Was in Sydney at the weekend hoping to get out and do some street photography but wasn’t feeling all that inspired so I wandered over to the Art Gallery of NSW and down into the contemporary art section. Noticed on the way that the ‘police wall of remembrance’, where they list officers killed in the line of duty and which I had never seen before, is located just next to the gallery. I found a bit discomforting the juxtaposition of a police monument and an art gallery that is supposed to house freedom of expression. Then maybe it doesn’t.
A function of art is to present to the public works that can be like a hypotheses, that go beyond the known and accepted and ask – what if? The public can respond, we can have a debate but that requires freedom of speech and expression. Below are a few pictures I took in the contemporary section.
Needless to say the walls themselves were bored and what might make a good work of contemporary art? An acquaintance who is lucky enough to reside in Berlin exhibited three stacks of a gay-boy magazine he published for a short while. The work challenged social conventions related to what can be considered ‘beautiful’ and I’m sure, sparked more than a few heated debates. Here nothing sets a foot outside of the strictly enforced boundaries of a nation in which the mere fact of being an artist means guilt is established.