Thursday, June 28, 2012

Don't worry, TCB happy

Hey. As you can see from the poster, I'm in the current show on at TCB gallery.
Well, sort of.

I'm very excited to have been asked for a nice stack of copies of the Henson book that I talked about in the previous blog post to be included in the exhibition.

In this photo you can see a copy of the book there on the edge of the table, Christopher LG Hill was reading it before he put it down to do a performance.
The other day one of my closest friends described the book as "controversial (conservative)", which I think is hilarious, and probably pretty accurate.

I don't know if any copies have actually been sold, but I've lowered the price to $4. 

Send me an email if you want one but can't make it to the gallery.
It feels like it was ages ago when I made the book, although to put that into perspective there's a Bruce Nauman video also currently playing in the gallery; Bouncing Two Balls Between the Floor and Ceiling with Changing Rythyms, which was made in 1967.

I didn't see old Brucey at the opening, but I'm sure he'd be the first to tell me that nearly four years since making my book really isn't quite so long when you compare it with the 45 years since making his video.

And so, if all goes to plan, "The trouble with Bill" will get to be in another TCB exhibition in another 41 years.
 
One of the other artists with a video in the space is Andrew Liversidge, here's a photo I took of his video art self standing next to his real life self. Both are equally as interesting to watch.
There's a whole bunch of reading groups and lectures going on during the exhibition.
The show runs from June 20 to July 07, 
at Level 1/12 Waratah Place, Melbourne, 
open Wednesday to Saturday, 12-6pm,
bla, bla, bla, bla, bla.
thanks for reading, see you soon, 
everything is gonna TCB A O K.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Good Bill Hunting

Here's a drawing I did at a public discussion between Bill Henson and Natalie King held at the MGA on Thursday October 13, 2011.
This was a tricky drawing to do because it was very quiet and my marker made a really jolting scratchy noise if I drew from right to left. So to avoid drawing attention to myself, I tried to draw every stroke from left to right.

Here I am with Henson after the discussion.
I should've shown Henson the drawing I'd just done of him, he might've liked it, at the time I wasn't happy with it though. Maybe I was being too hard on myself but I was annoyed because I drew his forehead a bit too small.
Anyway I had something better I wanted to show him.

In 2008 I made a book called "The Photography of naked children for the sake of art" censorship crisis of mid 2008, or: The trouble with Bill".
Here's the cover.
and here's Bill Henson holding a rolled up copy.
The book tries to break the messy event down into it's simplest form, through the format of a children's story accompanied by various drawings, photos and text pieces.
Just like my opinion on the matter, the book is absolutely not anti-Bills work, but at the same time it is also not 100% completely pro-Bills work either.

Really the books aim was to have a bit of fun exploring all of what I saw as the flaws in both arguments.
One thing I should briefly mention is that everything aside, Bill Henson is brilliant, and indisputeably a master of his art.

Ultimately though Bills art isn't what I was particularly interested in, what the book was mainly trying to examine was the hype of the scandal and the hysteria, and the ways in which the media and the public were reacting and encouraging it.
Here's a review that the book got in a 2008 Sticky Institute newsletter.

THE TROUBLE WITH BILL (Australian)
Earlier this year, there was a lot of controversy surrounding the artistic works of photographer Bill Henson and this zine focuses on this topic. I was initially reluctant to read this zine, mostly to do with it's A4 size, pink cover and blatant over-priced-ness, but also partly because I thought it would be purely the author's opinion presented in a one-sided manner. And, thank god, it's not.
It reads like a story, presenting the whole 'is this really art or porn' fiasco from beginning to end. In a rather clever manner, the text is accompanied by contradicting and rather well-placed pictures, such as photos of child beauty pageants and Michelangelo's David. Humorous hand-drawn images and the no-nonsense presentation of the stupidity of the media's presentation of this fiasco really make this zine an interesting read.
But the argument that Henson's artworks cost thousands of dollars and the zine only costs nine dollars doesn't justify charging that much for this publication. It's not worth nine dollars and I really think it would be more attractive to readers if it wasn't so expensive.
Kenny Pittock $9
I guess maybe $9.50 was a bit steep. Maybe. I guess it definitely is for a shop like Sticky.
A better response I got than this review was an email from a year nine teacher who told me that he'd used the book to study the event in his class. That was pretty amazing.
(As you can see my drawing ability has developed a lot since four years ago.)

I decided to make this book after reading an article in the free newspaper you get on the train, two days after the story had broken out. The article was covering a Melbourne woman artist who was holding an impromptu one night exhibition consisting of naked photos she had taken of her own children. This was her way to directly protest the negativity Henson was receiving.

In the article the artist was quoted as having said something along the lines of how by doing this she was not only defending Henson on behalf of herself, but that her stance in fact represented the opinion of the Melbourne art scene. This really bothered me. 'No way', I thought, 'I'm a Melbourne artist and you don't represent me.'
And so because of that it felt necessary for me to contribute to the conversation.
Here's one last photo of the book, on the side of a basketball court, looking cool and leaning against a wall like James Dean.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ten Kens

Things ken only get better.


1. Ken Done
2. Ken Vogel
3. Ken Carson
4. Ken Bruce
5. Ken Kurtis
6. Kendo stick
7. Ken Clark
8. Ken tucky fried chicken
9. Ken Anderson
10. Ken Zhu

(All from Google images)

Monday, June 18, 2012

DO YOU THINK IT'S A SIGN?

The other week I needed a bit of 6ml MDF board, I needed it right away and so I decided to cut up an old painting.

I was wanting to get rid of the painting anyway, it was just a sort of nothing experiment I did once upon a time.
Usually one of my biggest struggles is letting go of work, but this was a rare exception.
Here it is after I'd sawed it in three.

As you can see from where I signed it on the back, I did the painting on February 17, 2009.
Here's the shape I cut it into.
It's now the back of this painting.
The pole's made of duct tape, the bolt's are made of clay.
This is one of the works I had in the Funny Games exhibition, I'll put more, (and better), documentation of the show here soon.
I hung this piece discreetly amongst the permanent signs in the gallery, and as a result a lot of people who went to the show didn't see it.

I think maybe that's a good thing. Maybe it's symbolic, a sign of our times. Maybe it's funny, maybe it's whimsical, maybe it's sad. Maybe I've signed my life away. I hope this isn't a sign of weakness. I don't remember signing up for this.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Twenny Kennys

All your favourites 
                             
1. Kenny Garrett
2. Kenny Kramer
3. Kenny Kola
4. Kenny G
5. Kenny Chesney
6. Kenny Cunene
7. Kenny Wormald
8. Kenny Smyth
9. Kenny Rogers
10. Kenny Tam
11. Kenny McCormick
12. Kenny Koala
13. Kenny Kwan
14. Kenny the Shark
15. Kenny Blank
16. Kenny Perry
17. Kenny Walker
18. Kenny Vasquez
19. Kenny Easterday
20. Kenny Dalgish

(All from Google images)