July 29, 2015 - Institute of Modern Art - Patrick Staff and Dale Harding
July 29, 2015

Patrick Staff and Dale Harding

Patrick Staff, The Foundation (still), 2014. HD video, 28 minutes. Co-commissioned by Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane; Chisenhale Gallery, London; Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; and Spike Island, Bristol. Co-produced by Chisenhale Gallery and Spike Island. Courtesy of the artist.

Patrick Staff: The Foundation
8 August–10 October 2015

Dale Harding: White Collared
8 August–19 September 2015

Opening: Saturday, 8 August, 6pm

Institute of Modern Art
420 Brunswick Street
Fortitude Valley
Brisbane, Queensland, 4006

T +61 (0) 7 3252 5750
ima [​at​] ima.org.au


The Institute of Modern Art (IMA) is pleased to present a major film installation by Patrick Staff, The Foundation, co-commissioned with Chisenhale Gallery, London; Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; and Spike Island, Bristol. In this new work, Staff explores queer intergenerational relationships negotiated through historical materials. The film combines footage shot at the Tom of Finland Foundation in Los Angeles – home to the archive of the erotic artist and gay icon and a community of people that care for it – with choreographic sequences shot within a specially constructed set. 

The legacy of Finnish artist Touko Laaksonen (1920–91), better known as Tom of Finland, spans multiple generations. Tom of Finland’s work made a considerable impact on masculine representation and imagery in post-war gay culture. Rather than focusing on Tom of Finland’s work, however, Staff’s film evokes the foundation as a set of relations. Staff explores how a collection is formed and constituted; the communities that produce and are produced by a body of work; and ideas of intergenerational relationships and care. Through observational footage of the house, its collections and its inhabitants, the foundation is revealed as a domestic environment, a libidinal space, archive, office and community centre; a private space which is also the home of a public-facing organisation and the source of a widely dispersed body of images. 

Patrick Staff is based in London and Los Angeles. Selected exhibitions, screenings, and performances include Scaffold see Scaffold, The Showroom, London; Art Turning Left, Tate Liverpool; L’Heure Des Sorcieres, Le Quartier, France (all 2014); Mental effort Before Action: 1-5A-5B, South London Gallery; A Factory As It Might Be (Bournville), International Project Space, Birmingham; Society is a Workshop, Banff Centre, Canada (all 2013); and Chewing Gum for the Social Body, The Tanks, Tate Modern, London (2012). Staff took part in the LUX Associate Artists Programme in 2010/11 and was the inaugural White Building/Lux Collection Residency artist (2014). 

The Foundation Publication
A book departing from the project is being released in conjunction with the exhibition and features texts by Isla Leaver-Yap and Catherine Lord, as well as an interview with Staff and the Tom of Finland Foundation’s S.R. Sharp. The publication is a collaboration between Institute of Modern Art (IMA), Contemporary Art Gallery (CAG), Chisenhale Gallery, and Spike Island. It is published by IMA, Mousse Publishing, and CAG.

Dale Harding: White Collared
Alongside The Foundation is White Collared, the IMA’s inaugural Green Room exhibition by Brisbane-based artist Dale Harding. Harding is a descendent of the Bidjara, Ghungalu and Garingbal peoples of Central Queensland, who has gained recognition for works that explore the untold histories of his communities. White Collared presents imagined artefacts of mission times in Queensland’s recent history when the Department of Native Affairs, Police and Church Missionaries imposed total control over the lives of Aboriginal people.

The Green Room is a new dedicated space at the IMA for projects with a connection to our region. The Green Room is not unlike its namesake at a theater or television station, where contributors meet before and after the event to engage in discussions that often differ from those in the limelight. These moments “just before” and “right after” provide a space for less scripted meetings and experiences.

For more information about the IMA or the exhibitions, please contact Sarah D’Ardenne at sarah [​at​] ima.org.au, or call T +61 (0) 7 3252 5750.

The IMA is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, and from the Visual Arts Board of the Australia Council for the Arts, and through the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian Federal, State, and Territory Governments. The IMA is a member of Contemporary Art Organisations Australia (CAOs).

The Foundation is supported by Arts Council England Grants for the Arts, The Elephant Trust, the Genesis Prize, and the IMA’s 40th Anniversary Funds.

With thanks to the Tom of Finland Foundation.

Patrick Staff and Dale Harding at the Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane
Institute of Modern Art
Share - Patrick Staff and Dale Harding
  • Share
Click to subscribe to e-flux and be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements
Subscribe to e-flux
Be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements.
Subscribe to architecture
Explore the most recent content from e-flux architecture and urbanism
Subscribe to e-flux programs
Keep up-to-date on all upcoming talks, screenings, and exhibitions at e-flux in New York