Thea Costantino

From this Author

The lure of the animal

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The Hijacked series of exhibitions and publications, currently in its third iteration, juxtaposes the work of Australian photographers with their international contemporaries from the USA, Germany, and now the United Kingdom. Hijacked III brings together thirty-two artists from geographically distant but historically linked places, and the diversity of work is pronounced. However, there are some discernible themes at play: the performance of identity within the[.....]

U-Ram Choe

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U-Ram Choe’s animatronic organisms are at once ultramodern and quaintly aesthetic, evoking the antiquated futurism of Jules Verne. Entering the darkened space of the John Curtin Gallery, visitors encounter a fictional ecosystem populated by cybernetic life. Didactic panels convey the data collected by the mysterious U.R.A.M. (United Research of Anima Machines), stating that these mechanical creatures live symbiotically within the urban environment, feeding off human[.....]

Horse Play

Anna Nazzari’s exhibition Horse Play at Turner Galleries presents the losing game, and the dogged impulse to try again, as an inescapable aspect of the human condition. With a nod to the absurdist existentialism of Albert Camus, Nazzari’s games, which are impossible to win, allude to the futile quest for meaning in an inherently meaningless world. For Nazzari, this nightmarish scenario provides the ground to[.....]

Wrong Angles

Alex Spremberg’s current exhibition at Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts is an exploration of the limits of painting and a meditation upon the throwaway materials that pervade contemporary life, specifically the omnipresent cardboard box and the printed newspaper. Wrong Angles is, ostensibly, a painting exhibition, but despite the polychromatic riot of surfaces dripped and marbled with industrial paint, Spremberg reveals a preoccupation with the formal[.....]

Tarryn Gill and Pilar Mata Dupont: Stadium

Stadium, the ten-year retrospective of collaborative duo Tarryn Gill and Pilar Mata Dupont at Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, looks back on a body of work that investigates connections between nationalism, aesthetics and performance. While Gill and Mata Dupont primarily focus on Australian nationalism, their work has its genesis in the global cultural shifts – in particular the increasingly ring-wing politics – that occurred in[.....]

To enter the cell is to be transformed

Before I enter the gallery space I hear the roar of the fan blower. Once inside, I encounter an enormous inflated cube emblazoned with red and white stripes, like a circus tent. I join the line of punters and wait obediently, reading the didactic gallery signage. Eventually, it’s my turn: I’m handed a hooded jumpsuit with a red geometric print. They instruct me to remove[.....]

Ron Mueck

Resonant with the uncanny impression of human presence, Ron Mueck’s hyperreal sculptures provoke a queasy fascination in the viewer. Their porous, synthetic skins are painstakingly embedded with details like body hair, fingernails and sweat. However, their unnatural scale offsets the familiarity of the ordinary bodies on show—miniature or gigantic, they possess an otherworldliness that unsettles and enthralls. Simultaneously grand and vulgar, nestled somewhere between fine[.....]