BETWEEN TWO WORLDS opens at gallery

13 Nov 2019

A new exhibition at Newcastle Art Gallery will introduce audiences to the depth and breadth of Chinese art forms which underpin the Middle Kingdom’s long relationship with Australia.

(16 November 2019 – 16 February 2020) comprises 62 works from 43 artists examining themes ranging from cultural identity, globalisation and migration.

“In the ever-changing landscape of a culturally diverse Australia, it becomes increasingly important to hear from the voices of those who live within the liminal space – the space between two or more cultures,” Newcastle Art Gallery Director Lauretta Morton said.

“The exhibition is an acknowledgement of an Australia that encompasses more than just the land between our shores.

“It will be a fantastic cultural offering for Novocastrians and visitors to the city over the summer months.”

BETWEEN TWO WORLDS acknowledges artists who have lived, worked in, and are connected to both, China and Australia through migration, major historical events and Australia’s agricultural and industrial developments.

It engages four generations of artists including descendants of indentured labourers from Canton/Guangdong, recent arrivals from Hong Kong, refugees who fled China during the Second World War and those who are still in the process of reclaiming their Chinese heritage.

Showcasing the work of generations of Chinese-Australian artists, the exhibition also features works of art by Aboriginal artists who are exploring their own Chinese heritage.

incorporates installation, paintings, photography, sculptures and video, including works of art from the Newcastle Art Gallery collection, the National Portrait Gallery and other public and private lenders from around Australia.

Five works from the Newcastle Art Gallery collection will be included in the display, including new acquisitions from contemporary artist Owen Leong.

“Drawing on the rich resource that is our collection is of primary importance to our local community,” Lauretta Morton added.

“To present BETWEEN TWO WORLDS, the Gallery has worked together with Newcastle-based guest curator Catherine Croll, who is internationally recognised for her diverse work promoting cultural awareness and bilateral cultural exchange.”

A range of public programs in development will support the exhibition – including Chinese New Year festivities on Saturday 25 January 2020. All details of event programming before the close of 2019 are available on the Gallery website, with more specifics about the Gallery’s Chinese New Year festivities available on request.

2019 programming

Opening Weekend Panel Discussion
Saturday 16 November 2019, 2pm
Free event, no bookings required
Join guest curator Catherine Croll for a panel discussion that introduces the exhibition’s themes. Joined by exhibiting artists Guo Jian, Rowena Foong and Peter Gardiner.

Language and Paper Folding Lessons
Sunday 17 November then every Sunday until Sunday 8 December 2019, 11.30am
Free event, no bookings required
Explore the BETWEEN TWO WORLDS exhibition, and join the University of Newcastle’s Confucius Institute for Sunday afternoon drop-in classes hosted in the space. Learn simple Chinese expressions and paper folding.

Last Fridays: Jazz, Bao and Cocktails
Friday 29 November 20195-8pm
Free event, no bookings required
Last Fridays is transforming into 1920s Shanghai, featuring music from local jazz legends Half Nelson and Bao to be served by Newcastle’s very own Bao Brothers with delicious cocktails to match.

16 November 2019 – 16 February 2020

Also currently on display:
WISH YOU WERE HERE: landscapes from the collection
26 October 2019 - 27 January 2020

Image caption (top): Pamela See (Xue Mei-Ling)
Tears for Patriotic 2008 found political poster reproduction
Les Renfrew Bequest 2009
Newcastle Art Gallery collection
Courtesy the artists

Image caption (above):
Guo Jian
Untitled #2 2006
oil on canvas
152.0 x 213.0cm
Private collection
Courtesy the artist and ARE ONE Gallery Melbourne