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Contemporary arts & public gardens intersect in Sydney's West for annual Cherry Blossom Festival

BY green tea | 02-Aug-2016
Curator Glenn Barkley considers the influence of Japanese aesthetics and themes of botanical in Australian contemporary art for Peacock Gallery & Auburn Botanical Gardens.
The great English landscape designer Russell Page described Japanese gardens as a demonstration of 'the relationship between objects in space.' Using this as a cue, leading arts curator Glenn Barkley has organised a group exhibition for Auburn's Peacock Gallery and Botanical Gardens, a unique green space environment located just 18 kms west of Sydney’s CBD.

Opening on Saturday 6 August, OBJECTS IN SPACE: Artists in the Garden considers the influence of both 'the garden' and Japanese aesthetic on Australian contemporary art forms. It features the work of leading artists: Merran Esson, Steve Harrison, Christopher Hodges, Keiko Matsui, Mitsuo Shoji, Abdullah M. I Syed, Garry Trinh, Toni Warburton, Cameron Williams along with the Woollen Fernery Project - local arts and craft groups.

Drawing on ideas of the inside and out, Barkley has positioned artworks in the Auburn's unique Japanese Gardens, as well as recreating the botanical within Peacock Gallery’s exhibition spaces – itself a former fernery. The exhibition leads into Spring and the gardens brief cherry blossom flowering - an occasion celebrated via the ‘Sydney Cherry Blossom Festival'. Hosted this year on weekends 20 + 21 and 27 + 28 August, this popular cultural and community event saw over 40,000 visitors in 2015.

Featuring ceramics, sculpture, photographs, knitting and further mixed media. the exhibition officially opens on Saturday 6 August at 1.30pm and runs to Sunday 23 October 2016.

Enthusiasts of both contemporary art and traditional gardens will enjoy exploring the rich, subtle and detailed works on show at Peacock Gallery and in Auburn’s Japanese gardens – themselves a symbol of goodwill and peaceful contemplation within Sydney’s busy urban and multi-cultural environs.

An exhibition tour lead by curator Glenn Barkley takes place on Saturday 3 September at 11.30pm. bookings advised.