‘After many years, during which I saw many things, what I know most surely about morality and the duty of man I owe to sport’. Albert Camus
Last week was a crazed Melbourne art fiesta. The Melbourne Art Fair, CCP, Heide and the Basil Sellers Art Prize all within 48 hours.
We’ve been busting to share this post with you all, but had to wait for the Basil Sellers winner to be announced before you could see Brook Andrew’s entry. The competition was a tense undertaking with some of our favourite artists going neck-a-neck. Finally after months of build up and studio sweat the Ian Potter walls were painted fresh, the artworks hung. When the award night came and the odds were still far and wide amongst the punters, and the judging panel, made up of ex-rugby champions, art collectors and academics announced the $100,000 prize with as much fanfaronade as they could muster. Jon Campbell was the one, with his collection of dream team footy nicknames, brilliant.
It was a great day for the studio to see Brook Andrew’s Australia 1 hung side by side with Jon Campbell’s Dream Team, Brook’s work had lost none of it’s golden majesty from the result.
For Australia 1, Brook Andrew continued his work with the ethnographics collected over years from museums. This one is based on an image from William Blandowski, which he just titled Australia. Blandowski went on government adventures along the Murray and Darling Rivers around 1856, staying mainly among the Nyeri Nyeri people. Recently the work has risen to contention as its content was used as proof of that the origin of Australian rules football is in fact in Aboriginal culture.
Creating Brooks Andrew’s work pushed us once again to the studio limits, and there was certainly blood and a welling of tears during the printing efforts. The scale of the work was much, much larger than any screens we have in the studio so the screens were custom made, and even then we needed to print the work in two pieces, first bottom yand bottom.
First the 3 x 2.5m golden backgrounds were made onto a thick Belgian linen, kept flat and then lightly layed onto the tables. This was the challenge because the line of the two screens had to be perfectly matched so even an fraction of stretch would shift the match.
Above, Stewart Russell finds the join between the two large print areas with the artwork film.
Due to the ‘heyday’ of screen print being well and truly over in Melbourne manufacturing, it’s becoming much harder to rely on local suppliers for print elements like scanning and films. This became an issue for us during this print because the two three metre films had been stretched slightly in the outputting and were about one centremetre out of line. We manged to work with it and began the print. Below Stewart, Marina and Clara printing the top of the artwork.
The Sport + Art exhibition is on at the Ian Potter Museum of Art until the 4th of November.