Exhibition offers enchanting exchange

An exhibition drawing on folklore, fairy tales and mythology will open at the University of Tasmania’s Academy Gallery this Friday, 15 March.

Dark Rituals, Magical Relics: From the little art spell book is presented as part of Ten Days on the Island.

The collection will feature the work of contemporary women artists from Australia, Canada and New Zealand, including Amalie Atkins, Margaret Baguley, Beata Batorowicz, Linda Clark, Ellie Coleman, Lisa Reihana and Susan Shantz.

Co-curator Megan Williams said the exhibition explored ‘ritual’ as a concept and a process to subvert and disrupt gender, time, power and representational norms.

“Through a variety of media including video, sculpture, installation and photography, these artists delve into the undercurrents of emotion, relationships, nature, culture and religion to craft artworks that heed messages of warning, protection and caution,” Ms Williams said.

“We are thrilled to be bringing this exhibition to the Academy Gallery at the University of Tasmania during the Ten Days Festival and to be debuting a number of very ambitious new works that have been made for this exhibition, including a work in 3D by renowned Māori artist Lisa Reihana.

“Lisa represented New Zealand at the 2017 Venice Biennale, and her work was critically acclaimed as a highlight of the event.

“She has coupled 21st-century digital technologies with elements of traditional dance to interpret the assassination of a Māori chief.”

Exhibition co-curator and exhibiting artist Associate Professor Beata Batorowicz of the University of Southern Queensland said all but one of the artists in the exhibition were from or were currently living and working in a regional area.

“This exhibition focusses on regional exchange, nationally and internationally, and values the work being made by artists in regional Australia,” Associate Professor Batorowicz said.

“It also shows that collaboration can cultivate professional networks and opportunities for cultural exchange internationally.”

The project has been assisted by the Australian Government through its arts funding and advisory body, the Australia Council.

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