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Gail Hastings

To make a work of timeless art  1996

synthetic polymer on wood, watercolour on paper

dimensions variable

Museum of Contemporary Art, purchased with the assistance of stART, MCA Young Patrons, 1997


About the Artwork

Gail Hastings makes work which she describes as ’sculptuation’: a combination of sculpture and situation. Her work is a conversation about space and objects, and about the ideas that arise through their interaction and in different situations. She is most concerned with the twentieth-century understanding of minimalism, but transformed into a contemporary idea that explores the language of space and materials, and involves the active participation of the viewer.

To Make a Work of Timeless Art includes watercolours, wall painting and a number of large three-dimensional objects. The space created – the sculptuation – is between the watercolour floor plan and the actual objects within the room in which one stands.

Although the work is timeless – ever extending, all encompassing, encyclopedic, the whole (hence general) – it is given scale by 'this moment’ (a particular). If one of the couplets is missing, the work hasn’t scale. Scale is an object thing. A situation thing. A person thing. We, ourselves, are a particular amongst the general. If we lose sight of either, we lose sight of ourselves.

Gail Hastings, 1996

Gail Hastings

– About the artist

Born 1965, Perth. Lives and works Sydney.

Gail Hastings’ practice is informed by 1960s minimalism and the idea of created space. Her works, which she describes as ‘sculptuations – a spatial architecture that loops back on itself’, are sculptural situations concerned with the activation of real space through objects and form, and the active participation of the viewer.

Hastings was included in the inaugural Primavera exhibition at the MCA, Sydney in 1992. Since then she has exhibited widely, both nationally and internationally. Selected exhibitions include Less Is More, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne (2012); Minimalism and Applied II: Dialogues of Contemporary Art with Aspects of 20th Century Design and Architecture, Daimler Contemporary, Berlin (2010); Sculptural Situations: Gail Hastings, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, Perth (2008); Overheard Conversations: Sculptural Situations by Gail Hastings, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney (2007); Pitch Your Own Tent: Art Projects / Store 5 / 1st Floor, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne (2005); PLANS: A Sculptural Situation by Gail Hastings, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne (2003); art idea no.8,582,048, Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin (1999); Bahnwaterhaus, Galerie der Stadt, Esslingen, Germany (1998); and All This and Heaven Too: Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art 1998, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (1998).
Hastings’ work is held in numerous public collections throughout Australia, as well as a number of corporate collections internationally. The publication Missing: Four Sculptuations by Gail Hastings, was published in 2014.

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