Photography 130: Behind the Lens – 130 years of photography at RMIT

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Join us at RMIT Gallery on Thursday 9 March, 6-8 pm to celebrate the opening of  Photography 130: Behind the Lens – 130 years of photography at RMIT. 

The exhibition celebrates RMIT’s long and rich history of providing photography education, which is as old as the institution itself.

Photography 130 – Behind the lens: 130 years of RMIT photography (10 March – 13 April) brings together a collection of over 100 images from 59 photographers, revealing the significant contribution made by RMIT University’s (RMIT) photography programs to the culture and society of Melbourne.

When RMIT first began operations as the Working Men’s College in 1887, photography was one of the foundation disciplines, making it the oldest existing photography course in the world.

Sourced from RMIT archives, The National Gallery of Victoria, Monash Gallery of Art, the State Library of Victoria, private collections, photographers and artists, the exhibition features work created by RMIT staff and alumni between 1887 and 2017, in the service of art, politics, news, entertainment, commerce, science and discovery.

Much has changed in photography over the past 130 years, not least the technology. But the skills involved in composition, in challenging the limits of the camera or in capturing that special moment are as valuable today as they were 130 years ago.

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Harry Nankin, The Burning Bush, 1991, Dye transfer fibre paper print. 470 x 560 mm. Image courtesy of the artist.

Join us for the free public programs which offer a ‘behind the lens’ view of the exhibition. Bookings required.

Photography 130 public programs

Photography 130 – Behind the Lens: curator’s talk

Friday 10 March 1:00-2:00 pm
Photography 130 curator Shane Hulbert, Associate Professor and Deputy Head of School, Higher Education, School of Art, RMIT University, offers an expanded view of the role and contribution of RMIT University to the photographic imaging of Melbourne and Australia.

130 years of Photography at RMIT

Thursday 16 March 5:30 – 6.30 pm
Panel with Shane Hulbert (chair), and photographers Pauline Anastasiou, John Billan Gale Spring, and Alex Syndikas.

Photography Predictions & Premonitions

Thursday 23 March 1:00 – 2:00 pm
Panel with Shane Hulbert (chair), and photographers Bronek Kozka, Kate Robertson, and Murray McKeich.

Guided tours of Photography 130 exhibition

Suitable for school and university groups, VCE Studio Arts, and special interest groups.

Photography & particle accelerators: Harry Nankin & Chris Henschke at RMIT Gallery

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Harry Nankin installing his work Syzgy at RMIT Gallery as part of the exhibition Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts (until 18 February 2017)

In the final of our public programs for the exhibition Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts at RMIT Gallery (17 November – 18 February 2016) join us at RMIT Gallery on Tuesday 13 December from 12.30-1.30 pm when photographer Harry Nankin and artist Chris Henschke talk about their work.

In Harry Nankin’s work (pictured above) nine, multi-panel palimpsests are displayed on light boxes, and lake Tyrell in the semi-arid Mallee region of Victoria becomes semi-arid land as the impact of the contemporary ecological crisis finds its root and branch in starlight and shadowgram as live invertebrates mourn the age of the anthropocene.

The work ‘photo-poetically’ memorializes this erasure, resurrecting the dry lakebed into a focal plane upon which primal starlight is used to imprint photographic films on moonless nights. The environmental disease at the heart of this work is human-made: as we lay waste to our planet, the stars are slowly going out.

The prepared images include rare astronomical glass plate negatives from the telescopes at Mount Palomar (USA) and Siding Spring (Australia) and camera-less photographs of live native anthropods gathered from the lake’s shore.

Harry Nankin’s work honours the lost sacrament and acts as a metaphor for our global ecological predicament.

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About Harry Nankin: Harry Nankin is an Australian photo media artist and educator. In 1993 Nankin put aside the camera altogether and he has been creating ‘photograms’ (and occasionally ‘chemograms’) in the studio and on location in forest, desert, atop mountains and under the sea.

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Chris Henschke with his work Song of the Phenomena, opening night, Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts at RMIT Gallery. Photo by Vicki Jones.

Chris Henschke’s work explores anti-matter as we bare witness to how radiation is released by organic matter. Using an actual particle accelerator, the work shows how the humble banana emits antimatter on a regular basis. In an age where we fear the way antimatter impacts upon the nature of everyday life and the workings of the cosmos, we see how the organic itself brings potential dissolution to the human world.

About Chris Henschke

Chris Henschke is an artist and researcher who works with digital and analogue media and high-energy physics. He has exhibited around Australia and internationally, and has undertaken art residencies at the Australian Synchrotron, supported by an Arts Victoria Arts Innovation grant (2008), and the Australia Council for the Arts Synapse program (2010). He has developed and lectured courses in time based and interactive media at RMIT University, Monash University, and the ‘Art vs Science’ seminar series at the University of Melbourne Victorian College of the Arts. Currently, he is undertaking a Doctorate of Philosophy at Monash University, which includes on-site work at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), Switzerland, as part of the ‘art@CMS’ collaboration.

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What: Hanny Nankin and Chris Henschke artist talk

When: Tuesday 13 December 12.30-1.30 pm

Where: RMIT Gallery 344 Swanston Street, Melbourne

Free: register for tickets

Artists discuss ‘diseases of the arts’ at RMIT Gallery

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

Photo by Mark Ashkanasy, RMIT Gallery 2016

Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts at RMIT Gallery (17 November – 18 February 2016) is an interactive bio-art exhibition that uses actual and metaphoric communicative diseases to explore the fractured relationship between human and non-human life.

