2009 Program out now!



Platform's 2009 Program is now back from the printers! 64 glorious pages in full colour designed by Pandarosa and featuring the upcoming work of more than 100 artists is now available for just 10 bucks! We'll be selling copies of the program at all our events (next opening night is Friday 3 April). The Program includes images, biographies and artist statements from some of the hot new work hitting the underground this year!

The Platform 2009 Program is also available at our favourite Sticky Institute located at Shop 10 in Campbell Arcade (Degraves Street Subway) Melbourne.

Recent controversy....

Read The Age article about the recent controversy around a new work by Van Thanh Rudd, part of Resisting Subversion of Subversive Resistance, a show exploring contemporary arts activists in Australia.

The Platform response to this issue was as follows:

6 March 2009

STATEMENT REGARDING THE CURRENT EXHIBITION

Throughout this year, and for the last 20 years, Platform Artists Group Inc. has actively sought to engage the Melbourne public with a diverse range of artists, practices, techniques and critical thinking. This particular exhibition explores the various ways that arts activists engage the public in debate and discussion around social, political and environmental issues that directly impact our communities.

This week we have received some correspondence and communications about one of the works installed on Monday 2nd March:
Economy of Movement - A Piece of Palestine, by Van Thanh Rudd. In response to this, the City of Melbourne invoked the Protocol on Artworks, forming a Review Panel of professional arts and community advisers to assess the work and determine its suitability for public exhibition.

The Protocol on Artworks Review Panel findings have now been made public:

· In context of the Protocol, the Review Panel does not see a valid argument to prohibit the work in the public domain.

· The Review Panel noted Council’s ‘arms length’ funding arrangement with Platform – and that Platform is jointly funded by other government bodies.

· The Review Panel acknowledges potential concerns that might be raised by the artwork but considered them insufficient to override the freedom of expression principle articulated in the Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibility.

Following this decision and all relevant advice to Platform Artists Group Inc., we are presenting the work at the opening event to be held tonight, 6-8pm 6th March. The work will remain on show for the remainder of March.

The opinions expressed by artists as part of Platform’s programming do not necessarily reflect those of the Platform Artists Group Inc. board and staff, our sponsors, festival partners or funding bodies. Under the Victorian Charter of Human Rights in regard to freedom of expression, we encourage a diverse range of opinions and ideas from artists and the broader community.



Van's artist statement was also republished for the exhibition:

Van Thanh Rudd
Economy of Movement - A Piece of Palestine

This artwork is intentionally displayed like a museum piece – inspired by artist Hans Haake. The work contains a stone on a glass pedestal with two frames hanging on the rear wall (coloured blue and white with silver framing). Aesthetics has also played an important role in developing the work. The blue and white colours were chosen to represent blue sky and freedom - the sky that covers all countries of the world. It also references the colours of the flag of the state of Israel - a symbol of oppression to many Palestinians. As mentioned above, the artwork as a whole is presented to appear as though it is a museum piece where aesthetics is as important as the text content.

Resisting Subversion of Subversive Resistance



Resisting Subversion of Subversive Resistance
Propositions towards urban (r)evolution


Curated by Paul J. Kalemba
Tom Civil, Marc De Jong, Paul J. Kalemba and Van Thanh Rudd

No, painting is not done to decorate apartments, it is an instrument of war.
Pablo Picasso, 1945

Resisting Subversion of Subversive Resistance features the works and collaborations of four contemporary arts-activists. Romantic illusions of freedom fighters aside, serious business meets tongue-in-cheek as a homegrown r/evolution through urban edibles and the bicycle-peddling critical masses meet conscious consumption and political awareness.

The twentieth century saw exponential advancement in many areas of human activity. The image was by no means excluded from this refinement. The total war of World War II saw not only mechanised militarism devastate European civilization but the Third Reich, and the allies alike, bred the image for a new purpose. The manipulation of desire and fear was refined and exploited through the image, with propaganda aiming for nothing short of changing the opinions, and thus the actions, of entire nations.

Enter the twenty-first century. Commercial advertising carries on this imaging tradition into this decade, promising a veritable Shangri-La of sensual pleasure, luxury and convenience, tied firmly to a treadmill of competitive individualism. Meanwhile, headlines scream climate change, peak oil, environmental collapse, over consumption, finite resources… the new ideas now firmly in the zeitgeist. At face value, it seems society is economy versus a sustainable future.

Resisting Subversion of Subversive Resistance seeks to defy this manipulation of fear and desire, employing a combination of loose, scale model propositions with the graphic image – where WWII-style propaganda meets re-advertising, promoting consumer awareness and sustainable models via DIY culture. The artists create dialogues with the notations of propaganda and resistance though subverting emblematic symbology and imagery of contemporary art, advertising, politics and their concurrent histories.

