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HUW DAVIES GALLERY 15 March to 1 April 2012
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Image: Josh Wodak, entre naturaleza y cultura

Josh Wodak visited Spain in 2010 and was made a PhotoAccess artist in residence last year to develop an exhibition based on the visit. Sense of Surroundings is an important outcome of the project. In recent years he has also had residencies at the ANU School of Art and the Australian Film Television and Radio School.

Since 2009 Josh Wodak has shown always thoughtful images in a number of PhotoAccess group exhibitions in the HUW DAVIES GALLERY, but this is his first solo show with us.

Wodak’s images in Sense of Surroundings achieve what most good photographers aspire to achieve, taking us to a distinct place and time, sharing something of the moment of creation. Writing about that moment Wodak says he ‘… sensed ‘something’, [but] making sense of that ‘something’ is ever elusive.’

This is an intriguing group of works, works that clearly have a narrative intent but contain few hints to help us read the artist’s ‘sense’, albeit elusive, of the places and people he has chosen to show. Wodak’s titles don’t make the task easier. But I suspect that is the artist’s purpose—to encourage us to take the time and make the effort to conjure up stories. And not necessarily the stories that might be told by Wodak himself or the unwitting players in these tableaux created with an eye sensitive to the interplay of character and place. The images are carefully and effectively composed and lit, and rich in local colour and imaginative possibilities.

The project was supported by the Spanish Cultural Cooperation Program between the Spanish Ministry of Culture and the ANU Centre for European Studies, and by Hang Ups Picture Framing. Stephen Best from Macquarie Editions printed the images. We are pleased to share Josh Wodak’s Sense of Surroundings with visitors to the HUW DAVIES GALLERY.

David Chalker

[inline:Josh Wodak catalogue.pdf=Catalogue]

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End: 16:00

HUW DAVIES GALLERY 15 March to 1 April 2012
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Image: Ian Copland, Samakand Market

Markets is Ian Copland’s fifth HUW DAVIES GALLERY exhibition and a real departure from his previous work. Structures, shown in 2007, was an outstanding first exhibition based on the architecture of three of Canberra’s national institutions. The people and streetscape of Garema Place, more than just a street address for generations of Canberra people, were the focus for Garema shown in 2009. People, 2008, dealt with universal themes of humankind and had no specific Canberra connection. Brindabella, 2010, examined places close to home in rich black and white landscape images of the iconic Brindabella Ranges.

In Markets Copland has gone much further afield, to the Silk Road, to places where the first meaning of the word ‘market’ persists today. This work is a slideshow with music. The format has allowed Copland to use many more images than he could have done in a print based exhibition and the accompanying music adds brilliantly to the images creating a lively, colourful and authentic story of the places he visited and the trade in food and other things essential to the people of those places and their daily lives.

This like all of his work reflects Copland’s abiding interest in people and places. He refers to this interest in his artist statement:

'In this slideshow I return to a personal love—capturing people involved in everyday life … In many cities and towns around the world markets or bazaars are the significant focal point for the community They are a true reflection of the culture of the local community. Wherever I have travelled I have been drawn to this ‘real’ look at the local people and culture'

PhotoAccess is pleased to welcome Ian Copland back to the HUW DAVIES GALLERY, this time in the Multimedia Room, with Markets.

[inline:Ian Copland.pdf=Catalogue]