• Media Releases

    Upcoming Exhibition:

    Innovators 2 Media Release

     

    Current Exhibition:

    Innovators 1 Media Release

     

    Past Exhibitions 2014:

    Witness Media Release

    Linden Art Prize Winners Media Release

     

  • A message from the Board, 10 September 2013

    The Board of Linden Centre for Contemporary Arts is extremely concerned that charges have been laid against Paul Yore.

     

    The decision to charge an artist for work exhibited in a gallery raises real questions about censorship and the freedom of artistic expression. We believe that it is the role of contemporary art to challenge assumptions and inspire robust debate.

     

    Paul Yore is an emerging artist who studied painting at Monash University. Paul Yore has exhibited in several solo and group shows in public galleries and artist run spaces including Heide Museum of Modern Art, Federation Square, The Substation, Gertrude Contemporary, Westspace, and Trocadero Art Space. He also featured in Gertrude Contemporaries Melbourne Art Fair Project Room in 2012.

     

    As this matter will be before the courts, we cannot comment on the substance of the case. Our thoughts are with Paul.

     

     

    Linden Board of Management Inc

     

  • A letter from the Chair

    Everything is f#@ked. Now what?

    We are deeply concerned about the events of recent weeks and the impact of these events on Paul Yore and the other artists involved in the Like Mike - Now What?? exhibition.

    We acknowledge that questions have been asked about our response to this matter and are acutely aware of the concerns of the community and of those who have had difficulty understanding our decision to temporarily close the gallery and seek classification for the work. These decisions were not taken lightly and were debated vigorously, with all points of view considered. Ultimately, the decision was made to temporarily close the Gallery while we worked through the complex issues which included obtaining greater clarity on the legal issues faced by Paul and the Centre and the substance of the police concerns, practical and moral rights considerations in keeping an incomplete exhibition on show with works removed by police without the artists' consent and safety and wellbeing concerns for our staff and visitors. Classification in this case serves to notify visitors of the nature of the work in terms that are well understood in the broader community, and enables us to continue to exhibit the works in the manner intended by the artist and the Gallery.

    As it became clearer that the police investigation and the classification process were going to take longer than we hoped, we became increasingly uncomfortable with the gallery being closed. As such, and on the basis that the works of the other artists, namely Fergus Binns, Trevelyan Clay & Kate Smith, Jan Lucas, Simon Pericich, Nick Selenitsch & Alex Selenitsch were not in question, the gallery reopened on Tuesday 11 June 2013.

    Yesterday, we were notified by the Australian Classification Board that elements of the work by Paul Yore are considered Classification 1 - Restricted. This means that the work is considered to contain adult content and should be restricted to people 18 years and over. We are working through what this means in practical terms and will continue to consult with all the artists and our stakeholders when making decisions about how best to proceed. It is important to note that we understand no charges have been laid against Paul and we hope this will remain the case.  The police seized a number of items from Paul's installation at the gallery and classification was sought on Paul's work in its altered form.

    We hope it can be appreciated that this has been a complex matter, where we have tried to find the right balance in managing our artistic, legal and moral responsibilities. Indeed, some observers have considered that we haven't always got this balance right. However, we can assure everyone that while it may not always be evident externally, we have been working tirelessly to resolve all the issues in a timely and appropriate way as well as manage the concerns of all the artists and our stakeholders.

    It's crucial that the issues raised about Paul's work are viewed in the context of the exhibition and the intent of his work. Like Mike - Now What?? pays homage to legendary Australian artist Mike Brown his energy and restlessness, his use of materials and his intuitive processes. From periods of pornographic collage, political satire and commentary, Mike Brown challenged art audiences with his "anything goes" approach to art making and exhibition. The artists selected for the exhibition have in some way been influenced by Mike or are working in a similar mode. The exhibition was intended to celebrate the legacy of an acclaimed and controversial artist, who pushed boundaries as contemporary art often does.

    As Paul has stated, the intent behind his work is to confront fear, boredom, confusion and apathy.  Like Mike Brown, Paul's work is conversational, confrontational and uncompromising.

    Linden Centre for Contemporary Art plays an important role in the community as a vibrant, evolving place for the creation and presentation of contemporary art; a place where audiences are encouraged to enjoy and support contemporary art and where the artist's own vision is unlimited. Our stated mission is to support and promote contemporary art by creating opportunities for artists to present innovative and uncompromising art and presenting art that encourages risk. The exhibition is consistent with our mission.

    The exhibition has re-opened and we will be extending our opening hours in the hope that as many people as possible will come and see this amazing exhibition. We hope that you have the opportunity to come and take a look and make your own assessment about the artistic merit of the work.

    Once all the controversy surrounding the exhibition has passed over, which we sincerely hope will be very soon, we very much look forward to participating in a robust discussion with the community and artists about the issues of censorship and the freedom of artistic expression.

    Thank you for your continued support.

    Sue Foley,
    Chairperson
    Linden Board of Management Inc