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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Mike Parr: The Eternal Opening

Expect burning art, live painting and thought-provoking performances at Mike Parr's free and immersive Carriageworks exhibition.
By Libby Curran
August 15, 2019
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Mike Parr: The Eternal Opening

Expect burning art, live painting and thought-provoking performances at Mike Parr's free and immersive Carriageworks exhibition.
By Libby Curran
August 15, 2019
  shares

If anyone can turn your perception of art entirely on its head, it's revered Australian performance artist and printmaker Mike Parr. And you can expect plenty of those mental shake-ups when the legend himself descends on Carriageworks this spring, for the fifth SchwartzCarriageworks artist commission.

Running from October 25 to December, 8, this latest work from the thought-provoking Parr moves far beyond your standard gallery-hopping experience. In The Eternal Opening, an entire art gallery becomes an artwork, as a life-sized replica of Melbourne's Anna Schwartz Gallery is transplanted into Carriageworks. It sets out to reconstruct Parr's minimalist performance, LEFT FIELD [for Robert Hunter], which was held at the original gallery in 2017.

Audiences will move through the long, rectangular box of the replica gallery, while watching video footage of the original performance, showing Parr climbing up and down a ladder, painting white onto walls. As an added layer, audio from the 2017 audience's first-hand experience reverberates through the space.

The captivating exhibition is also set to show video documentation of Parr's 2016 work BDH [Burning Down The House], where hundreds of thousands of dollars (approximately $750,000) worth of the artist's own prints were artfully arranged, doused in petrol and set alight.

During the exhibition's lifetime, Parr will also host two live performances. On the opening night of the Carriageworks exhibition — Thursday, August 24 — Parr will climb ladders to paint 'unseen black squares' around Carriageworks for Towards a Black Square — mark 2 (2019). Then, in the early morning of Saturday, November 16, he will create another live work — details on this are scarce for now, but we'll let you know when more drop.

Mike Parr: The Eternal Opening will be open from 10am–6pm daily.

Images: Mike Parr, Left Field [for Robert Hunter], 2017 by Zan Wimberley

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