October 20, 2015

Anna Schwartz Gallery presents new exhibition of work by Shaun Gladwell titled 'The Inspector of Tides'

The Inspector of Tides’ is appropriated from the second volume of work by the late Australian poet Michael Dransfield and provides the spiritual and conceptual framework for Shaun Gladwell’s exhibition. Rodney Hall has described Dransfield as an eclectic poet who was never interested in orthodox categories or even the larger interconnections within art and society. Instead, Dransfield was trying to open himself to ‘surprises’ through a wild and discursive range of interests and stylistic approaches. Gladwell finds an affinity with this rejection of a specific and singular signature, both in terms of medium and subject matter. If any methodology is employed in Gladwell’s recent works then it is an itinerant multi-media trans-national and trans-historical wandering: the present show was produced in London, Paris, Antwerp, Sydney and Perth. 

The work engages with material from the early 20th century with Hans Heysen, the 1930’s with the films of Cinesound and photographs of George Caddy, the 1970’s with Dransfield himself. The exhibition also features performances held within the last year by Gladwell and his collaborators. The work even makes projections into a distant future with the painting of a science fiction drone. The tide of the exhibition is historically and geographically expansive.

‘The Inspector of Tides’ is perhaps most literally depicted by Gladwell in a series of large scale photographs taken at Sydney’s iconic Bondi Beach. Since his childhood, Gladwell has returned to Bondi to receive inspiration. ‘Severed Heads‘ depicts a hand reaching out from the churning whitewash of a broken wave. The title describes both the mechanics of freshly cut flowers as ‘severed heads’ but also refers to the 1980’s Australian experimental band by the same name.

This exhibition is comprised of photographs, paintings, installation and video.

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