John Nixon and Jan van der Ploeg in The Kaleidoscopic Turn, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia

John Nixon and Jan van der Ploeg in The Kaleidoscopic Turn,  National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, AustraliaAnne-Marie MAY, Untitled (Construction of coloured rays), 1993
Coloured felt
122.4 x 122.4 cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Margaret Stewart Endowment, 1994
© Anne-Marie May, courtesy Murray White Room, Melbourne

March 20 – August 23, 2015

The Kaleidoscopic Turn brings together works by artists working with colour, light, sound, movement and space. Drawn from the collection of the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and featuring a number of recent acquisitions, The Kaleidoscopic Turn resonates with references to various artistic legacies of the 20th century from Op art to colourfield painting, offering a range of multi-sensory experiences including immersive installations, kinetic sculptures, video art, works on paper and painting in its diverse and expanded forms.

Tracing connections between a range of artists experimenting with pattern, repetition, light, colour, movement, space and various optical and kinetic effects from the 1960s to now, The Kaleidoscopic Turn aims to provoke active engagement with its audience in intense and lively ways. Whilst focusing largely on contemporary Australian art, The Kaleidoscopic Turn will include a selection of works by international figures, such as Bridget Riley’s dynamic experiments in Op Art, Martha Boto’s kinetic sculptures and Zilvinas Kempinas’s dazzling air and video tape installation. In doing so, The Kaleidoscopic Turn will explore the nature of perception from diverse artistic positions.

Artists in the exhibition include Martha Boto, Angela Bulloch, Eugene Carchesio, Olafur Eliasson, Marco Fusinato, Briony Galligan and Rafaella McDonald, Diena Georgetti, David Harley, Melinda Harper, Matt Hinkley, Robert Hunter, Zilvinas Kempinas,Ross Manning, Anne-Marie May,  Elizabeth Newman, Johnny Niesche, John Nixon, Tomislav Nikolic, Bridget Riley, Sandra Selig, Jesus Soto, David Thomas, Jan Van der Ploeg and Victor Vasarely among others.

Included in the show by Jan van der Ploeg is WALL PAINTING No. 401 clean (2015),courtesy Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney. Jan van der Ploeg first created wall paintings on the sides of buildings in his home town of Amsterdam. In WALL PAINTING No. 401 clean, basic, linear components painted in alternating directions confuse the distinction between foreground and background. Van der Ploeg employs simple, familiar shapes – such as these delicate blue and bright orange zigzags – combined with high-keyed colour and shifts in scale to create dynamic installations that encourage us to reconsider the architecture of the space we inhabit.

Included in the show by John Nixon is Colour mountains 2  (2014), a digital video, courtesy of Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney. John Nixon uses his paintings as the starting point for this film, creating different colour and black-and-white reproductions of them through digital filmic processes. The film uses a rapid succession of shapes, colours and permutations on a formal theme to create a dynamic retinal experience, while referring to nature in the simplified triangular form of the mountain. Colour mountains 2 has been constructed from eight primary units that have been used to generate a multitude of images through variation, reversal and inversion. The looped work suggests a continuous stream of time, with no real beginning or end.