Dark Heart success

Ben Quilty_The Island_edThe Art Gallery of South Australia has announced that more than 111,000 people visited the 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart since the exhibition opened in March 2014. The 2014 attendance figure represents an increase of 10% on the 2012 Biennial.

Art Gallery of South Australia director and 2014 Adelaide Biennial curator Nick Mitzevich said “by being able to expand the reach of the Adelaide Biennial with offsite projects, including Skywhale and Caroline Rothwell at the Botanic Gardens, we’ve been able to build on the success of the 2012 Biennial.”

Dark Heart also commanded more Gallery floor space than ever before, extending across three levels, and again broadening our reach,” said Mitzevich.

The 2014 Adelaide Biennial was made all the more visible by artist Ian Strange’s sculpture Landed in front of the Gallery on North Terrace. It is estimated that 1.5 million people experienced this provocative work of art across the three month period.

Ten works of art from the 2014 Adelaide Biennial have been acquired into the Art Gallery’s collection. Thanks to the continued generosity of the Contemporary Collectors, Alex Seton’s moving sculpture Someone died trying to have a life like mine has been acquired into the Gallery’s collection.

Seton’s solemn marble re-enactment of an incident whereby the lifejackets of 28 asylum seekers were discovered washed-up on Cocos Island has been one of the most talked about works of art in this year’s Adelaide Biennial.

In a windfall for the Gallery’s Australian sculpture collection two works of art by Dani Marti, three by Brendan Huntley and Julia deVille’s, Victorian Cat Mummy, have been acquired. Moving image works are also well represented in this year’s acquisitions with Del Kathryn Barton and Brendan Fletcher’s the human dress, Shoufay Derz’s Depart without return and Richard Lewer’s Worse luck I’m still here all taking their place in the permanent collection.

2014 Adelaide Biennial Managing Curator, Lisa Slade has also been appointed as curator of 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art in a move to use the Art Gallery’s in-house expertise to continue to grow and progress this important biannual event.

“I am pleased to announce that Lisa Slade has been appointed curator of the 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art,” says Mitzevich.

“Lisa Slade is currently Project Curator at the Art Gallery of South Australia, her recent exhibitions include HEARTLAND: Contemporary Art from South Australia, Curious Colony: A twenty first century Wunderkammer and Ben Quilty Live!

“Lisa’s extensive network of contemporary artists, writers and academics across the country will enhance the biennial’s national status.”

Details about the 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art will be released in early 2015. For more information, visit: www.artgallery.sa.gov.au

Image: Ben Quilty The Island, 2013, oil and acrylic on linen, 390.0 x 880.0 cm, courtesy the artist, Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane and Tolarno Galleries, Melbourne