17 December - 19 January 2013


Thinking about what might be shown in SLOT I grappled with the concept of the Window Gallery itself. Focusing on it as space that one encounters from the street - and at the same time being a space that brings the artwork into the public arena whilst still remaining a conventional form of a gallery space (ie. white cube/non-interactive). These original ideas focused on dealing with the very volume of the slot. My first thoughts were to build a construction that did not fit into the space - ideas that were trying to engage the curiosity of passing pedestrians by creating a work that performs within the space itself, and at the same time making it a foreign concealed object.

The idea then moved towards a direct interest in the actual SLOT window space, and was to replicate the volume into plywood. Made to look as though it had ‘turned’ within the confines of SLOT, appearing to have crumpled in on itself. These ideas remained attractive but unrealistic, especially if the installation was going to be shipped from Europe where I am on residency. The challenge was to take this thinking process towards something that could be installed by others via instruction. What developed was a work that challenged the concept of the Window Gallery and arrived at a project that covers the glass with images documenting the artist trying to fit something into a space. This was an attractive move as it would also involve the passing viewer, creating an invitation to remove the posters so as to reveal the scrunched mattress inside SLOT.

 Now the work is as much about interaction as it is about making art at a distance but
also sticks to the original proposal to make an artwork that is present to the urban
character of Redfern as a surrounding environment.

- Alexander Jackson Wyatt 2012



19 November - 15 December 2012

This flighty installation uses the plastic sleeves for protecting film negatives, suspended in columns of light, movement and colour. As relics of a generation of photography now super ceded by digital technology, Judy has converted their 'slots' as housing for her drawings and prints - zips that build vertical landscapes.




I was between Tonga and Easter Island when I heard the Australian poet Rosemary Dobson had died. Martin Gascoigne emailed the news from Canberra on 2 July 2012. I had corresponded with Rosemary briefly in 2004 while curating an exhibition of work by her very close friend Rosalie Gascoigne for City Gallery Wellington. Hence the email from Martin. Rosemary was well into her eighties at the time of the Gascoigne exhibition. Her son Ian, a classical violinist, came up from Christchurch, where he was living, for a poetry reading in honour of the artist. He read a memoir which his mother had written especially for the occasion. Among the poems Ian also read was 'Grieving':

Upstairs there, in the mind:
Beating of wings, loud weather
Days, nights together
To force on the mind order...

In the small world of things, my father had known Rosemary's late husband Alec Bolton, a hand-press printer and renowned publisher at Brindabella Press. Between my father and my brother Brendan, our family owns a complete set of every Brindabella book ever produced.

In her heyday Rosemary Dobson would drive Rosalie Gascoigne around rural Canberra, collecting road signs and old softdrink crates for her assemblages. These two exemplery figures would careen around the rolling country, riding the soft suspension of their hulking Holden stationwagon, often reciting Romantic poetry.

When I heard Rosemary Dobson had died, I decided I would have an imagined last conversation with her. And the best place on the planet I could think of for this dialogue was the very remote Raoul Island, in the Kermadec Group, 1000km north of New Zealand. (I had steamed up there in May 2011 on HMNZS Otago.) Rosemary would enjoy such a Romantic setting.  We would time the conversation so that it occurred on 8 October, which is the day the migrating whale population in the waters around Raoul is surveyed by the Department of Conservation workers on the island. Last year 126 whales were recorded during one four hour period. Hence 'Whale Survey, Raoul Island, with Rosemary Dobson', a poem based upon Rosemary's 'Poems from Wang River', offered with gratitude and respect. This is how we leave things. Two poets talking, immersed in land and sea and sky, counting whales, basking in the wonder of it all, now and for all time.

  i. m. Rosemary Dobson 1920-2012

Whale Survey, Raoul Island, with Rosemary Dobson
Gregory O'Brien

Two poets on a headland, mid-survey
might pause suddenly and say
will this be your whale, or mine?

Moving, accordingly, from one observation area
to the next, a whale is 'handed over'.
Please take it. No, you first.

Early morning spent 'getting the eye in'
the velocity of clouds, sea conditions noted.
Breaching, logging, travelling, the Pacific

divided between Coral Bay and Tropic Bird Face
Bomb Shed, Hutchies Bluff and Blindspot. Later
Rosemary observed to a friend

from the sharpest point of her triangulation
of ocean: If I stand still enough, I can see
Wolverine Rock, a water spout and, westerly,
          one cow and calf.


23 September - 21 October 2

The idea for this work was inspired by a collection of Jacob and Co. watches titled Epic Tourbillon. Marilyn Schneider is interested in this title because the billon part of tourbillon could easily be mistaken for billion and this word combined with epic suggests that these luxuries offer some form of abundance.

As these ‘excessories’ are usually decorated with hundreds of diamonds, the title implies an extensive display of conspicuous consumption for the wearer, although their inevitable small scale undermines the use of language that promotes them.

