At the above
Level 1, 198 Gertrude St
WAS IN RESIDENCE
15.07.22 — 25.07.22
This solo exhibition of Joshua Searle (Australian/Colombian) explores themes relating to childhood, Black genius, joy, colonisation, urbanisation, cross-cultural experiences, industrialisation and psychology.
Featuring a new body of work, this is Searle’s fourth solo exhibition in a year since he held his first show in July 2021.
Continuing with his environmental practice of painting on and with found materials, including reclaimed canvas, real estate auction signs and cabinet doors, this series features his most ambitious scale to date; with large canvases that explore the inner workings of the mind and memory and childhood experiences of racism and violence.
Dragons feature throughout as a symbol drawn from childhood, along with Searle’s signature motifs of Western urbanisation and industrialisation: the car, towering buildings and smoke stacks. The exhibition delves into an exploration of colour and optics, experimenting with a mix of materials: acrylic paints, house paints, spray paints and oil sticks.
Painted to the genius of Kendrick Lamar’s Bricolage rap they explore issues of identity and investigate the history of cultural and financial theft by empire: gold Colombian masks held in the collection of the British Museum, the practice of redlining which denied people access to fundamental rights of housing and security, the exploitative or slave labour of resource production. These are countered with joyful colours and strong representations, a reclamation of the artist’s self, through self-portraits and the use of the bright, bold colours drawn from his heritage.