wotwedid

Victoria Cooper+Doug Spowart Blog

Posts Tagged ‘QCA

ARTISTS FACING STUDIO CLOSURE: QCA vs Griffith University

leave a comment »

Over the last month there have been reports coming out of the Queensland College of Art about proposed changes being instigated by the hosting institution Griffith University. The University’s intentions are outlined in the University’s ‘Proposal for Workplace Change Roadmap to Sustainability *’.

*If link is broken Download a copy of the Proposal for Workplace Change Roadmap to Sustainability ‘  GU-QCA-Proposal-for-Workplace-Change-Roadmap-to-Sustainability_students

.

Outcry from a cross-section of the Arts community has been forthcoming. This has included Arts academics, current and past students, staff and colleagues, Arts organisations like Occuli, NAVA, Brisbane Visual Arts Advocacy Group, Artisan and The Print Council of Australia, Arts Agencies and other supporting groups.

 

Save our Studios Poster by Isobelle Dwyer

Save our Studios Poster by Isobelle Dwyer

 

.

.AS ALUMNI WE WANT TO SUPPORT THE QCA

So we composed the following letter to the Griffith University’s Vice Chancellor:

 

Dear Griffith University Vice Chancellor Professor Carolyn Evans,

By now you will have received a significant number of responses relating to the proposed changes to the Queensland College of Art.

I have read many of the responses to these changes posted online and I concur with the concerns raised by many of the respondents. The Queensland College of Art has history, a solid reputation for the quality of its graduates and the possibility to contribute significantly to the ongoing record of the life of human and non-human habitation on this planet.

Imagine for a moment if you can your world without the framed artwork on the wall – what it’s like to witness the vibe of the well attended gallery, the encounter of a sculpture in a public space, and the wonder of the fleeting image on Instagram. All of these are created by artists – the very people who will be affected by the changes you are intending to implement.

I understand the contemporary funding pressures created by the Pandemic and government indifference to the need to financially support academic study and research into the broader aspects of human existence.

However there is a necessity to be careful that rapid submission to comply, with what may be short-term influences, will have implications. Not just within the fine arts discipline but also, as the artist tells the stories of their times, fewer qualified practitioners will culminate in a gap in the creative record of human existence.

I urge Griffith University to reconsider what has been proposed and find a space to allow art and artists to be nurtured within the Griffith University academic programs.

I also wish you to consider that while many other universities may be considering a similar course of action in cutting Fine arts programs Griffith University has an opportunity to stand firm and continue the Queensland College of Art and realise the benefits identified in the vision and dreams that the supporters of the SAVE our STUDIOS have.

The studio is the crucible that provides the catalyst and engine room for the creative thought…

Sincerely,

Dr Doug Spowart M.Photog, FAIPP, HonFAIPP         Dr Victoria Cooper M.Photog, HonFAIPP

Graduate: College of Art Brisbane 1972                                                  Graduate: Queensland College of Art Brisbane 1993

 

 

A RESPONSE TO THE EMAIL WAS RECEIVED LATER IN THE DAY …

.

 

.

STUDENT PROTESTS AND MEDIA REPORTS HAVE BEEN SUCCESSFUL IN GENERATING COMMUNITY AWARENESS

.

Photos courtesy of Cheryl Bronson

Photos courtesy of Cheryl Bronson

.

An ABC TV REPORT HERE

AND

An ABC RADIO INTERVIEW HERE

(interview begins at around 1:42:45 and runs for 15 mins)

.

A PETITION

At the time of posting the SAVE OUR STUDIOS Petition had received 10.6K signatures

– You can add your support by signing the petition here: http://chng.it/Zv22YbfP6y

.

FB Page

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE QCA SOS PROTEST VISIT:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/teamqcasos

 

Save our Studios QCA by Summer Hiskens-Ravest

 

.

AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL UNIVERSITY and the School of Art and Design

It’s interesting to note that at this time the Australian National University is doing the same for their Art programs with their demand being “…the long-standing structural deficit of the School cannot continue and must be addressed. The School must position itself tobe able to deliver its programs and research with continued excellence but in a financially viable and sustainable manner.”

READ MORE HERE: https://www.anu.edu.au/files/guidance/Managing%20Change%20Proposal_CASS_Tranche%202_November%202020_.pdf?

If link is broken Download a copy HERE ANU-Managing Change Proposal_CASS_Tranche 2_November 2020_

.

.

.

.

WOTweTHINK: Joe Ruckli’s ‘LIGHTNING WITHOUT FLASH’

leave a comment »

.

 

Walking into Joe Ruckli’s exhibition Lightning Without Flash at the Queensland College of Art’s Web Gallery was a little like entering into the subject of his documentary work.

The white walls of the gallery evoke the opal miner’s white clay tunnels of Lightning Ridge in northern NSW. Here and there the glimmer of what opal miners call ‘colour’ appear in the form of photographs arranged in rows and in one random gallery hang.

In the center of the room on plinths sit piles of ‘potch’ – miners slang for junk opal in the form of Keno tickets, fractured clay clods, crumpled beverage cans, machinery debris and a ‘roly-poly’(tumble weed).

 

Lightning Without Flash QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… Installation QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Gallery visitors at the exhibition opening ... PHOTO: Doug Spowart

Gallery visitors at the exhibition openingPHOTO: Doug Spowart

 

In traditional documentary style Ruckli’s ‘miner’s tunnel’ presents visual material that tells or invokes stories about place.

Ruckli’s human inhabitants live hard lives working in difficult conditions.

  • A hand holds a wallet in which a well-handled 1960s b&w portrait of lady looks out of the frame – the thumbnail of the hand is damaged and cracked and a fly sits on the knuckle…
  • A 50s+ lady stares challengingly at the camera, hand on hip the other resting on the doorway to her ‘home’ – behind her head a circular dark shape, perhaps a window, acts like a halo. There are layers of meaning here…
Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

 

The human occupied space where people live and work is depicted as a run-down, rough and inhospitable place.

  • A caravan surrounded by assorted re-purposed corrugated iron sheeting hides within a barren withered land.
  • A ‘room’ of walls made of bits of bags, iron sheets, wood and bush poles seems like an abandoned hermit’s lair laid dormant for a century.
  • A shop in the street ‘Peter’s Opals’ presents a stark elevation despite the beauty of the stones inside for sale.
Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

 

The natural space is tough enough for plants and animals without it being overlaid by the detritus of human habitation and exploitation.

  • Bushland slashed by the track of grader blades, scattered bleached kangaroo bones and shrubbery covered by powdered bulldust giving the appearance of a snow scene.
  • A kangaroo skeleton lies in profile, its running pose is gradually being smothered by wind-blown dust to perhaps one day to be found as a fossil of this time…
Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

 Lightning Without Flash...... QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

Lightning Without Flash…… QCA Webb Gallery PHOTO: Joe Ruckli

.

Ruckli has selectively, through his image and ephemera collecting, presented us with a first-hand experience of Lightning Ridge. It’s an alien space that few of us will ever encounter. But for one moment, in this white ‘tunnel’, we came to experience something of what lies behind the opal’s seduction. So powerful that it drives human endeavour to live, work and endure the hardships to strike the illusive and lucky find.

And we wonder about the gem – once extracted from its hiding in the claystones and then polished – destined for another place to adorn, as a jeweled accessory, the lifestyles of another world …

 

Doug Spowart with editorial support by Victoria Cooper

13 Jan 2020

.

What is WOTweTHINK?

We attend many exhibitions and lament that these shows rarely have personal or reflective commentaries published about them. Our concept is to condense our thoughts into an Instagram-like short/sharp rought draft post. We hope that WOTweTHINK may encourage a broader discussion …

.

 

A SELECTION OF OTHER IMAGES FROM THE EXHIBITION

.

%d bloggers like this: