This poster was created by artist Te’ Claire to support the exhibition info for the twenty five artists that made work in to celebrate The Substation’s 100 Year anniversary.
Video duration 21 mins
Darren Williams is a Newport resident and local business owner. He is a co-founder and past President of The Substation. He led a dedicated community group in the restoration of the Newport Substation from a formerly derelict building to a centre of artistic and cultural expression. Throughout the journey, a key focus was the creation of employment and training opportunities, the involvement of local business supporters and government, and the engagement with the community around The Substation.
Darren has unearthed some old video footage he created on the first day of works to redevelop The Substation……to follow was a fifteen year commitment to see the dream finally realised.
Video editing by Roynae Mayes
Foam, pleather, power cord, steel, screws, iron on patches
James Parkinson is based in Melbourne and is undertaking his BFA (Honours) at the Victorian College of the Arts in 2016. His work addresses symptoms of late capitalist administered systems through investigations into utility, complacency and ontological accessibility. Parkinson’s solo projects include RIP Angel (She Fell From Heaven and Landed In our Hearts) at Kings ARI 2016 and Free Time at Seventh Gallery in 2015.
Hans Van Hans is a visual artist completing their Honours year of Sculpture and Spatial practice at RMIT. Hans Van Hans’ latex casts create visual echos of these central pillars. Trapped in their translucent skins is a hundred years of wear and dirt. They interrupt the original composition of the room as a tactile memory of the site.
Steel, weather and time
Tricia Page is a Melbourne based visual artist whose practice considers ideas of comfort, curiosity and the human experience. Working with steel, wood and old fabrics, Page uses the body as a starting point to engage with both the physical and psychological.
Adaptation is a response to the constant stream of change that comes with the passing of time. Sometimes it feels that In order to stay relevant in a constantly evolving landscape, either functionality or curiosity must be maintained. In response to the structures within the substations walls, she chose the latter.
Charlotte Dayman’s work is an exploration of three dimensional forms. Through dichotomy and scale, her practice challenges the relationship between contrasting materials. She is influenced by minimalism which is often reflected in her work, alongside themes of tactility and simplicity. Charlotte is in her final year of Fine Art at RMIT.
The use of concrete and fabric forms the basis of contrasting materiality in this work. This draws parallels between the past and present context of The Substation building, former power station turned multidisciplinary arts space. It explores the possibilities for change and versatility.
Aluminium, silver gelatin emulsion, polyurethane varnish
Jessika K is an experimental analogue photographer working in Victoria. Her interest lays in the human condition represented simultaneously in dissipated abandoned landscapes and intimate, yet sometimes unexpected portraiture. Jessika K’s image making process often relies on simple handmade cameras in attempt to capture honest nostalgic reflections of real life and the reproduction of primitive printmaking processes. Jessika K recently finished her degree at Deakin and her work has evolved into two solo exhibitions, [Post] Landscape and Dichotomy of Memories (Fractured Landscapes), as well as countless works in group shows.
Copper, aluminium, wood, speakers, earth
Miranda Liebscher and Tobias Brodel are sound and media artists living in Melbourne’s west. Drawing inspiration from the remote landscapes of their homelands (Far-East Gippsland and Western Tasmania respectively) their practices focus heavily on place and site-specificity. Using sound, light, photography, video and sculpture Liebscher and Brodel interrogate the relationships between place, emotion, history and politics.
In their collaborative work Resonant Earth: Listening Coils the artists echo the history of The Substation as a site of transduction (converting AC to DC). Liebscher and Brodel use aerial-loop antennas to harness electromagnetic activity from the site and transduce it to sound and movement. Through this act of listening, ultrasonic and invisible energies are translated into perception as earth sourced from the site is gradually displaced and reformed.
