Lisa Sammut: Full Circle – Mosman

From 4 January – 20 March 2022, Mosman Art Gallery will present a new installation work by Canberra-based artist Lisa Sammut. FULL CIRCLE will be exhibited in The Cube, the Gallery’s dedicated space for video and experimental art.

FULL CIRCLE is an exhibition of new work including objects and moving image that considers the length of a human life in connection to transitions and cycles in the cosmos; the circular, orbital, elliptical and eclipse. Drawing on historic astronomical diagrams, illustrations and manuscripts documenting the movements and appearance of comets, FULL CIRCLE loops between the earthly and otherworldly in an attempt to bring the human condition and cosmic forces into close relationship through speculative visual materials.

FULL CIRCLE began with the realisation that Halley’s Comet will appear twice in the artist’s lifetime; once at the very beginning, and again somewhere towards the end. The duration of Halley’s orbit closely coincides with the length of an average human life. Linking cosmic and human timespans, the visualisation of a comet’s elliptical path illustrated within a simple image, brings a strange comfort. This exhibition questions the notion that life moves in a straight line, from here in the present moment out into the deep unknown. Like the cyclical trajectories of comets, the circular perspective presents an alternate view where a life is defined by a departure and a return. Exploring the human need to reduce complex structures and concepts into simplified symbols and visual representations, FULL CIRCLE takes shape in the knowledge that our fate is intertwined with the events and laws of the universe.

About the artist

Lisa Sammut is an artist working in woodwork, sculpture, collage, video art and immersive installation. She makes playful, poetic works that explore and oscillate between notions of optimism, perspective, belonging and time. Recent works have drawn on diverse historical and cultural sources including the fields of astronomy, astroarchaeology, celestial architecture and natural history. Using a wide range of media, Sammut focuses on the nonhuman and otherworldly to facilitate new perspectives and collective self-reflection.

Sammut has exhibited widely in Australia and undertaken several recent large-scale projects; including new work for The National 2021: New Australian Art, Art Gallery of NSW (2021), 20:20, Murray Art Museum Albury (2020), HIGH LOOM, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, Sydney (2019) and A monumental echo, presented at both Firstdraft, Sydney (2018) and Fremantle Arts Centre, Perth (2019). Her work has been recognised in several prizes including the Churchie Emerging Art Prize, receiving the Sam Whiteley Memorial Prize (2016), and as a finalist in the John Fries Award, UNSW Galleries (2018) and Ramsay Art Prize, Art Gallery of South Australia (2021).

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