Ex­hi­bi­tions full of di­verse works


CULT he­roes and comic books, new stature for the or­di­nary, the por­trait as cul­tural doc­u­ment, and a boldly colour­ful homage to coun­try chal­lenge and de­light through a range of cur­rent ex­hi­bi­tions.

The Toowoomba Re­gional Art Gallery is play­ing host to the Phan­tom, the Ghost Who Walks, with the ex­hi­bi­tion “The Phan­tom Art Show.”

Cu­rated by artists Peter Kingston and Di­et­mar Led­er­wasch, the ex­hi­bi­tion com­prises works by some 40 artists for whom the Phan­tom was cen­tral to their child­hood mem­o­ries.

Rude, ec­cen­tric, funny, and to­tally en­ter­tain­ing, the paint­ings, dio­ra­mas, and sculp­tures re­flect the dis­tinc­tive styles of the artists while ac­knowl­edg­ing the con­tin­u­ing pop­u­lar­ity of this comic book hero in his body suit and mask.

The par­tic­i­pants in­clude lo­cal artist David Usher and such no­ta­bles as Charles Black­man, Garry Shead, Reg Mom­bassa, Euan Macleod, Elis­a­beth Cum­ming, Mar­tin Sharp, and Michael Le­u­nig.

A mem­o­rable paint­ing in Nor­man Rock­well style by Paul New­ton de­picts the twenty-sec­ond Phan­tom as a child, and there is a grainy black and white “gang­ster” film fea­tur­ing Brett and Wendy White­ley.

The Feather and Lawry Gallery, 4 Rus­sell St, is pre­sent­ing “From a Dis­tance,” an ex­hi­bi­tion of richly sur­faced paint­ings by Bris­bane artist Dy­lan Jones.

A ‘plein air’ painter who con­fronts his sub­jects on lo­ca­tion rather than in the hind­sight of pho­tog­ra­phy, Jones paints scenic anom­alies. In­stead of pretty land­scapes he in­tro­duces his viewer to the re­wards of the mun­dane, of­ten ne­glected slip­pages in ev­ery­day ex­pe­ri­ence.

Clothes flap­ping on an apart­ment bal­cony, a high vis­i­bil­ity vest tossed over a chair, rust­ing cars sink­ing into obliv­ion through car­pets of weeds, a bus shel­ter, a high­way un­der­pass — all are given new stature through the ge­om­e­try of pat­tern and the play be­tween light and tex­ture.

The Queens­land Art Gallery and Gallery of Mod­ern Art in Bris­bane are of­fer­ing two stun­ning ex­hi­bi­tions. “Cindy Sher­man” is the epony­mous ex­hi­bi­tion by this New York based artist.

Sher­man is a pho­tog­ra­pher who uses por­trai­ture, with her­self as model, to in­ter­ro­gate the so­cial stereo­type as cul­tural icon in the brit­tle world that em­braces the cult of celebrity.

Al­though ap­pre­ci­a­tion of her genre may be an ac­quired taste, Sher­man’s par­tic­u­lar ex­plo­rations have been sig­nif­i­cant in en­dors­ing pho­tog­ra­phy as an im­por­tant con­tem­po­rary art form. The sheer scale of this in-your-face show is part of its fas­ci­na­tion.

The sec­ond ex­hi­bi­tion at QAGOMA is “Dulka Warngiid Land of All,” a ret­ro­spec­tive of paint­ings by the late Indige­nous artist, Sally Ga­bori.

Her dy­namic blocks of ab­stract colour are more about feel­ings than the act of paint­ing it­self.

Ga­bori’s con­cep­tual as­so­ci­a­tions to the land­scape are trans­lated through colours and painterly ges­tures that are emo­tional re­sponses sig­ni­fy­ing her con­nec­tion to Ka­iadilt Coun­try, Bentinck Is­land.

Ga­bori only com­menced paint­ing when in her eight­ies and the ex­hi­bi­tion in­cludes some of the first and last works by this re­mark­able artist.


“Nin­jilki” 2008 by Sally Ga­bori at QAGOMACol­lec­tion: Eleonora and Michael Triguboff © Mir­did­ingkingath­i Juwarnda Sally Ga­bori. Li­censed by Vis­copy.

The 22nd Phan­tom by Paul New­ton at Toowoomba Re­gional Art Gallery.

“All the fish” 2005 by Sally Ga­bori at QAGOMAGift of Jim Cousins, AO and Libby Cousins through the Aus­tralian Gov­ern­ment’s Cul­tural Gifts Pro­gram, 2013 Col­lec­tion: Na­tional Gallery of Vic­to­ria, Melbourne © Mir­did­ingkingath­i Juwarnda Sally Ga­bori....

Don’t turn your back on me, car by Dy­lan Jones at The Feather and Lawry Gallery.

Un­ti­tled #466 2008 by Cindy Sher­man at QAGOMAI­mage cour­tesy: The artist and Metro Pic­tures, New York © The artist.

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