Photographs, negatives, nails, bluetack, milk cart, letters
Roynae Mayes is a Canadian Australian artist currently living in Melbourne. Her migration to Australia inspired her to create opportunities of interaction and inclusion using a variety of mediums. For Come To The Substation Mayes has hung about Newport for a month. She has been meeting and photographing the locals using an old film camera. These photos will be hung in this arts centre, where they will await collection from the photographed community.
Plaster, sisal, metal rods
Cristal Johnson is fascinated with the negative space that surrounds us. Her work introduces physical line to these absences therefore creating a significant space that mentally interacts with the viewer. The unpredictable essence of formlessness also fuels Johnson’s work, while making connections between structure and fluidity. Organic forms are created using free flowing materials such as plaster and resin. The staircase symbolizes a pathway between levels, a physicality that invites presence and interaction. Stairway approaches the architectural stance of The Substation and stems from the presence of transformation that the building has undergone over the last 100 years.
Banner, poetry by Bruce Dawe, stanchions, plastic tape, rope
Mig Dann is a Melbourne-based artist whose current practice explores the natural world to investigate embodied experience and encounter within a sculptural installation practice. At its base lies the relationship between the natural world and a sense of place informed by cultural history and memory. In this work she is referencing the history of the Substation through its use as an illegal squat. As an integral part of Australian history, not only are squats an inevitable outcome of the ongoing struggle of homelessness due to poverty, substance abuse issues or mental illness, they also serve as creative crucibles for artists and musicians pursuing their dreams.
Recycled blankets, rope
The installation is completed by your presence.
100 Blankets chaotically assembled into makeshift shelters; an exploration of both comfort and isolation. The work is a reaction to social perceptions of homelessness, and the years that the dilapidated Substation building served as a temporary refuge for the down and out, and the wanderers.
Found, collected, donated and hauled to The Substation, now accumulated in this space, the nature of the items themselves is considered. These familiar human objects, immediately relating to the body; perhaps serving as stand ins for the people they would shelter against the harsh elements.
In recognition of the hardship faced by people living on the streets and in unconventional or temporary housing, the blankets will be donated to the emergency accommodation program at the Kensington Community Outreach Service.
Porcelain clay, cables, headphones, sound
Leana Kim is an award winning ceramist from Korea who recently graduated from RMIT with distinction. Her work for Substation, Untitled, are slip cast clay pipes which create ambient sounds. Kim sees these harmonies as moments of a fragile connection. Her interest lies in the tenuousness relations we have to people, places and things and the resonances of memory. The form of the pipes echo connections as well as Substation’s exposed piping and the time of Substation’s dereliction when the pipes were destroyed for their copper.
Video, projector, glass lens, motor
Moment eclipses moment.
Memories falling into time.
collecting like dust settling in cracks.
Eclipse is a response to the ghosts of memories embedded in the bricks of the Substation.
In collaboration with Irene Metter, Jaan Tiersen, Akhmatova and Mary Oliver.
Foam, mattress, blanket, steel, pvc, lycra, flour, felt, acrylic, rope, latex
10 Minute Performanc
Zoë Bastin is a Melbourne based installation artist. Her practice investigates the body as a site for interaction and collaboration, by working with performance to develop a dialogue between bodies and sculptural objects in space. This constant oscillation references how we exist in a material way, the bodies fluid nature in a constant negotiation with the built world. Her work in 100 Years manifests itself as four separate performances that are determined by a material inquiry in the architectural constraints of a space. Bastin is currently studying her Masters of Fine Art by research at RMIT University.
Copper Plates, copper wire, electricity, TENS machine
Mira Oosterweghel is a Melbourne based artist working across performance, installation, sound and video. There is a violence in touching is a new work for the 100 Years exhibition. The work seeks to touch on notions of vulnerability through a bodily encounter with electricity.
1 hour Performance
Throughout the 100 Years opening night, labourers carrying construction materials negotiate their way through the building and through the crowds. The continuous gesture is a homage to the volunteers who laboured to transform the derelict building between 1996-2008 and an absurd celebratory parade of the tools and materials they used.
