In the heart of Fitzroy lies the home of commercial art, Sutton Gallery. Converted from a warehouse, the space involves a main gallery and a project space. Artists are invited to experiment their talent and develop their exhibiting processes, unrestricted by the formalities of traditional shows. They can work collaboratively, as curators, or try new practises including performance, installations and multimedia. The welcome mat is designated to those keen creators of risky, experimental and unrestricted art.
Opening on the 16th of this month was Sutton Projects’ latest exhibition, Irrational Behaviour: a collaboration between sculpture artist, Susan Hawkins and photographer, Clare Rae. The show explores the ideas of domesticity, space and objects, in relation to the body. Hawkins’ sculptures, using domestic and recycled objects are repurposed, re-interpreted, and brought to a new meaning when paired with Rae’s photographs. Rae’s images interacting with the objects are gestural, with a feminist undertone, exploring the ideological links between the female body and domestic objects.
There is a strong, collaborative relationship between the artists; the direct repetition of Hawkins’ sculptures in Rae’s photographs, and the connected themes of feminism and domesticity. The artists have worked in a ‘call and response’ method, where Hawkins has created the call (sculptures) and Rae has responded with photographic works, using the sculptural objects. It is a playful approach that ties the body of work together nicely.
The works in the exhibition are slightly humorous and absurd. They include objects such as mesh, wheeled table legs, mirrors, and elastic bands. They are rebuilt and repurposed, turning them into something that appears unusable. They are familiar but not. This awkwardness, paired with the gestural photographs is confusing, uncomfortable and illogical. They are placed simply within the space, so that they invite the viewer to closely inspect and allow their personal interpretation place loving judgement on pieces.
The exhibition is a reflection of the symbolic and physical connections between the human body and domestic objects. Rae and Hawkins have delivered an absurd show that questions our impressions of objects, how they can be used, and the ways in which we understand ourselves in relation to them.
Saturday, 10th March / 3pm
Clare Rae and Susan Hawkins will be doing an artist talk in the gallery, a must see, and everyone is welcome!
Sutton Project Space
230 Young St, Fitzroy (just off Brunswick Street)
Open Friday and Saturdays: 1 – 5pm
Feature Image Credit: Clare Rae, Untitled Action for Susan #1, 2017, archival pigment print, 40 x 40cm
Courtesy of the artist and Sutton Gallery