words@bld50 monthly talks


Thursday 3 June 2010, 7PM: Panel talk - Art + Social Space!

Panel Discussion

At RMIT bldg 50, Orr St (off Victoria St), Carlton

Thursday 3 June 2010, 7 PM

Entry by gold coin donation

Refreshments provided

How can art respond to social values and promote critical dialogue in a public context?

How can it push the boundaries of its physical and social surrounds?

Is there a social responsibility involved in the practice of public art?

To remove art from the privileged domain of the gallery and make it available for general consumption can be a powerful act, and its capacity to generate controversy is clearly alive and well in Melbourne - as evidenced by the passionate and mixed response to the work 'Red Fragments' by Carl Michael von Hausswolff, displayed temporarily in Melbourne's City Square.

Public art has the capacity to QUESTION, CHALLENGE, STIMULATE DISCUSSION, PROVOKE... also to INSPIRE, REFLECT COMMUNITY VALUES and raise AWARENESS. It can attempt to capture collective memory and identity, invite interaction - appear fleetingly, or bear witness to the passing of years. Works of public art can be simply vehicles of individual expression, or represent the agenda of a commissioning authority. However, often such interventions can also work to bridge cultural interests, interpret and frame community values or critique social structures.

Four practitioners will explore their experiences of creating art in public spaces, drawing on examples of their own work, and reflecting on the possibilities, challenges, freedom and limitations they have encountered.

Dr. Maggie McCormick is a coordinator, Major Research Project, Master of Arts, School of Art at RMIT University. Her researches focus on the impact of transient urbanisation on changing perceptions of cultural space.

Visual artist Dr Elisabeth Weissensteiner was nominated for Best contribution to Urban Art - Design Development Awards in 2010 by the City of Port Phillip.She views the role of art in public space as that of a catalyst within a complex system determined by social and topographical parameters.

Researcher, architect and teacher Ammon Beyerle is actively involved in the growth of Urban Village Melbourne, a multidisciplinary social enterprise interested in arts, design community development and sustainability in public space.

Karen Casey is an interdisciplinary artist, who started out as a painter and printmaker and now is among a vanguard group of urban Aboriginal artists exhibiting widely in Australia and overseas from the late 1980's.

Chaired by Alex Selenitsch, a poet, an architect and a senior lecturer in the Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning, University of Melbourne. He was a founding member of the Public Art Committee at the City of Melbourne.

photo by yourdevelopment.org

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