Arie Rain Glorie is an artist and curator based in Melbourne who exhibits regularly in group shows and festivals, which has recently included projects with GSPF, TINA, PICA, Melbourne Fringe (Keynote project), White Night, Melbourne Now, Channels, Craft Victoria, Margaret Lawrence gallery and West Space gallery.
Canvas, branches, motor, light
Christian Bishop’s practice is primarily concerned with subverting the Australian landscape. Exploring the abject/other within the urban environment, Bishop asks how these places are defined by the often fraught relationships that we have with them. For the exhibition 100 Years, Bishop has focused on the Substation’s history as a place re-purposed as a home for the marginalized and disenfranchised. In Home Truth Bishop calls into question the fragile boundaries between interior and exterior space, the private and public realm, and notions of ownership and place.
1 hour Performance
Gabrielle Leah New is a performing artist who uses Butoh and Improvisation as well as video performance and wearable installation. Her practice explores the space between the internal and external worlds. In Optional Ending with Pigeons she uses the history, environment and architecture of Newport’s Substation to generate spontaneous improvised performance which is fun, twisted, playful and totally unexpected….even by her….and may or may not include pigeons.
Video, projection 1:06 min
Linda Loh is a Melbourne based artist working primarily with video and installation. For this exhibition she has manipulated video footage from the Substation, distorting the original content to the point of non-recognition. The abstract imagery shifts and changes, somewhat elusive and ephemeral. Embedded in the work are metaphoric ideas about the subjectivity of history and how it is selectively manipulated. The elusivity and intangibility refers to the slippery nature of constructed perception; how what might be considered solid and “real” dissipates when paradigms shift and consciousness moves on.
Reticulation poly piping, wooden dowels, wool, staples, wire, fishing line, glue
Carol Kirkwood Gardner is interested in the visual, material and historic qualities of objects and their visual resonance with their current environment, as well as with their embodied history. In creating this site-specific work, Gardner is responding to the evolution of the building: both its use and its infrastructure. The building evolved from its original purpose to supply power enabling the electrification of the train network, to its new purpose as contemporary art space. In doing so, the building’s infrastructure was transformed leaving remnant elements such as the steel ladder. Gardner is entering her third year of study for a BA (Fine Art) in Sculpture, Sound & Spatial Practice at RMIT.
Steel, expired lights, wire, timber plaster, concrete, paint
Tracey Lamb’s art explores and connects ideas around memory, the domestic, architecture and design. This installation is site specific and references the history of the Substation’s associations with the inauguration of electric services in the area during the previous century. The installation consists of a trio of steel towers that act as a framework for a mass of obsolete electric light bulbs. Lamb has re-purposed the found bulbs to form a composite of old electric technology.
Southern Ice porcelain, paper tags, card
Te’ Claire, a Melbourne based ceramic artist, dedicates a twelve piece porcelain set to her grandfather Mr. Maxwell Stanley Brumley, born 31st March 1928. In 1948 Mr. Brumley commenced his apprenticeship at The Substation with his two best friends Mr. Arthur Cochram and Mr. Les Baynes. He spent over a decade working as an electrician at the power station, which converted electricity for the railways. During his time at The Substation he became fond of early Australian Literature, which he noted extensively in his notebooks.
Claire’s visual ode represents the loss of her inspirational figure and his memory through each porcelain artifact, exposing the fragility and the history submerged within the architecture of The Substation.
Enamel, plywood, PVC pipe
Working with essential elements distilled from our world; Jasper Killick creates ambiguous landscapes of life from a macro to microscopic scale, making the impossible appear logical, while offering other-worldly possibilities and alternative solutions to our society's dilemmas.
Steering various computer aided manufacturing processes toward an organic, nonlinear mode Killick translates the fluidity and uniqueness of mark making to physical form, Up-cycling where possible, striving to uncover inventive material uses and unconventional techniques