Wired Lab: Review of interdisciplinary exhibitions

Neill Overton

    Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


    On Saturday 21 October, the Wired Lab artist-led organisation, as part of its platform for evolving interdisciplinary art practices in rural Australia, staged the agri(culture) project as “a participatory landscape-scale and omni-sensorial exploration of rural and agricultural phenomena with regional and metropolitan audiences.” Twelve interdisciplinary Australian and international artists and collectives presented creative outcomes, with the viewer/participant trekking into and through site-specific landscape installations, from early afternoon until 11pm — the art-walker on an experiential tour.

    Something in the lone, three-legged photo-boxes straddling the landscape speaks of dystopian invasion: the spindly War of the Worlds tripods landed here in a remote paddock as forerunners of a semi-remembered technology, an unravelled history of the photograph. The farmland gullies outside Cootamundra have been abruptly colonised by the unknown, the weird and the naggingly unnamed familiar.

    It included key landscape photo-installation works such as Beggan Beggan (created by NSW regional artists The Ronalds, David Burraston and Wired Lab’s Sarah Last), which constructed and navigated a traditional shearing shed viewed on blank, undulating land through the simple, stolid device of viewing boxes seemingly left idle in a paddock. The tiny dioramas seen in the boxes ‘mapped out’ the spaces and evoked a sense of a ghost-shed, resonating strongly and endemically with the land and place preoccupations of Wired Lab’s focus on agri-culture.

    As an evolving event focused on experimental, and experiential, arts practices - the Wired Lab organisation has been increasingly straddling rural, national and international importance in its objectives and impact as an organisation. In this 2017 event, it brought a leading sound artist, Chris Watson, from England to Australia - and exhibited the arts exhibition/practices of some 12 highly profiled and documented environmental, land-based, and experimental practice based artists. The works included photographic, sound, music, installation, video, new materialist, and indigenous arts - of cutting edge calibre, across the emergent fields of contemporary arts. It is determinedly global and local in its strategies of engaging experimental arts practices directed within rural Australia - it betokens the exhibition/art event value of "the regional" engaging in international cross-disciplinary idea exchanges to achieve international impact.

    RealTime is published by Open City, an Incorporated Association in New South Wales. RealTime E-ditions are published by Open City an Incorporated Association in New South Wales. Open City Inc is supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding body, and by the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy [VACS], an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments.
    Original languageEnglish
    PagesRealTime E-ditions
    Number of pages3
    Volume22 November 2017
    No.RealTime E-ditions
    Specialist publicationReal Time
    Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2017


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