Using the idea of a ‘face’ as a façade that exhibits excessively ambitious presentations of wealth, Schneider utilizes sculptural installation to create of collection of ‘replicas’ that reinterpret the glamourising norms of representation that emulate luxury and status.


Not only biologically sound and environmentally safe, but also socially and aesthetically acceptable

27 August - 22 September 2012

"Farmers already lose up to 30% of some crops as a result of birds. Some bird species will double their population in the near future, which will have a dramatic effect on food security worldwide, and as you know food shortage is already a disturbing global phenomenon."

Wildlife scientist and bird expert Kevin Shaw

The "pest bird deterrent" borrows its form, materiality and dynamism from the visual language of Bauhaus and Minimalism.

It is marketed as a tool for the protection of crops, thereby ensuring food security for the earth's human population.

But can an art object really save the world?

Kenzee Patterson is represented by Darren Knight Gallery, Sydney

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.


Memorial to the Unknown Armchair General

30 July - 25 August 2012

Are we and our junk reaching critical mass? If all our junk is made in China, we will have nothing worth digging up in the future. The trivial and shallow now represent the peak of Western Civilisation. The internet brings the entire history of human achievement into our homes, but we are watching ‘reality' TV. 

Welcome to the age where nearly everyone grows old, hates the young and is so busy being scared of dying that they have forgotten how to live. Stop, take a deep breath and step back.

- Will Coles, 2012


Within Walking Distance

2 - 28 July 2012



Garry Trinh became a local Redfern resident in 2012. Within Walking Distance is Trinh's exploration of his new environment. Using SLOT as a starting point for a series of walking adventures, these photographs are the result of Trinh's exploration of Redfern and its surrounds. 

Through internal dialogue and curiosity, Trinh's photographs express a heightened visual awareness. They demonstrate that the most common subjects, approached with straightforward techniques, can be made beautifully new. They are able a way of seeing and appreciating whatever is within walking distance.

- Garry Trinh, June 2012


Chloé Wolifson

June - December 2012

Co-directors of SLOT artist Tony Twigg and writer/curator Gina Fairley are delighted to hand over their Redfern window gallery to a new vision.  From June through December this year Chloe Wolifson will join this team to curate a program of exhibitions that not only engages but extends our understanding how art can reach out to the person in the street.

Chloe says, "SLOT is a space of direct encounter. I have invited artists to make new work that considers the relationship between people and their urban environment. SLOT provides a chance to explore this idea through the work of very different artists and by engaging the physical space of the gallery and its location." 

Twigg says, "This is a fantastic opportunity for us to support curatorial practice and to really give someone a decent period of time to flesh out ideas and realise them. We were particularly excited by the standard of applications received for the Guest Curator position, and found Chloe's vision tapped into the ethos of SLOT, pushing it forward in new and exciting ways."

Chloe's program kicks off this week with a stunning installation by Astra Howard - a performance based work engaging the very locale of SLOT and presented as a video.

Wolifson is an independent arts writer and curator. In February 2011 she co-curated Subtext: Art for Literacy at CarriageWorks, Redfern and is the gallery manager at Darren Knight Gallery, Waterloo, and was recently awarded the 2012 Firstdraft Emerging Writers Residency. Her writings have been published in Art & Australia and HEAT.


The Heightened Drawing Platform
3 June - 1 July 2012


The concept for the Heightened Drawing Platform (HDP) project was inspired by 13th Century Byzantine iconographic artwork that Astra Howard chanced upon during a visit in 2008 to the National Gallery of Art on the Mall in Washington DC. The icon figures depicted were framed by triangular or ogival shaped golden archways, which illuminated their face and torso creating a heightened sense of poise and stature. The characters within these ethereal painted spaces appeared to look out to the audience from the security of their contained cloistered environment, having witnessed and accepted centuries of observers watching them, some even reproducing their image in pencil and paint.

The ‘icon’ in the HDP project, comes to life, embodied by the Action Researcher/Performer sitting inside the vehicle observing and being observed by passing members of the public. In this case, the ‘icon’, herself adopting the pen (or brush) through the act of drawing, reveals the ‘other/outer’ side of the picture, what is otherwise hidden, in the surrounding environment of the work. The mirrors on either side of the central viewing space are simultaneously used as devices to gain further ‘unseen’ perspectives or to witness momentary acts, reflected back into the delineated images of the city.

Necessarily the Action Researcher/Performer works quickly, moving the whiteboard marker across the internal perspex surface at a pace in order to capture the dynamic and ever shifting view outside. The linear markings change in direction, dimension and relationship to one another depending upon the position of the vehicle at each location and the reflected overlapping elements viewed through the mirrors.

The design of the HDP form also took inspiration from Astra’s 2009 visit to the renowned Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris. The vaults in this cemetery were typically tall and slender in their construction with triangular and/or ogival shaped archway detailing. Each of the vaults appeared weather worn in grey and black subdued tones, the porous stone and water stained copper, blurring the fine marble work and inscriptions into uneven patterns and crevices.

