Date: 17-Sep-2005 – 16-Oct-2005
Location: Contemporary Art Tasmania
Fellow Anthropoid proposes that the important point of meaning in the process of making art, the point where art happens, is not in the private studio of the artist (during the production stage of the work), but in the gallery (in the reception stage of the work). It is after the art is produced, when it begins to circulate in a social world, that relationships between the artist, the work, the gallery space and the viewer form and re-form. This exhibition proposes that the push-pull of communication between these points produces a flux of meaning where self-identification becomes confused, form collapses into formlessness and a split occurs in the world as we look at nothing but ourselves.
The artists in Fellow Anthropoid exhibit works that reveal their conscious awareness of the complexities and power relations embedded in social exchange. Perhaps it is the difficulty of these explorations that provokes them into developing artworks that manipulate inter-personal space and give personal traits to non-human, inanimate objects.
Fellow Anthropoid takes a critical look at humanistic assumptions about a world made for man; in particular, as top predator, man’s mental and sensual capabilities are the measure by which all things are evaluated. The human subject, as the independent core from which identity springs is turned upside down, where like so many anthropomorphised objects, human identity appears as the most basic and persistent deception of all. We deceive ourselves, not only as to our independence of character but also in our capacity to define reality as other than creating the world in our own image. Reality escapes us, in the same way our independent selves do because it isn’t there; the works in this exhibition suggest that we are bound to this fragmentary world of identity as conceptions of self and being – united through a materialist anthropomorphism; a multifaceted contingent experience of the world like the many-headed mythological hydra.