Belles-lettres

Belles-lettre is a project consisting of separate installations by three artists, Maureen Burns, Gail Hastings and Virginia Ward. Based in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth respectively, each has devised a site-specific work for ACCA which explores new definitions of sculpture and the relationships between object, text and space. The ephemeral nature of the communications — both textural and spatial — connects the three installations in belles-lettres, which individually explore cultural terrains and practises.

Media Release, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, 6 August 1993

EXPANSION Wanting some guidance for this essay, I browse amongst the rows of books. Selecting one, I turn to a page and read that … science is endeavouring to discover a Theory of Everything. The Theory of Everything will be represented by a mathematical equation of compressed information. (1) Desiring to understand, I turn the page and initially feel slightly affronted. For before me, running over the top of the words, sprinting so as not to get caught — is a child’s robust scribble. Scribbled as if in a quick fury and in a moment snatched — unobserved by the parent as they were perhaps looking elsewhere, perhaps driving with the child in the back seat on their way to return the book to the library. An expression of rage, a silent protest, marking the absurdity of growing up. Perhaps summoned by the indignity suffered when one begins to discover that life is not about possibility and expansion, but probability and compression. Shelved. While the physical scale of the library’s passageways diminish — surprisingly, the place to which the most diminished, such as a sentence of words, eventually leads is enormous. It contains you and me, the trees the flowers, the sun the moon — and the library.

Gail Hastings, excerpt, A Sculpture by Gail Hastings: a page torn from a secret, in Jenepher Duncan (ed.), exhibition catalogue, Australian Centre of Contemporary Art, Melbourne, 1993.

Exhibition
Date: 05/Aug/1993 to 05/Sep/1993
At: Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne
Artists:

Maureen Burns, Gail Hastings, Virginia Ward

List of Works: by Gail Hastings
A Sculpture by Gail Hastings: a page torn from a secret
Download:

Catalogue: A Sculpture by Gail Hastings: a page torn from a secret, 1993

Bibliography: Edward Colless, ‘The Secret History’, in Ashley Crawford (ed.), World Art, Ashley Crawford, Melbourne issue Inaugural, November 1993, p.38. Gail Hastings, Gail Hastings: a page torn from a secret, in Jenepher Duncan (ed.), exhibition catalogue, Australian Centre of Contemporary Art, Melbourne
Image:

a page torn from a secret by Gail Hastings

Australian Centre for Contemporary Art

Dir: Jenepher Duncan

Dallas Brooks Drive
South Yarra VIC 3014

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