Presented by Perth Festival in association with DADAA
Making processes that require focus and repetition offer time to reflect, record, prepare, repair, and to manifest histories and cultural traditions. Reflecting on the past year when attention has been re-focused on creativity at home, Fair Isle honours the quiet activism of craft-based practices and collective forms of production by reframing the gallery as a space for actively ‘thinking through making’.
Featuring new works by Western Australian artists, designers, photographers and writers, this exhibition explores how artists use their practices for new forms of adaptation and self-sufficiency, to build spaces of learning and care, and to create continuity and community amidst disruption.
Curated by Katherine Wilkinson, Fair Isle features work by artists Emma Buswell, Mei Swan Lim, Angelina Karadada Boona, Joanne Hayward, Bo Wong and Rose Megirian (Wong + Megirian), Melissa McGrath and Kelly Fliedner (Semaphore).
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Emma Buswell is an artist, curator and designer fascinated with systems of government, economies and culture particularly in relation to constructs of place, identity and community. Her current work takes its inspiration from the maternal hand craft and knitting techniques passed down from her grandmother and mother as well as a contemplative investigation into the nature of kitsch, ephemera and national identities. Emma has previously run a variety of artist-run spaces across Perth and Fremantle and has exhibited and curated exhibitions across Australia. She was resident at Fondazione Antonio Ratti, Como, Italy in 2011 and participated in the 2015 Australia Council for the Arts Venice Biennale professional development program. She is currently the Fremantle Arts Centre Print Award Coordinator.
Mei Swan Lim
Mei Swan Lim is a practicing sound and visual artist whose work centres on the environmental, emotional and spiritual importance of place, interdisciplinary investigation and cultural storytelling. Her works have appeared at Proximity Festival, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, Perth Festival and Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery. Mei completed her Bachelor in Visual Art at Edith Cowan University in 2017.
Angelina Karadada Boona
Angelina Karadada Boona is a painter and the arts worker at Kira Kiro Artists. She was born in and currently lives in Kalumburu in the north-west Kimberley of Western Australia. She recently graduated from the ANKA Arts Worker Extension Program and the National Gallery of Australia Wesfarmers Indigenous Leadership Fellowship. Her mother is the famous artist Lily Karadada and her father is Jack Karadada, a medicine man and maker of artifacts such as the didgeridoo and spears used for hunting. In 2020 Angelina exhibited her work Wandjina Emerging in the Hedland Jury Prize and won the Cathy Donnelley Encouragement Award category.
Joanne Hayward is a Perth-based artist whose practice is centred around site-specific performance, interventions and installation. Her practice is concerned with the natural world and materials, and often involves participatory or immersive experiences which invite shared acts of attention, care and healing. Hayward has been included in numerous group exhibitions and presented works through DADAA’s MarshArt (2010-12), Derby and most recently as an artist for Field of the Unwanted (2018), an International Art Space and DADAA project.
Wong + Megirian (Bo Wong and Rose Megirian)
Bo Wong is a photographer working with art, artwork and craft documentation, architecture and portraiture. Her podcast with fellow workshop facilitator Amy Snoekstra, Soul Traders Podcast, explores topics related to creative businesses and freelancing in Australia. Rose Megirian is a designer interested in the intersection of design thinking and contemporary making practice and its role in ethical and sustainable production. Rose believes championing and supporting creative industries and centring makers or craftspeople is key to ethical consumption and sustainability. The foundation of the Wong + Megirian collaboration lay in their embedded roles in the Western Australian art and design community and are a key part of its emergence into an age of maturity and design confidence.
Semaphore (Melissa McGrath and Kelly Fliedner)
Semaphore is a collaborative project by Kelly Fliedner and Melissa McGrath. As writers, curators and creative producers, they focus on the role that writing plays in the presentation and consideration of artworks and art practices from Western Australia. They work with writers and artists to publish individual and collective opinions, reviews, commentary and creative responses to art; with a particular interest in writing that reflects upon border cultural themes and issues, as well as the formal structures or writing itself.
Image: Wong + Megirian x Liam Kennedy, 2020