Al Ouchtomsky, Joanna Mortreux, Kyoko Imazu, Emmet O’Dwyer Second NatureOpening: Tuesday 7 April, 6-8pm Dates: 7-24 April 2009
Bringing together works that examine the ways in which our culture perceives nature, Second Nature investigates the role humanity plays in influencing the world in regards to evolution, extinction and cultural manipulation. ‘Second Nature’ draws attention to the ever increasing gap between civilisation and the wilderness. By using various media such as printmaking, painting and collage, the works become a combined response and a questioning of how we as humans fit into the natural world.
Kyoko Imazu’s work examines artificial and cultural constructions of nature using the motif of the rabbit. By juxtaposing depictions of rabbits ranging from fauna studies by eighteenth and nineteenth-century European explorers and scientists with contemporary imageries such as cartoon, children’s stories and games and through distorting and manipulating the rabbit’s physical structure, the work challenges conventional representations of this creature in a cross-cultural investigation. Copper plate engraving, used to reference eighteenth century natural illustration evokes an imagined evolution of this iconic animal.
Kyoko arrived in Australia in 2002 and completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Printmaking) in 2007 and selected for various awards and exhibitions in Australia.
Joanna Mortreux’s work is as much about the weight and materiality of paint as a medium, as it is a standoff between a swarm of unknown creatures and the audience. Her work deals with the unpredictability of nature. Presented in a state of flux the natural order is unbalanced and uncertain. Focusing on the first encounter of a species her work questions the potential outcomes of such an estranged confrontation.
Joanna Mortreux is a graduate of Fine Art from RMIT University and of Psychology from The University of Melbourne. Her work was selected for the 2006 Siemen’s RMIT Fine Art Scholarship Exhibition and shortlisted for the 2007 Millowick Photography award. She works and exhibits in Melbourne.
Alexander Ouchtomsky’s work is formed by the collection and recombination of found images and objects. He finds the construction and composition of his work an instinctual process. His work presents ideas of an imagined universe. Where hybrid creatures and imagined primitive beings are conceived from a variety of found materials. Within this imagined environment the work reflects on the evolutionary adaptation of the inhabitants. Questions are raised about these objects previous origins and how they reflect on both the imagined and existing environmental contexts. Alexander Ouchtomsky has recently exhibited in the group show Leper / Messiah at Neon Parc and in the 3rd installment of the Skin and Bones Costume exhibition at Bus.
My name is Emmet O’Dwyer, I grew up in Shepparton, studied a Ba in Fine art Printmaking at the VCA after school and moved back to the country last year after completing the degree. I spent most of the year working on a farm and returned to Melbourne where I spent time at the Lancaster Press in Brooklyn working with Peter Lancaster, producing 4 lithographs. I also hired a studio and produced lithographs at the Australian Print Workshop and held a solo show at the Firestation Print Workshop. I am currently undertaking an honours degree in Fine Art, Printmaking at Monash Uni. My work centers on drawing, from life and from a more purely imaginative sense, and I like to expand this into other fields such as printmaking, painting and sculpture. I try to make work that is entertaining yet thought provoking and challenging.