Growing up on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Joshua Reeves says his family home always had “space and value for the arts”.
As a child, Josh was interested in becoming a comedian. However, by the time Josh was six years old, his interests changed to drumming. His passion for music continued in high school after completing a big band jazz course.
“While doing music I was always drawing and writing, and thought I’d love to do a Fine Arts course at one stage in my life.
“A few years after I finished my course, I had a pretty full-on car crash, and that became the catalyst for me wanting to pursue the Fine Arts degree.”
Josh says completing Bachelor of Fine Arts (Hons) has enabled him to experiment with different mediums and explore his practice further, with his Honours component being a pivotal moment to his experience at UNSW.
“The Honours cohort has been the highlight for me. It’s such an artistically diverse group and the work that has come from it is so special and exciting.
“I feel completely humbled and privileged to work with amazing teachers that have crafted such an exceptional course.”
Josh’s Honours project, Lower Middle Arse, reveals tough times through a more comedic lens – a sculpture that explores hyper-masculinity, past memories, trauma and playfulness revealed through 24 oversized bottle caps, carved foam mattresses and text-based works.
“The installation of Lower Middle Arse is meant to make you laugh, but then hopefully lead you to some darker things though the viewing process.
“The team down in the UNSW Galleries have been amazing. It’s been awesome to have our work handled and curated for such a professional space and show,” says Josh.
Josh won the TWT Excellence Prize for his sculpture at the opening night of the A&D ANNUAL 19 Graduate Exhibition, which was selected by a judging panel with over 150 graduate submissions.
Looking back at his time at Art & Design, Josh says the vast knowledge and openness shared by peers enabled him to work collaboratively across the different mediums.
“I’ve found that by trying to be sensitive to situations in combination with working hard provides me with a very rich and productive way to work across fields.
“An openness to other people’s knowledge and confidence in working together has meant I’ve met and worked with some amazing people!” says Josh.
After graduating, Josh will spend time to focus on his art making, while keeping occupied with a few side projects such as teaching drumming lessons.
“I’m looking to keep the ball rolling outside of uni – I’m interested to see how my work will develop.”
Josh’s advice for future UNSW students is to “stay open to new information.”
“Use the facilities, you’re paying for them. Have heaps of fun!”