VIRGINIA FRASER & ELVIS RICHARDSON
3 – 31 October 2015
Opening | Friday 2 October 6pm
FEMMO Focus Group | Saturday 3 October 3pm
The artists Elvis Richardson and Virginia Fraser have adopted a curatorial pose to collaborate on a series of magazine covers, combining portraiture with attention-seeking headlines for a so-far fictional publication FEMMO™. Where other curators might select, arrange and present tangible and digital objects in galleries, the editors of FEMMO™ have organised indexical text objects on a (very big) page. FEMMO™ promises articles its producers would like to read. FEMMO™ imagines a world where feminism is central to, and informs, every topic. In particular FEMMO™ has fun with the art-world’s gender biased status-quo.
The National Library of Australia declined to issue FEMMO™ with an International Standard Serial Number because it had “no content”. FEMMO™ disagrees. FEMMO™ is joining the surface litter of Australian art history.
Virginia Fraser is an artist, writer, editor, occasional curator and a historian of women in early Australian film – art and art-related activities. She lives and works in Melbourne. Fraser trained first as a journalist and has worked for newspapers, business publications, community and ABC radio and as a freelancer, including as a writer about art. She has a Certificate in Motion Picture Projection from RMIT, a BA in Media Arts with a double major in photography and film from Phillip Institute of Technology and an MFA by research from the Victorian College of the Arts.
In her art practice Fraser has worked largely but not exclusively in light-based media – photography, film, video, lights and light itself – and in installation, mainly in a variety of differently motivated and constructed collaborations with other artists. Her work is usually a product of thinking as unsentimentally as possible about the way the past lives in the present (or doesn’t), the language and content of popular and mass culture and media, and personal stuff. Installation and video work she has produced with Destiny Deacon over the last 25 years has shown widely overseas and nationally and is held in many private and public collections.
Elvis Richardson (b.1965 Sydney, lives and works in Melbourne) is an interdisciplinary artist whose conceptual practice explores social modes of recognition and memorialisation. Richardson re-values ‘found’ and obsolete personal and mass-produced objects and images and uses them to reconstruct stories of ambition and abandonment, public recognition and private nostalgia.
Elvis Richardson’s work has been exhibited in many key Australian contemporary art spaces as well as commercial galleries and she has been involved with numerous artist run initiatives including First Draft, Elastic, Ocular Lab and most recently DEATH BE KIND a bespoke gallery and program of curated exhibitions about art and death with Claire Lambe. Richardson is represented by Galerie pompom, Sydney and Hugo Michell Gallery, Adelaide. Elvis Richardson is the author of CoUNTess, an online research project that engages with the current state of contemporary art practice and provides an essential tool for understanding the arts in Australia. CoUNTess, established in 2008, is a blog that publishes data on gender representation in the Australian visual arts sector.
Image: Virginia Fraser and Elvis Richardson FEMMO™ Issue 4,5,6 2015, installation view, Boxcopy.
This project is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.