The Gravity of Moments

Suzanne Davey, The Gravity of Moments, fabric, steel, resin, 350cm x 350cm x 350cm

The Gravity of Moments is a large suspended installation that flutters in the breeze. The work is featured in Sculpture in the Glen, along with 50 local, national and international artists work and includes small indoor and large outdoor sculptures in a variety of media. The exhibition is curated by Penny Philpott and celebrates Glen Street Theatre’s 30th anniversary. It opens 5 September and continues untill 25 October 2015. The ethereal sculpture responds to its theatrical site and bushland gardens.

The Unfurling

Suzanne Davey The Unfurling 10m x 3m x 2m, recycled clothing, resin, steel

The Unfurling is a large scale site responsive installation of suspended body ‘voids’ created from recyled clothing and resin, harnessing wind and light. The work was exhibited as part of the North Sydney Art Prize 2015 at the Coal Loader Waverton.  The site is located on the shores of Sydney harbour and examines the coast as a place of sanctuary.


The Unfurling is a response to the debate surrounding vulnerable populations arriving on Australian shores and beyond, and the human costs. Individual rights and national interests are given precedence over collective human rights. Tragedy grips people dreaming of sanctuary but who are subjects to forces beyond their control through war, politics and discrimination.
Clothing is utilised as a social and cultural signifier of identity, memory and psychological ties with others. The clothes become traces of the bodies that once occupied them, ‘voids’, and on mass symbolise the collective struggles of vulnerable people. 

Wind choreographs movement in the collective and subjects them to elemental forces beyond their control. The sculptures are translucent and reflect natural light as they move.

The work was inpired by the poems of Mena Johnson, a poet that I collaborated with for the On Islands project at Eramboo Artist Environment.

The Unfurling installation detail On Islands project

The Unfurling installation view On Islands project

The Unfurling installation video showing movement, On Islands project

The Unfurling installation details On Islands project

The Unfurling bushand installation view On Islands project

The Shape of Air: exhibition at Eramboo Artist Environment

Suzanne Davey, Zest (maquette), twigs, grasses, wire, wax, 50 x 90 x 40cm

The Shape of Air was exhibited at Eramboo Artist Environment and comprised of works by installation artists Suzanne Davey and Ainslie Murray exploring the tangible nature of air and material echo. Curated by Greg Stonehouse the works investigate a range of ideas drawn from notions about air and immaterial space such as breath, presence/absence, the dissolution of architectural space and atmosphere. Both artists explored these notions through outdoor works in the Eramboo bushland as well as a range of process works in the gallery.

The Shape Of Air exhibition installation

Concepts introduced by Monika Bakke’s book ‘The Life of Air’ were explored, including thinking of air as a crowded perpetual motion component of place and as a dynamic habitat we share through the action of breathing with plants, animals (birds and insects) and microbial life. The works respond to the site by installation placement, using materials collected from it or by engaging with  the unique and special characteristics of Eramboo as a place on the urban fringe, surrounded by wild bushland.  The spatial intersections ultimately aim to investigate our dynamic relationship with the landscape; as a space where our bodies merge constantly with the environment.

The Shape Of Air exhibition installation
Suzanne Davey, Tangled, fabric, sticks, resin,
wax, wire, 110 x 250 x 10cm
Suzanne Davey, Tangled, (detail), fabric, sticks, resin,
wax, wire, 110 x 250 x 10cm
Ainslie Murray, The Liquid Air (Prototype),
aluminium, acrylic, sand, dimensions variable
Artist talk, The Shape of Air, Ainslie Murray, The Liquid Air (Prototype),
aluminium, acrylic, sand, dimensions variable

Suzanne Davey, Configuring Wonder, installation detail,
fabric, bamboo, sticks, 300 x 500 x 800cm
Suzanne Davey, Configuring Wonder, installation view with
Eramboo gallery, fabric, bamboo, sticks, 300 x 500 x 800cm

Suzanne Davey, Zest (maquette), twigs, grasses, wire, 50 x 90 x 40cm

Suzanne Davey, In Between, fabric, sticks, stone,
rope, tent pegs, 200 x 300 x 550cm

Suzanne Davey, In Between, fabric, sticks, stone,
rope, tent pegs, 200 x 300 x 550cm

 

Suzanne Davey, On the Edge, bamboo, fishing line,
 wire, paint, 80 x 180 x 450cm

On the Way to Ithaca: HIDDEN Rookwood Cemetery Sculpture Walk 2013

Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca, fabric, steel, bamboo, 320 x 350 x 750cm

HIDDEN

On the Way to Ithaca was created for the fifth HIDDEN Rookwood Sculpture Walk held at the Rookwood Cemetery; the largest working cemetery in the southern hemisphere. The exhibition was curated by Cassandra Hard Lawrie. 40 selected artists responded to themes appropriate to the site such as life, love, death, loss, memory and mortality as well as the culture around memorial, eulogy, burial and ceremony.  



ARTIST STATEMENT

Have Ithaca always in your mind.
Your arrival there is what you are destined for.
But don’t in the least hurry the journey.
Better it last for years……..

