The 2015 Bammy Residency recipients are:
United by friendship the three artists share responsibility in the administration and direction of NANA, a not for profit and artist run space located in Newcastle NSW. NANA was founded by Jacqueline and Madeleine in 2013 and has featured over 20 shows since its inception, including solo exhibitions by all three applicants in this proposal. In March 2016 Madeleine, Jacqueline and Prince will each use a window in NANA’S gallery and present the work that is developed during the 2015 Bammy Residency.
Read about their various activities and projects during the Bammy Residency.
I make art because I simply cannot live without it. It is when feeling and thinking become one. I am dedicated to self-questioning and self-reflective art in order to make sense of one’s own life and it’s worldly circumstances. My life experiences, life’s observations, and life’s episodes inspire my work.
Through painting, drawing, performance, video and writing…I reveal my identities, desires, humiliations, frustrations and pleasures, also questioning a broad thematic range of subjects including gender, cultural identity, autobiography, history, memory, time, space, politics and popular culture. I use a palate of humour, and inter-textual gifts in questioning cultural stereotypes, stale notions of gender, sexuality, and politics.
My art practice is used as a tool to reveal and to perhaps re-create/re-enact experiences and memories that are with me…and I use humour to tell my story. I believe humour to be an important and essential part of life; a way of breathing, a coping mechanism and a place to be absolutely inappropriate. Moments of pointing out life’s absurdities.
Prince at The Bammy Residency
Often, peace is lost in noise within a world that demands to be loud – my time at Mangrove Creek gave me the ideal opportunity, time & resources to observe the pace of nature, listen to the music of the earth, and a quiet place for self-reflective research.
During the four weeks, time was spent further consolidating my experimental performative works, using the natural setting as ‘stage’, and working interchangeably with painting, drawing, dance, writing and video.
During my time at Bammy I continued with some clay work that I initially started in my studio in Sydney, that is, a series of giant clunky mugs. As time progressed I decided to convert my mugs into novelty products marketing the possibility of a new life in Mangrove Creek. This coincided with a video I made during the residency titled ‘Mangrove Creek Commune’, a short narrative style video that I am currently editing about a fictional ‘alternative’ women’s commune being set up by the river.
I have become increasingly interested in the popular phenomenon of ‘going off the grid’ and the motivations behind groups of people who willfully isolate themselves and actively reject society. Although a simple act, rejecting the foundations that encompass every aspect of how we live out our daily lives is to me the ultimate act of subversion. The untouched surrounds of the Hawkesbury were ideal for this exploration and made the perfect backdrop for me to play out my ideas.
I enjoyed the collaborative aspect of everything we developed. We performed and were extras in each other’s videos and photographs, constantly influencing each other and nutting out ideas.
I loved the simplicity that the residency gave us, sharing meals, drinking wine, all the laughs, a few tears, dancing in the lounge room to the excellent record collection, going for walks, coming across the strange characters that live in a community that is so hidden away it almost feels lawless, living by the river, watching the fading light on the porch, bird sounds, cowering in bed at night to the strange sounds of the yowie/bunyip/ gunman, enjoying the company of my complex and interesting friends, the beautiful horse spotted only once trotting down the road, the resident goanna, the comical bush turkeys and the charming jumping fish.
I had a positive experience during the Bammy Residency, as it was both a personally therapeutic and an artistically productive time. The month long residency gave me a break from my urban life and it’s professional and social pressures, whilst providing me with uninterrupted time and space to work on my art practice. I found the isolation and natural beauty of the landscape cleansing and gained and a renewed sense of confidence and positivity.
I responded to the landscape whilst visiting Mangrove Creek, making drawings and watercolours outdoors, before working on collages and larger paintings in the studio. The Australian bush is a captivatingly complex subject from which to work and I found the opportunity to revisit sites and be immersed in the space on a daily basis a valuable part of my residency that enriched my painting practice. The final works that I produced operate as interconnected psychological interiors and landscape paintings that chart the emotional terrain of my experiences within the natural environment of Mangrove Creek.
See more of Madeleine’s work here