Chris Orr | The Jewell of Art | The Art Hunter | Ep 23
In this show, David talks to graphic artist Chris Orr and how he developed his own unique art styles. Chris Orr is of European and Narungga descent. He studied art and design at Prahran Institute and graphic design at Swinburne University in the 1980s. In the 1990s, after rocking around in nightclubs, he started a graphic design practice, Beige, strongly anchored in street art.
Chris’s first venture into the art world came about when a friend gave him a plastic doll’s head and challenged him to ‘make art out of it’. The result was a series of oversize digital manipulations baked-on canvas and paper. Melancholy and mesmerising, they contained a dark beauty. Displayed only in the foyer of an architect’s firm in Sydney in 2001, the series was created and sold to collectors in Melbourne, Sydney, Berlin and Osaka.
Years on, colleagues and friends prodded Chris to produce a new series. In 2014, with the purchase of a skull from a medical supplies store, the Bone Idol exhibition began to develop. Although the obvious parallel of birth and death is not deliberate, there is a tangible dialogue between the two objects.
In 2018, Chris began work towards a new show, Conventicle. Exhibited at fortyfivedownstairs in May 2019 to enormous success, the show was described as “an unorthodox assemblage of Renaissance and Victorian engravings blanketed in everyday detritus, modern ephemera and classical stencils”.
In late 2019, Chris entered four small versions of artworks from the Conventicle exhibition in the Linden Postcard Show, each framed in custom coloured acrylic boxes. In 2020, Motherboard Portal Verde from the Conventicle exhibition was acquired by the Australian Catholic University for their permanent collection.
In July 2021, the work Miss Information was shortlisted for the Geelong Acquisitive Print Award. In August 2021, the work Gethsemane (Garden of Loneliness) was shortlisted for the Banyule Award for Works on Paper.
In The Art Hunter David Hunt explores the artist with an in-depth look into their background; where they came from, the type and work they do, their latest work and where they see the future.
Host: David Hunt
Producers: David Hunt and Simon Barnett (https://etainment.com.au/)
Director: Tim Barnett
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