Early artworks by leading mid-career Australian and New Zealand artists who have engaged with a diverse range of materials in surprising and transformative ways are on view in a new exhibition titled Out of the Ordinary at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW).
Now on display in the AGNSW's contemporary spaces, the exhibition provides a compelling snapshot of the breadth of artistic practice emerging in the two countries during the early 2000s.
The exhibition is drawn from pieces collected throughout the life of the ARTAND ‘Art & Australia Contemporary Art Award’ initiative (2000-2015), a platform created by the magazine under the tenure of the publisher and editor Eleonora Triguboff. This adventurous prize supported and promoted the practices of young artists for more than a decade by using the back cover of the prestigious magazine usually reserved for ‘big advertisers’ to profile each artist and also included a text by an emerging writer. The award aimed to advocate for artists whose practices were not typically commercial or were underrepresented.
As one recipient, now UNSW Art & Design, Deputy Head of School Art, Dr Grant Stevens, confirmed, “As a young artist there are always a lot of “firsts”. Being supported and encouraged when you are experimenting with different processes, materials and ideas really help to push your practice and to open up new possibilities.”
Artists featured in the exhibition include; Rebecca Baumann, Kushana Bush, Sara Hughes, Helen Johnson, Jonathan Jones (UNSW Art & Design graduate), Nicholas Mangan, Laith McGregor, Grant Stevens (UNSW Senior Lecturer) and Michelle Ussher.