Platform: Kent Wilson, Tristan Jalleh, Elizabeth Van Waarden
Words By Kate Forsyth
Photos by Andy Donohoe
Hi I’m Kate Forsyth. You may know me from such blog posts such as Love on a Platform where I confessed my knowledge of art was gleamed from 30 Rock’s Jack Donaghy: “I know what art is! It’s painting of horses”.
Going underground again to the Platform Public Artspace in the Degraves Street Subway, surrounded by lovely shabby peach tiles, cute shops, public transit turnstiles, and a series of harshly lit glass covered recesses that act as the exhibition space, again, I’m sad to report there was not a single painting of a horse, Pegasus or unicorn.
Opening on Friday the 13th, I wondered how artists feel about having a show open on this inauspicious day. Probably like the rest of us (me); quietly hoping it won’t go to hell in a hand basket, but not wanting to express such a daggy thought.
Anywho, Kent Wilson’s work fills most of the platform space and while the concept is most excellent, the execution was not visually exciting.
Kent photographed weeds throughout Melbourne’s CBD, kidnapped those weeds and took them back to his lair (I cannot confirm if he has a lair) where he separated the parts (roots, stems, foliage etc), mushed them up, then used the mushed up plant substance as a paint of sorts to recreate the weeds from memory.
The results were quite lovely, detailed and true to the photographs displayed next to the paintings, but I felt like it was an exercise in technical prowess rather than something you’d want to hang up in your lounge room, unless perhaps you were a botanist or a hard out hippy. Yes, yes, I realise not all art is meant to be hung in a lounge room, but for now, in my art discovery infancy, that’s my yard stick.
Elizabeth Van Herwaarden’s large window puzzled me. Live plants in mud filled jars. My feeling? Please explain.
Finally there was Tristan Jalleh’s intense and magnetic video, playing on a large flat screen, lying ascrew on the floor of the final large window space. It featured the shape of a person who instead of being a person- filled-person, was a person-shaped-digital-image filled with other digital images, doing stuff like fighting with non-digitial people. Loved it. Watched it repeatedly. Good day.
This exhibition runs until Saturday 27th April. You can see their website here
Can you spot both of our photographers and the author of this piece?