Brook Andrew

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Ancestral Worship

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Ancestral Worship   21st Century: Art in the First Decade

18 December, 2010 – 26 April, 2011 Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane

Words by Julie Ewington, Curator Australia Art. GOMA.

For Ancestral worship 2010, commissioned for this exhibition, Andrew [places] images of people from post-cards collected over 15 years, now inserted into the present [onto the relaxed deck-chair]. These post-cards or cartes de visite were used for tourism, exotic display or personal use in Australia and other colonised countriesand show details of their original settings. As you see, all but one is within a domestic Western context but Andrew is interested in spaces between exotic/other and civilized: the portrait of the young European women was found on a Melbourne street, discarded and crinkled.

The work is a warrior’s challenge, of a sort: one can sit beside the images of these dignified people from the past, rather than on them: the choice is ours. Andrew sees the portraits as ‘ancestors’ or  ‘gods’ – here, now, possibly sunning themselves alongside us, gracing us or haunting us with their presence. These exquisite faces remind us how often our shared humanity is betrayed. It’s a provocation set under playful, though arguably, ceremonial trees, in a fool’s paradise perhaps, but importantly it is also a memorial to our ancestors – whatever their origins.

Written by brookandrew

November 27, 2010 at 3:07 AM

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  1. […] talking heads to show the art itself.  You can get a hint of what it’s all about from the latest entry on Andrew’s blog, but not nearly […]

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