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Archive for July 2014

COOPER+SPOWART EXHIBITION: Speaking About Place

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Gallery-layout JULY 2-72

Speaking About Place gallery layout

 

Speaking About Place: the Nocturne Project

Victoria Cooper & Doug Spowart

Cam Robertson Gallery, Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery, 19 July – 17 August 2014

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Our arts practice is informed by our ongoing and evolving connection with Place. Our Place-Projects are influenced by the context and the consequences of living within a constantly changing landscape. We work with a range of photographic concepts and techniques, from the camera obscura, through analogue processes to the digital forms of the medium. Our work is presented as visual narratives in artists’ books, photobooks, exhibition images and, more recently, blogs and social media.

Through our Nocturne documentary photography and Facebook social media projects, we have explored connections with Place in urban and regional communities throughout Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. For us the phenomenon of nocturnal light transforms these everyday spaces. Buildings, busy street corners, quiet alleyways all become filled with the dramatic light of a movie scene. In 2013 and 2014 we were given the opportunity, through funded Artists-in-Residence (AIR) programmes, to undertake Nocturne projects in the regional communities of Muswellbrook, Grafton and Bundaberg.

In this exhibition we present a selection of images from three years of our Nocturne Projects. The work shown here adds to the recent Childers Art Gallery exhibition of this project, by the inclusion of social media elements. Therefore in this gallery we invite viewers to connect with the work in a forum outside the virtual space of Facebook. To enable this connection to take place we have created folios that contain transcripts of Facebook/Place/Storytelling from each of the three AIRs.

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About the photographs

We photograph in the early evening nocturnal light, a time of day where the afterglow of sunset and the glow of streetlights transform the everyday experience of place for the viewer. Images created at this time require long camera exposures and therefore produce photographs that can capture blurred movement of people and vehicles. Another important aspect of the Nocturne aesthetic is the effect of colour and the juxtaposition of coloured lights in the different situations of ambient daylight, artificial lighting, car head and taillights.

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Exhibition viewers reading Facebook responses

Exhibition viewers reading Facebook responses

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More than photographs

The photographs in themselves have no intrinsic meaning – it is the viewer, with their experience and memory that brings life to the image. In this moment of connection they may recount a personal narrative or connect with the historical significance of the place. This collaboration between photograph and viewer is exciting and vibrant – expanding the potential for the documentary image to go beyond the vision of the photographer.

As the Nocturne project has evolved, we have discovered the importance of sharing place stories through images, words, in person and online. Through Speaking about Place we have extended the potential for this project to share the transformative nature of lived experience and everyday life in each community.

The Western Downs town of Miles is scheduled for a social media Nocturne project later this year.

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CLICK HERE To download a PDF of some of the Facebook narratives Catalogue-Comments-interact-FP3

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Community comments about the photographs on Facebook

 

 

The online Nocturne Projects can be accessed at http://nocturnelink.com

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Link to The Toowoomba Chronicle online news story:

http://www.thechronicle.com.au/news/showing-cities-in-a-new-light/2323064/

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A selection of images from the opening and associated events

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Toowoomba Chronicle photographer get a Nocturne reverse-photo with us - From The Chronicle Instagram feed

Toowoomba Chronicle photographer Kevin Farmer gets a Nocturne reverse-photo with us – From The Chronicle Instagram feed

Exhibition invitation featuring the Toowoomba Town Hall Xmas 2012

Exhibition invitation featuring the Toowoomba Town Hall Xmas 2012

The opening of 'Speaking About Place by Ashleigh Campbell

The opening of ‘Speaking About Place by Ashleigh Campbell

Some attendees at the opening

Some attendees at the opening

Maureen Trainor and Kevin visit the show

Maureen Trainor and Kevin Scattergood visit the show

Jess Martin's 'Nocturne Cup Cakes...

