Subtleties of Obsession

Embroidered jewels; details from painted landscapes. A deceased Mother’s hair replies to letters from the homeland.
Richly intense mark-making with ink and thread tell stories of a life.
With repeated soft rubbing, the Woolly bush manifests itself, onto the gallery wall.
Domestic objects, made ambiguous, explore configurations of matter that ask questions on mortality.
Through objects materialised by the will of hand and mind, five discrete practices are brought together in this exhibition.
Subtleties of Obsession probes, by the dissolution of boundaries and through intense focus, the nuances and possibilities of ways of making meaning. Featuring the work of Kate Campbell-Pope, Barbie Greenshields, Elizabeth Riley, Kati Thamo and Anne Walmsley. Subtleties of Obsession exhibition forms part of the 2021 Indian Ocean Craft Triennial and is on display in the Town Hall Galleries September 30 - November 2.


MIX IT UP Contemporary artists respond to the City of Albany Art Collection

Intriguing and imaginative – these two words sum up this fascinating exhibition for which contemporary artists have created artistic responses to treasures in the City of Albany Art Collection.  The MIX IT UP exhibition is presented by MIX Artists Inc and is on at the Albany Town Hall from August 20 to September 23, 2021.

Seventeen artists from the MIX Artists group have taken on the challenge of responding to six historical and contemporary paintings and prints.   Visitors to the exhibition will see each of the six artworks from the Collection surrounded by the contemporary responses, in an inspiring presentation.  

Indra Geidans, Visual Arts Officer and Curator of the City of Albany Art Collection, made the initial selection of artworks, choosing historical and contemporary artworks with a range of subject matter, and which include paintings in oil, acrylic and watercolour, prints, pastels and mixed media works. 

The MIX Committee then randomly allocated each participating artist to a Collection artwork.  MIX Artists Chairperson and exhibition Co-ordinator, Annette Davis, explained

“As a group, we agreed that we wouldn’t get to choose which work we wanted to respond to, and that instead, names would be drawn out of a hat to allocate artist to artwork.  This is part of the idea of mixing it up – it has challenged us to move out of our comfort zones.”

Indra Geidans commented “This exhibition is taking the Art Collection out of its comfort zone as well.  It will be exciting to see how the artists have responded to, and been inspired by, the Collection.  I think it will encourage visitors to look closely at all the artworks to find the connections.”

Some of those visitors will be preschoolers and their parents.  In a first for an exhibition in the Town Hall, the Albany Public Library is holding a Storytime Session in the exhibition, on Tuesday September 7 from midday to 1pm.  Bookings can be made at the Library.   For visitors of a slightly older age, there is an opportunity to hear directly from the contemporary artists in a session titled “Inside the Artist’s Mind” on Saturday August 21 commencing at 1.30pm.   In addition to these sessions, an activity sheet will be available at the exhibition to help people of all ages explore the art. 

The MIX exhibitors are Susan Angwin, Kerrie Argent, Christine Baker, Ann Copeman, Jenny Crisp, Annette Davis, Catherine Higham, Pradip Griffiths, Anne Grotian, Paul Moncrieff, Jill O’Meehan, Nat Rad, Lizzie Riley, Margaret Sanders, Renee Tan, Shaun Wake-Mazey and Jo Wassell.  

The artworks selected from the Collection are all 2D artworks.  In responding to the artworks MIX Artists have worked in a range of media and the final artworks include sculpture, textiles, paintings, photography and installations.  

Catherine Higham has created an ink painting in response to the Collection’s painting by Shandell Cummings of the wattle seed pod.  For Higham, this painting brought back memories of the fast-growing red-eyed wattle trees she planted on her farm, which provided a hiding place for children and assorted animals over the years.

There Were Moments of Transformation

There Were Moments of Transformation explores the power and fragility of transformation through video, jewellery, glass, ceramics and sculpture. Featuring works by international artists including Auguste Rodin, Pierre-Auguste Renoir and William Kentridge alongside local pieces by WA artists such as Lucy Yukenbarri and Bethamy Linton, the exhibition asks you to consider through the creation of these works, how materials change, how they change us, and the world around us.

While the exhibition contains several key works from the State Art Collection such as Renoir’s Tete de Venus and Rodin’s 1880 bronze La Faunesse à genoux [Kneeling fauness], AGWA Curator of 19th Century Arts, Melissa Harpley explained the focus was on materiality, creative process and applying a different lens of looking at the transformative nature of art.

“With this exhibition, we wanted to explore the process of transformation that occurs through art and the process of making works. Our approach lies in drawing out how materials are transformed as works are created, how artists engage and transform the environment during their development processes, and lastly how we are transformed, by the experience of considering process, the emotional response generated, and our connection to the works.” she continued.

All objects start with two things, an idea … and raw materials: clay, tin, copper, sand, wax, paper, steel. The process of bringing those two elements together leads to many questions connected to the idea of change.

There Were Moments of Transformation brings together 40 works of art from the State Art Collection, most of which have not travelled outside the Gallery before now. It includes works by Western Australian, Australian and International artists, made in media that range from traditional bronze casts to video-based, and with works made as early as 1880 and as recently as 2017.

This is an ART ON THE MOVE and Art Gallery of WA touring program developed as part of Freighting Ideas project.

This project has been made possible through the Regional Exhibition Touring Boost managed by the Department of Local Government Sport and Cultural Industries, supported by Royalties for Regions and delivered in partnership by ART ON THE MOVE and the Art Gallery of Western Australia.

 (Biennial Community Art Prize)

Great Southern Art Award Winners 2021
Almost $10,000 in prizes has been handed out to the five talented local artist winners at the Great Southern Art Award this evening as the event officially opens the refurbished Albany Town Hall. A trio of adjudicators including James Davies, Annette Davis and Paul Moncrieff spent Tuesday afternoon deliberating their decision before announcing the winners at the award’s official opening.
Jo Wassell was awarded the City of Albany Acquisitive Prize for her piece ‘Siblings’, taking home a $5,000 prize and either a supported exhibition or a month working out of Vancouver Arts Centre.
Judges comment on the piece saying it possesses a delicate and meditative quality.
“Given the artistic statement, the work has been produced in a sensitive and appropriate manner pertinent to the contemporary experience (ie. Global pandemic) that back up the work and approach extremely well. A deceptively simple work that is very well resolved.” they said.
Carol Farmer won the Works on Paper Award with her piece ‘Intrusion’ which the judges described as an innovative and involved approach employed to document the landscape.
The Print Award winner was Francesca Mia with her artwork ‘Untitled’, which the judges said was a refreshing, enjoyable and straight forward lino cut that has succeeded with regard to what the artist set out to achieve.
Judges described Paint Award winner Andy Dolphins piece ‘Washout Woogenellup’ as an extremely well executed, atmospheric and accomplished work.
This year’s 3D award went to Merry Robertson for her piece ‘We are the Guardians’ which the judges describe as having lovely observations combined with an ambitious and interesting approach employing both drawing and printmaking techniques and abilities


The Garden

“My way of expressing my love for the earth and my hope for the future is to garden. The values that are important to me, the way of being in the world that feels right, and glimpses of the beauty and mystery of what it means to be alive, are nurtured when I connect with the earth beneath my feet. Gardening is an accessible, hopeful and incredibly powerful act.” Georgina Reid – The Planthunter
The Garden by Phoebe Duff is an exhibition that explores the act of gardening and the ways that engaging with plants and the natural world can nurture and inspire us.

Passage through first light

Passage Through First Light showcases one artists search to describe the primal beauty of nature. Artist Jhodi Benett documents decades of pilgrimages to Middleton and the animals she encountered. 


Artist Christine Baker presents 'SAOL' a new immersive exhibition of paintings and unique clay pieces inspired by the themes of community and separation.