– Highlights

highlight
Mca Collection

MCA Collection

29 Mar - 31 Jul

highlight
Exhibition

Telling Tales

02 Jun - 09 Oct

highlight
Exhibition

New Romance

30 Jun - 04 Sep

– Learning Events

highlight
Workshop

Booked out Out Soyo Lee’s Cactus Grafting Workshop

01 Jul, 10.30am, Level 2: Seminar Room

highlight
Talk

Artists In Conversation

02 Jul, 3.00pm, Level 3: Creative Studios in NCCL

highlight
Workshop

Junior Art School

16 Jul, 10.30am, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

– News from inside the MCA

Where do artists get their ideas from?

Artist Educators Stephanie & Athena are interviewed by kids about their art practice more

Meeting Jumaadi: MCA Kids Committee

Siobhan learns from artist Jumaadi about his shadow puppet performance The Life and Death of a Shadow more

MCA X PITCH ZINE Digital Zine

The MCA has collaborated with PITCH ZINE to create a digital zine in anticipation for the 9th annual MCA Zine Fair this weekend. more

– Spotlights from the collection online

highlight
Volume One: MCA Collection

Works from the MCA Collection

highlight
Collection Artist Interviews

Watch our latest interviews in the MCA Video Portal

highlight
Joint acquisitions by MCA and Tate

The Program promotes Australian art globally, helping Australian artists reach new audiences.

avoiding myth & message: Australian artists and the literary world

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)

Duration

07 Apr 2009 to 12 Jul 2009

Artists

Vernon Ah Kee, Micky Allan, Gordon Bennett, Vanessa Berry, Maureen Burns, Tim Burns, Destiny Deacon, Christopher Dean, Rosalie Gascoigne, Shaun Gladwell, Patrick Hartigan, Tim Johnson, Ruark Lewis, Colin Little, Robert Macpherson, Noel McKenna, Rose Nolan, Mike Parr, Sweeney Reed, Sandra Selig, Noel Sheridan, Imants Tillers, John Tranter, Richard Tipping, Peter Tyndall (solo work and collaboration with Phillip Tyndall and Gerald Murnane), Phillip Tyndall, Jenny Watson, William Yang

Curator: Glenn Barkley

about the exhibition

avoiding myth & message: Australian artists and the literary world explored the rich and varied links between Australian visual artists and the Australian literary world, with a particular emphasis on poetry. The works were drawn primarily from the MCA collection, with a selection of additional works from artists and local collections. The exhibition looked at some of the major themes within the Australian literary and visual traditions and considered some areas where the two forms overlap: the landscape and the interior, text and image, urban life, politics and the personal.

avoiding myth & message featured works by artists working within an illustrative mode; artists who use words and texts within their practice or are influenced by concrete poetry (a fusion of text and image, treating words and form as the medium itself) and practitioners who adopt a more poetic, narrative-based approach.

The exhibition included ephemera, artist books, self-published and media-based works, along with individual writer and artists’ texts, performance footage and works that traced the emergence of feminist, multicultural and gay voices within the literary and artistic scenes. The exhibition also included important historical works by key figures within the Australian literary and artistic worlds and more recent works by a younger generation of artists inspired by literature’s ability to create a visual world based on language.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

Various Artists Ltd
  • A package deal assembly book
Vernon Ah Kee
  • Whitefellanormal/blackfellame
Maureen Burns
  • Self portrait 1999
Destiny Deacon
  • Adoption
  • Axed
  • Meloncholy
  • Whitey's Watching
Shaun Gladwell
  • Portrait of Michael Dransfield
Tim Johnson
  • Alienation
  • Poem
  • Spare parts
Ruark Lewis
  • FALSE NARRATIVES
Colin Little
  • Preliminary for cover for a package deal assembly book [A book of sixty poets and artists co-edited by Nigel Roberts, Tim Burns and Amanda Stewart with publisher Dave Morrissey] (green trees on blue)
Robert MacPherson
  • All English Literature - unwritten [Art Projects]
  • EATING, SLEEPING, LYING, SITTING, STANDING, WALKING, RUNNING, LAUGHING, WEEPING, BREATHING, PROCREATING
  • I see a can of paint as a painting unpainted
  • Little Pictures for the Poor
Rose Nolan
  • Homework
  • Homework
Mike Parr
  • Black Box of Word situations, variation 3
  • Box containing Possibilities (3) 1971, Poem event 1971, and Manuscript 1993
  • Various Ideas
Imants Tillers
  • Rendezvous with configuration p
Richard Kelly Tipping
  • The Sydney Morning volumes 1-4
Peter Tyndall
  • detail A Person Looks At A Work Of Art someone looks at something
  • The literature club

In the Shop