EXHIBITION CURRENT 11 TO 29 NOVEMBER 2020
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Kylie Banyard is a multidisciplinary artist and educator. Her artistic practice is grounded in painting and intersects with photography, video, sculpture and immersive architectural spaces. Banyard was included in The National 2019: New Australian Art at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia and recently completed a VR Studio with Tactical Spacelab (funded by the Australia Council and Arts NSW). She has been included in significant group exhibitions including Art from Down Under: Australia to New Zealand, Turchin Center for the Visual Arts, North Carolina (2018); Another Green World, The Western Plains Cultural Centre (2017); The Mnemonic Mirror, Griffith University Art Museum, Brisbane, and UTS Gallery, Sydney (2016-2017).
Banyard has received competitive funding from Arts NSW and the National Association for the Visual Arts, as well as postgraduate research grants including the Australian Postgraduate Award from the University of NSW and the COFA, UNSW Travel Grant. She has been the recipient of several competitive artist’s residencies, such as the Cité International des Arts Paris, France and the Firstdraft Emerging Studio Residency Program, Sydney.
Banyard has been a finalist in the Arthur Guy Memorial Painting Prize, the Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize and was awarded the National Tertiary Art Prize and The Basil and Muriel Art’s Scholarship, Art Gallery of NSW. She has a PhD in Fine Arts from the University of NSW and is a Lecturer of Visual Art at La Trobe University. Banyard’s work is held in numerous public and private collections including Artbank, Australia.
Holding Ground continues Kylie Banyard’s exploration of alternate models for living and learning. Her work explores and brings to a new audience the radical pedagogies of American mid-20th century art school Black Mountain College. Those pedagogies are based in practices of care for others, the development of the whole person, and care for community and environment. The paintings in this exhibition focus on a small group of archival photographs in which female artists and students are engaged in intimate exchanges and moments of co-creation, responsive to the wild mountainous land surrounding them: farming, making, reading and dancing. Banyard combines archival research with fantasy, drawing on images and ideas from the past, bringing them into the present through a painting process that conflates and overlays facets of her own domestic space and lived experience with Black Mountain College’s historical record – her paintings propose a present that is thick with remembrances of the past.
ARTIST IN CONVERSATION
KYLIE BANYARD DISCUSSES EXHIBITION WITH CURATOR AND WRITER AMELIA WALLIN
In Kylie Banyard’s newest paintings the mood is simultaneously mystical, technicolour, strangely nostalgic and enduringly hopeful. While her latest oil and acrylic works emerged from interests in the experimental American art school Black Mountain College, which in the
mid-20th century emphasised holistic learning, this isn’t necessarily clear. Yet the aura of the influence is apparent, particularly in the most compelling paintings that depict women working together in acts of toil and farming, their skin tinged by vivid pinks and blues, blending into the environment in which they work. Existing in luminous lighting, the women’s movements are choreographed in ways that feel caring and reciprocal, not exploitative or competitive.
For an artist with a practice across many mediums, it’s clear Banyard knows painting: colours expertly morph into one another; shaded and flattened areas are designed for maximum impact; a single painting of a house is masterfully skewed, drifting on a pink background, curiously emerging as both a relic from the past and a dream of the future. Alongside the paintings are textile and sculptural forms, yet these don’t quite enhance the atmosphere the paintings so brilliantly conjure − a reverie on labour and creation, and women being with women.
Tiarney Miekus 'Galleries' in The Age Saturday 21 November, p 9 (Spectrum)