This is the second year the group Untethered have exhibited together. The group has lost a few members since their last showing and now has 23 active contributors who are producing quality art pieces
From my personal point of view, comparing their 2015 exhibition ‘Out of Hand’ against this year ‘Ebb and Flow’ I feel the group has become more cohesive over the last 12 months. I understand that they run a private on-line group where they discuss work progress, critique, encourage and provide a supportive foundation for each other. In my opinion this has enabled many of them to evolve their art practice and produce new pieces with a more professional outcome.
Whilst I believe art, in whatever medium, is a very personal thing there is something to be said for exhibited pieces being attractive/appealing to the public viewing them. They may evoke any of a range of emotions or visual sensations but achieving some reaction has to be a consideration. Many of the works have personal messages or social comments attached to them which comes through strongly in some cases.
Below I’m showcasing a few pieces that particularly drew my eye – for whatever reason:
This piece considers how the ebb and flow of water may bring fortune, good or bad and especially references the people of inland Australia and the drilling of bore holes that some rely on.
Artist statement (in part): I have long been fascinated by what I perceive as the mystery, beauty and sadness of ruined structures from antiquity. This work gives form to these emotional responses and ruminations on this subject.
Artist statement (in full):
When we think of ‘ebb and flow’ it’s easy to be lulled by the idea of a gentle rhythm, the breath of life. But while this is sustaining, the extremes of the ebb and flow are sometimes required for rebirth and creation.
The Australian bush is a great example, needing the extremes of heat and fire to off new seeds, to germinate new plants and stimulate new growth.
As humans, we try to avoid extreme situations, but often it’s when we are faced with the catastrophic that we grow, we create. We dig deep and rise to the occasion. Like the bush, we can grow from unexpected places: perhaps we regenerate through our root system, or sprout again from our ravaged bark.
Growing up in Sydney’s south, I witnessed catastrophic bush fires and miraculous regeneration up close. The colours – the stark black trees that are gradually cloaked in green, the charred seed pods opened to reveal bright ochres and rusts, the subtle pinks and oranges and lilacs and limes of fresh young eucalyptus leaves – are uniquely Australian and part of our identity.
I was impressed with many of the artworks and pleased that visitors were allowed to take photographs. I don’t want to copy any of these above, or the others I saw, but I’d like to be reminded of them, their creators (most of whom I know) and their stories/journeys.