Constantine P Cavafy

However long our life may be our journey is punctuated by many beginnings and ends. These moments are marked in funerary architecture and memorial landscaping by gates, arches and avenues. On the Way to Ithaca is an ethereal response to these forms as we travel between our first and last breaths; our lives shaped by our ties and connections to one another. The installation aims to explore the tension between life and death, and the fragility of life, as we journey towards Ithaca.
Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca, installation detail

Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca

Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca, installation detail
Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca

Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca, installation view from the All Souls Chapel
CREATIVE PROCESS

Suzanne Davey, On the Way to Ithaca proposal drawing

On the Way to Ithaca, developing the work in studio

On the Way to Ithaca, installation on site

On the Edge: Coal Loader Waverton

bamboo, fishing line, paint, fabric, 70 cm h x 450cm l x 180cm w
On the Edge is an ephemeral kinetic installation exploring balance and counterbalance in the elemental landscape; the ebb and flow of tides, bobbing boats and floating buoys, and the waft of sea breezes. Inspired by the movement of cranes, it responds to the Coal Loader as a site that seeks equilibrium between its industrial heritage, community usage and as a delicate ecosystem on the edge of the harbour.

A site responsive work exhibited at the Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability, Waverton for The North Sydney Art Prize: toward 2020 exhibition 27 July – 5 August 2013



Configuring Wonder: Sculpture at Scenic World

Suzanne Davey, Configuring Wonder, fabric, sticks, bamboo, 8 m x 6 m x 1 m 

Configuring Wonder is an installation that responds to the world heritage site of Scenic World (Blue Mountains, Australia) as a tourist attraction, a natural ‘wonder’, and a delicate ecosystem. It was created for ‘Sculpture at Scenic World 2013’ and exhibited along with the work of 35 other selected Australian and International artists. 

Suzanne Davey, Configuring Wonder,  fabric, bamboo, sticks, 8 m x 6 m x 1 m

Classical notions of beauty include three ’ingredients’: symmetry, proportion and harmony. These notions are also principles of composition throughout art history and abundantly evident in the natural world. Configuring Wonderapplies these principles and explores the discord between notions of beauty and wonder and the use of nature by man. Using the ever present polygon in nature as the foundation for multiple forms they are distorted by the straining of delicate sticks against fabric, tied and tethered all while awkwardly ‘performing’ for the viewer. Between the large number of forms, and their interactions with the flora of the rain forest there is an uncomfortable striving for balance and equilibrium amongst excess (the golden mean).


Suzanne Davey, Configuring Wonder, fabric, bamboo, sticks, paint,  8 m x 6 m x 1 m


The work integrates closely with the site, allowing ferns and small trees to protrude through the installation. Over 60 fabric sculptures are configured in a large diamond shape covering 24 square metres and suspended on a wire net above the floor of the rain forest.

Configuring Wonder, detail of installation unit, fabric, sticks, bamboo, 80 cm x 45 cm x 45 cm


The fabric sculptures are varied in size and shape: some are tethered to bamboo frames and stretched and contorted; others are attached to a golden framework with sticks pushing and distorting the surface. In sunlight the forms are semi-translucent with the outline of delicate sticks visible through the fabric.

Configuring Wonder, detail of installation unit, fabric, sticks, bamboo, 65 cm x 40 cm x 40 cm
Configuring Wonder, detail of fabric sculpture units for installation


The installation was created in response to a site visit in 2012 and took into account the unique physical and aesthetic qualities of its location.


Rainforest site for Configuring Wonder
Configuring Wonder installation in progress

ADRIFT in Manly

ADRIFT, recycled polystyrene, fishing line, glow in the dark paint, bamboo
3.5 m x 4.5 m x  2 m

ADRIFT is an ephemeral public art installation created in response to Manly Esplanade; its physical qualities, and the way people interact with, and utilise the site. 

It was exhibited as part of ‘SEE: Manly Public Art Project’ along with the work of 23 artists. The project was the result of a collaboration between Eramboo Artist Environment, Manly Art Gallery and Museum and Kendal Henry, an innovative New York artist and public art curator. 

ADRIFT, recycled polystyrene, fishing line, glow in the dark paint, bamboo
3.5 m x 4.5 m x  2 m


About ADRIFT:
Manly Esplanade is a site where drifting occurs, both seen and unseen. The ebb and flow of tourists, weekenders, commuters, ferry’s and boats, wind and water is a constant. It provides escape from the day to day, respite for many socially disadvantaged people and is a site of rescue for some. Along with escapist play and respite comes the flotsam and jetsam of broken boogie boards, surfboards, fishing floats and line, esky’s and buoys drifting on ocean currents. 


These leave a dark aftermath: lethal litter for birds and sea creatures and toxic chemicals for our food chain. 

Threaded polystyrene shards (like ‘neptunes beads’ seaweed,  pearls, swimming lanes) respond gently to air currents. At night the installation glows, referencing the phosphorescence of the sea which carries the lethal drift ashore.


It started with a broken surfboard shard washed ashore and blowing around the Manly Esplanade.


Recycled polystyrene was collected and completely sealed to prevent further environmental damage.




 The coated shards were threaded on fishing line, arranged in an ‘ocean current’ pattern 
and painted with glow in the dark paint.
The final size of the installation was adjusted to the dimensions of the site.

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