On October 7th two diverse exhibitions, both exploring the speculative nature of Sydney’s real estate market, will open at Tin Sheds Gallery, The Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning, The University of Sydney.
Dirt, by Iakovos Amperidis will be a mixed media installation comprised of samples of “dirt” taken from properties listed for sale across Sydney and Overlay, by Cath Brophy, will be a large scale drawing of the controversial site at the former Rozelle Psychiatric Hospital, in Sydney’s inner west.
Overlay was originally conceived while working for a two-week period in the derelict Wards 17 & 18 of the iconic Rozelle Psychiatric Hospital. Ms Brophy’s intention was to overlay abstracted, geometric drawings onto the architecture of the buildings, thereby playing with perceptions and illusions of physical space. In the process of making, and then photographing the installation, she identified opportunities for incorporating actual photographic images of the architecture into the process of drawing, collaging and manipulating, which had hitherto formed the basis of her art practice.
The former Rozelle Psychiatric Hospital in Callan Park, the basis of this installation, is a site layered with personal narratives and community histories, as well as by continuing and often conflicting debates regarding its future conservation and development. By installing this image in Tin Sheds Gallery, Ms Brophy aims to highlight these multiple narratives and invite viewers to overlay their own experience onto their interpretation of the images.
Dirt is an exhibition created from an ongoing land art project in which a single bucket load of topsoil was stolen by the artist from the front lawn of 100 properties on the real estate market throughout Sydney. The hundred bucket loads of earth were then used as the base material for the show.
From Rose Bay to Bankstown, Vaucluse to Miller, the stolen property in the exhibition makes explicit reference to notions of the commons and private property, both in art and the broader social arena. More specifically, it is a deliberate attempt to ground the romanticism of the Australian landscape through the vernacular of real estate. According to Mr Amperidis it “proposes a more accurate psycheographic account of life in Sydney, retracing our sensibilities of place, inundated as they are, within the ideology of home ownership”.
The objects created for Dirt draw on amateur soil science, mechanical engineering and market analysis. Included in this show are 100 soil monoliths that scale the gallery’s walls, indexed according to a hierarchy of property value; a 1.5 cubic metre block of soil, made from the 100 bucket loads of top soil, steadily destroyed by a motorised pounding mallet; and documentation of the 100 individual square holes left on the front lawns of the properties in the wake of the artist’s thievery.
These two exhibitions will both provide fascinating insights into the complex and contested nature of Sydney’s real estate market.
For more information contact Tin Sheds Gallery: 9351 3115.
Tin Sheds Gallery
148 City Road,
Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning
University of Sydney, NSW, 2006