The exhibition explores an insight into the representation of both North and South Korea through images, symbols and concepts of a society, who have endured extreme cultural, social and economic change. The works are digitally montaged and infused with vivid, bright pop colours depicting historical scenes with the stereotypical clichés of a highly technical, hybridized contemporary Korean society.

Lee’s presence in the first week of the exhibition allowed for the audience to gain a better insight into his works, which was followed by curator and artists talks.


Whats On in Spring

Art & About Sydney 2013, Festival Private Lives Public Spaces 
20th September – 20th October 2013
Exhibitions, Installations, Family Events, Talks and Tours, this festival is right across all spectrums, definitely worth spending time reading the program.


Spill – Shaun Parker & Company
4th October – 7th October 2013
Free! Shaun Parker’s dance company will bring three inner-city play grounds to life with high energy, urban, colourful, fast and fun. The playground will be transformed into a performance space.


The Banner Gallery – Walking Men Worldwide (TM)
Until 20th October
Walking Men Worldwide TM  will make Sydney an outdoor gallery with 99 banners of traffic light icons, a series of public art installations that made its debut in Manhattan in 2010. Presented in human scale the works of pedestrian icons have been assembled from around the world. Working as a collaborative, International photographers have contributed to the project that will line our Sydney streets.


Art Gallery of New South WalesContemporary Project Space
Keep an eye on this site as it features an on going series of exhibitions of new work by living artist.


Sydney Moderns
23rd September – 4th October 2013
A tour of the Sydney Moderns exhibition that involvescreating Art, producing a flaneur’s keen eye for observation.


Museum of Contemporary Art Primavera
30th August – 2nd February 2013
Young Australian Artists! An exciting collection of works from Australia’s emerging artists, 35 years and under.


 Activities with current exhibitions as well as live music by other youths. Food, art, fun and free.  


Power House Museum Kaleidoscpoe Workshop
21st September – 7th October 2013
This is a coolidea, exploring the nature of shadows through interaction with light and dark, dodge a maze of Lasers and watch stuff glow.


Thinkspace: Digital Media Workshops
Be guided by experts as you learn-by-making, explore digital media in applied arts and sciences.


Beaux Ball 
7th November 2013
Architecture as fancy dress, go as your favorite building!! 18+  


Sydney Opera House Graphic Festival 2013
Animation,illustration, music and underground ground art forms. There is only one thing to do, check it out!


White Rabbit Gallery Serve the People
30th August 2013– 2nd February 3014
White Rabbitshould always be part of what you see, because if the diverting, exciting and refreshingly new take on contemporary art featured in this privately owned collection of Chinese Art.


Explore technology at the Sydney Opera House.

Discover the House
until 15th October 2013

Staging Stories
A digital story telling workshop, until 12th November 2013



Review of .M Contemporary at Sydney Contemporary

“Opening its doors just this year, .M Contemporary is exhibiting as part of the Project Contemporary section of the fair, devoted to galleries less than three years. A collection of artist Lyndi Sales’ work is the

focal point of .M Contemporary’s display. 159/296 is a large, beautiful installation representing the lives lost in the tragic Helderberg plane crash of 1987; Lyndi’s father died on the flight. Thought to be caused by the South African regime in power at the time, the lives lost were mainly South African and Taiwanese nationals. Lyndi Sales is based in Cape Town, South Africa.” Read the full article here


Review of the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair by Nicholas Forrest

Sydney-based gallery .M Contemporary only opened in August of this year, but the director of the gallery, Michelle Paterson, made such an impact on the Sydney art scene that she earned herself a place in the inaugural Sydney Contemporary art fair within weeks of launching her gallery. Paterson launched .M Contemporary with an exhibition of works by the prominent South African artist Lyndi Sales. The exhibition was a great success which prompted Paterson to present an exhibition of Sales’ work at Sydney Contemporary. The opening night of Sydney Contemporary was bigger than anyone could have expected with 12,000 visitors – four times the expected

number – descending on the Carriageworks arts space for a night of great art, fine food, and plenty of wine. By the second day of the fair Paterson had already sold a number of works by Sales including the large work “Vesica Piscus” for $9,900 and a number of smaller works ranging in price from $900 – $1400 per work. As well as exhibiting Sales’ work in her gallery booth, Paterson is also presenting a major work by Sales as part of the Installation Contemporary project space. The spectacular hanging installation at the entrance to the fair features five shimmering oval mirrored discs

that were originally inspired by shattered wristwatches which were recovered from the Helderberg plane crash. “For this installation I wanted to also make reference to the vortex or tunnel of light scenario associated with a near death experience,” explains Sales. “The Shattered discs are cut from mirror Perspex and reflect into each other which is translated as multiple realms that exist in a parallel universe and the contemplation of these parallels within the macrocosms and microcosms.” Review by: Nicholas Forrest Executive Editor ARTINFO AUSTRALIA New Website:


Sydney Contemporary Art Fair

Sydney Contemporary Art Fair @ Carriageworks, Redfern
19 Sep 2013 – 22 Sep 2013
The Inaugural Sydney Contemporary Art Fair showcased over 83 local and international galleries, representing 300 artists from around the world and bringing over 1,000 works for this weekend long event.

Tim Etchells (co-founder of Hong Kong Art Fair) and Barry Keldoulis opened the event as Carriageworks transformed itself into its first art fair. It was a magnificent event to be part of and was packed with art enthusiasts, avid collectors and new collectors from all over.

Included in the program were informative talks by artist Ben Quility, publisher Suzanne Boccalatte, Associate Dean of Sydney College of the Arts Jacqueline Millner, art advisor Mark Hughes and gallery Director Anna Schwartz.

Reviews by:

Review of Sydney Contemporary by
Review by Jacqui Thompson

Review of the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair by Nicholas Forrest
Review by: Nicholas Forrest: Executive Editor


Sydney Contemporary Art Fair launching tonight


We’re very excited to be apart of the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair this year, with our artist Lyndi Sales producing an installation piece in the main entrance foyer. Come and visit us at BOOTH PC 106 to see more of her work. The event begins tonight (launch) and ends this Sunday, 22 September.

For further details visit:

We’re also hosting the launch after-party, with Australian artist Garth Knight performing live, taking you on a journey, applying his interest in Zen concepts, pagan mythology and the traditions of kinbaku bondage. RSVP essential. Event details: 9-11pm, 37 Ocean Street Woollahra.

Follow us on Facebook or twitter to stay up-to-date with the event over the next few days:


What’s happening in September



The exhibition travels between a hybrid of fine art, literature and the complexities of contemporary life. Hattingh’s distinctive style is deeply layered and functions as a hyper textual, image ridden network of traces and meanings.

We anticipate great things from this new artist, her debut solo show in Australia, Each Their Own Wilderness is a truly incredible body of work and almost sold out at the opening.

Marna’s wide appeal sees her work being sort internationally with a solo show at the Cat Street Gallery in Hong Kong in 2014 followed by another solo show in South Africa in 2015.

Her exhibition at .M Contemporary runs until 6 October 2013

Click through to her e-catalogue


Thursday 19 Sep 9-11pm
RSVP essential very limited capacity


Garth Knight
The Enchanted Forest

We are very excited to host the VIP after-party for the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair and have an exciting night planned for you.

Australian artist Garth Knight will take you on a journey with a live performance, applying his interest in Zen concepts, pagan mythology and the traditions of kinbaku bondage.

We will also have an exclusive sneak peak at a new Melbourne band who will be playing a selection of their music.

Access is restricted to RSVP and VIP passes, if you have not registered or received your VIP pass, please visit us at the gallery as we have a very limited capacity.


Sydney Contemporary Art Fair

Sydney Contemporary is Australia’s new international art fair. The inaugural show will take place on 20-22 September 2013 at Redfern’s art precinct, Carriageworks. It will showcase modern and contemporary artwork from around the world presenting multi-displinary practices..M Contemporary’s artist Lyndi Sales has been especially selected to produce an installation piece for the main entrance of the foyer.?Shatter consists of five large mirrored discs that will be suspended from the ceiling; it will appear to float through space.Visit us at BOOTH PC 106 to view more work by the renowned artist Lyndi Sales



Image Annie Aikten
Title: Kaleidoscope 9

Annie Aitken has the alchemist’s touch; her work transforms discarded materials into soft sculptures that appear to erupt with colour out from the wall.

The beautifully crafted sculptures assume the form of fragile containers, transforming materials of the everyday into artworks that speak directly to our senses, expressing the beauty of nature. The delicate constructions are seen as “three dimensional drawings” by the artist, as they hover between both two and three dimensional.


Marna Hattingh Opening

Marna Hattingh Opening
Each Their Own Wilderness

Marna Hattingh’s exhibition Each Their Own Wilderness was her first solo show in Australia and was a great success. A body of work inspired by a 1957 play by British writer Doris Lessing. The works are an integration of daily life and the wider society blurring humor and social commentary with a playful palette. The compositions highlight the linear style of repetition, waves, movement, diagonal lines and patterns.

The exhibition explores the hybrid of fine art, literature and the complexities of contemporary life and the society that we live in. Her distinctive style is deeply layered and functions as a hyper textual, image-ridden network of traces and meanings. With more than half of the works sold during the exhibition she is bound to be a success worldwide. Her success has been well sought after, with her next solo show at Cat Street Gallery in Hong Kong in 2014.

Installation view, 2013

.M Contemporary opens!

Despite it being the coldest night in Sydney this year with horrendous traffic and rain we had an amazing turnout of more than 150 people at the opening of .M Contemporary by Michelle Paterson. Friends, neighbours and fellow supporters of the arts came together to support the opening which was held in conjunction with the opening of Levitate, a well-thought out body of work by incredibly talented South African artist, Lyndi Sales. Our guest speaker Professor Jill Bennett from COFA (College of Fine Arts) summarised Lyndi’s work and the content with such delicate clarity that it was a privilege to hear. We would also like to thank Barry Keldoulis, CEO and group fairs director of Art Fairs Australia, for taking time opening the space and his ongoing support.

Thanks all for attending, it was a great night!

Click here for the full blogpost for photos of the night and some of Lyndi’s beautiful work taken before the party began. Stay tuned for more pics of the artwork and gallery space soon. Enjoy.


Lyndi Sales (in pink dress) chats with visitors to .M Contemporary and her show.

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Artist Talk

Artist Talk

After an exciting opening on Thursday 8 August, Lyndi was thrilled to talk about her body of work including her most recent work VesicaPiscis 2013. Lyndi spoke about each work individually and expressed the meaning and representational concepts that have evolved in her works. With much of her works focusing on one’s fragmented yet fragile existence- she expresses this through her own personal experiences with loss.  It was a lovely afternoon that made for great conversation with the audience and artist.

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Lyndi Sales Opening

Lyndi Sales Opening

The opening exhibition Levitate showcased the works by South-African artist Lyndi Sales, the body of work spans from 2006 to 2013 and explores the themes of perception and connectivity. Her series of installations seek to investigate the circumstances surrounding the controversial Helderberg plane crash, the materials she uses often sheds light on the fragile nature of our existence, temporality and how chance plays a role in our lives. It was such a successful opening, despite the rain and cold weather!

The Director of Sydney Contemporary Art Fair Barry Keldoulis officially opened the gallery while Professor Jill Bennett from COFA (College of Fine Arts) spoke about the opening exhibition Levitate. Lyndi was overwhelmed with the positive and enthusiastic response that she received from the Australian audience and was more than happy to share in the excitement. When Jill spoke about her work, Lyndi stated that she felt a little emotional when hearing about the perception of her work from others, as her works form the basis of her own personal experiences in life.

As Nicholas Forrest states about this new exhibition and venture-“.M Contemporary has the potential to become a major force in the Australian commercial gallery scene”. And so it begins…


.M Contemporary starts catching the online art world’s eye.

It’s been a great few weeks of online mentions and articles about .M Contemporary, our new gallery space and our opening exhibition of Lyndi Sales’ works in ‘Levitate’ set to open this Thursday. Click on the links below to check out some of these articles, including a great profile by Nicholas Forrest of BlouinArtInfo on Michelle and her story so far. Thanks to everyone who’s working hard getting it all up and running and thanks also to all these publications for giving us a shout-out. We’ll see you on Thursday!

New art gallery . M Contemporary to open in Sydney on BlouinArtInfo

New gallery .M Contemporary launches with Lyndi Sales’ exhibition ‘Levitate’ on Art Almanac

What’s On: Levitate on artshub


.M Contemporary art trip to South Africa

Hi there! Things have been really busy here at .M Contemporary setting up the permanent gallery space in Woollahra and getting ready for a host of new shows as well as Sydney Contemporary 13 in September (more news on this soon). Having recently though come back from a very inspiring, whirlwind trip to South Africa to meet and scout new artists for our 2014 .M Contemporary shows, I thought I’d write some of my observations of the scene over there. Overall there’s a really great, dynamic energy in the air with so much variety and art being produced by new and established artists alike. We got some great artists for our 2014 program with more to be confirmed soon so we’re really excited. Read on for more insight into the Johannesburg part of our trip.

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I Fink U Freeky, 2013

Die Antwoord & Roger Ballen win award

I Fink U Freeky music video has won another prestigious award. The video won the Best Music Video award at the 20th anniversary event of the Plus Camerimage International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography in Bydgoszcz, Poland. This is the second major award for the video, which has received over 20 million hits on You Tube. Earlier this year the video was awarded the Music Video Grand Prix at the Curtas Vila do Conde International Film Festival in Portugal.

Watch the video here.
From Erdmann Contemporary Gallery.