My pick from the New Romance exhibition

Never really understood the beauty of media art until Anna Davis gave us an insightful and direct introduction to the show last Wednesday. Some of the works are still a bit impersonal (as in cold, distanced, irrelevant and fearsome) to my practical self (who is a typical gen x playing catch-up with the gens y and z as we speak). The painter side of me can and does appreciate the new forms, platforms and contents (same old subjects in different packages really) and gets very intrigued by the new talents and works of this kind indeed. The romantic me says yes to most of the works, in particular those with a hint more of the “conventional” “painterly” (re-)presentation.

The piece I relate the most to is the installation Perpetual Snow, 2015 by Kibong Rhee.

Kibong Rhee, Perpetual Snow, 2015, installation view, New Romance: art and the posthuman, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, glass, silicon, aluminium, steel, marker pen, arduino system, Image and © the artist, Photograph taken by Ho Yee Wong at 3rd August 2016
Kibong Rhee, Perpetual Snow, 2015 details
Kibong Rhee, Perpetual Snow, 2015 details

The conventional bit maybe totally wrong by now (we are living in the digitized era yeah?!) but the painterly quality certainly retains. Audiences are even allowed access to the progression of creating this painting (or printing?). Anyhow, I see it as mark-making by robotic arm from the other side: the realistic hand made me feel that I am the one from the obsolete side of reality, that is, the older generation who has unrealistic expectation from visual art of today.

I like the beginning of it when only a small white circles were spotted (refers to the courtesy photo taken by Alex Davies) and I like the middle of it when the glass panel canvas was being filled up by horizontal and vertical lines dashed with gathered snow flakes (see inserted images), and I wonder how it is going to end up in a few more weeks when the show concludes.

The format is likened a mega flat screen TV set that tells us a story that is real. More than real because it is in its making happening right in front of our naked eyes. The realistic hand appears to be doing the work for/of/as the artist. I appreciate its operation the way I appreciate my Brother ink jet printer at home working as a loyal servent to me… It IS the conceptual representation of my Brother printer coming alive but working as my creative partner instead of a mere slave!

This is what art is about: a visual presentation that gets you.


Author: z2152311

Studying Fine Art at UNSW School of Art & Design; Keen observer and drawer, painter wannabe; Mother of 2 tweens and concerned citizen of the world too big yet too small.

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