Saturday, 2 June 2018


Meredith Turnbull

March - July 2018
The Ian Potter Museum of Art

University of Melbourne Art Collection

Artist Talk; Writing & Concepts, Thursday 31 May 6pm

Ideas, concepts, statements to ponder from from Turnbull's talk:
  • material is utilised then arrested 
  • practice is an expanded vision of the object 
  • object has agency
  • should an object designed for use be touched? In the museum context we look > imagine > its use & function
  • importance of scale
  • installation has a sense of promise
  • object & space are in active relationship
  • installation is an equation of OBJECT + MATERIAL + TIME + SPACE
  • ref to Liubov Popova, Russian Productivist artist especially dress desig

Greg Daly, No Title [stoneware form], 1977

Joan Campbell, Untile [large sphere], 1971
Following three photographic arrangements of Campbell & Daly's vessels

[Stephen Benwell, Untitled 1980], 2018, archival pigment on paper
[Alan Peascod, No title, 9urn0, 1977], 2018, archival pigment print on paper

Alan Peascod, No title [urn], 1977, stoneware

Stephen Benwell, Untitled [stoneware just], 1980, stoneware 

Quotes from wall text:

Meredith Turnbull brings together visual art, design and craft languages in her artwork, she reorders ideas of discipline and value. 

In Closer, Turnbull has been invited to explore and respond to the rich array of decorative art objects in the University of Melbourne Art Collection. Turnbull has created an installation environment that displays selection from the Collection on furniture designed by the artist, along photographs of the objects which obscure differences in scale and encourage the view to look back and forth between image and original.

Turnbull's election range from antiquity to the current day. 

This could be a ceramic pot with a surface that looks like folds of fabric or water rushing over rock. These are special objects with personalities or visceral qualities that we can feel just by slowing down and looking more closely. 

Closer is a reflect on the use-value, decoration and the formal qualities of these exquisitely shaped and detailed objects. The title of the exhibition plays upon the artist's desire to have a close encounter with the items that can no longer be touched for conservation reason. It begs the question , its it sometimes easier to closely observe collection objects throughout, photographs, while we maintain a safe distance from the originals.

The decorative arts have traditionally been differentiated from fine art due to their consideration of function alongside aesthetic concerns. Turnbull is interested in items that hover between utility and excess. 

...displayed here, they are even further removed from their original function. In their new status as collection objects they are in the Artist's words, 'both inside and outside of time'. By combining objects of disparate style and time period within the unifying field of an installation, Turnbull obscures their original contexts, while encouraging the viewer to contemplate their individual characteristics. 

DAMP, Grecian pattern plate, 2012, acrylic paint on stoneware, polymer adhesive.

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