Monday, February 26, 2007


Fans of Art & Mayhem (all 3 of you) - may have been dismayed by the quality of postings recent months - as it sems to have become like a displayable version of Marrickville councils ACME e-list.

That's largely because Mayhem has been in New York - trying to write a PhD and doing research on ife drawing. I've made some postings abut art and life generally - but alchohol abstinence has inhibited my gellery attendance somewhat....

This week - I've stuck on details about THREE EVENTS ON THIS WEDNESDAY NIGHT (Feb 28th) PLUS somhtig amazing on saturday.... ALL AT WORTHY INTERESTING GALLERIES.

you can read the details below.
It's strange about the internet - the way that even in brooklyn I can apear to have my finger on the pulse of sydney art - just with an internet connection.

I also get a bit sad sometimes realising what I'm mising out on! especially the slit launch at medium rare last week - I even shed a tear and had to go to Babeland looking for decent dyke porn and a new sex toy....

maybe the above is to much information. Sorry.

but I've also been thinking about what defines the art I like. and I think it is stuff that involves CONNECTION.

I like paint - because it connects me with sloppy snotty oozy bodily bits - and makes me feel all oozy and sexy and a bit abject.

I like bright colours - because they shimmer and remind me of mambo trumpets and evoke a vibratory jouissance - that Eizabeth Grosz is far more eloquent about than me.....

I lke 'political' art - or conceptual art that explores themes of connection, change and community - because it explores connection change and community.

I just wish more of it was more transparent about the types of 'communties" being connected - and the delirious ambiguities of semi recuperated avante-garde ant intelectual posturing combined with a strategic niche careerism.

i'm as careerist as the next person - but it would be nice if we could be a bit more playful about our own ambiguous and fragile waiverings between being radical and recuperable.... It is a rather odd tension running right through the creative economies and one that probably many thrity-fourtiy somehtings would be willing to invest in.....

I find purely conceptual or 'purely' abstract or 'pruely anything a bit frghtening because it sems to cut off and close in possibliites rather than open up and expand them. this may just be an ex-catholic thing.....

I get scared when words surrund things too much, I get depressed when paint is streaky or too linear or flat and I get nauseaous when things are to astringent or claustrophobic or pompous.....

going to the Feminisnt art confests in New yrk was both exhilarating and scary. the churchy zeal of US femininsts is a bit scary. Esepcally since they're so pale and earnest and straight and midle clas and not kinky or queer or trashy.....

I am also pale and earnest and man, I'd LOVE to be middle class AND also kinky, queer and trashy. at the moment I'm far too bookish to be the latter.....

So having given a little mainfesto - i thoguht I'd mention some of the funstuff htat's been happening. the ctationality of contemrpoary art scares me a little - and I indlge in it to. Nameing names as plugs for friends or stuff I like - wihtout acutally critically ENGAGING with the work....

But I also hope that the plugs and circulations act to remind readers, archivers whoever THAT THERE IS A HELL OF A LOT OF ART THAT IS HAPPENING. and whether it is interesting or engaging or challenging - is largely up to how we, the audiences choose to engage with it. (Seeing and talking about it is a start, eh?)

so I JUST READ that IN GOSFORD - some people did a conceptual piece wiht a tree in a shopping mall.

apparently it was a high fallutin collaboration within a larger work with artists from Canada, Korea,
Japan and Australia.

A tree in Gosford Mall provided support for a stall display board as well as leaves to pin to it, which
were sold to passersby. Conversations focused on ideas related to limits of commodification processes, who
controls monetary regimes and determines monetary values, and the broader ethical concerns of deceit and
powerlessness for many within this system.

This work aimed at providing a context to link other works in the wider event such as those relating to the
Gulf War (oil) and local environmental issues (water), as well as text I provided for the screen displays in
a week long shop display taken from Senator Ron Paul in his speech to the US House of Representatives
(2006) called the End of [American] Dollar Hegemony.

It reminds me alitte of they sydney uni greens a few years back (ie 15 - fuck i'm old) who hadned out leaves as part of their studnet election campaign...

but reading about something - doesn't acutally encompass what the work actually meant to people who experienced it, amde, it engaged with it..... I duno what i'm trying to say but I BELIVE LISA KELLY is serious about using 'art' or art spaces as a publicforum for a critical engagement with art.... and so I urge reader to explore the latest LOOSE project:

Is it possible to bring political art into the gallery?

feedback session, wednesday february 28th, from 6pm

Thumbs up, thumbs down... a wrap up and debrief on the exhibitions, workshops & newspaper project

