Thursday, December 19, 2013

Damien Minton Gallery - One Night Stand - Connie Anthes

As a part of Damien Minton’s One Night Stand series of shows, Connie Anthes’s highly anticipated ‘Low Relief” exhibition opened last Tuesday Night 17/12/2013.  On entering the gallery we are confronted with two gunmetal grey plan drawers one on top of the other facing opposite directions. They sat in the centre of the space surrounded by completely bare walls.

The perceptiveness to conceive the potential of utilising these drawers, purchased from the now extinct Sydney map shop, and the curating of 20 disparate artists of wide ranging level’s of experience and profile is the genius in Anthes’s project.  20 drawers and 20 artists each asked to respond to the original labels on the drawer they’d been allocated, eg Australian Relief, LGA Maps, Asia Pacific Continents, etc.  Exhibitors include Noel Mckenna, Ian Milliss and Peter Sharp.

The effect of this is the creation of a gallery within a gallery where the viewer is compelled to consider the works one at a time with serendipity and a tilted perspective enabling a fresh experience of art viewing.   I found a heightened sense of anticipation as each drawer revealed a treasure trove of creativity.

Some inviting in interaction, as in Eric Niebuhr’s piece, that contained a mobile phone with which you converse with the artist real time addressing his assigned topic, or Madeleine Preston’s drawer of objects inviting you to remove and read books and eat supplied studio snacks.  Other drawers contained paintings, objects, prints etc. All contributors seemed to rise to the challenge that often inspired interesting departures from their usual practises.

The ephemeral nature of a show being open for just one night intensified the experience reflected in the buoyant crowd that somehow instinctively found a way to experience the art in an effective orderly manner.

Text by Glenn Lockee
Photographs by Jim Anderson

17th December 2013

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