Denfair 2017: 5 Artists Not to Be Missed
Australia’s leading destination for contemporary design is back today and we were among the first to bask in all the dream-house goodness. Of course we made a beeline to Denfair’s ever expanding art section, where some of Australia’s most prestigious galleries are exhibiting alongside established and emerging independent artists. Twice as big as last year’s area, this move suggests that Denfair will be focussing more and more on art in the coming years. We spoke with gallerists and artists to get a sense of the art that’s currently making a commercial impact in the design world. If you’re heading to Denfair this weekend, be sure not to miss these incredible artists.
Coady has an impressive display that draws you in from a distance. Instantly relatable, the oversized, sexy medication makes you question its place in our lives. “Years of experimentally testing my limits, both conceptually and in terms of access to new technologies, has resulted in a range of what might at first appear to be quite different bodies of work,” explains the artist. “Collectively though, there are abiding themes – about control of our bodies, experiences of bodily detachment and enhancement, and the alluring promise that medicine can offer a condensed chemical pill to enhance the way we feel and behave, against our instincts and ‘true’ nature. It is hoped that the mind and body can be aligned.”
Creating sublime fantastical landscapes, heavily influenced from her trips to Iceland, Kate Shaw is a Melbourne-based artist whose reputation is growing. Represented at Denfair by Martin Browne Contemporary, Kate is in the running for this year’s prestigious Arthur Guy Memorial Painting Prize announced next week. Her latest landscapes transform from warm to cold as you pass them by.
“They’re called lenticular prints which is kind of an old fashioned printing technique,” says Kate as we’re swaying side to side to see them in action. “Do you remember the postcards where the girl would wink or something like that? For me with my work, because I’m working with poured paint, I get to see all this beautiful movement in the paint whilst I’m making them, but then the collector only gets to see the dry, still paint. I really like the way these conveys that movement.”
Lyndi Sales is an artist based in Cape Town, South Africa. In 2011 she was chosen to represent her country at the Venice Biennale and we can see why.
“She explores themes of perception and vision as well as connectivity,” says Serna Williams from M Contemporary. “For this work, Chop Shop and Arial View, she looked at Google Maps of her old neighbourhoods in Cape Town and got inspired by the different colours she saw. Lyndi’s recently been working with this new material, hand dyed vilene.”
Canberra’s Hannah Quinlivan returns again this year with two mind-blowing sculptures. She’s a rising star in the international art scene and has work in a number of important collections including the National Gallery of Australia. “Hannah’s a multi disciplined artist working across the platforms of printmaking, sculpture and painting,” explains Melanie Cable from Flinders Lane Gallery. “This is one of her three-dimensional drawings – they’re still all considered drawings. It’s made out of PVC coated wire and also a full addition of a copper plate etching woven through it. She’s been doing really well recently. She had a big installation at Hong Kong Art Central earlier this year and just won a big public art commission for the Canberra new rail system.”
Another outstanding artist represented by Flinders Lane Gallery at Denfair is Michael Gromm. “He won was the winner of our emerging artist award last year in our emerging artist exhibition,” Melanie tells us enthusiastically. “He’s been doing great things – he won the Metro Prize a few years ago, he’s always continuing to change his practice, so you’ve got some really bold abstraction with little hints of pop realism that really tie everything together, and make them pretty unique.”
Denfair is open to the public this Saturday. Go along and explore all the visual and sensory delights for yourself. Find out more.