Australian contemporary art in spotlight

By Lee Woo-young

3 exhibitions introduce media art and photography by young and emerging Australian artists

  • Published : Jul 17, 2014 - 20:27
  • Updated : Jul 17, 2014 - 20:27
The undiscovered aspects of contemporary Australian art will be on view in Seoul this summer, highlighted in three exhibitions featuring media art, photographs and a mix of diverse media.

Australia is one of the five guest countries invited to the 13th Dong Gang International Photo Festival, scheduled for July 18-21.

The Australian photo exhibition highlights contemporary aspects of indigenous photography of aboriginal artists.

“Aboriginal art has been thought of as paintings with flamboyant colors or craftworks. But this exhibition offers a modern aspect of aboriginal art that’s changing with cutting-edge media art,” said Lim Bo-young, cultural relations manager of the Australian Embassy.

Twelve artists portray cultural and social diversity in Australia by focusing on multicultural aspects of Australian life and social minority groups.

Another photo exhibition, which will take place from Aug. 27 to Sept. 2 at Gallery Now in Seoul, is devoted to photographs of aboriginal artists. The photographs offer a glimpse into the northern territory of Australia, home to the country’s most vibrant indigenous culture. Images of red soil and arid terrain, which symbolize the “red center” of Australia, dominate the exhibition.
“Rotational Affinity” by Justine Khamara (POSCO Art Museum)

The primitive natural beauty is delivered with short essays and sentences that depict the history of the land and nature and what they mean to the aborigines.

The touring exhibition at POSCO Art Museum offers insight into Australian contemporary art through innovative works by young, emerging artists. Titled “Vertigo,” the exhibition deals with universal sentiments of uncertainty and anxieties among the youth, portrayed in media art.

“The exhibition reflects on an accelerating world and its associated anxieties. ‘Vertigo’ features a search for balance and a reevaluation of priorities and possibilities for the future,” said Lesley Always, director of Asialink Arts.

The exhibition is organized by Asialink Arts of the University of Melbourne and independent contemporary art space Blindside in Melbourne. The exhibition was held in Indonesia and Taiwan from March to June.

Artists use diverse media ranging from paintings, collages, drawings and sculptures to video works that portray various aspects of the society they live in.

Artist Kate Shaw, based in Melbourne and New York, creates an artificial-looking natural landscape combining painting and video in an attempt to portray the human desire that pushes them away from Mother Nature.

A neon installation by New York-based Kristin McIver explores the desire and greed that prevail in a society of consumerism.

The exhibition runs from July 23 to Aug. 27 at POSCO Art Museum. For more information, visit www.poscoartmuseum.org.

By Lee Woo-young (wylee@heraldcorp.com)