14 October 2022: An incredible series of art installations has been erected across the University of Canberra campus this week, as part of Canberra’s art biennial.
Contour 606 – featuring six works spread across the grounds – is operating as part of three events of the same theme across Canberra – Contour 556 (Lake Burley Griffin) and Contour 656 (National Arboretum).
Each event name represents the elevation of the installation location, and was conceptualised and curated by University of Canberra alumnus Neil Hobbs, partner at Harris Hobbs Landscape Architects.
“The initial idea for Contour 556 was a case study for my creative practice PhD. My supervisor suggested that the creative practice component could be a curated exhibition,” Mr Hobbs said.
“I decided that the designed lake landscape could be a good foil to present art in – highlighting the design and planning of the lake and national triangle.
“After the 2020 event, we looked to further expand the festival. The National Arboretum had always been a site worth exploring, but UC came to my thinking after a discussion with Julian Raxworthy.”
Mr Hobbs aims to integrate art into the public realm through ephemeral events like Contour 606. The event at the University of Canberra has been co-curated by Associate Professor Julian Raxworthy – Discipline Lead of the Landscape Architecture program – and Ben Ennis-Butler, senior lecturer and Program Core Coordinator, Design.
“Ben and Julian were the satellite curators for the UC site, and responsible for artist selection. I’m really pleased with the group they have selected,” Mr Hobbs said.
Artists involved in the exhibition include Martin Kirkwood, Suzann Victor, Elliot Bastianon, Ben Ennis-Butler, SueAnne Ware, Miranda Cunningham, and Cate Consandine.
Students from the University have also been involved throughout the process – by designing the logo and branding for the event and putting together a website.
Dr Ennis-Butler said it has been fantastic to see the community come together to create the artworks and contribute to the event.
“The branding was developed in the Professional Evidence (Design) unit last year and the concepts for the website were also contributed to by our students,” he said.
The works will remain in place until 29 October, and more information can be found on the Canberra Art Biennial website.