THE FEBRUARY SHOWS Opens Fri 6th Feb 2009

JOMBI SUPASTAR



Jombi Supastar
Earthly Delights
pencil, paint, glitter on paper
(detail) © 2009

I’ve been enraptured by painting ever since my father took me to see work by Henri Matisse when I was a boy. Seeing works by Bosch, Blake and Basquiat in museums or galleries is vastly more wonderful for me than seeing them in reproduction. Even work you would think would reproduce well, like Walker’s or Haring’s; I find far more compelling in the original.

My own work is often narrative in nature, exploring the realms of the subconscious, the nether worlds and the sphere of the nature spirits. I think of my art as an expression of the multi-dimensionality of perception, and of the many-layered nature of my spirituality and sexuality. I seek to make my images dense and complicated, like life. I see no reason to limit myself to paint alone. I take a child’s delight in glittery, shiny objects. They excite me. I want my work to communicate that sense of excitement, and to create excitement of its own.

Jombi Supastar has shown his work at galleries in Philadelphia, New York and San Francisco. A radical faery, he was the first African American to serve as a steward of the Short Mountain Sanctuary in middle Tennessee. He now lives in Berkeley, California where he was recently awarded a grant, with Alwyn de Wally, to produce an installation piece for the National Queer Arts Festival in The United States this June.

JASON LINGARD



Jason Lingard
Skin Idols
giclée print on paper
Installation view © 2009

Skin Idols
is a series of work that explores the blurred line between pornography and art, absurdity and decency, abhorrence and worship. Jason Lingard’s prints take pornographic imagery out of the privacy of his bedroom, reconfiguring them into fantastical characters and idols, redisplaying them in the public domain, a space usually reserved for the presentation of brash large-scale advertising.

Jason Lingard is a multi-disciplinary artist whose work mainly consists of pop-influenced collage, digital manipulation, video and installation. Graphical, highly stylised, confrontational, and sometimes sexual, Lingard’s work has explored themes of body image, self-perception, sexual identity, celebrity culture and cosmetic surgery. Lingard has studied both graphic art and fashion design. Originally from New Zealand, he has exhibited in Australia, New Zealand and Germany. His worked has also been featured in magazines such as Dazed & Confused, Empty and Carousel.

FREDDIE JACKSON



Freddie Jackson
Disco/nstruction
digital print ©2009

Darkness pervades every part of our lives and minds. Each and every one of us battle with dark forces, inner demons, secret feelings we would never care to admit to anyone, maybe not even ourselves. That darkness is just as much a part of humanity as our other more appealing facades. With a little humour, a little sparkle, we can make that darkness seem less powerful and destructive than it appears to be.

These recent works mess up some of the darker icons of popular culture. Disco Death Star takes the planet destroying weapon from the Star Wars franchise and emasculates it into a sad and broken mirror ball. Like a party queen after too many hard nights, the power and puff has gone but a little pazazz remains, ready to be reconstructed if loved enough, even if for the wrong reasons. Foxy conceals the world's most powerful media baron behind a sequined guise, part wrestling fatigue, part drag fetish, the work masks that which is already masked. This thing is hidden from us all is so devastating that even if we knew the whole truth we could never even say it aloud it. Masks and reconstructions in this way work to prefigure an innate and far greater power that can not be understood, only inferred.

Freddie Jackson is an experimental queer artist who works under various psuedonyms in an attempt to debunk the myth of individualism while planting a tongue firmly in cheek. His work has a high camp queer aesthetic that interupts in the patriarchal monologue with a secondary male, yet queer, voice that combines some fine feminine qualities with a solid dose of darkness to pack a glittery punch to the rather dull status quo. Feddie once studied art at RMIT University and has exhibited under various names in line with his deliberately fluctuating identity.

LINSEY GOSPER



Linsey Gosper
Black Widow
cardboard, velvet, lights, video tape, photographic prints
Vitrine: installation view © 2009

Black Widow
is an exhibition of photographic self-portraits of female cinematic personas portraying multiple identities. The conceptual link between my research and studio work is based on one of the most important contributions feminist film theory has made to the larger field of feminist inquiry, that the image of woman is a ‘construction’.

The focus is the femme fatale, as an alternative feminine persona that is contradictory, fluid and liberating. She is the object of desire and a vehicle for feminist empowerment. Her role, particularly in the context of film noir, establishes her as the antithesis to other feminine stereotypes, yet she is an image of ultra femininity. This portrayal of femininity may be a masquerade, veiling her more masculine qualities of explicit sexuality, violence and assertiveness. Her independence and lack of interest in men often present her as a self-absorbed narcissist. Narcissism is linked in the popular imagination with femineity and lesbianism. I propose imagining a female Narcissus: ‘a woman whose belief in her own self-cultivation might result in significant cultural production.’*

The artworks will be super flat, life size, and freestanding cut outs – similar to cinema or video display posters, and reinforced by the shopfront aesthetic of the Vitrine. The audience can visibly see their construction and limited depth.

* Don’t Kiss Me: The Art of Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, Tate Publishing, London, Jersey heritage Trust, 2006, p. 37.

Linsey Gosper completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Honours) from The University of Newcastle while working as a photographic demonstrator for the School of Fine Art. She exhibited extensively during this time in Newcastle, Sydney, the Gold Coast and Perth. Gosper was the recipient of the Jennie Thomas Travelling Scholarship from The University of Newcastle and winner of the Newcastle Art Space Emerging Artist of the Year. Images from her Honours exhibition Bad Taste were published on the covers of Real Time and Jet, and she was commissioned to produce a body of work for the exhibition Autofetish: Mechanics of Desire, at the Newcastle Region Art Gallery in 2004. Gosper was a recipient of the Australian Postgraduate Award from The University of Melbourne and completed her Master of Fine Art at VCA in 2008. She has recently held shows Trocadero Art Space and Kings ARI.

MATT SHAW



Matt Shaw
The Underground Garden II: Boxed In
metal, welding, plants, stones, paint, diamantés
installation view ©2009

The Underground Garden installation at Platform is a living project that was devised to creatively deal with the leaky cabinet in the rundown subway. Following road works in Degraves Street above the subway, pipe damage led to a water leak problem that destroyed artwork and led to the closure of the end cabinet of Platform’s exhibition space. When artist Bernadette Trench-Thiedeman began experiments for her exhibition with botanical specimens in the leaky cabinet, she discovered that certain plants could survive underground for many months under fluorescent light.

After local designer Matt Shaw worked with Trench-Thiedeman on the living garden wall in Melbourne Central for French horticulturalist Patrick Blanc, the pair devised a plan to create a completely underground garden. Matt created the first experimental garden in mid-2008, which survived through much of year. This year Matt will create Boxed In, a new garden commission for The Underground Garden designed to remind us of nature’s enduring strength, and our opportunity for future sustainability.

Matt Shaw is a garden designer with more than ten years experience working in horticulture and landscaping. He also has an established practice in sculpture, in which he combines reclaimed industrial waste with hardy, drought-resistant plants to create unique and sustainable garden creations for Australia’s harsh climate.

Visit Matt Shaw's website here.

TAPE PROJECTS



Tape Projects
Frame Residency No. 1
flip books, string, tape, video, mini-dvd players, vinyl LPs
Frame: installation view © 2009

A new interdisciplinary case at the dark end of the subway...

Tape Projects seeks to promote the wealth of talented and underrepresented young and emerging artists in Melbourne and throughout Australia, who practice media art and hybrid forms not necessarily suited to the traditional gallery format. As young and emerging artists ourselves, we believe in supporting our highly skilled community by creating new opportunities for the screening and showcasing of accomplished experimental art.

For our Frame Residency at Platform we have several delights up our sleeve: each month we will alternate between shining a light our previous output, as well as creating brand new site specific works to best take advantage of the strange and unique Frame space. Hidden away in the appendix of Campbell Arcade, furtive noises and flickering lights will draw passing pedestrians into an unexpected revolving side show, where they can come across some of Australia’s least recognised, most talented temporal practitioners. Expect to see Flip Books and Locked Grooves, 123TV Preview, Best of Tape Projects, plus lots of new work.




