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Backspace Gallery presents a vibrant program of exhibitions which showcase contemporary art, craft and design and celebrates the arts in our region. Backspace Gallery, managed by the Art Gallery of Ballarat, provides artists and curators the opportunity to exhibit in a professionally supported gallery.

There is no fee to exhibit in Backspace Gallery. The City of Ballarat supports the gallery and exhibitors receive assistance with installation and publicity, and an opening event.

An annual call for applications will be made in the first quarter of each year. All applications for inclusion in the program are evaluated by a selection committee, and are based on the written application and supporting material.

Preference will be given to applicants living or working in the City of Ballarat and the wider Grampians and Central Highlands Region. Applications from artists outside this area are welcome but should demonstrate a connection or benefit to Ballarat or region.

OPENING HOURS

Thursday – Sunday
12 pm–4 pm

CURRENT EXHIBITION

Panmela Castro, Caminhar, 2017 (detail), digital photograph

BEYOND 50% 

7 March 2019–24 March 2019

Beyond 50% focuses on the ways in which art can be used to influence cultural change, looking specifically at artists who seek to change the culture surrounding gender-based violence. It presents work by six international and Australian artists who identify as activists, craftivists, agitators and feminists.

Curated by Felicity Martin

This project has been supported by the City of Ballarat. 

PUBLIC PROGRAMS

International Women’s Day talk and morning tea
Friday 8 March, 10.30 am
Guest speaker: Kim McConville, Executive Director, Beyond Empathy  

This event will also be the launch of the book Tinder Machina by Catherine Gomersall, one of the artists participating in the exhibition.

READ MORE

Opening event
Saturday 9 March, 2 pm 

Craftivism workshop with Tal Fitzpatrick: Making with meaning
Saturday 16 March, 2 pm – 4 pm

READ MORE

EXHIBITIONS COMING SOON

Domestic Punk, Renovator, 2018 (detail), digital drawing on paper

WOMEN’S WORK 

28 March – 14 April 

Ballarat-based artists Laurene Dietrich, Amanda Fewell, Heather Horrocks, Lucinda Horrocks, Emma Lea, Domestic Punk and Kate Vivian have each made new work that directly responds to the titled theme of the exhibition in a range of mediums: poetry, assemblage, soundscape, textiles, ceramics, word art and illustration. The works offer personal interpretations and explore the concept through representation, celebration, embodiment and analysis, revealing familiar themes in new ways. 

Curated by Amanda Fewell.

PUBLIC PROGRAMS

Opening event
Friday 29 March, 6 pm 

Women’s Art Register information session and workshop: Saturday 30 March, 1 pm–4 pm

Liz Blizzard, The You Yangs, 2018 (detail) mixed media

EXPRESSIONS OF LANDSCAPE: TIME AND FRIENDSHIP 

18 April 2019–5 May 2019

The friendships between Jan Alexander, Liz Blizzard and Angela Robinson span 30 years and they agree that time and thought are needed to develop a concept, to interpret, learn from, absorb and reflect on one’s work. In this exhibition of their work 2D and 3D they express their admiration of and respect for the natural environment.

Curated by Angela Robinson.

PUBLIC PROGRAM

Opening event
Thursday 18 April, 6 pm
Speaker: Wadawurrung artists Aunty Marlene Gilson and Deanne Gilson
Music: Mick Trembath

Jack Morph title TBC (detail)

EXTEMPORE: IMPROVISATION, SERENDIPITY, SPONTANEITY

9 May 2019–26 May 2019

This exhibition explores how different artists accommodate or even encourage the unanticipated or the unexpected in their work. Extempore encourages and investigates the creative process of a group of artists for whom improvisation, serendipity, and spontaneity are vital to their practice: Pam Andrews, Alexandra Bell, Konii C Burns, Mason Chamberlin, Len Hyatt, Jack Morph, Pauline O’Shannessy-Dowling and Dawn Whitehand.

Curated by Kiri Smart.

PUBLIC PROGRAM 

Opening event
Friday 10 May 2019, 6 pm

Liz Souter, Trinket box, ca. 1990, Jacaranda twigs,hazel wood, handmade paper, beads

LIZ SOUTER RETROSPECTIVE: FOUR DECADES OF BASKETMAKING

30 May 2019–16 June 2019

Liz Souter turned basket-making into an art form, creating sculptural works from home-grown and recycled materials. Her stitched baskets, made from threads such as precious silks and indigo dyed camel hair, could take many hours to make. She travelled widely absorbing influences from other cultures but was always original with a richness and fine eye for decorative touches.

Curated by Kate Souter

PUBLIC PROGRAM

Opening event
Friday 31 May, 2019, 6 pm

Image: Liz Souter, Trinket box, ca. 1990, Jacaranda twigs,hazel wood, handmade paper, beads

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