It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to the opening of Paper Moon: a unique photographic exhibition of studio and table-top constructed photography featuring works by artists from Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia and toured by the Contemporary Art Services Tasmania.
Paper Moon presents artists who rather than using computer software to create their imagery have opted instead to painstakingly construct their own sets and props.
In creating these works through painted back-drops, props and narrative devices these artists have drawn on the types of techniques that have played an important role within the history of photographic imagery.
The artists in Paper Moon employ techniques such as painting, sculpting, sewing, printing and model making to create he subject matter for their photographs. Paper, plastic, wood and fabric are just some of the materials used to explore issues ranging from historical themes, politics, personal memory and early pictorial construction.
Amongst the many artificial props used within a photographer’s studio the romantic ‘paper moon’ always proved popular – so much so that it inspired composer Harold Arlen to pen the famous song of the same name later sung by Ella Fitzgerald.
The curator of this exhibition Dr. Elly Ray has also been inspired by the name and has sought out artists who continue to explore the potential of this artificial backdrop.
Amongst the artists featured in this exhibition include Jacqui Sockdale who has been inspired by the colonial painter John Glove, bringing together an array of characters such as Ned Kelly, a princess and a mysterious Tasmanian Tiger.
Rose Farrell and George Parkin have created images reminiscent of a Gothic asylum while Vera Moller’s sculptures have been invaded by a family of rats within these photographs.
Not all of the sets in these photographs are life size although we may not realise it.
Patrick Pound, Melanie Breen and Samantha Small have created scaled models all of which are uncannily life.
In one room an elderly woman lies sleeping while in others the inhabitants have vacated the scene.
Beyond the method of construction these works also share a sense of narrative. Like all good art, however the narrative of these works is open to interpretation.
I will now leave it you to not only be inspired by these works but to unravel and interpret the narrative that these works convey.
I now declare this exhibition open. Thank you.