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Contemporary Art Archive 2: Lyndal Jones - The Prediction Pieces

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)


05 Feb 1992 to 22 Mar 1992

Curator: Sue Cramer

About the exhibition

This exhibition drew upon Contemporary Art Archive, a developing collection within the MCA of rich and diverse primary, documentary and source material by contemporary Australian artists. It focused on the work of Lyndal Jones, a performance and installation artist who had been working on the Prediction Pieces since 1981, a series of ten works produced over a period of ten years. The Prediction Pieces are multi-disciplinary, time-based works which combine elements of theatre, music, visual art, dance, photography (slide works) and video.

'Central to all the Prediction Pieces,’ Jones has written, 'is an examination of the acts of prediction… the processes through which we arrange our future(s) within our minds and hence our ability to plan, to intervene. It is an examination of the foundations upon which we can organise and create change.’

Included in this exhibition were several pieces from the artist’s archive, including pages of scripts and writings, 24 photographic slides used as back projections during the performance, audio cassettes used for the soundtrack, a VHS video of Prediction Piece 1, documentary photographs, and a plan of the work in the George Paton Gallery in 1981. Also included were the black shirt, trousers and red shoes used as the artist’s costume in all of the Prediction pieces.

The Prediction Pieces introduced the notion of prediction through reference to the I Ching, tarot cards, astrology and weather forecasting. Readings from each of these systems of prediction suggested ways in which we construct our self-image and our paths into the future. Phrases were repeated throughout the series such as 'watch this space’, or 'and as the sun sinks slowly on the West’, creating an atmosphere of suspense as the future unfolds.