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An “arty farty” show about the thriving arts scene in Melbourne and beyond. The program covers all styles of art, including film, performance and visual arts.
Sunday Arts Magazine talks about Melbourne Now. The second edition of the ground-breaking exhibition Melbourne Now at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia highlights the extraordinary work of more than 200 Victorian-based artists, designers, studios and firms whosepractices are shaping the cultural landscape of Melbourne and Victoria.
The free exhibition features more than 200 ambitious and thought-provoking projects on display, including more than
70 world-premiere works commissioned especially by the NGV for this major presentation. Bold in scope and scale,
Melbourne Now highlights the vibrant creativity of local emerging, mid-career and senior practitioners and collectives –
including many who are presenting at the NGV for the very first time.
The exhibition traverses all levels of The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, including contemporary interventions
across the Australian Art and First Nations permanent collection displays, and highlights a diverse range of
contemporary disciplines across fashion, jewellery, painting, sculpture, architecture, ceramics, video, virtual reality,
performance, photography, printmaking, product design and publishing. Areas covered include:
Myles Russell-Cook, Senior Curator, Australian and First Nations Art, NGV.
James Lemon, contemporary and ceramic artist. James Lemon’s tactile and colourful ceramic works embody a sense of humour and are an expression of social and philosophical issues, from pop culture and religion to conservation and the world of insects. Lemon primarily works with clay but often employs other objects – bricks, precious stones and discarded ephemera – to bring his dynamic, sculptural works to life. With his interest in social media, Lemon embraces the digital space as an extension of his material practice.
For Melbourne Now, Lemon takes over a gallery space on the third floor of The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia with an immersive, participatory work combining ceramics, painting, textiles and digital media. In a nod to philosopher Thomas Nagel’s 1974 paper ‘What is it Like to be a Bat?’, Swarming asks the onlooker: What is it like to be a bee? Inside an ultraviolet hive of activity, adults and children alike are invited to interact with soft pupae forms, learning through play about the importance of bee life in our ecosystems – and to human survival. Part playground and part photo booth, this NGV takeover is a first for Lemon in both its scale and inter-disciplinarity.
Lemon was born in New Zealand but moved to Melbourne in 2012. He has developed exclusive collections for the NGV and Heide Museum of Modern Art; has exhibited at Melbourne Design Week; and has featured in publications including Wallpaper, Architectural Digest, Vogue Living, Vault, The Design Files, Yellowtrace, Real Living, The Journal of Australian Ceramics and Broadsheet. Lemon also teaches workshops and masterclasses at his studio and showroom in Northcote.
Lemon also has a collaborative work with Dale Hardiman in No House Style.
Joel Bray presenting a new commission as part of the Performance Program, Joel Bray’s performance-making practice is grounded in his Wiradjuri heritage, and in his research into Wiradjuri Country and ritual on the one hand, and sex, sexuality and Queerness on the other. At Melbourne Now Joel will perform Storage unit in which Joel and his co-conspirator rummage through the remnants of his dance works from the past six years. Props, sets and costumes jumble together with archival footage and sound, emptied from Joel’s storage unit and spilling out into the gallery space. Marked by Bray’s trademark humour and sex positivity, visitors find themselves among the chaos, lending helping hands and collectively making sense of it all.
For Melbourne Now Georgia has created a whole Gallery installation titled DataBaes. As part of the installation Georgia has created Gee, an AI chatbot whose personality was developed using data from the copious questionnaires Banks completed while applying for several Australian reality dating TV shows. To create ethe AI Georgia spoke to Gee every day, to see if they could fall in love with each other. In the installation the DataBaes film is shown featuring a selection of Georgia and Gee’s conversations as the basis for a montage of a reality TV show date. During the exhibition, visitors are invited into the mock reality dating show set to see if they can also fall in love with Gee.
Dorcas Maphakela is a creative producer at Multicultural Arts Victoria and was born in South African, moving to Melbourne 13 years ago. Dorcas is a TV presenter, public speaker and founder of the Antenna Award winning OZ AFRICAN TV (OATV); a digital platform that celebrates people of African diaspora in Australia. Dorcas is also the Community Engagement Manager at C31 Melbourne & Geelong where she facilitates the development of outreach programs to engage multicultural and under-represented communities on TV.
Percy Dube is a music producer, creative director at OZ AFRICAN TV, CHANNEL 31 Advisory Board Member; and the founder of Yo CiTY. YoCiTy champions BIPOC experiences within contemporary society through music and arts. Percy is also a painter and fashion designer of the emerging label Blackout Apparel
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