Join us at RMIT Gallery on Thursday 1 December from 5.30 – 6.30 pm as Cameron Bishop, Chris Henschke, Harry Nankin, Darrin Verhagen and Anne Scott Wilson discuss translating metaphor into art and their work in Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts. 

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

The Zero Machine (or The Human Stain Remover), Cameron Bishop & Simon Reis. 
 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts, RMIT Gallery installation image by Mark Ashkanasy, 2016.

Cameron Bishop’s mechanical installation seeks to rid the art world of all diseased art. This playful machine aesthetic re-mediates art ‘masterpieces’ as they are pressed and turned through the machine, coming out cleaned of all impressionable colour, line and shape. The blank surface we are left with is the ultimate neo-liberal art piece – instantly copyable and immediately forgettable.

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

Song of the Phenomena, 2016, by Chris Henschke. Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts. RMIT Gallery installation image by Mark Ashkanasy, 2016.

Chris Henschke’s work explores anti-matter as we bare witness to how radiation is released by organic matter. Using an actual particle accelerator, the work shows how the humble bananaemits antimatter on a regular basis. In an age where we fear the way antimatter impacts upon the nature of everyday life and the workings of the cosmos, we see how the organic itself brings potential dissolution to the human world.

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

Syzygy (2007-16) by Harry Nankin
Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts, RMIT Gallery installation image by Mark Ashkanasy, 2016

In Harry Nankin’s nine, multi-panel palimpsests displayed on light boxes, lake becomes semi-arid land as the impact of the contemporary ecological crisis finds its root and branch in starlight and shadowgram as live invertebrates mourn the age of the anthropocene. The work ‘photo-poetically’ memorializes this erasure, resurrecting the dry lakebed into a focal plane upon which primal starlight is used to imprint photographic films on moonless nights. The environmental disease at the heart of this work is human-made: as we lay waste to our planet, the stars are slowly going out.

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

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Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts, RMIT Gallery installation image by Mark Ashkanasy 2016

In Darrin Verhagen’s work with the group (((20hz))) sound-image installation explores the way audio-visual fields can wildly affect the well-being of the hearing-viewer. With two catastrophic audio-vision soundtracks that register as sickly encounters, one can choose to hear without commentary, or to hear about how and why the soundscape induces nausea. Pulsating light beams and reflections accompany these sound pieces like a cosmos is dying and exploding before us.

RMIT Gallery 2016 Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts Date: 17 NOV 2016 - 18 FEB 2017 Location: RMIT Gallery, City campus Morbis Artis explores the radical conjunction between the biomolecular and the artistic, and the thin doorway between life and death housed within discourses of disease.

Fluid retention, 2016 
Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts, RMIT Gallery installation image by Mark Ashkanasy, 2016

Anne Scott Wilson’s balloon installation and video projection explores the poetics of gravity and the chrononormativity of time to account and prepare us for the not-living that eventually befalls us all. The stillness of the balloon and the movement of the ballet dancer speak to the material divide between the body that lives, that dies, and that then, perhaps, floats away.

What: Panel discussion artist talk with Cameron Bishop, Chris Henschke, Harry Nankin, Darrin Verhagen and Anne Scott Wilson

When: Thursday 1 December 5.30-6.30 pm

Where: RMIT Gallery, 344 Swanston Street Melbourne

Bookings: free – please register 

 

Interactive bioart at RMIT Gallery – Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts

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Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts – invitation

Please join us for the opening of Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts on Wednesday 16 November 6-8 pm at RMIT Gallery.

Vicki Sowry, Director of the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT) will open the exhibition. ANAT is Australia’s leading cultural organisation working at the intersection of art, science & technology; networked & emergent art practices; experimental music & sound arts; and mobile & portable platforms.

Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts is an interactive bio-art exhibition uses actual and metaphoric communicative diseases to explore the fractured relationship between human and non-human life.

Works by 18 artists explore the thin doorway that exists between life and death in what is the vexing age of species and habitus destruction, and the increasingly permeable tissues of contemporary bodies.

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Lienors Torre’s multi-media and glass work on degenerative vision explores how our view of the world is metered and tainted by digital technologies.

The art work is also set within current debates and concerns about what constitutes life, what counts as a sentient being, and who gets to determine what lives are saved, punished, exploited and destroyed?

What is life?

What is disease?

These are the diseases of the arts…

RMIT Gallery’s artist talks further explore the fine line between art and science, and other binaries. Please join us for the following free public programs

Book now  Friday 18 November 1-2 pm artist talk + Drew Berry, biomedical animator

Book now  Tuesday 22 November 5.30-6.30 pm Ursula Hoff Contemporary Lecture: Hybrid Worlds: When Art and Science Collide. Speakers: Dr Drew Berry, Dr Jonathan Duckworth, Prof Angela Ndalianis, Prof Kim Vincs    

Book now Tuesday 29 November 1-2 pm artist talk + Lienors Torre & Anne Scott Wilson 

Book now Thursday 1 December 5.30-6.30 pm panel discussion + Cameron BishopChris HenschkeHarry NankinDarrin Verhagen Anne Scott Wilson

Book now Tuesday 6 December 1-2 pm artist talk + Alison Bennett & Jodi Sita 

Book now Thursday 8 December 5.30-6.30 pm panel discussion +  Alison Bennett, Drew Berry, Sean Redmond, Josh Redmond & Lienors Torre 

Book now Tuesday 13 December 12.30-1.30 pm artist talk + Chris Henschke & Harry Nankin