Saturday, June 13, 2015

Chrysalis Bindi Cole

Bindi Cole, an Australian artist with Wadawarrung heritage, shows CHRYSALIS at Maroondah Art Gallery in Ringwood from 10 April - 13 June 2015.

On a sunny Saturday afternoon in May I attended an artist talk by Bindi Cole.

The Art Gallery is situated in Maroondah Federation Estate where I took this photograph.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

The title for the exhibition CHRYSALIS suggests the idea of a protective coating, a sheltered state, or a stage of being and growth.

Bindi Cole in front of Clouds Are The Dust Of His Feet #4, one of a series of large cloud photographs in Gallery One.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

Work EH4542 refers to the artist's experiences in prison. Between 1999-2000, Cole spent two years across different prisons in England including the notorious Holloway Prison. For the artist it was a period of significant self-transformation during which she embraced Christianity.

The prison cell plays upon the idea of solitude as potentially nourishing or oppressive. It was built to specifications in accordance with the average size of a prison cell in the British Isles. It features a collection of objects from the artist's time in prison including photographs, identity tags, cigarette papers, lighters, video stills and diary.

In Gallery One the imagery of the prison cell is contrasted with the series of cloud photographs.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

© Barbara Oehring 2015

The artist's installation We All Need Forgiveness in Gallery Two is an HD video installation lasting 5 minutes.

Kevin Rudd's 2008 "Sorry" speech forms a starting point for much of Cole's work on the topic of forgiveness.

Visitors to the gallery are invited to write their own message of forgiveness on a small cloud; in this way adding to the fabric of the installation.

Here Bindi Cole is photographed with some of her friends who participated in the multi-channel video work while a couple of visitors are inspecting the various messages of forgiveness on the small clouds attached to the wall.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

I returned to Maroondah Gallery for the CHRYSALIS exhibition launch on 28 May 2015. In recognition of Reconciliation Week 2015 Aunty Diane Kerr provided a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony. Natalie King, Senior Research Fellow, Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne opened the exhibition. Les Chessells, General Manager Mullum Mullum Indigenous Gathering Place, spoke about the community controlled Aboriginal organisation.

Performances by the Djirri Djirri Dance Group and singer song-writer Kutcha Edwards followed.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

Kutcha Edwards demonstrates the meaning of Reconciliation to the visiting school students.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

Kutcha and Dan.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

After the opening celebrations I witnessed a group of children showing much interest in Bindi Cole's video work We All Need Forgiveness. This black and white image is my impression of the original colour installation by the artist.

© Barbara Oehring 2015

No comments:

Post a Comment