In the exhibition The wayback machine, Sydney-based artists Jaki Middleton and David Lawrey collaborate on a series of new sculptural installations that take iconic films from the period of their childhood as sites for exploration and manipulation. Combining the technology of pre-cinematic objects such as the perpetual gallery and the praxinoscope, with scale models of historical film sets and locations; the artists merge different visual languages of the past to create works that draw new connotations and meanings in the present. For example in Magic Mountain (Edward), (2008), the artists have crafted the isolated world of Tim Burtonís film Edward Scissorhands (1990), then multiplied it infinitely with the use of mirrors to create a never-ending nightmare of suburban sprawl. Other works in the exhibition operate in a similar way, honing in on a specific sequence or scene and continuously replaying it in a number of new contexts; thus reflecting on the repetition of the struggles of the everyday.
The wayback machine is the third major collaboration between Jaki Middleton and David Lawrey. In 2007 the artists completed a New Visions commission for Experimenta Playground, currently on show at the Performance Space, Carriageworks. Both are also current editors of the contemporary art magazine runway (with Rachel Scott). Jaki would like to thank the Australia Council for the Arts for their assistance in the research and production of this work via the London studio residency.
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Jennifer Leahy, Vincent Watson
The seductive atmosphere of the forest lures us again and again conjuring images drawn from folklore, circumstance and contemporary culture. This is a progressive work that explores vulnerability and heightened imaginings experienced within remote forest landscapes. The images present as a paradox: they may be dreamlike and detached, yet they resonate with the familiar.
The forest scene is a dramatic stage for lost moments in time. Accordingly, it embodies a convergence of fears: as a landscape it is isolated, foreign, overwhelming and impenetrable.
This presentation of work is a crosshatching of narratives or tales, either true or fictitious, a succession of incidents that may be linked or not - a visual poem.