January 8, 2010 - Fremantle Arts Centre - Guy Benfield open for business
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January 8, 2010

Guy Benfield open for business

Guy Benfield
Mother Door Spirit Level, 2007
Performance, Jack the Pelican Presents, New York

GUY BENFIELD:
Expanded Ceramithéque Drug Time Present

30 January – 14 March, 2010

Fremantle Arts Centre
1 Finnerty Street, Fremantle
Western Australia
Open 7 days, 10am-5pm

www.fac.org.au

Guy Benfield is open for business at Fremantle Arts Centre. Expanded Ceramithéque Drug Time Present is a frontier pottery shop which celebrates the questionable stylistic choices of the 1970s and their accompanying utopian impulses.

An outcome of a recent residency, Benfield’s exhibition is a raucous happening which draws on the bohemian aspirations of his own parents. In the guise of a quasi-anthropologist, Benfield fulfils a life-long yearning to learn pottery as he immerses himself in the brown, encrusted ceramics which the decade produced – relics whose weight and texture came to be suggestive of a more progressive décor and lifestyle. Benfield unashamedly embraces the transformative rhetoric which has long been associated with the crafts which fell out of favour but is back with a vengeance.

Expanded Ceramithéque Drug Time Present is a recuperative gesture to the decade which now labours under the orthodoxy that it is the decade that style forgot. The result is a chaotic installation incorporating over 150 locally produced ‘poo brown’ ceramics from the City of Fremantle Collection. The exhibition initiates viewers into the mysteries of backyard raku firing, ‘pot’ smoking; and our flawed attempts to re-cast the world through social practices which are organic and close to home.

Reflecting a worldwide revival of interest in the seventies, Benfield takes his inspiration from the Californian Mojave Desert; the infamous pottery scene from the film Ghost; and late twentieth century communal living. Informed by absurdist theatre, Expanded Ceramithéque Drug Time Present embodies all the vulgarity that has come to characterise Benfield’s work.

A participant in The Bon Scott Project at Fremantle Arts Centre in 2008, Benfield’s residency and exhibition are an expression of Fremantle Arts Centre’s continuing desire to generate both local resonance and international reach across its multi-arts programs.

Guy Benfield is represented in Australia by Kaliman Gallery, Sydney, and Uplands Gallery, Melbourne. Whilst his recent projects include Erratic Anthropologies (with Shana Moulton and Rancourt/Yatsuk) at Art in General as part of Performa 09, Benfield’s work has also been shown at Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland; Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne; Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius; and Zacheta National Gallery, Warsaw.

Fremantle Arts Centre

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