YES & NO: THINGS LEARNT ABOUT FEMINISM
18 October – 8 November 2014
Opening Event | Saturday 18 October 6pm
Artist Conversation | Sunday 19 October 2pm
In 2012 Doley initiated The Learning Centre: Two Feminists, a project whereby she invited 16 participants from a range of backgrounds to teach her about feminism. Doley then condensed this knowledge from an eclectic range of sources into a series of catch phrases and slogans. This project transforms the live moment between artist and participant into over 90 posters that make up this exhibition.
Utilising the tropes, clichés and didactic nature of the political poster, the slogans are a tongue in cheek barrage of historical facts, mottos and phrases. Grouped together they make up a type of hobbled together archive of feminist thought, predictions and histories. These slogans are made up of the collected thoughts, ideas and facts passed on to Doley through her conversations with the 16 participants. They are contradictory, mixing the cliché with the ambivalent, the old fashioned with the relevant, the important and the silly. The florescent mixed messages and sentiments offer no answers or solutions. But this fits. Contemporary feminism by its very definition is confusing, unfinished, hard to define and temporal.
And for Doley, this is the project’s most interesting quality. The feminisms advocated in these posters promote an intersectional feminist discourse. These ‘political’ posters are part homage to the historical waves of feminism that took to the streets to fight for their rights. However, through repetition Doley hopes to highlight the now anachronistic mode these forms of protest take, suggesting that the political poster now signals the deflated power of collective action within a contemporary setting where a more effective political activism now operates online in dispersed settings.
Join us on Sunday 19 October for a conversation between artist Kelly Doley and Brisbane based artist Courtney Coombs. Courtney is a founding member of the feminist collective and ARI, LEVEL, and is currently completing her PhD at the Queensland University of Technology.
Kelly holds a Master of Fine Arts from Sydney College of the Arts, University of Sydney (2011) as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts (1st Class Hons) from UNSW, Sydney (2006). She has exhibited and presented solo and collaboratively nationally and internationally including ISCP, New York, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Artspace and the MCA, Sydney, Westspace, Melbourne, Fremantle Arts Centre W.A., Boxcopy, Brisbane and NMOCA, Seoul. She has received numerous government and philanthropic arts grants and in 2012 she was the recipient of the Redlands Emerging Artist Award. Since 2007 Doley has also worked collaboratively with all female artist collective Brown Council. In 2011 Brown Council received the QANTAS Encouragement of Contemporary Art Award and were the commissioned artists for the MCA’s 2014 Jackson Bella Room.
Since 2008 Kelly has also been initiating curatorial and publishing projects. She has served on the board of Firstdraft Gallery, Sydney (2008-2009) and was co-founder of Sydney lounge-room gallery Cosmic Battle For Your Heart (2009-2011) with Mitch Cairns and Agatha Gothe Snape. In 2013 she launched JANIS, a pilot exhibition, publishing and talks project dedicated to promoting women in the arts. She has curated two JANIS exhibitions and produced two JANIS publications and talks. Her work with Brown Council and solo pieces are held in private and institutional collections nationally.
Acknowledgements: Deep gratitude and thanks to the 2012 Learning Centre: Two Feminists participants: Anne Marsh, The CoUNTess, Deborah Strutt, Kenny Pittock, Kyla McFarlane, Kate Rigby, Georgie Proud, Clementine Ford, Karen Pickering, Karen Green, Georgia Quinn, Chris Scuito, Terri Bird, Odette Marie Kelada, Beth Muldoon and Jenny Menthol.