"If You See Something Say Something" initiated by Keg de Souza & Zanny Begg

Loose projects, level 2 168 Day St, Darling Harbour, Sydney

gallery hours: thursday and friday 12-5pm, saturday 1-6pm

the same bloody night Factory 4 has an opening of

Constructions by Helène Barbe (from Paris), opening 6 - 8pm, Wed 28 Feb until Sat 10 Mar

Outside Wall Work painting by Kate Mackay

at 49 Shepherd St, Marrickville, Sydney. (Shepherd St runs off Addison Rd)

The Showroom is open every Thurs - Sat, 1 - 6pm

AND DON't LOOK HAS: The Adventures of Sprite

WHEN: Opening Wednesday February 28, 6pm, Thur March 1 - Sat March 10 (Thur-Sat 11-5)

WHERE: DON'T LOOK Experimental New Media Gallery
419 New Canterbury Rd (Near Marrickville Rd), Dulwich Hill

WHO: Tanya Richards

CONTACT: Greg Shapley - Ph: 0401 152 434
Also see

The Adventures of Sprite
Tanya Richards

Why is it that clowns are at home both at children's parties and in nightmares?
In a creative exploration of the Jungian concept of Persona, Tanya Richards invokes her alter ego, a slightly deranged clown called Sprite.

Sprite, through video, sound and performance, explores the tension between conformity and the individual in the construction of self. We all wear 'masks' to cope with everyday life. We act differently, depending on who we're talking to, and what we're doing. 'Masks' help us put up with the mundane and tedious, as well as the unexpected and shocking, but at what cost?

In this exhibition, Sprite challenges the distraction, boredom, fantasy and psychotic behaviour that often lurk behind the acceptance of repetitious everyday experiences. By revealing the moral constructs behind fairy tales and rhymes (the keepers of much modern-day morality), Sprite smashes the spectacle laying bare the forced facades of modern existence.

Practically, she does this by weaving herself into the well-trodden paths of staid childhood stories and verse. By rupturing tales that should run 'automatically', she forces us to sit up and take notice – to 'think' about what we're seeing and hearing instead of humming along to some mystical hermetically-sealed mantra.


MEANHWILE OUt IN LIVERPOOL Khaled Sabsabi has curated "TONE"
as part of te Arab Film Festival.


Join us on 3 March at the Liverpool Regional Museum as Casula Powerhouse and Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE) launch an exhibition of audio-visual works by Arab artists as a parallel program to the 2007 Sydney Arab Film Festival.

It is about negotiation and openness of opinions. It suggests there is no singular way of communication or conflict resolution but diversity of opinion about the Arab world and diaspora.
- Khaled Sabsabi

Tone - a word rich with shades of meaning. Tone may be defined as a tint or shade, a musical sound of definite pitch, a modulation of the voice expressing meaning and feeling, or style and elegance, among many others.

Local and international artists have come together to initiate a dialogue on the many Tones of Middle Eastern and Arab culture. Their works reflect and interact with each other within the gallery space, creating the opportunity for conversation and debate. No one opinion is the right opinion.

Artists involved in this project include: Nadyat El Gawley and Fatima Mawas, Mireille and Fabian Astore, Anna Bazzi-Backhouse and Murmur Sayed Ahmed, Nabila Irshaid, and Jacko Restikian.

For more information on the 2007 Sydney Arab Film Festival, visit

Exhibition Details
WHO: All Ages
WHERE: Liverpool Regional Museum
Cnr. Hume Highway & Congressional Drive, Liverpool
WHEN: LAUNCH Saturday 3 March 2-4pm
Exhibition runs until 24 March
TIME: Monday - Saturday, 10am - 4pm
MORE INFO/ RSVPs would be appreciated for the launch by 28 February.
RSVP For more information or to RSVP, call reception on (02) 9824 1121 or email


Artswipe said...

You're in New York?! Lucky bitch. So I suppose you've met Ms Schneemann by now? How exciting to meet such an icon of all things vagina. Speaking of which... "vibratory jouissance" - if that's not Eizabeth Grosz's term then, Mayhem, you ARE far more eloquent than her!

Here, Mayhem, have some lesbian cake over at Artswipe's most recent post.

Best wishes with the PhDEE (and the new sex toy)!

mayhem said...

Dear Artswipe

thanks for the com(plim)ent!
I reckon my eloquence was the inevitable result of the hitachi wonderwand AND some new pocket pickle I got for the plane ride....
and yes I did meet Carollee - and my words totally failed me - I was just in awe......

Anonymous said...

Hello Art and Mayhem,

Not sure how to contact you via email, so apologies for communicating through comments.

I would like to warmly invite you to the opening of my exhibition at Mori Gallery next Wednesday 7 March 2007, 6-8pm.

Wednesday 7 March 2007, 6-8pm

7 - 28 March 2007

Mori Gallery

168 Day Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Coinciding with this exhibition is the launch of my new website: