Domesticated: Feminism in past and future at the George Paton Gallery

The George Paton Gallery returns this 2022 with upcoming student exhibition Domesticated,.


The George Paton Gallery returns this 2022 with upcoming student exhibition Domesticated, a playful exploration of the meeting points between domesticity and feminism curated by Master of Arts and Cultural Management student Steph Markerink.

The exhibition is multi-disciplinary, promising crocheted nipples, paintings of women merging into furniture and a chandelier of granny undies.

“This exhibition examines the politics and emotion of domestic spaces, represents contemporary uses of traditional ‘feminine’ crafts, and touches on the history of the George Paton Gallery [GPG] as a hub for feminist artists in the ‘70s and ‘80s,” said Markerink.

“[T]he exhibiting of various artistic disciplines allows for multiple discussions on feminism and feminisms to take place simultaneously. Each artist uses different materials, techniques, and tools to examine their own understanding of gender and identity. Bringing these different perspectives together in the same space creates a conversation between each work rather than the delivery of a single argument.”

Supporting media will guide visitors through Domesticated with Markerink paying special attention to the creation of an informative, inclusive and accessible exhibition experience.

“[Y]ou’ll be introduced to each artists’ creative practice, invited to take part in interactive artworks, and will learn about the history of the GPG and the powerhouse feminists who have exhibited there in the past,” said Markerink.

The Gallery’s founding directors Kiffy Rubbo and Meredith Rogers were influential in establishing it as a venue for experimental and inclusive contemporary art, particularly feminist art.

In 1975 the Gallery hosted Australian Women Artists: One Hundred Years 1840—1940, an exhibition curated by recent graduate Janine Burke and, in the same year, a lecture given by American feminist activist Lucy Lippard that spurred the creation of the Women’s Art Register.

From 1994, the Gallery’s primary focus has been student exhibitions.

This history of exhibiting student work and the work of marginalised artists is married in Markerink's Domesticated.

It will be one of the GPG’s final exhibitions at Union House before the gallery moves to the University of Melbourne’s New Student Precinct.

As such, Domesticated possesses a unique and unmissable twofoldness: a farewell to the Gallery’s past with a celebration of Australian feminist art’s future.

The exhibition will feature the artworks of Bella Froebel, Ebony Hoiberg, Maddie Mo, Emily King, and Caitlin Aloisio Shearer.

Domesticated will be showing from 9-18 March at the George Paton Gallery on Level 2 of Union House 11am-5pm Monday-Friday.

There will be an exhibition closing event on 17 March 5pm-7pm.

You can find more information about the exhibition on Facebook and on the UMSU Website.


Image provided by Stephanie Markerink.

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