In the contemporary adaption of these images and forms, the HDP uses aluminum fabrication techniques, stainless steel and alusheet paneling. Built on wheels, the recording device can be moved to any street corner in a particular suburb, or wheeled across an entire city, or taken to a range of countries and cities around the world.

In Redfern, local residents stopped in their tracks as they came across the HDP on their otherwise familiar footpaths, with those standing still long enough, witnessing themselves being drawn into the local urban scene. Others assisted holding the mirrors in strong winds, a few describing the form as a ‘time machine’ or a ‘birdcage’ for a rare human species, indeed, inhabitants from another time. For others, it was a catalyst for discussion about the changes they were observing in the local neighbourhood of Redfern, the gentrification and removal of Indigenous peoples being significant subjects of heightened concern.
- Astra Howard, May 2012


Smoke and Mirrors

3 May - 2 June 2012

The term 'smoke and mirrors' refers to the kind of trickery originally used by magicians as a way of deceiving the audience. Billowing smoke would be used as a fascinating screen to mesmerise the audience; the multiple reflections of mirrors made it difficult to perceive the difference between the artificial and the real.

This installation of Pat's plays with those devices with a very acute understanding of the site. SLOTs window can often pose a difficult scenario with its heavy reflections immersing the very activity of the street within an artist's work. Pat has used this layering of reflections, whereby the mirrors, placed as punctuations on the back wall, hone and isolate the street's activity into fragments of stillness and clarity.  They offer a connectivity for the viewer, but also metaphorically position the viewer within this narrative of the displacement and journey.

These drawings were taken from photographs of refugee vessels.  But at the same time they are simple images of tiny craft being 'lost at sea'. The skies seem endless, the seas seem vast, and the mirrors cast our own reflections back at us. Furthermore, the mirror seemingly perforate the gallery wall like portals to a promised land glimpsed beyond. There is a wonderful energy between the velvety charcoal moments and the mirrors, their regular meter across the space speaking to an endlessness of the tale it presents.

'Smoke and Mirrors' is often used with reference to political spin, to the ways the public is told to pay attention to one story while more important events are permitted to unfold without critical scrutiny. Like magicians and some spin doctors, artists too can lure their audience to focus on certain images and surfaces while at the same time slipping in suggestions and ideas and possibilities that respond to everyday experiences.   Pat's wonderful pantomime of reflections capture our attention, and slowly, a more serious engagement emerges from her field of charcoal 'abstractions'.

Pat Hoffie is a Brisbane-based artist and Professor at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.



26 March - 3 May 2012

Our urban landscape is full of words. Be it advertising, signage or graffiti, text permeates our conscious through its repetition and banal presence. Sarah Nolan plays on these ideas with the installation NEARLYTHERE - the density of the words stacked within the gallery space seemingly vibrating with the hum of the traffic.

It reminds us of the drag of lights as one passes quickly in the traffic, only half recognisable reduced to blazing trails of colour. And yet upon closer inspection, Sarah's font is meticulously crafted from fabric remnants. NEARLYTHERE is the collision of domestic and public space.

Hovering on strings there is something tenuous about this installation. Is it meant to be read? Or just absorbed for its obsessive aesthetic play?  The process in making this work and installing it was a laborious one and not unlike a piece of embroidery, Sarah found herself consumed by its intricacy. It is an interesting place for an artists to engage with an artwork on a very intimate or micro level, and yet remain alert to its spatial engagement with the scale of the street. Simply NEARLYTHERE is a mantra is a mantra of persistence in our urban grind.


13 - 24 March 2012

For just a short two weeks SLOT will partner with fellow Redfern gallery - Damien Minton Gallery - and Beijing's iconic Red Gate Gallery, to present the work of Shanghai-based painter Jiang Weitao and the artist collective island6 as part of the Australian national touring exhibition Two Generations.

Established twenty years ago by Australian director, Brian Wallace, Two Generations marks the anniversary of Red Gate Gallery by featuring the work of senior Red Gate artists who have each nominated a young emerging artist. We are delighted to show two at SLOT continuing our own outreach to Asia
island6's striking LED animation Personal Revolution sits in conversation with the lights and signage of SLOTs environs. The collective of 10 Chinese and International artists founded by the French producer Thomas Charveriat, is a creative synergy of East meets Wes, old and new, perfectly captured in this classical Chinese fan dance enlivened with a digital twist.

Jiang Weitao similarly captures the resonance of the street in his paintings. He celebrates his love of classical Chinese calligraphy with a contemporary vision, fusing Eastern and Western painting techniques in his abstractions. Created through multiple coast of thin glaze finished with lacquer, the luminosity and palette of Jang's paintings reference Shanghai's neons.
For this painting he uses the Chinese character kou meaning 'mouth', 'entry point' or 'window' that is abstracted and repeated. As an ideogram it alludes to the opening of China as it enters a new era of economic prosperity. It also has a particular resonance to SLOT as a 'window facing the world'.

The national tour Two Generations has been curated by Brian Wallace, Catherine Croll and Liu Life.