EXHIBITIONS    Survival Bias

La Trobe Art Institute

24.06.17 to 03.09.17

Image: Daniel Boyd, Up in smoke tour #8 (2011), watercolour and archival glue on photocopy in Natural History Museum skull box, 25 x 18 x 5 cm, Courtesy of the artist and STATION, Melbourne.


Featuring Hannah Bertram, Daniel Boyd, Deidre But-Husaim, Penny Byrne and Victoria Reichelt. 


Survival Bias presents the work of five Australian artists who explore different aspects of how institutions deal with art and artefacts – the collection, presentation and care of these important and sometimes contested images and objects. The exhibition provides a timely insight into the nature of collecting by the administrative bodies who hold some of our community’s most valuable cultural assets.

The paintings of Deidre But-Husaim provide us with an insight into the ways in which audiences encounter artwork in institutional settings, while Victoria Reichelt’s ‘back-of-house’ images reflect on the ways in which institutions administer the care of their collections. Daniel Boyd’s layered artworks lift the lid on systemic abuses evident in the structures of our public institutions, offering us an opportunity to look afresh at those acts and actions we might take for granted and assume to be without bias. Conservation as a mutable and mutational act is explored in the work of Penny Byrne, as she manipulates collectible objects with an infusion of contemporary content and context. Hannah Bertram, working directly with La Trobe University’s own collection management, addresses notions of labour and the physicality of care that come with protecting artworks hidden away from the public eye.


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