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18.09.2015 – 24.10.2015

Amiel Courtin-Wilson
The American Experiment
Front and main galleries

Exhibition dates: 18 September–24 October 2015
Exhibition opening: Friday 18 September 2015, 6–8pm

The American Experiment is a new solo exhibition by Australian artist and filmmaker Amiel Courtin-Wilson. Representing a collection of expanded fragments assembled over seventeen years of filmmaking in the United States of America, the exhibition will comprise of moving image installation, audio recordings and diagrammatic endeavors to find new graphic representations of cinematic structure.

Courtin-Wilson's exhibition forms part of a new interdisicplinary research focus at Gertrude Contemporary on the ever-mutable documentary form. Where previous interdisciplinary exhibitions have seen Studio Artist Claire Lambe collaborate with dancer and choreographer Atlanta Eke (for the exhibition Miss Universal), The American Experiment specifically explores the intersection of contemporary art and documentary film. Of Courtin-Wilson's exhibition, Director Emma Crimmings says:

Courtin-Wilson's films are not strictly documentary in nature or form, but rather carefully contrived portraits of trauma and survival. Straddling a space somewhere between the real and unimaginable, his work is characterised by its combination of highly authored realist narratives with imagery that is raw, fragile, violent, impressionistic—and oftentimes staggeringly beautiful. By bringing this category-defying and often confronting moving-image work into the gallery, we hope to ignite new ways of interpreting and understanding the increasingly overlapping relationship between contemporary art and the documentary form. Additionally as an organisation that prides itself on risk and experimentation, Gertrude would be remiss if it did not present alternative contexts and structures for a range of new creative voices.

Amiel Courtin-Wilson is an acclaimed, multi-award winning filmmaker. Directing over twenty short and five feature length films, he has also collaborated with Opera Australia, Chunky Move, The Snuff Puppets, and The Black Lung Theatre Company. His video installation work has toured internationally and his films have screened at the National Gallery of Victoria, MONA, the Art Gallery of New South Wales, and the Australian Centre for the Moving Image. Courtin-Wilson’s feature documentary Bastardywon the Best Documentary Jury Prize at the 2009 Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards (FCCA), best documentary at the ATOM Awards, and was nominated for three Australian Film Institute (AFI) awards. His dramatic feature film debut Hailpremiered at the Venice Film Festival and won many international awards, including the Age Critics Award for best Australian feature at the Melbourne International Film Festival. His most recent film Ruin won the Special Jury Prize in the Orrizonti competition of the Venice Film Festival in 2013—the first Australian feature film in twenty years to win an award at Venice. Courtin-Wilson was recently commissioned to create a short film for the 70th Anniversary of the Venice Film Festival as part of a project called Venice Future Reloaded alongside directors Bernardo Bertolucci, Catherine Breillat, Monte Hellman, and Atom Egoyan. In 2014, he received the AFTRS Creative Fellowship grant for Aether, an upcoming feature film about iconic jazz pianist Cecil Taylor.

A full media release is available here.


The American Experiment features photography and moving-image work from four upcoming feature films including upcoming collaborations with renowned jazz pianist Cecil Taylor and Los Angeles–based filmmaker and artist Rick Charnoski.

Amiel Courtin-Wilson is co-writing and co-producing Rick Charnoski’s visceral debut feature film Warm Blood and the photography featured in the exhibition spans a number of research trips to Modesto California with cast from the film and a mixture of local residents from the tiny Californian town.


11.09.2015 – 00.00.0000

Danae Valenza and Simon McGuinness
The Torn Cloud
Gertrude Glasshouse
44 Glasshouse Road, Collingwood

Exhibition dates: 11 September–10 October 2015
Exhibition opening: Friday 11 September 2015, 6–8pm

Gertrude Contemporary is pleased to present a new Gertrude Glasshouse exhibition by Studio Artist Danae Valenza in collaboration with Simon McGuinness. Their exhibition, titled The Torn Cloud, reflects on the scale and potentiality of humans and their built environments. The artists write of the project:

Temporary/permanent. A scaffold bigger than the sum of its parts. Tall buildings cast shadows. From atop, people glint, pulse through streets with a hum. Flecks of stone in the pavement become a tiny phenomenon. Phone lines are electric with human voices. If you could reach so far to tear a cloud, where would you go from there?

Danae Valenza and Simon McGuinness are Melbourne-based creative practitioners who work together in many ways, often with friends and other people they meet. The Torn Cloud is their first solo exhibition together, comprising of sound, sculpture, painting, and a text by Al McKay.

As a Studio Artist, Danae Valenza has exhibited widely in Australia and internationally, including: ACCA, 2014; Gertrude Contemporary, 2010, 2014; Prawneg and Wolf, South Tyrol, Italy, 2013; Objectifs Centre for Photography and Film Making, Singapore, 2014; and Bus Projects, 2013; Blindside, 2011; Arts House, 2013; and Next Wave Festival, 2012. She has been awarded The Ian Potter Travelling Scholarship, 2013; a JUMP Mentorship Grant, 2013; an ArtStart Grant from the Australia Council of the Arts, 2012; and a city of Melbourne Docklands Grant, 2012. In 2015, she undertook the Australia Council studio residency at Suomenlinna Studio, Helsinki. Valenza has a Bachelor in Fine Arts from Monash University.

Media release available here.




18.09.2015 – 24.10.2015

Ross Coulter
Studio 12

Exhibition dates: 18 September–24 October 2015
Exhibition opening: Friday 18 September 2015, 6–8pm

Gertrude Contemporary is pleased to present a Studio 12 exhibition by current Studio Artist Ross Coulter, titled iWork. Coulter is renowned for his photographic and filmic work in which he is frequently pictured as a protagonist. iWork is a new moving-image work that captures Coulter narrating the skill set and willingness to work of the generic job applicant. Of the new film, Coulter says:

Seeking: Driving force to develop and explore new market economies. We are looking for a clear communicator, team player and independent thinker. Your ability to excel under pressure will see you thrive in this role. This is a company with a reputation as a leader and innovator in the field.  We are looking for a fresh perspective, offering flexible conditions; the base salary is the envy of the sector. This is an employment opportunity to work in a dynamic environment. Conditions. Industry. Sector. Global reach. Family-focused. Work–life balance. Ambition. Long-term. Short-term. Applicants will demonstrate effective standards-based practices. This is a unique opportunity for someone qualified in the field.

An equal opportunity employer.

Ross Coulter is a Melbourne-based artist who is currently known as the guy who is taking photographs of an audience gathered in an empty gallery, in which there is no art, watching a performance that doesn’t exist: In every gallery in Melbourne. Having shot over 70 galleries he has almost finished this project. Ross was previously known as the artist responsible for coordinating the release of 10,000 paper planes into the State Library of Victoria (the paper plane guy). He has exhibited locally and overseas but never interstate. Ross has received a number of awards, but not enough to give up his day jobs.

Image: Ross Coulter, iWork (video still), 2015.

Media release here.