Culture Crash

Published by: John Klein | 14-Aug-2019
Sydney-based artists Gabby Malpas, John Klein and Mellissa Read-Devine have joined forces to stage Culture Crash, an exhibition that explores multiculturalism in Australia. Each artist has examined this theme through their own personal life experiences, metaphors and visual language. ARO Gallery 51 William Street, Darlinghurst. 29 October to 10 November 2019.
Venue: ARO Gallery
Address: 51 William Street, Darlinghurst
Date: 29 October to 10 November 2019
Time: Tuesday-Friday 11am-6.30pm, Saturday-Sunday 11am-5pm
Ticket: Free exhibition
Gabby Malpas is a graduate of the Otago School of Fine Arts, Dunedin NZ, working in watercolour on paper and canvas. Her work could be interpreted as purely decorative however she weaves stories into her paintings based on her life experiences as a Chinese adoptee raised in a white family in NZ and as an immigrant to both the UK and Australia. "My works celebrate my uniqueness: the differences, the similarities and the funny bits" said Malpas. "I am reworking the very European tradition of Chinoiserie with modern cultural references, joyful imagery and some good old Aussie/NZ humour which I think the world needs a bit of right now".

John Klein is an Australian artist based in Sydney. With a background in film and television, arts management and marketing, John has been engaged in creative pursuits for his entire career. Although he didn't start to exhibit his work until 2012, he has always been passionate about painting. "As a fifth generation Australia, what I find interesting is the influx of immigrants to the country and how much they have enriched our lives with their different cultures, art and foods" said Klein. "I live and work in suburbs that have seen huge increases in Asian immigration and have seen the suburbs transform over the years from primarily conservative Anglo communities to vibrant multicultural communities. My work in Culture Crash is a response to these changes. The merging of races is reflected in my still life paintings where vases from Asia are adorned with Australian flowers and birds. East meets Oz in still life".

Mellissa Read-Devine Since the 90s Mellissa has continuously studied and practised painting and printmaking; honing her art to vibrant optimistic harmony with her chosen subjects. Her studio is set in a rural location alongside the Hawkesbury River and is inspiration for her paintings. An Associate of the Royal Art Society of NSW, Mellissa is an art & craft tutor and travels to teach art enrichment workshops around the country. The recipient of many Australian art prizes, Mellissa's style is distinctive with her electric palette and layered application of brush strokes. Mellissa says "My works celebrate the combination of native Australian flora and fauna with introduced species from around the globe. Detrimental in the wild without proper management, but domestically joyful and familiar. As an introduced being myself - I was brought here as a child; I am comforted and encouraged by these scenes of beauty and harmony. I am thankful to have this place to call home".

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