The gallery is very proud to share Shaun Gladwell‘s cover and feature story for the April issue of ArtNews. Featuring an image from his 2009-10 “Double Field” photography, performance, and video series – which was derived from his travels to Afghanistan and the Middle East with the Australian Defence Force – the magazine cover connects to a story titled “Art Made in Harm’s Way.” Says writer Lilly Wei:
Gladwell, who lives between Sydney and London, is known for his physically strenuous work. He represented Australia at the Venice Biennale in 2009 and was chosen to be Australia’s official war artist that same year. He went to Afghanistan and the Middle East with the Australian Defence Force in 2009, and a book about his time there by Kit Messham-Muir is soon to be released. Gladwell said that he has always been anti-war and left-leaning, having chosen art school partly in reaction to his family’s tradition of military service. Nonetheless, he remains sympathetic toward his father, who served in Vietnam and whom he admired. Gladwell shared with his father and brothers a love of physical risk and intense sports, playing a kind of Russian roulette to see if he could sidestep death or severe injury.
When he went to Afghanistan and the Middle East, Gladwell wanted to analyze the war experience from a less dramatic perspective, using a less expected language, one that was empathetic but critical. He said it was hard to anticipate what happens in a war zone—the amount of down time, waiting time, as well as the traveling, and more waiting—echoing Biggs about the crippling boredom. “These were schizophrenic environments,” he said, “where some people welcomed your presence, others tolerated you, and others tried to kill you. But it was the tension of waiting that was my experience of war, waiting for the IED to go off or the threat of indirect fire. ”
To read the full article documenting Gladwell’s incredible and harrowing experience, click HERE.
Concurrently, Gladwell is also the subject of a number of positive reviews and features from ArtInfo (as well as several other publications) for his current two-part exhibition at the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (AUS). On view through April 25, 2015, “‘The Lacrima Chair’ (SCAF Project 24) at SCAF is an immersive installation comprising sculpture and video. It ‘engages the poetics of flight, travel, and cultural transmission, specifically French cultural influences within Australia and vice versa,’ according to SCAF. Visitors enter the exhibition through a mist screen and can even choose to enhance their experience of the installation by getting into costume and sitting in an airplane chair under a shower of water.” – ArtInfo
Says the publication:
Sydney-born, London-based video artist Shaun Gladwell is one of Australia’s most important and successful contemporary artists. Since he emerged onto the international scene in 2000, Gladwell has exhibited throughout Australia and around the globe, cementing his status as one of the world’s most innovative video artists. He represented Australia at the 53rd Venice Biennale and travelled to Afghanistan as the official Australian War Artist in 2009.
Sydney’s Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (SCAF) has brought Gladwell back to Sydney for a major project across two sites that reveals the breadth and scope of Gladwell’s creativity and ingenuity. SCAF features “The Lacrima Chair” a major new commission by Gladwell, and the UNSW galleries is the site of “Collection+: Shaun Gladwell”, a survey of Gladwell’s career and practice featuring more than 20 works that have been drawn from public and private collections worldwide.
We congratulate Shaun on these significant milestones! For more information about the artist or available works, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.