Australian self-taught and visionary artists
from Arts Project Australia, Melbourne
6 - 22 July 2001
With the support of the Australian High Commission
"The pure inspiration and joy people will feel from seeing this work is all the justification it needs," says Stuart Shepherd, co-curator of "Face-Up Australian self-taught and visionary artists".
This exhibition, which is financially supported by the Australian High Commission, appears at Idiom Studio from 6 to 22 July. Last year, Stuart curated a highly successful exhibition at Idiom by artists based at Vincents Art Workshop in Wellington. "We wanted to build on the interest in that show, and reflect the international stature of this field of fine art," he says.
The eight "Face-Up" artists all work through the Melbourne-based Arts Project Australia, which has been a centre for work by intellectually disabled artists since 1975. Since then it has provided paintings for some 80 exhibitions in major art galleries throughout Australia, in Europe and elsewhere.
They include Julian Martin, a finalist in Australias prestigious Moet and Chandon Travelling Fellowship, Leo Cussen who has also shown at Belgiums Museum of Modern Art and whose work is eagerly sought by Australian collectors, and Alvaro Alvarez who is legally blind but produces delicate and haunting drawings based on photographs he has seen.
Stuart says "The inspiration of these works is unfiltered and direct and thats what gives them such excitement. They are a celebration of intuition, as opposed to processed, academic, theory-based work."