On Wednesday night “Looking at the Overlooked” opened at the George Paton Gallery in the Union House at the University of Melbourne. Curator, Joleen Loh has balanced the art of three Melbourne artists: Brooke Williams, Leah Williams and Mia Kenway in an exhibition of calm visions of the constructed world. Joleen Loh is an art history student at Melbourne University who also works at Fehily Contemporary in Collingwood.
Brooke Williams is in her final year at the Victorian College of the Arts. Her impressive installation, “Circle” is a series of dry mounted lithographs on metal brackets mounted floor to ceiling.
Leah Williams is showing two graphite drawings of paint splatter concrete floors, three videos of the play of sunlight and three photographs of views through partially curtained windows. Leah Williams’s art has the serene objectivity of relaxed observations of the ordinary world.
Mia Kenway has a scatter of objects in the gallery, fleshy blocks of pink colored plaster, the sheet of aluminum and tiles on the floor, a piece of glass leans against one wall, a screen hangs on the wall. Although this untitled work does fit with the rest of the exhibition I’ve seen too much of this kind of work in the last year.
The exhibition focuses on the subtly of material, the overlooked in a meditative mood. Of course, at the opening, with about a hundred people drinking wine and talking in the gallery it is hard to even remember such a mood.
The little ‘L’ shaped George Paton Gallery has regular exhibitions every two weeks. There is an old poster by Peter Tyndall advertising the gallery at the entrance. The gallery has been around since the mid-70s and was one of Melbourne’s first contemporary art spaces but it has been overlooked as more and more spaces have opened.