Richard Grigg

Kings ARI
King Street Melbourne, June 2005
Richard Grigg
Richard has made a really thoughtful and intricate group of works. The space is dark and there are tiny battery operated globes that illuminate his objects and drawings. Pieces - legs, a bird with a cube for feet, a tree - are made from card stuck together and carved and sanded down with incredible detail and attention. And yet they are somehow also loose and the emphasis is not on the crafting of the objects but how they materialise and relate to the other things he's made and assembled. There is something not unfamiliar about this work but it's new somehow, perhaps it's the approach.
Jacqueline Riva


Ricky Swallow

'Killing Time' Australian Pavillion
Venice Biennale, June 2005
Ricky Swallow
I enjoyed Venice tremendously, especially so as I had been dreading going. After being sick the week before, I wasn't really in the mood for the artworld and the high powered schmoozing that is so much a part of Venice and so was pleasantly surprised that I really enjoyed the biennale. Ricky Swallow's work was great, but I felt that it seemed to mirror the Patricia Piccinini work in a weird way - perhaps in its meticulous hyper-reality - and came off badly for being presented in the same pavilion, as the sculptures were placed in almost the identical places as 2003, so that I felt a sense of deja vu. The work was beautiful; I just couldn't get away from thinking that they needed to have done something different in how they exhibited the work to break with the time before. The catalogue is fantastic, and very thoughtful.
Barbara Hunt


Lizzy Newman

Mir 11
11th Floor 522 Flinders Lane (Kings Carpark) Melbourne, May 2005

Lizzy Newman's work was made for MIR11, but it seemed less concerned with the abstraction offered by art-space, and more interested in camping out in the concrete. The work presented itself up as an aggregate of furnishings, producing a doubly real and imaginary waiting room complete with water cooler. The supply of water was sucked completely dry by the time of the opening, and the fountain sat strangely empty for the duration of the show, kept company by a bin full of plastic cups at its foot. It imparted the work with a slightly depressing ambience, edged by lack, and absence; and of a dissapointment that you get when arriving too late.

Arresting the free-flow of sweaty couriers and well dressed architects between the ARM architectural offices and the lift well, the work hooked into the context of it’s foyer; creaming together the corporate with the abstract and offering itself up, almost masochistically, as a zone of service provision.

That the work was banished from the space, (without the artist's knowledge), by the ARM architects while hosting the arrival of “some important clients” (but replaced by a painting for the occasion!); convinces me of the potency of this work. It’s indeterminate nature worked to playfully unsettle, and activate the latent and forceful politics of its’ place.
Bianca Hester