Last week I gave my creativity an early Christmas present. I stepped out of the humid heat and into the cool spaces of GOMA, Queensland’s Gallery of Modern Art which was showcasing the eighth Asia Pacific Triennial art exhibition. I still try to maintain the habits I started when doing Julia Cameron’s ‘The Artist’s Way’, particularly the habit of raking your inner artist on a weekly date. After attending the previous exhibition three years ago, I wasn’t going to miss the latest inspiring treat. Appreciating any form of art takes practice. You have to allow the artwork to speak to your soul in both a liminal and direct way. Its both a Yin and Yang experience, that is being receptive to the art and also taking away a new understanding and applying it in some way, shape or form in to your life. I remember reading about a remark by a great writer-one of the Margarets- either Drabble or Atwood-who said that she didn’t really care what people made of her work because once it was finished and left her domain, it belonged to others who gave their own meaning to it.
Walking through the galleries at Goma I was stunned by the cornucopia of artistic diversity. Artists from Indonesia, India, Myanmar , New Zealand, Nepal, Vanuatu, China, Vietnam and Australia were all expressing their unique view on life. Some artworks made me feel sad, like the Chinese artist whose artwork was a bicycle of flowers in memory of Tiananmen Square, others were fun like Indian dancing figures. Some were (to me) strong political statements on historical events like ‘ The Transit of Venus (Intercepted) ‘ by a New Zealand artist which consisted of a continuous film of a tableau depicting the event of Captain Cook’s visit to New Zealand and Tahiti to track the transit of Venus. This was compelling viewing where the strong cultural differences seemed to exist side by side with an air of unnatural normality.
After an hour I decided to leave and take time to reflect on the stunning pieces in this free exhibition. I vowed to return for another session, realising that I had only managed to see a third of the artworks on display