THERE’S a new gallery on the burgeoning Kingston Foreshore, and it’s opening tonight.
I was walking by the Foreshore just before the International music festival opening on Friday night, saw the signs and and wondered what it was, later serendipitously receiving an email from architect Rodney Moss, the brains behind the new venture.
It’s about connecting artists and architects and activating public spaces, says Moss, who has dedicated the gallery’s opening exhibition, to his friend and critic Richard McPhetres.
“Through the eyes of an Architect” will feature work by Moss and fellow architect, Claire Reece and is to be opened by Denise Ferris, head of the ANU School of Art, this evening, Wednesday May 6.
“We are setting up a gallery to activate the public space in an interesting and creative way,” Moss says, “We are also setting up a stronger relationship between architects and artists…we want art embedded in buildings and not just ‘plop’ art”
Moss, a fellow of Cox Architecture, has spent his life as an architect recently holding a professorial fellowship and now an adjunct professorship at UC.
“One of the things I tried to teach young architects was to draw to think, not think and then draw. There is a huge difference…The pencil or pen should be an extension of the brain just like a champion golfer’s clubs are an extension of themselves.” Moss says he has applied the same principle to painting—“Let the painting take over, Go with it and see what happens,” he advises.
Both Moss and Reece, as practising architects, are interested in painting and interpreting landscape as a composition.
Moss says he explores the space that exists within the horizontal plane where earth meets sky, whereas Reece looks at the ground plane and the patterns of occupation that dwell there. His grid of paintings may be viewed individually or as a whole. “Landscape through the eye of an Architect” is an exploration of the South Coast and Kimberly regions of Australia in which Moss has “transgressed” into acrylic on canvas, while retaining the “vulnerability of mark-making as a process of progression.”
Reece’s landscape paintings digress from big skies and horizon lines, instead filling the frame with ground plane and focusing on the patterning presented by light, landforms and their occupation. Her works depict the National Arboretum, which as a designed environment offers forms and geometries to challenge ‘the dominance of a governing horizon-line’. Each work is layered using translucent washes of colour that describe the early morning light or late afternoon blush of the landscape.
“Through An Architect’s Eye: Rodney Moss & Claire Reece,” in Cox Gallery, at Cox Architecture, 1/19 Eastlake Parade, Kingston Foreshore, open to public weekdays May 7 to June 5.