Jess Martin’s Nocturne Cup Cakes…

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Visit http://nocturnelink.com to connect with our Nocturne Projects

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Installation photos and documentation of the artworks and text  ©Doug Spowart

Instagram photo and news story © The Toowoomba Chronicle and Kevin Farmer

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Creative Commons-by-nc-nd.eu

My photographs and words are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.5/au/

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MEMORY COLLECTIVE: Super Moon + Phoenix

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Eighteen months ago Toowoomba artist Damien Kamholtz began a project that was to bring together a team of local artists to participate in a conceptual artwork that would have many states and private and public iterations. The first public presentation of the The Memory Collective was at the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery in August/September 2013.

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Two weeks ago a key element of The Memory Collective project was altered yet again into a new state. This took place near Cabarlah at a symbolic time for Kamholtz, the recent super moon…

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Here is part of the document made on that July evening.

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Damien Kamholtz @ the burning  Photo: Cooper+Spowart

Damien Kamholtz before the burning Photo: Cooper+Spowart

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The super-moon rising and the embers of the phoenix rising

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Aftermath of the fire

 

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Damien's Ash-Burn

Aftermath: ashes of the painting the next morning. Photo: Damien Kamholtz

 

…. this is not an ending for the Memory Collective…

 

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 THE BACKSTORY OF THE MEMORY COLLECTION

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An exhibition of the collaborative artwork as a singlarity

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Memory Collective image from the exhibition @ Toowoomba Regional

Memory Collective image from the exhibition @ Toowoomba Regional

 

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A painting and a performance

 

 

The Memory Collective painting by Damien Kamholtz

The Memory Collective painting by Damien Kamholtz

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The Memory Collective is a multi-disciplinary collaboration orchestrated by artist Damien Kamholtz. Kamholtz states: The Memory Collective Project is a creative collaboration between 12 artists across eight artistic disciplines exploring concepts and themes relating to the human condition such as change, constants, history, refection and memory. The artworks created during the project will make up an exhibition to be held at the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery in September 2013.

There are different stages to the project. First Kamholtz created a large 2.2 metre square painting, while sculptor, Jessie Wright constructed the large vessel to hold the water. Kamholtz’s painting is embedded with personal meaning in the form of fragments of his past art, the ashes of diaries. In the presence of this artwork we are drawn into a poetic landscape where faces emerge; symbols and totems slip from passive dark spaces and come into conscious awareness.

The second stage of the work was the performance in the form of 9 responses to the painting by Kristy Lee. The painting and the pool created the reflective and reflexive performative space and the transformative process of the original painting then began. Integral to the space were David Usher’s delicate pots; these vessels contained the pallet of shades that then shrouded and clouded the memory of the work. Over the course of the day the painting’s physical form was transformed into something different loosing its current visual form as only a memory.

Our part of the collaboration was to witness, respond and record the transformation of the work over the day. The next stage of the Memory Collective’s work will continue over the next month our component will be to create 9 large collaged photograph memory states of the work for the show in September. Works by others include; a video art piece, a documentary video, a soundscape, interviews, prose and poems. It is a significant project and is being funded by the RADF and supported through the exhibition at the Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery.

 

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A fragment of photographic memories made by us for the MEMORY COLLECTIVE

 

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Kamholtz in the performance space with the painting and pool

Damien Kamholtz in the performance space with the painting and pool

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A performance

 

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Kirsty Lee and painting – in the early state…

Kirsty Lee performs before the painting

Kirsty Lee performs before the painting

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State 3 Kirsty applies paint to the paining...   Photo: Cooper+Spowart

State 3 Kirsty applies paint to the paining…

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Hand paint

Hand paint

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Kirsty Lee and her interaction with the painting   PHOTO Cooper+Spowart

Kirsty Lee and her interaction with the painting … around Stage 6

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Blue hand...

Blue hand…

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Kirsty Lee in a frenetic stage…

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Kirsty Lee and brushes before the pool

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Paint fluid in the pool…

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Towards the final state…

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The final state …


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Memory Collective logo.

