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Artist Callum Morton's irreverent Monument #23: Helter Shelter is on display at HOTA this summer

Art in the great outdoors

HOTA | December 2018

This summer we’ve got a few surprises in store for you as you wander around HOTA, Home of the Arts.

As we move towards presenting more art in the outdoor space and developing our outdoor curatorial program, you can expect to see some really great art and insta-worthy moments popping up in unexpected places.

Bradley Vincent is HOTA’s new Curator of Public Art & Outdoor Programming. He’s been working with our team to delivering a number of exciting commissions to give you a taster of what’s to come as we prepare for the brand new HOTA Gallery, set to open in 2020.

Field Drawing #1

The first work to appear will be Field Drawing #1 by Kerrie Poliness. This amazing choreographed artwork is in the form of a drawing made with a sports field line-marker, from a set of step-by-step instructions provided by the artist. The result is a beautiful array of lines – reminiscent of natural patterns of growth – which will be installed on the grassy lawn of the HOTA Outdoor Stage for the viewer to explore.

Melbourne-based Kerrie Poliness is a conceptual artist who uses abstract forms to create site-specific work, often participatory in their execution. She’s known for her rule-based paintings and drawings that revisit the ideas of conceptual art. This temporary artwork can be made again and again, in various locations, at different scales. On this occasion Poliness will work with the gallery team to oversee the installation however it can be installed by a team without the artist present, by following the detailed rules and instructions.

With this work, Poliness challenges the spatial perceptions of the viewer but also the site where it has been installed. A system of triangles and diamonds are laid out across an undulating lawn. The result is a different artwork each time it is installed, altered by both the estimations of the team who are following the instructions and by the choice of location.

Walk across it, lie on it, play tag on it – this composition of triangles and diamonds is a beautiful piece of art that just begs to be explored and photographed.

Monument #23: Helter Shelter

The second new work that will be popping up in the precinct in December is Callum Morton’s irreverent Monument #23: Helter Shelter.

Montreal born, Melbourne based artist Callum Morton has created a piece of street furniture rendered in the form of an emergent Donald Trump head, hollowed-out and replete with inferno flames and bench seating. It is part parade float, part protest – an artwork that merges sculpture and architecture with a dose of humour.

Emerging uncannily from the ground this monumental work is temporary architecture in the form of a Bus Shelter. It’s a place to take cover when rain comes over and interrupts your BBQ. And maybe the most useful Trump has ever been.

The work is Pop Art in its sensibility. Graphic in aesthetic and making use of icons as visual material, it deploys familiar imagery and humour to probe around an idea. It’s at once a one-line joke and a multi-layered commentary. And it’s functional.

Callum Morton has exhibited nationally and internationally since 1990. His work has consistently addressed the ‘architecture of experience’, the moment of encounter between viewer and object, or viewer and built environment. Morton focuses on the relationship between private and public space, between reality and illusion.

Situated lakeside for the summer, this sentinel figure is part of our revitalisation of the sculpture walk by introducing temporary sculpture projects to the precinct.

HOTA curator Bradley Vincent says “We spend so much of our time outside, be it socialising, exercising, relaxing or exploring. I think it makes sense to think about what art can be exhibited, performed or made in the outdoors. There is no better time to be outside than a Gold Coast Summer. It’s the perfect time for people to explore the parklands here at HOTA and see them bought to life by the work of amazing artists.”

What can I see and when?

Field Drawing #1 can be found near the Outdoor Stage from Friday 14 December until it grows out or washes away. Don’t miss it! Monument #23: Helter Shelter can be found near the river from Friday 14 December 2018 to Friday 25 January 2019.

For more information on the commission and HOTA, Home of the Arts, please visit www.hota.com.au.

This article was originally published on HOTA, Home of the Arts.

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