Tape Projects is comprised of the following individuals:

Sunday Ganim has been weaving much, making pop up books and hasn't managed to switch her computer on for about a year.

Tanja Milbourne (Kimme) is a photographer and media artist often working collaboratively. Her work incorporates an ongoing investigation into the conceptual and formal properties of photographic documentation, often employing the existing site as the subject for enquiry.

Eugenia Lim works predominantly in video and photography to explore issues of identity, race, and culture. She is a founding member of Tape Projects, an artist run initiative championing experimental cross-disciplinary art in Melbourne and beyond.

Michael Prior is a media artist interested in creating interactive installation works that attempt to distort time perception via sound and architecture. He also produces publications and performance work with Tape Projects as well as soundtrack work for film and TV

Zoe Scoglio experiments with moving image, sound, torches, triangles & the human body to create works that have been performed both locally & abroad.

Lee Anantawat was born in Thailand, and currently lives in Melbourne, She draws pictures of love-lorn robots, science experiments in nature, mermen/women and is trying to live her life as an animator.

Nic Whyte works in the realm of moving image, video installation & interactive art. Recent years have been spent scaling ladders to install projectors whilst facilitating temporal media through Tape Projects.

Jessie Scott is an artist who works primarily in video. At the moment she is preoccupied with the human tendency to embroider mundane tasks, making them unnecessarily complex and beautiful.


Visit Tape Projects website here.

SAM WALLMAN



Sam Wallman
Tasmanian Fags
drawing on paper
©2009

Sam Wallman is not actually homophobic, racist, or sexist. He just likes making fun of those who are by stealing their humour and pretending to laugh along with them. We know this because Wallman's catalogue of grotesque, wrinkled, characters include people just like him, and he would never really laugh at himself.

New work on show at the Majorca Building, Centre Place Melbourne, during the Midsumma Festival.

Sam Wallman is 23 and currently works as an advocate for young people with disabilities, while living with his partner in Collingwood. At the moment he is producing a collaborative book called Stab Your Brother, a follow up to 2006's Go Home Abos. He draws pictures of the grotesque people in his head, in attempted exorcism.

HANNAH RAISIN



Hannah Raisin
Suggar Mummas Part 2
video, dvd player/screen, photographic prints, rotating frames, breakfast cereal, photocopies, string, glitter, plastic, glue
Sample: installation view ©2009

Milking the symbols of a synthetic femininity.

Is an embarrassment a rejection of oneself? A rejection can be a starting point, a reaction to a negative force. Why is it that if we believe we become somebody else we will be happy? Through the dismissal of our natural bodies, a synthetic and sterile beauty can often become the epitome of what is considered sexy. But who can measure the unnatural?

Every thought has a perfect image encapsulating its essence, binding it to the world. The ideas and key icons we attempt to mimic (the heightened colours and flavours) are as unstable and artificially enhanced as packeted cereal. Unfortunately the highly addictive sugar coated death pill is ultimately unsatisfactory.

Hannah Raisin completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Drawing) at the VCA in 2007. Raisin has exhibited throughout Melbourne in both solo and group shows including: Eat My Spider, TCB (2008); Wallara Travelling Scholarship, Margaret Lawrence Gallery; Somewhere to Run, Loop Bar; Provisional Investigations; George Paton Gallery, Melbourne University; Do It, Margaret Lawrence (2007) and Do you like me? at Kings ARI (2007). Raisin was a finalist for the Wallara Travelling Scholarship and received the Proud second year art award.

UQ/Midsumma Opens Mon 19th Jan at 6pm

Platform on 774 ABC Melbourne Radio

Hilary Harper from 774 ABC Radio talks to Linsey Gosper about exhibiting at Platform as part of Midsumma. Hear the story online at ABC Melbourne.