Possible Worlds

Possible Worlds

Ricky Swallow, Bianca Hester, Emily Floyd, Andrew McLeod, Ronnie van Hout

18 March – 13 April 2002

Curated by Juliana Engberg


Possible Worlds explores some of the ways we construct social, theoretical, metaphysical and artistic spaces through a selection of installations and works by three Australian and two New Zealand artists. The exhibition has been put together by Melbourne based curator Juliana Engberg. Each of the artists in the exhibition explore the logic and systems of hypothetical scenarios, sometimes a world within a world, like the nested quotations of Ronnie van Hout. Equally however, they explore the potential of knowledge systems such as language or architecture to define a world-view.

Bianca Hester's elaborate, informal installations strive for their own spatial and material logic and establish communities of connections that suggest conversations and debates. They might be referred to as spatial symposiums. Hester was included in Primavera 2001 at Sydney's Museum of Contemporary Art. She lives and works in Melbourne and is studying toward a PhD at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

Emily Floyd creates 'islands' of discourse in which the world is ordered by concepts and theories. Her work for this exhibition 'Space and Theory' establishes a kind of city of potential semiotic mechanisms. Floyd is based in Melbourne and is the current Studio Resident at 200 Gertrude Street.

Ricky Swallow sets up a visual conundrum between nature and culture with a delicate wooden sculpture of a bird nestled in a sports shoe. This strange symbiosis asks us to consider what kind of habitat is being alluded to in this meeting of organic and inorganic. Swallow was winner of the Contempora5 art prize in 1999 and was Artist in Resident at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery in 2000. He lives and works in Melbourne.

Andrew McLeod uses the foil of architectural plans to suggest worlds of veracity, and yet his plans are of imagined buildings that emerge as potential sites of social intersection. In his beautiful paintings of blue rococcoesque flowers and ornament he proposes a world of scientific metaphor and sexual play. McLeod is a recent graduate of Elam School of Fine Arts.

Ronnie van Hout's works deal with the possible worlds inherent in the metaphysical propositions of artists Piet Mondrian and Colin McCahon. His small sculptural scenarios, are presented as if maquettes for a future, potential monumentality. They deliberately struggle in that place of the propositional space between art and reality. New Zealand born, van Hout participated in the International Studio Programme at PS1 in New York in 1999 and he now lives and works in Melbourne.

See available editions by Ronnie van Hout