NOLA FARMAN: UNTITLED
Polished white shapes unexpectedly round themselves up out of their materia mater, cast concrete that has been meticulously sanded then clad with fine layers of paint. Built up from within while simultaneously holding themselves back, Farman's objects enact a quirky drama of force and resistance--refusing to go along with the formation of something familiar.
Encountering these oddly iconic shapes, we see in them what we like. One knots back on itself in an instant of containment from which it threatens to erupt. Another looks as if it might implode, take the world inside like a venus fly trap. But for the most part Farman's shapes open into the spaces around them, their silky surfaces inviting us to trace contours with hand or eye.
Generously, they lend themselves to our reading of them, our being read by them. Jointly and severally these related shapes compose an essay on form in the making, a coming into being under pressure that is nonetheless free to engage the imagination. In this act of viewing/reading, we become Farman's co-creators of what might be a three-dimensional Rorschach test.(extract from essay by Caroline Bourke)
NOLA FARMAN: AOCA (Hons) MA (Hons) PhD
AWARDS & RESIDENCIES: Farman has received two Australia Council Fellowships (1997 & 1993) and two Premier's Awards in Western Australia both in 1995 In the same year she received the Mundaring Arts Centre Inaugural Prize for Self-portraiture. In 1991 she was awarded the Diploma of Honor at the Prix Ars Electronica, Linz, Austria for The Lift Project. She has been an artist in residence at the Cité international des Arts; Chiang Mai University (Thailand)and several Australian Universities & TAFEs.
COMMISSIONS: Farman has been commissioned to produce a number of permanent and temporary artworks in prominent sites throughout Australia & in Singapore. Many of these works are on a large scale and engage with environmental and ecological principles with an emphasis on interactivity. EXHIBITIONS: Art Gallery of Western Australia; the MCA (Sydney); Gallery East (Sydney); the Plimsoll Gallery (Hobart); Casula Powerhouse (Sydney); Chiang Mai University (Thailand); the IMA (Brisbane); the Linden Gallery (Melbourne); Stephen McLaughlin Gallery (Melbourne); Artplace (Perth); the Women's Gallery (Fitzroy); the EAF (Adelaide); The Performance Space (Sydney); the PICA (WA); Fremantle Arts Centre & regional Galleries throughout Australia.
BOOKWORKS: Farman produces artists' books under her own imprint - The Garden Path Press
COLLECTIONS: MOMA (New York); The Bibliotheque Nationale (Paris); National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa); the Tate Britain; Art Metropole (Canada); the Royal Society, London, UK; Baltic Centre, Gateshead (UK) & the Centre Livres d'Artists, Saint-Yrieix-la-Perche, (France). In Australia the Art Gallery of WA; and several private collections.
REVIEWS & PROFILES have appeared in international publications such as art_public, Issue No 33 (www); Leonardo; Art in America; Studio International; Der Prix Ars Electronica: Compendium of Computer Arts; Music Today (Tokyo) & Sound Arts (Kobe). In Australia, Monument; Object; Indesign; ArtLink; Eyeline; Art & Australia; The Australian Art Review & Photofile
The question of how to explore the intricate nature of the human body while simultaneously embarking on a journey to discover new insights into art making has been one of the great paradoxes to confront Western artists since the beginning of the twentieth century. My approach to this exhibition has involved an exploration of the intricate functions of the body rather than an attempt to describe external structures. The work is informed by both an extensive personal history working in hospital and health care systems, as well as through western medical literature, imagery and diagrams - particularly images relating to pathophysiology, microbiology, and medical imaging.
The medical model of understanding the human body is based upon surveillance: the body under the scrutiny of many types of recording technologies which feed data bases, which in turn serve to classify and define the boundaries between wellness and illness. Much of this data is converted into practical knowledge through visual interpretation by means of medical imaging technologies. Medicine is now free is slice and explore the body without the use of the scalpel, and to employ the medical gaze with greater intensity than ever before. Beyond the original diagnostic intentionality of the scan dwell the potential for new meanings which become more illuminated when re-presented outside the accepted cultural domains (hospital/gallery). Within this shift, visual knowledge is free to become entwined with symbolic knowledge and the potential for a rich dialogue between the body and art may be generated which is simultaneously contemporary and historical..
1985-86 Certificate Fine Arts, Liverpool College of TAFE
1989-92 Bachelor Creative Arts (Hons), University of Wollongong
1991 Paintings & Sculpture 1991, Illawarra Technology Centre
1992 A Genealogy of Mortals, Paintings & Video installation, ITC
1993 150373 Paintings & Sculpture, Mary Reibey Gallery, Sydney
1996 The Artist Stripped Bare Paintings & Sculpture, King Street, Newtown
2000 Razorback from Sawadee Paintings & Drawings, Camden Art Gallery
2008 Body-Language Paintings, works on paper & video art, Caloundra Regional Art Gallery, QLD
2009 Somatoforms Paintings, works on paper & video art, FCA Gallery, Wollongong
2010 More Body-Language Paintings, video/sound art Hervey Bay Regional Gallery, QLD
1989 Problem With drawing Camden Art Gallery
1989 Past & Present Long Gallery, University of Wollongong
1990 Big Fish Eat Little Fish Long Gallery, University of Wollongong
1990 Homage To Van Gogh Campbelltown City Art Gallery
1991 Past & Present Long Gallery, University of Wollongong
1992 Young Australian Contemporary Art Perth Institute of Contemporary Art
1994 Brush With The Bush Wirrimbirra Wildlife Sanctuary
1995 Brush With The Bush Wirrimbirra Wildlife Sanctuary
1996 CANdid: Creative Arts Network Campbelltown City Art Gallery
2009 Birds Maleny Art Gallery QLD
1989 St. Gregory's College Art Prize
1990 St. Gregory's College Art Prize
1990 Stonequarry Festival of Arts Prize
1992 Stonequarry Festival of Arts Prize (Drawing)
1992 Camden Art Prize
1995 Stonequarry Festival of Arts Prize
2006 Commended Finalist Sunshine Coast Art Prize
2007 Finalist Sunshine Coast Art Prize
2009 Finalist NSWNA Short Film Festival
2001 Artist in Residence, International Emergency Nursing Conference, Wollongong