PLAY is the fourth exhibition at PSEUDO SPACE, opening on March 25th, it is intended to explore the notion of play.
Spontaneous indulgence is increasingly less common in our day-to-day lives. Like our 9-5 jobs, leisure time is often something that is planned: we do not leave much room for unplanned enjoyment. As we spend more of our time living through technological devices, we are constantly meeting deadlines we ascribe to ourselves via the virtual clock.
It may not come as a surprise that most significant inventions were created through play (think Archimedes discovering volume displacement by getting into a bathtub and watching the water overflow). Science is much about play and experimentation. In a similar way, the art process is a form of play: often involving actions with unknown outcomes. PLAY does not just reference science and the art process, but also could be a metaphor for the way we live our lives. The philosopher Martin Buber said that “play is the exultation of the possible.” Life, like play, is unpredictable. It is possible to be hurt or injured through the process of play but the benefits usually outweigh the costs for us to engage in it.
PLAY will show works across a range of mediums. Gemma Mckenzie-Booth’s work Altered Flesh (Into the void) involves casts taken inside her body. The end product, which appears as beautiful jewellery on first glance, is the result of a playful experiment that many people would consider unusual. A video of the casting process is also part of the installation. The work implies that the erotic and disgusting parts of the body are often the same.
Jonathan McBurnie has had a long-time fascination with the Batman character. Having one of the most recognizable appearances in history, Batman has associations with trash culture, car culture, hippy culture, gay culture, vampirism and vigilantism. And of course, the character itself, who embodies a kind of wish-fulfilment in the extreme. McBurnie said about the work:
Do I wish I had millions of dollars at my disposal that I could spend on crazy outfits and cars and the like, and out-think my adversaries before beating them to a pulp? Of course I do- with Robin at my side, wielding a hi-def camera, I would be creating a hard-hitting art work (pardon the pun), fit for MoMA. And what is play without wish-fulfillment?
This exhibition attempts to engage the viewer in the works and question the nature of PLAY. Artists involved include a performance poet who is on tour from Melbourne called Randall Stephens, The Bubble Solution, Art Rush, Georgia Banks, Ollie McKenzie, Riachard Kean, Chris Raymond, Rebecca Naughton and Allana McAfee.
Curated by Fleur Wiber