Ideology and Artefact (with Malayalam text)

2013

Mythopoetic: Women Artists from Australia and India

Webb Gallery, QCA, Brisbane

The exhibition Mythopoetic: Women Artists from Australia and India surveys an

emerging visual culture developing in a milieu that encompasses the Asia Pacific and

South Asian contemporary art scenes. With a curatorial framework developed as a

response to Donna Haraway’s anti-essentialist stance, appealing to women to move

beyond the confines of the binary oppositions that had dictated the prevailing

gendered representations of them, and create new mythos; ‘Mythopoetic’ offers an

array of alternatives visualising 21st century perceptions of gendered experience. In

the 22 years since Haraway made the statement,

‘Though both are bound in the spiral dance, I would rather be a cyborg than a

goddess’. 1

women artists have developed sophisticated and unique methodologies to engage

with popular cultures to fashion their own mythologies, creating new archetypes and

symbolic language. Emerging Australian curator Marnie Dean borrows Haraway’s

notion to anchor visual culture to critical theory in a cross-cultural dialogue that

highlights the existence of ‘zones of connexion’ and ‘intersections of affinity’ in the

visual languages and practices of Australian and Indian contemporary women artists.

The places of interconnection or kinship and mutuality in ‘Mythopoetic’, are identified

in an open space in which cultural difference and diversity are embraced as rhetorical

indices demonstrating the foundations for visual cultures’ contributions to knowledge

systems.