The Bauhaus is the most influential art and design school in history. In this its centenary year, Bauhaus Now! explores its legacy in Australia – both for contemporary artists and for art education – highlighting its visionary, collectivist ideals and its radical practices.
Opening at Buxton Contemporary on Friday 26 July, Bauhaus Now! reveals a range of contemporary experiments inspired by the Bauhaus diaspora. Artists and students across several art, design and architecture schools will exhibit forms of creative play, while questioning and challenging conventional ideas and practices.
Curated by Ann Stephen, major features of the exhibition include: Lantern Parade – brilliant display of lanterns and costumes made, worn and carried by art students from RMIT and the VCA inspired by the early Weimar Bauhaus mid-winter festivals – accompanied by historic and contemporary footage of the parade.
Mondspiel, the ground-floor installation by Mikala Dwyer and Justene Williams, is part resurrection and part zombie dance. The first-floor gallery displays rare Bauhaus archival material from the two former Bauhaus students exiled to Australia, Gertrude Herzger-Seligmann and Ludwig Hirschfeld-Mack.
Reconstructions by kinetic artists Michael Candy and Christopher Handran will demonstrate the celebrated Bauhaus experiments with colour and light, in Hirschfeld-Mack’s Farbenlichtspiele, (Colour-Light Play) and Moholy-Nagy’s Light Space Modulator.
The recent Bauhaus Weaving of Elizabeth Pulie and Rose Nolan’s constructions are both made from the cast-off litter of domestic life. Other artists in this exhibition channel colour theory, like Peter D Cole’s miniature multiples, Jacky Redgate’s experiments with colour, light and photography, and Shane Haseman’s performance Triadic Dance of the Secondaries.
Ann Stephen’s curatorial career has been in public and university museums. She is currently Senior Curator of the University Art Gallery, Sydney University Museums, a role that she has occupied since 2009.
Ann has developed a number of significant exhibition projects including; Women and Power, University Art Gallery, Sydney University Museums, 2015; J. W. Power: Abstraction-Création, Paris, 1934, with, University Art Gallery, Sydney University Museums, National Library of Australia, Canberra and Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, 2012; Narelle Jubelin: Vision in Motion, Sydney Festival with University Art Gallery, Sydney University Museums, Monash University Art Gallery and Samstag Museum of Art, Adelaide, 2012; Mirror Mirror then and now, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane with University Art Gallery, The University of Sydney, and Samstag Museum of Art, Adelaide 2009-10.
Ann has a national and international publishing record in modernism and Conceptual art. She has been awarded several significant grants and prizes for her academic work, was appointed a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 2009 and has been chair of Art Monthly Australasia since 2014.
Buxton Contemporary, Corner Dodds Street and Southbank Boulevard, Southbank
Exhibition: 26 July – 20 October 2019
For more information, visit: www.buxtoncontemporary.com for details.
Image: Mikala Dwyer and Justene Williams, Mondspiel (Moon play) 2019 (detail), mixed-media installation, Courtesy of the artist, Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne; Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney; Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney © the artists