TOM CIVIL





(upper)
Tom Civil & Marc de Jong
Subversive Resistance
paint, rusted spray cans, metal sheets, stickers, markers
(installation detail)
© 2009

(lower)
Tom Civil
Untitled
paper, paint, marker
(installation detail)
© 2009

Tom Sevil (AKA Civil) is a community graphic designer and artist. Since completing a Bachelor of Environmental Science in 1999, he has gone on to become involved in the independent media and publishing community. Tom has worked as a graphic designer for many political and community organisations including: 3CR, Seeds of Dissent Calendars, The Big Issue, Voiceworks Magazine, The Paper, Melbourne Indymedia, and Stolenwealth Games. His stencil work has been featured in Stencil Graffiti Capital: Melbourne, the film Rash, as a feature artist in Melbourne Stencil Festival, and most recently as part of the London Cans Festival. Tom is one half of Breakdown Press.

MARC DE JONG





(upper)
Marc De Jong
Human Brain
print on cardboard
(installation detail)
© 2009

(lower)
Marc De Jong
She'll be Rite
reflective signage print, metal frame
(installation detail)
© 2009

Marc de Jong (AKA marcsta) is one of Melbourne’s most notable illegal street artists. He completed a Bachelor of Fine Art at VCA. Prior to that, he studied under Howard Arkley at the Prahran College of TAFE. He has held over 15 solo exhibitions and was a finalist in the Wynne Prize at the Art Gallery of New South Wales and in the 2008 Fleurieu Biennale. He also featured in the April-June issue of Australian Art Collector magazine. His work is held in various collections throughout Australia, including National Gallery of Australia, Ballarat Fine Art Gallery, Monash University and Artbank. His work has also featured on the cover of Adbusters.

PAUL J. KALEMBA





(upper)
Paul J. Kalemba
Economic Growth
wooden crates, cardboard, water reticulation system, soil, vegetables
(installation detail)
© 2009

(lower)
Paul J. Kalemba
Beyond Petroleum
cardboard, jars, preverved fruit
(installation detail)
© 2009

Paul J. Kalemba (AKA thinblackline) is an urban edible (r)evolutionary and sustainability activist who takes a renaissance approach to art. Prior to recently completing a Master in Visual Art at the VCA, Kalemba’s career highlights include: The National Print Symposium at the National Gallery of Australia, 2004,; co-directing Alleys Not Telleys pubic space reclamation/multi-arts festivals, 2001-2004; Eyes For Other Skies Travelling Animation Festival, ACMI/South Korea; and creating propaganda and projections for the tree planting/re-veg Tranceplant Festivals 2001-2005. Kalemba’s work also features in many independent publications amongst a prolific CV of community, public and white cube rah rah.

VAN THANH RUDD





Van Thanh Rudd
Economy of Movement - A Piece of Palestine
rock, glass, ink jet prints, frames
(installation view & detail)
© 2009

Van Thanh Rudd has been exhibiting since growing up on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast. Moving to Melbourne in 1995, his work has increasingly attempted to address issues surrounding social justice. He researched socio-economic systems and the role of art and politics by travelling to countries such as Vietnam, Cuba, Chile and France in 2005. One of his major projects, The Carriers Project (2004-2008), involved carrying his paintings on foot through public and private spaces in Australia’s major cities. He has taken part in major social actions such as the Anti-G20 Rally (2006), The Stolenwealth Games (2006), Industrial Relations Rallies (2005) and Free The Refugees Protests (2004). Current and ongoing works include the Residencies of Thought Project, taking place in The White House, Washington and the Guggenheim Museum, New York.

BRAD HAYLOCK



Brad Haylock
Everything you never wanted to know about fashion
(but were too afraid to ask)

lightboxes, acetate lettering
(installation view)
© 2009

Continuing the artist’s fascination with public communication, Everything you never wanted to know… responds to the spatial qualities and the location of Vitrine, and particularly to its visibility and the passing foot traffic. The work offers to passers-by a commentary on the world of fashion and its underlying logic, whilst adding to the cacophony of signage with which commuters are barraged. The textual content of the work takes inspiration from critical theory and from the most hyperbolic and vacuous of fashion advertising, and from combinations of the two. The resulting commentary spans the incisive and the absurd, the pithy and the banal. The form of the work also takes cues from the world of fashion; this form is a reflection upon the fetishism of the object that is characteristic of the worlds of fashion and art alike.

