Australian Art

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M I C H A E L R E I D	

                                                           Australian Art	

                             How much?

DANIE MELLOR (1971-)                                                               from travelling trunks brings together the heritage of his
                                                                                   mother’s people from the Atherton Tablelands and associations
With an American-Australian father and an Irish-Aboriginal                         of colonial arrivals and departures. In An unsettled vision
mother it is unsurprising that Danie Mellor’s works should focus                   (pictured) a mother and baby koala climb up a eucalyptus
on the interaction of different cultures. To portray the concept                   branch. At first glance the scale and colour of the marsupial duo
of a shared history Mellor melds elements from indigenous and                      places them at odds with their very British Spode surroundings,
British traditions. Waist-high sculptures of kangaroos are                         but the background pattern, with its European gothic castle and
covered in a mosaic of blue Spode china, the 19th century darling                  Chinese blossoms, hints at the possibility of a future
of the British dining-room, and intricate mezzotints of the tightly                amalgamated culture.
furled fronds of Cyathea Cooperi (Australian tree fern) are
reminiscent of Joseph Banks’ illustrations, sent back to a British                 Mellor’s work has been acquired by the National Gallery and
public hungry for a sight of the ‘exotic’ flora and fauna of the                    major state galleries and was featured in the 2007 National
colonies. Mellor admits that his practice is “tongue in cheek and                  Indigenous Art Triennial, Culture Warriors and in 2009 he won
a little bit kitsch” but it achieves his goal of getting his work                  the Indigenous Ceramic Art Award. Working in his Canberra
“spoken about and shown and discussed and enjoyed”.                                kitchen-cum-studio Mellor finds it hard to keep up with demand
                                                                                   – there is a lengthy and ever-increasing waiting list for those
Mellor often combines disparate images to reflect a collision of                    kangaroos.
cultures. His 2008 series of shields made from steel reclaimed

An unsettled vision (the predicament), 2007	







                Courtesy of the artist
Mixed media on paper
110.0 x 152.0 cm	

                        Michael Reid at Elizabeth Bay	

                 Michael Reid at Murrurundi

                                              44 Roslyn Gardens, Elizabeth Bay	

              Boyd Street, Murrurundi, The Upper Hunter

                                              NSW 2011 Australia	

                            NSW 2338 Australia

                                              +61 2 8353 3500	

                               +61 2 6546 6767

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