On 21 March a group of fifteen art teachers and arts professionals participated in a masterclass with acclaimed contemporary artist Emily Floyd. Participants collaborated to make sculptures in response to Floyd’s new public art commission This place will always be open 2012 using workshop materials and processes that could be translated to the classroom.
MUMA’s opening exhibition for 2013, Richard Bell: Lessons on Etiquette and Manners, has attracted plenty of media attention already. The Age interviewed Bell for this video clip and article by Sonia Harford.
MUMA has teamed up with Monash University Facilities and Services to bring Ronnie van Hout’s R.U.R (2008) sculpture to the Clayton campus centre. The fallen robot was exhibited in the Ian Potter Sculpture Court at MUMA in 2011 before retiring for a sojourn in country Victoria. By popular demand, R.U.R has been coaxed back, dusted off and installed at the newly developed Union Loop Plaza outside the Clayton campus centre in time for students returning for 2013.
A permanent version of van Hout’s 8 meter long lounging robot was commissioned by The Dowse Art Museum in Lower Hutt, New Zealand. Watch their feature on Ronnie and the making of Fallen Robot (2012).
Artists’ Proof #1 and Artist Masterclass: Expanded Sculpture with Emily Floyd
Emily Floyd with teachers at the expanded sculpture masterclass
A group of eighteen art and design teachers from the Schools Access Monash (SAM) program enjoyed a professional development event at MUMA on Tuesday 13 November.
MUMA’s Acting Director Geraldine Barlow led the first part of the program with a guided introduction to Artists’ Proof #1. Geraldine initiated a discussion around how Jonathan Jones’ installation Untitled (posts) 2012 relates to the Gippsland landscape through his selection and use of particular found materials. She followed with an exploration of Rose Nolan’s engagement with the visual language of constructivism and her collaboration with MUMA volunteers to install the wall drawing Big Words – YOU SEE WHAT I’M SAYING (condensed version) 2012. The teachers also considered Ash Keating’s elaborate production process for the performative video work West Park Proposition 2012. Throughout the morning Geraldine articulated how the MUMA curators worked with each of the exhibiting artists as they resolved their commissioned projects, giving the teachers a unique insight into the development of this initiative.
The second session was led by acclaimed Melbourne artist Emily Floyd. Emily presented a three hour expanded sculpture masterclass inspired by her new public sculpture commission, This place will always be open 2012. Emily explained the development of this playful and vibrant piece in terms of both its aesthetic link to Bauhaus typography and conceptual relationship with the notorious student radicalism at Monash during the late 1960s and early ’70s. In addition, she introduced a selection of her previous work and ongoing interest in education theory. Emily focussed on pedagogy and how this is expressed in particular education projects she has developed for GOMA and the MCA, exciting teachers with her proposition that the immersive aesthetic of a typical school art classroom is a form of expanded sculpture. The practical aspect of the afternoon invited teachers to explore a series of approaches to sculpture for themselves, offering materials and techniques that could be translated to the classroom.
– Melissa Bedford, Education and Audience Development, MUMA