Brad Haylock is a lecturer in Visual Communication in the Faculty of Art & Design at Monash University. He variously practices as an artist, designer, writer, and curator. Recent projects include the solo exhibitions Crazed and Defused and A Beginner’s Guide to Politics, design for Making Space and Objects in Space, the curation of The Art of the Bicycle and the co-curation with Mark Richardson of Advance/Retreat.

KATE MOSS



Kate Moss
Hey give me a break
digital photograph
© 2009

Hey give me a break is a site-specific installation in the display cases on the Majorca Building. The cases will comprise of a 2D work replicating existing and imagined sites of socially motivated, anti-aesthetic graffiti found within the public domain. The work will adopt the aesthetic of these sites. For example, on a brick wall on a street in Fitzroy someone has spray painted 'hey give me a break'. I will replicate this site using brick veneer and text enclosed within the cases on Centre Place.

I am intrigued by the ambiguity of this statement and wonder at what point an individual is motivated to commit such a statement publicly. I am interested in public space as a vessel for free expression whether social, political or personal. The gallery space is a platform for artists to freely express ideas, beliefs and concepts within a controlled environment. I am interested in replicating these graffiti statements and to see how they can be recontextualised in a gallery space within the public domain.

Kate Moss lives and works in Melbourne. She is currently completing a Bachelor of Fine Art at the VCA. In 2006 she was the recipient of an Excellence Award at The Centre for Contemporary Photography in Melbourne. Her practice utilises a variety of media and stem from her interest in 1960s and 1970s counter culture and the failure or abandonment of structures within society, whether physical or ideological. Her installations involve re-working these abandoned ideals in the context of the now.

CHRISTA JONATHAN



Christa Jonathan
You’re alright, love
photographic collage, ink jet print
(installation detail)
© 2009

You’re alright, love
is a social commentary on and about two sides of Melbourne. The lovely side, the one we all take pride in and acknowledge: that laid-back, friendly, multi-cultural and multi-racial city that welcomes everyone regardless their appearances. And the other, often dismissed and ignored side – that drenched in offensive mockeries and insults from racists, which in few occasions are so dumb that they’re borderline hilarious. Inspired by the situations I experienced first hand, I will create a series of illustrations made out of wood, found images, photographs, patterned papers, fabric off-cuts found in op shops, markets and paper recycling bins of the city. These small collages are layered up to create one huge image – transforming the Sample window into a visual manifestation of my observation, exploration, experience and memories of Melbourne for five years and counting.

Christa Jonathan is an Indonesian-born, Melbourne-based emerging graphic designer and artist. She completed her Bachelor of Visual Communication with First Class Honours at Monash University in 2008. When she’s not designing and illustrating she can be found exploring op shops, scouring markets and taking photographs of letterings in Melbourne. This is her first art show in the real world outside of university.

LEE ANANTAWAT & ZOE SCOGLIO





Lee Anantawat & Zoe Scoglio
Ooomong: Building Tunnels and Pondering Infinity
cardboard, paper, kaleidoscopes, AV loops, screens
(installation view & detail)
Photos courtesy of Tanja Milbourne
© 2009

Lee and Zoe's third collaboration is a site-specific installation, which sees the dark, subterranean Frame window below Flinders Street transformed into an intergalactic porthole. Utilizing sounds, structures and video, Ooomong playfully explores the fine lines between the infinite and infinitesimal, the wise and the whimsical, and the eternal and ephemeral. Adapted from the Thai word for 'tunnel', Ooomong creates stepping stones between the physical world and that which is unfathomable.

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. Lee has completed a Master Degree in Animation and Interactive Media (AIM) from RMIT and has exhibited in group shows with Tape Projects of which she is now a member.


Zoe is a media artist who creates video and sound often for public, live and site-specific contexts. Her current work involves spontaneous collaborations and explorations into transformation and ritual. Some projects in the last year include video work for Gertrude Projection Festival, Electrofringe, Next Wave at Urban Screens, Michael Koro Gallery, PACT Quarterbred residency, Platform Artists Group Inc and The Women's Circus. She is a founding member of Melbourne artist run initiative, Tape Projects.

Visit the Tape Projects
website.

2010 Next Wave Festival Proposals

Call for Next Wave project proposals closes next Friday 13 March.

You have until the end of next week, Friday 13 March, to propose a project for the 2010 Next Wave Festival, on in May next year.

Proposals must respond in interesting and complex ways to the 2010 Next Wave Festival theme NO RISK TOO GREAT.

Visit Next Wave to download an information pack. Previous artists to show at Platform as part of Next Wave include Hiromi Tango, Cecilia Fogelberg, Trevor Flinn, Objects in Space, Tai Snaith and many others...