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WA Focus - Nathan Beard

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Based on an exploration of his Thai-Australian background, Nathan Beard’s work bridges the personal and the political. Dealing with the fluid and hybrid nature of family and cultural identities, Beard has an equally hybrid attitude to his art making. Spanning sculpture, installation, photography and drawing, the works he produces are resonant experiences of selfhood, memory and cultural heritage. As he investigates the duality of his family’s heritage he challenges what it means to grow up “Australian”. His interest in the exchange between himself and his maternal ancestors infuses his work with an emotional edge that draws audiences into his complex, but deeply felt, web of influences. Often drawing on an aesthetic inspired by what he has described as a “kitsch Orientalism”, Beard reworks elements of Buddhist icons, shrines and funerary practices. Central to his WA Focus display is Beard’s suite of mixed media photographic works titled Ad Matres. This work features manipulated images of found photographs depicting deceased relatives from his mother’s abandoned home in Nakhon Nayak, Thailand. Beard has meticulously decorated these portraits with intricate crystal patterns combining influences from various death masks and runway fashions with traditional Thai culture. ARTIST TALK | FREE 3-4pm, Saturday 8 April 2017 With an introduction by AGWA Curator Jenepher Duncan, hear from artist Nathan Beard for an insight into his practice and his WA Focus display.

When?

Saturday, April 01 – Sunday, May 28

Where?

Art Gallery of WA
Perth Cultural Centre
Perth, Western Australia

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