Museum of Brisbane

In the spotlight: Anna Carey

Museum of Brisbane 15.5.2014 - Anna Carey_2

Anna Carey, one of the featured artists in David Malouf and friends tells us a bit about her background and which Malouf works influenced her the most.

Museum of Brisbane: When did you first realise you wanted to become an artist? 

Anna Carey: I never had a realisation or epiphany of any sort. I enrolled in a Bachelor of Visual Media because I wanted to do something creative and this course was very open, it covered a variety of visual arts such as design, photography and fine art. Over the course I started to focus on fine art electives because I enjoyed it the most and I was doing well in them. At my graduate exhibition the work was really well received so I continued making work, so I guess here I am still making work now as an artist.

MoB: You grew up on the Gold Coast, how do you think this influences your work?

AC: When I started making work at art school, the transient urban landscape of the Gold Coast was the basis that inspired my work. The houses that I grew up with, that hold many memories, were being demolished around me at a rapid speed. I think that even if my work was not specifically inspired by memory, the Gold Coast would still influence my work because it is part of my experience. Art itself can be seen as a filter of experience, I think that you can see this when looking at artists work.

MoB: What first inspired you to build the architectural models and photograph then?  

AC: Before I started to work with the technique of model making and photography, I was creating architectural models for installations. The technique of photographing the models rather than exhibiting them expressed the ideas I am interested in more successfully. The photographs of the models create an illusion of space, which is similar to the spatial experiences that I explore, such as displacement, simulacra and deception.

MoB: How did you first become involved with the David Malouf and friends exhibition?

AC: The curator Renai Grace approached me, Renai saw connections between Malouf’s writing and my work and she was spot on. I started reading the book 12 Edmondstone Street as my PHD supervisor Donna Marcus suggested I read it, she also saw the connection between our work.

MoB: Do you have a favourite work by Malouf? Which story or stories influenced your art pieces in the exhibition and why?

AC: Well I would have to say 12 Edmondstone Street, I responded to the book through my work. The book takes you on a journey through spaces and places Malouf has inhabited throughout the world, starting with his childhood home 12 Edmondstone Street. Malouf talks about the way childhood memories are never lost and always come back to haunt us. I was reading 12 Edmondstone Streetwhile travelling through California. It was timely to read his journeys through different spaces while I was experiencing my own new journeys through architectural spaces. My memories of my childhood were reverberating into my new experiences. It was just like what Malouf describes in the book, ‘memories come back to haunt us’. The architectural models for the work in the David Malouf and friends exhibition are based on my mixed memories of my childhood and travels that have stayed with me.

MoB: It was mentioned that you don’t keep the models you make for your final photographs but destroy them. Can you explain why you don’t keep them?

AC: Well there is simply no need, I build them solely for the purpose of photographing them, they do not have any other use. I destroy them and reuse the materials therefore the photograph captures a moment in my practice. It becomes a parallel to constantly changing urban landscapes like the Gold Coast.

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