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Additional material

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Damien discussing movement with Kirsty

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Kirsty Lee towards the end of the performance

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Another creative work from the performance by Jason Nash…

Jason Nash - Time lapse video

Jason Nash – Time lapse video

CLICK HERE to see Jason Nash’s ‘Memory Collective’ time-lapse video

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The Team: Front Ashleigh Campbell, Julio Dunlop, Kirsty Lee, Victoria Cooper, Doug Spowart Back: David Usher, Jason Nash, Jesse Wright, Damien Kamholtz, Zac Rowling ( weakling). Not present: Craig Allen & Jake Hickey

The Team: Front Ashleigh Campbell, Julio Dunlop, Kirsty Lee, Victoria Cooper, Doug Spowart
Back: David Usher, Jason Nash, Jesse Wright, Damien Kamholtz, Zac Rowling ( weakling).
Not present: Craig Allen & Jake Hickey

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Toowoomba Chronicle 17 June, 2013 by Kate Dodd PHOTO: Dave Noonan

Toowoomba Chronicle 17 June, 2013 by Kate Dodd PHOTO: Dave Noonan

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© 2013+2014 Victoria Cooper and Doug Spowart for The Memory Collective

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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DOUG is 2014 Siganto Foundation Artists’ Book Research Fellow

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Doug Spowart @ the State Library of Queensland

Doug Spowart @ the State Library of Queensland

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About the 2014 Siganto Foundation Artists’ Book Research Fellowship from the application details:

The Siganto Foundation Artists’ Books Research Fellowship, proudly supported by the Siganto Foundation, is to be used by an individual to undertake original research on one aspect of artists’ book practice, theory or history, making use of the resources contained within the collections of the State Library of Queensland’s Australian Library of Art. Subject to this general consideration, State Library allows the Fellow to determine expenditure of the funds and may require the Fellow to account for the funds awarded.

 

About the research that I intend to undertake:

Today photographic expression is evolving to pervade all kinds of books by artists, artists–photographers, photographers and photographer-artists. Collections such as the Australian Library of Art at the State Library of Queensland become repositories for selected or exemplar works. In the Research Fellowship I intend to review the field of creative book production that utilises the photograph and consider what has been created to date and in the SLQ collection, as well as identify emergent trends.

As a significant repository of artists’ books, the State Library of Queensland’s Australian Library of Art is a pre-eminent location to carry out the proposed research. Additionally access to books contained in the State Library of Queensland’s general library collection and Zine collections will considerably add to the research.

Importantly the collection contains artists’ books created over a great number of years by a range of practitioners representing a broad range of practice. These books may encompass the full gamut of photograph usage in the book including approaches to the narrative carried by the book, the physical form of the book and the integration of the photograph into design, typographic and textural components.

This proposed research will define a process by which the uses of photography in the creative productions of artists’ books and photobooks can be defined and compared. In my recently completed PhD research on the topic of the artists’ book and the photobook, I identified the need for scholarly research on this evolving phenomenon.

My aims in this research are to create an approach to the development of a flexible and dynamic nomenclature for the photo and the book. This preliminary strategy will provide a way in which books from a variety of makers, media, structures and motivations can be compared. Ultimately this research will produce outcomes that approach a broader and topical view of artists’ books and photobooks to stimulate dialogue and debate.

The Fellowship will include blog posts on the SLQ site and an illustrated presentation at the 2015 Siganto Artists’ Books Seminar.

I am looking forward to the opportunity to research my favourite topic – books!

 

The Siganto Foundation Artists’ Books Creative Fellowship has been awarded to Jan Davis. Her project One thing becoming another: labour-infused artist’s books which investigate lives of toil in nineteenth and early twentieth century rural Queensland.

For more details see   http://blogs.slq.qld.gov.au/ala/2014/07/18/2014-siganto-foundation-fellowships/

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The State Library of Queensland

The State Library of Queensland Photo: ©2011 Doug Spowart

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