Contemporary Australian Drawings 1

Contemporary Australian Drawings 1 is a major component of the RMIT University and University of Arts London Drawing Out conference, held at Storey Hall, RMIT City campus, 7-9 April.

Curated by Dr Irene Barberis, Director of the international research hub, Metasenta Pty Ltd ®, Contemporary Australian Drawings 1 explores the depth and diversity found in the drawings of the particular artists whose works appear in a new survey on Australian drawing.

“Each artist has their own language of the mark; that which defines aspects of their practice and response to the world, the everyday and the ‘other’, whether the drawings are the actual interface with the public or are quiet private intimate notations within the process, drawing is an integral aspect to the artist’s thinking, doing, being, working, finding, crafting, musing, saying,” said Dr Barberis.

“The work in this exhibition has been chosen from some of the artists to be featured in the forthcoming publication of Dr Janet McKenzie’s Contemporary Australian Drawing. From my involvement in the School of Art at RMIT University, building up the Drawing Studio with Godwin Bradbeer and James Taylor, and with the benefit of national and international perspectives, I recognized the need for an updated survey on Australian drawing.

“To this end, I invited Dr McKenzie on behalf of Metasenta® Pty. Ltd, to author the soon to be published book Contemporary Australian Drawings 1, as she had authored an earlier survey on Australian drawing in 1986. It is significant that this exhibition be understood as contributing to the dialogue generated by the Drawing Out conference, which is a collaboration between RMIT University and the University of the Arts London.”

Dr Janet McKenzie from her introduction to the forthcoming survey on Australian drawing:

"In a global context drawing exists irrespective of cultural identity. It is a basic human instinct to make marks, to draw, to write. It could be perceived as ironic, that charged with the knowledge of new technology and the multitude of new forms and attitudes, that artists have chosen drawing in manifold forms. Over the past ten years, drawing has assumed a pivotal role in defining contemporary culture.

“Drawing at the present moment is seen to occupy a position of critical ascendancy. The conceptual and the subjective, arguably the most vital components of contemporary art practice - connect in drawing more forcibly and more appropriately than in any other form of art. Drawing as a structural and conceptual necessity has become increasingly important for many artists working today. Psychological space can be made to coexist with pictorial space, enabling a personal revision of history."

Curator: Dr Irene Barberis

Exhibition dates: 8 April – 26 June 2010

Artists: Raymond Arnold, Irene Barberis, Godwin Bradbeer, Jon Cattapan, Greg Creek, Elizabeth Cross, Michael Esson, Graham Fransella , Virginia Grayson, Pam Hallandal, Euan Heng, Philip Hunter, William Kelly, Culture Kitchen, Deborah Klein , Hilarie Mais, Mandy Martin, Helen Maudsley, Noel McKenna, Jennifer Mills, Allan Mitelman, Adrian Page, Mike Parr, Stieg Persson, Kerrie Poliness, Bernhard Sachs, Jörg Schmeisser, Jan Senbergs, Vivienne Shark LeWitt, Wilma Tabacco, Sarah Tomasetti, Aida Tomescu, Jenny Watson, Gosia Wlodarczak, John Wolseley, Helen Wright.

Irene Barberis, Light Circle #10: 8 points, 2010, Light lines in wall installation, 250cm diameter

Irene Barberis, Light Circle #10: 8 points, 2010, Light lines in wall installation, 250cm diameter.

Godwin Bradbeer, Imago XIX, 2007, 170 x 142cm, Chinagraph, silver oxide, pastel dust on Fabriano paper. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

Godwin Bradbeer, Imago XIX, 2007, 170 x 142cm, Chinagraph, silver oxide, pastel dust on Fabriano paper. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy.

Euan Heng, elephant, 2010, Neon, glass dome, plinth, Neon: 59 x 49cm (irregular) Plinth: 100 x 20 x 20cm, Dome: 14 x 14cm. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

Euan Heng, elephant, 2010, Neon, glass dome, plinth, Neon: 59 x 49cm (irregular) Plinth: 100 x 20 x 20cm, Dome: 14 x 14cm. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy.


Sarah Tomasetti, Worldlines Series, 2010, Fresco and graphite on muslin, 36 x 36 x 4cm (x3). Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

Sarah Tomasetti, Worldlines Series, 2010, Fresco and graphite on muslin, 36 x 36 x 4cm (x3). Photo: Mark Ashkanasy.

Contemporary Australian Drawings 1, Installation view, 2010. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

Contemporary Australian Drawings 1, Installation view, 2010. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy.


Mandy Martin, Sketch Book, 2007-10, 15 x 20 x 2cm. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy

Mandy Martin, Sketch Book, 2007-10, 15 x 20 x 2cm. Photo: Mark Ashkanasy.