BOARD: surf and skate cultures meet contemporary art

9 December 2017 – 4 February 2018

With an eye to fresh takes, relevance and multidisciplinary practice, and in line with the outdoors character of the concurrent season, this exhibition recognises the board as a ubiquitous feature of Australian life and consequently fertile ground for the visual arts. The selected artists mine board-based subcultures – specifically surfing and skateboarding – for their dynamic imagery and performance potential as well as metaphysical and narrative associations. In so doing, they draw the audience into a worldview, and not simply the ‘ride’, to challenge stereotypes and describe survival, ethical concerns or emotional conditions. These artists also broach questions about the creative act, and art in our present-day world. Features works by Vernon Ah Kee, Gerry Bobsien, Shaun Gladwell, Nancy Kilgour, Brett McMahon, Tracey Moffatt, Nell, John Turier (with emerging artists from Hunter St TAFE), Gerry Wedd, John Witzig, Jud Wimhurst, Anne Zahalka and vintage surfboard loans from collector Tony Brown.

A gallery project curated by Meryl Ryan. This exhibition is supported by the Dobell Exhibition Grant, funded by the Sir William Dobell Art Foundation and managed by Museums & Galleries of NSW.

Shaun Gladwell Skateboarders vs Minimalism (still) 2016, single-channel HD video,16:9, colour, sound, duration 53mins 28secs, courtesy the artist and Anna Schwartz Gallery © Shaun Gladwell

artwork Shaun Gladwell

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Lake Macquarie: Living Cultures

9 December 2017 – 4 February 2018

The Lake Macquarie: Living Cultures exhibition project is an ongoing series, a museum-style display with a difference. This new space supports local stories, artist residencies and research. Artists will also be engaged to interpret and document aspects of Lake Macquarie history, culture and the environment with a combination of artefacts and artworks. This second exhibition in the series focuses on the beach life and activities, and features a small selection of artworks from the collection.

A gallery project coordinated by Debbie Abraham and Jo O’Toole with the Aboriginal Reference Group, local surf clubs and historical societies.

Artist Unknown, Caves Beach Open Boat Crew 1960 (Winners of the 1960-61 Australian Championships). Image courtesy of the Caves Beach Surf Life Saving Club.

artwork artist unknown

Five Islands School: At the Beach

9 December 2017 – 4 February 2018

Five Islands School, located on Lake Macquarie, is a NSW government school designed to cater to the needs of students with a moderate or severe intellectual disability. Working with children from preschool age to Year 12, the school aims to deliver innovative quality learning experiences and develop students’ skills. This exhibition will be selected from works the students have created around ideas invoked by the theme of the beach.

A gallery project coordinated by Rob Cleworth.

Student Aaron Pope at work on his painting skills, courtesy of Five Islands school

artwork student Aaron Pope