Barbara Cleveland present This is a stained glass window at Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney

Published by: The Fold PR | 6-Nov-2019
Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney is pleased to announce This is a stained glass window - the first presentation by Sydney artist collective Barbara Cleveland at the gallery on 30 November - 21 December 2019.
Venue: Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney
Address: 799 Elizabeth St, Zetland, Sydney NSW 2017
Date: 30 November - 21 December 2019
Time: 10am - 5pm Tuesday to Saturday
Ticket: Free
This is a stained glass window is a single channel video installation that reflects on the 15-year working history of Barbara Cleveland, a collective of four artists: Frances Barrett, Kate Blackmore, Diana Baker Smith and Kelly Doley.

Directed by the collective, with original score by Corin Ileto, the new video work is inspired by the description of the friendship between two authors, political theorist Hannah Arendt and novelist Mary McCarthy who describe their friendship as a 'thinking business for and with each other'.

The work enquires into Barbara Cleveland's 15-year shared intellectual and creative pursuit, positioning their friendship, artistic labour and collaboration as 'a stained glass window' - an accumulated density that exists between them.

Through a self-reflexive video portrait, which draws on the aesthetics and conventions of cinéma vérité, conceptual art and performance documentation, This is a stained glass window is a tracing of their unique working model and their imbricated lives.

Exposing their working method in a film studio, the video is an intimate portrait of the collective that purposefully considers how Barbara Cleveland's specific 'thinking business' can offer an alternative support structure for and with each other.

Sullivan+Strumpf, co-founder and director, Ursula Sullivan says the gallery is proud to be representing Barbara Cleveland and looks forward to unveiling their new work.

"Barbara Cleveland is the most important, hardworking and long-standing artist collective in Australia. For their first solo with us, it is fitting that the work is a reflection on the inner relationships of the group, looking back to look forward. It's also timely with the latest Countess report, that we celebrate the group of dynamic female artists and all that they represent," said Sullivan.

The collective, which takes its name from the mythic feminist performance artist Barbara Cleveland, creates projects that are informed by queer and feminist methodologies that draw on the historical lineages of visual and performing arts.

This is a stained glass window is on view at Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney from 30 November to 21 December 2019. Entry is free. For more information, please visit

Exhibition Details

This is a stained glass window
Barbara Cleveland
Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney, 799 Elizabeth St, Zetland NSW
30 November - 21 December 2019

Friday, 29 November 6 - 8pm

Saturday, 30 November from 3.15pm
Join us for a panel discussion facilitated by contemporary arts writer, curator and broadcaster Julie Ewington, with Barbara Cleveland (Frances Barrett and Diana Baker Smith) and eX de Medici and Wei Rong Wu to discuss their new show at Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney.

About Barbara Cleveland

Barbara Cleveland is an Australian artist collective directed by Diana Baker Smith, Frances Barrett, Kate Blackmore, and Kelly Doley, working on Gadigal land (Sydney). The collective take their name from the mythic feminist performance artist Barbara Cleveland - who they recovered from the margins of Australian art history - and has been a key feature in their work since 2010.

Barbara Cleveland's projects are informed by queer and feminist methodologies that draw on the historical lineages of both the visual and performing arts. Their recent video and performance works are deliberations on history and memory as embodied action, as fiction, as mode of collaboration.

Barbara Cleveland's projects have been presented at Hayward Gallery (London), 20th Biennale of Sydney, 2018 Adelaide Biennial, Art Gallery of NSW (Sydney), Museum of Contemporary Art (Sydney), Artspace (Sydney), The Physics Room (Christchurch), Australian Experimental Art Foundation (Adelaide), Performance Space (Sydney), National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Seoul) and Monash University Museum of Art (Melbourne).

Their works are held in the collections of Artbank, Museum of Contemporary Art, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Monash University Museum of Art, Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art and the Art Gallery of NSW.

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