Art & Architecture
Artist Profile

Artist Profile Issue 37

Artist Profile is a leading quarterly journal taking its readers into the studios and minds of contemporary artists across Australasia and beyond. Industry professionals engage leading practitioners and emerging talent in conversations about their art, in their own words, while our exclusive photo shoots provide intimate access into artists’ personal and working lives. Readers gain knowledge of artists’ methods, preview works in progress and discover the life experiences that ignite artistic imaginations.

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4 Issues

in this issue

3 min.

THE AP TEAM EDITOR Kon Gouriotis artistprofile@nextmedia.com.au ART DIRECTOR Kim Gregory kgregory@nextmedia.com.au DEPUTY EDITOR Lucy Stranger lstranger@nextmedia.com.au SUB-EDITOR Jamie McIlwraith CONTRIBUTORS STEVE LOPES is a Sydney-based painter. He is represented by Stella Downer Fine Art, Sydney, and Mitchell Fine Art, Brisbane. www.stevelopes.com.au ASHLEY CRAWFORD is a Melbourne-based arts journalist, and a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne. cargocollective.com/ashleycrawford SARA SWEET is a Sydney-based arts writer and artist. sarasweet.com.au ANNA JOHNSON is a Sydney-based arts and cultural writer. BRIDGET MACLEOD is an arts writer and curator. She is the Gallery Officer at Shoalhaven City Art Centre, Nowra. STEPHEN OXENBURY is a Sydney-based photographer. www.stephenoxenbury.com LUKE SCIBERRAS is a regional NSW based artist. He is represented by King Street Gallery on William, Sydney, and Scott Livesey Galleries, Melbourne. www.lukesciberras.com MICHAEL YOUNG is a journalist and visual arts writer based in Australia who regularly travels to China. OWEN CRAVEN is a Melbourne-based writer. He is a curator with Urban…

2 min.
editor's note

CHANGE MATTERS IN THIS ISSUE of Artist Profile: inspiring change, the consequences of change, finding beauty in change. These and more notions of change illustrate that the paths to being an artist are various and often unexplained. You will see and read, through the work of our committed writers, photographers and illustrators, how the artists featured in this issue respond to change. Our cover artist Savanhdary Vongpoothorn understands the dangers and happiness of change. We find out why her recent work responds to change along the Mekong River. This Mekong focus is a sharp change from her distinctive paintings adorning many Australian public galleries; this previous work related to the Australian bush and her Lao heritage. In her latest work there is a paradoxical dilemma, here she is embracing her Lao culture…

6 min.
like anantelope through a python…

DEBATE IN AND AROUND ART EDUCATION IN THIS country and therefore its impact on our culture and support for retaining art schools, particularly in Sydney, is important and needs input from all those who truly care for a serious ongoing vibrant culture in the visual arts. This essay’s heading of “like an antelope through a python” are words I_have never forgotten. They’re from an article written or maybe typed by Robert Hughes (who else?) in 1985. The article in Time magazine, titled ‘Careerism And Hype Amidst An Image Haze’, gave me the first inkling that American universities had made a shift to add another string to the academic bow, and as a graduate from two art schools here and in England, I was bemused and_somewhat taken aback at the implications for American…

5 min.
david frank

THE SON OF A STOCKMAN, DAVID FRANK WAS BORN and_raised by his family on the Mount Cavanagh cattle station in the very southern parts of the Northern Territory. These days, he lives and works in at the Iwantja community, on the eastern side of the Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in far northern South Australia. This is close to his mother’s country, which lies in the far west APY Lands near the Amata community; his father’s country is close to the Ernabella community where a large mission was originally established. David’s grandfather was a renowned traditional healer – a Ngangkari – skills that David was taught throughout his youth and which now form a strong part of his identity. Then in his mid-thirties, David decided to leave the cattle station to take…

8 min.
david horton

The objects Islamic culture makes, calligraphy and miniatures are some of the best examples of paintings produced by humans. YOUR MOVE INTO ART CAME VERY EARLY? I won art prizes throughout school. I’d always wanted to be at art school. Leaving school at year 10, I went for a greenkeeping trade, but throughout that time I was interested in becoming an artist. When I finished greenkeeping, I thought “right, now I’ll do this”. So art always nagged at me. What makes you want to know how something works? I don’t know, it’s an impulse, the thing that shouldn’t need an explanation. It’s not mechanical things, it’s more emotional or felt things like music, art or cooking. Once you demystify something it lessens its mystery, it’s like learning how the magic trick works. “Teaching is a…

13 min.
savanhdary vongpoothorn

SAVANHDARY, CAN YOU REFLECT ON YOUR MIGRATION to Australia? I was eight years old when my mother one morning got up at dawn, packed all the children, left the dog, and took us down to the Mekong River and locked us in a dark room. All day long we weren’t allowed to make any sound or go outside. When it was night time, what the current Australian government would call “people smugglers” took us onto a little boat and crossed us over to the other side of the Mekong River. It was a big risk that my mother took. She did that because my father was going to be taken to a re-education camp which was notorious, as people opposed to the Communist party never returned from it. He was smuggled…