2016 – current

The Hemp Initiative

 

Kandos School of Cultural Adaptation Land Art Residency

 

The initial residency for the Kandos School of Cultural Adaptation is a collaboration with Stuart Andrews of Natural Sequence Farming fame, exploring the potential of low THC industrial hemp, for the purposes of land rejuvenation. The long term goal is to have industrial hemp added to the local, rural economy, with proven ecological benefits for the environment, financial benefit for farmers, and commercial benefit for manufacturers retailers and consumers.

 

Hemp is one of the first plants to be domesticated by humans, for human and animal food, cloth and paper making fibre. With tens of thousands of industrial applications low THC industrial hemp is sess petrochemical dependent than either flax or cotton, every part of the plant provides raw materials for mature industries, with myriad new applications found annually. Every product that can be created from mineral oil has, or can be, created from hemp. It is an opportunity to do good that is too good to ignore.

 

The prohibition of hemp is based upon the scurrilous demonization by yellow journalism, using racist and xenophobic slurs, to promote the vested interests of unscrupulous, monopoly capitalists.  It is increasingly obvious, from the data and research, that hemp and/or cannabis threatened economic advantages of the industries with which it competed. The ongoing suppression of hemp is to the detriment of human health, wealth and happiness.

 

The ecological – social, political and environmental – climate has shifted and new thinking is required as a post carbon economy will need tried and tested replacements for the stranded assets of coal and oil.

 

Retro-innovation is the underlying zeitgeist that has seen the revival of crafting, of the revaluing of artisanal skills, and the desire for a return to “heirloom quality”. More than a passing fad, the revival of real skills are necessary for resilience into the 21st century, to add meaning and beauty to our lives, and to live with grace and dignity within ecologically defined limits. The daze of designer landfill are over.

 

The Cementa ceremonial gate – Angus Avenue, Kandos. L-R Ann Finnigan, Alex Wisser, Sam Paine, Gilbert Grace. Hempcrete wall constructed from Australian and imported hemp hurds/shiv, Australian certified lime binder, with oxides as colouring agent. Hempcrete as a building product is one of the many applications of industrial hemp. Thanks to Australian Hemp Masonry for the instruction and support in this project.

Article: Hemp Hope in Kandos, Mudgee Guardian, 5 December, 2016.

 

 

2015

Deep Green and Bright Blue – Downing Centre

November 2015

Downing Centre, Liverpool St, Sydney.

Downing Centre 2015_4

Downing Centre – Installation view.

Deep Green and Bright Blue

Saturday 26 September 2015
Culture At Work at Pyrmont; SCA at Lilyfield; Big FAG Press at Glebe.

IMG_20150921_075941

Sydney College of the Arts Gallery, Lilyfield – Installation view.

2013

Super Six

DNA Projects, Blackwattle St, Chippendale.

Super Six 2013

Gilbert Grace, ‘Super Six’ 2013, shaped, cut, and burned Fabriano paper, plaster, fibreglass, blue chalk. Dimensions variable.

Super Six Tour + Inner West Food and Art Trail

Sydney Inner West, November 2013.

Hamil Tiran Theresa @ Branch3D

We interwove sites of significance in the study of asbestos with the Inner West with Food and Art Trail to ensure the appetite for art and refreshment were catered to. More photos at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Super-Six/651703291530145 .

Adrian Clement’s review appeared in Das Platforms Emerging and Contemporary Art, 19 January 2014 http://www.dasplatforms.com/writing/super-six. The beauty of the artworks delicately counterpoised the brutality of the (non-) application of law and commerce in the real world.

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The Common Wheel  – Pyrmont Rolling Sketch Tours

Pyrmont, 20 September – 21 October 2013

Pyrmont Rolling Sketch Tour - 21 September 2013

Pyrmont Rolling Sketch Tour – 21 September 2013

A series of sketch tours, a bicycle rally, and a ‘radonneur’ style ride, were part of The Common Wheel residency and exhibition at Accelerator Gallery for Culture At Work, Pyrmont.

– – –

‘ARTcycle Sketch Tours’

‘Cementa 13′ – Kandos, 1-4 February 2013

ARTcycle-Kandos-Mystery-Tou

Surveying the site of the cement works from near the grounds of the Managers House, while David Standfield (with bicycle) describes the day to day realities of living in Kandos while the cement works were operating.

Cementa 13 was an amazing get together of artists, arts administrators, art appreciators and some often bemused, often enthused locals in the rural NSW town of Kandos. The town lost 98 jobs when the cement works closed down, the Bylong Valley is currently in the news for other reasons.

GPS tracking (and some make do infill when the GPS failed) was used to create this drawing using google maps.


View Cementa_13 – Drawing Kandos in a larger map

ArtCycle Sketch Tours and Bicycle Hire have been generously supported by a CASP grant from Regional Arts NSW

regional arts

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2012

‘Sydney Green Ring – Propositional Works’

‘ARTcycle – Residency Action Committee Vehicle’ – INDEX space 2012.

Sydney Green Ring_Propositional Works

‘Sydney Green Ring – Propositional Works’, 2007-2012, mixed media, dimensions variable.

The works illustrate various trees to be found on the GreenWay (and Sydney Green Ring) with suggestions as to proposed or speculative projects that could be accomplished.

This project was supported by a grant from the New South Wales Government – Arts NSW and the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments. The program is administered by the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA).

 - - -


2011

‘Taking a Line for a Ride’

Sketching the Gamut – INDEX space, St Peters. October 2011.

'Taking a Line for a Ride' 2011, real time video, d.i.y. sketch book.

‘Taking a Line for a Ride’ 2011, real time video, d.i.y. sketch book.

‘Taking a Line for a Ride’ is a play upon the phrase attributed to Paul Klee, “Drawing is taking a line for a walk”. Klee’s use of whimsy oft belied the seriousness of his intent, which seemed like an excellent place to begin. As the theme for the exhibition was drawing the Sydney Green Ring, using a bicycle to draw in this way seemed entirely appropriate. The video was a response to Lucas Ihlein’s, Mont Royal, Montreal, time lapse video in the Bicycle Film Festival 2007 ‘Bespoke‘ exhibition at Mori Gallery.

More about the Sketching the Gamut show here,   http://thegamutsydney.blogspot.com.au/

This project was supported by a grant from the New South Wales Government – Arts NSW and the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments. The program is administered by the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA).

– – –

‘Many Hans Make Light Work’

‘In the Night Garden’ – Sydney Fringe Festival, INDEX space, St Peters.

‘Redfern Artist Group’ – Global Gallery, Darlinghurst.

‘Many Hans Make Light Work’ 2011, mixed media assemblage light installation, dimensions variable

The materials for this installation are all recycled, with the exception of the light fittings. The sculptural hands are from the ‘Presumption of Regularity’ vehicle, and are themselves based upon the cliched and statistically most reproduced image in history, Albrecht Durer’s, ‘Praying Hands’. The mdf used was reclaimed from an installation in The Ghost Show at Hazelhurst Gallery. The pine is a gift of dumpster diving in Hutchinson St, St Peters.

It could be critiqued in terms of Nicolas Bourriaud’s ‘post production’, being inspired by the works of Christian Boltanski and Hans Haacke.

It got its first outing during the ‘In The Night Garden’ show, part of the 2011 Sydney Fringe Festival. And again in the ‘RAG Time’ Show, at Global Gallery, Paddington, 2011.

– – –

2009

‘The Presumption of Regularity Vehicle’

‘Reality Cheque’ – ATVP, Newtown.

‘Breathing Space’ – Hawksbury Regional Gallery, Windsor.

‘Trauma Porn’ – ATVP, Newtown.

Presumption of Regularity 2009 (work in progress)

‘Presumption of Regularity’ (2009) mixed media installation, dimensions variable. ‘Reality Cheque’, At The Vanishing Point, Newtown, 19 June – 5 July 2009.

During the SIEV X affair Tony Kevin, a high ranking government official, claims the then Liberal Government relied on the ‘presumption of regularity’ to cover activities that breached international maritime conventions and covenants.

The crew of Bock’s Car, following the blessing from a catholic priest, dropped ‘fat man’ on Nagasaki missing its target by a mile and destroying the Mitsubishi torpedo factory. Collateral damage was the Urakami Catholic Cathedral and half Nagasaki’s 14,000 Catholics who had long been persecuted by the local authorities.

In Australia ‘our’ answer to queue jumpers, was to strip them of their humanity locked away in detention centres; some would eventually be driven insane and/or perform acts of self harm. These people – legitimate asylum seekers – were attempting to escape the bombing that has been unleashed upon civilians in countries ‘we‘ are invading while providing for ‘our‘ (and our allies) ‘energy security’ – i.e. profits.

Thanks to the GreenWay Project for the ‘fallen limbs’.

 


‘Presumption of Regularity’ (2009) mixed media, dimensions variable. ‘Breathing Space’, Hawkesbury Regional Gallery, Windsor, 18 September – 25 October 2009.

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2001

‘igogo’

‘Palimpsest 4’ – Mildura & Red Cliffs

Coolgardie Safe installation in Red Cliff packing shed

Coolgardie Safe installation in Red Cliff packing shed

 

The project was underpinned by a concern for sustainable husbandry and manufacturing. Materials were found, reclaimed and purchased. Fabrics include hemp (subject of research trials), cotton (a large scale crop with its own chemical load), and charcoal (a potential new industry). Materials that, along with flax, the oil from various seeds, and earths, form the basis of traditional painting techniques. Western White Gum (Chinchilla) was obtained after viewing ABC Landline program. The project was a response to the theme of sustainable use of resources and the effects of salination of the Murray and surrounding environment.

The bicycle is still one of the most extensively used and least polluting forms of transport and a reliable workhorse.  The bicycle has become an integral part of my practice, a necessary and affordable intervention into contemporary, motor-vehicle dependent lifestyle.  I rode from Mildura, via Virginia, to Goolwa at the mouth of the Murray. One of the most bizarre moments of the ride was crossing the Murray River at Blanchetown.

Coolgardie safes flatpacked for transport

Coolgardie safes flatpacked for transport, Red Cliffs

 

 

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