Sydney Contemporary 2019

Sydney Contemporary 2019

Sydney Contemporary returns from the 12-15 September 2019 [Opening Night 12 September] with 90+ galleries representing over 450 artists from around the globe.

Taking place at Carriageworks, the Fair offers visitors access to curated exhibitions alongside an ambitious program with over 150 events including ground-breaking installations, live performances, engaging panel discussions and kids activities from some of the world’s most respected artists.


Sydney Contemporary is pleased to offer 30% off tickets when purchasing any Art & Design book purchases in store at Kinokuniya. While stocks last.

This year’s Talk Contemporary, presented by Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund, is packed with topical conversations by industry leaders and art aficionados including artist and Artistic Director for the Biennale of Sydney 2020 Brook Andrew, radio presenter and journalist Richard Glover, fashion designer Linda Jackson, artists Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, Fiona Hall, Guo Jian and Lindy Lee, comedian Tim Ross as well as avid collector Penelope Seidler AM.

OpeningNight_EmilyParsonsLord performance contemporary_SC18_CreditJacquieManning

Join the Sydney Art Week festivities kicking off on Opening Night, Thursday 12 September, 5pm – 9pm at Carriageworks. Be a part of the art world at this exclusive event. Browse the 90+ galleries, meet the gallerists, hear from the artists and witness first time performances all while sipping on a Negroni from our Campari bar! Don’t forget the chance to confess your sins to renowned artist Tony Albert and to rock out at Nell’s ROCK GATE.

“Celebrating our fifth edition with over 90 galleries from around the globe, we are excited to present new work by the most dynamic names in contemporary art. I always look forward to our Opening Night celebrations, this year with art activations by Nell and Tony Albert, as well as a full program of performances and artist talks it’s not to be missed!” – Barry Keldoulis, Fair Director

Our selection of titles by Sydney Contemporary 2019 featured artists:


Layout 1Don’t Look Down
by Brad Rimmer
RRP $40

From ancient times to the present, the Alps have had mythological, spiritual and romantic significance. Recognisable peaks, like the Matterhorn, have become trademarks for chocolate companies and the like; their rugged profiles filtering into our everyday lives, even in places far away. Over the past century, advances in engineering have made access to viewing platforms easy in the Alps, and now thousands of tourists line up to photograph these scenic vistas every day.

For his series Don’t Look Down, Rimmer sought to alter these views, and thereby question the experience of what we already know in our collective memories. By deliberately inverting the image into an unnatural colour palette, the landscapes become foreign and unsettling.

Brad Rimmer, presenting a solo exhibition of photography with Art Collective WA, will present a book launch of his second book ‘Nature Boy’ with Anne O’Hehir (Curator of Photography at NGA) on Saturday 14 September 2PM.


9783869302058Minutes to Midnight
by Trent Parke
RRP $60

Minutes to Midnight is the ambitious photographic record of that adventure, in which Parke presents a proud but uneasy nation struggling to craft its identity from different cultures and traditions. Minutes to Midnight merges traditional documentary techniques and imagination to create a dark visual narrative portraying Australia with a mix of nostalgia, romanticism and brooding realism. This is not a record of the physical landscape but of an emotional one. It is a story of human anxiety and intensity, which although told from Australia, represents a universal human condition in the world today.

Trent Parke will exhibit with Hugo Michell Gallery – he is currently the only Australian member of the renowned Magnum Photo Agency and is considered one of the most innovative and challenging photographers of his generation


by Leila Jeffreys
RRP $49.99

In Birdland, Australian fine-art photographer Leila Jeffreys presents us with a bird-watching experience like no other, drawing birds out from their leafy shadows and airy territories and presenting them to us with the skill and intricate detail of a portrait painter. The result is a stunning encounter with some of the world’s most beautiful birds. Captured in a moment of stillness, Jeffreys’ feathered sitters reveal qualities and features that invite human projection. Birdland invites us to rediscover birds through the gaze of an exceptional photographer, and to marvel at their many-splendored glory.


TomPolo_cover_622.jpg.2000x2000_q85Paris Drawings
by Tom Polo
RRP $49

Australian artist Tom Polo uses painting and painted environments to explore how conversation, doubt, gesture, and ways of looking are embodied within abstracted acts of portraiture. His works often come from acute observations, absurdist encounters, and personal histories. Drawing on a body of work made during his 2016 residency at the Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris, Polos first book says much about his distinctive, mildly idiosyncratic approach to drawing, painting, and the portrait. The 48 imaginary portraits it presents reveal a language that proves both playful and pointed, naive yet with an astute painterly syntax and sensibility.


9780994388391-usWalking in Both Directions
by Emily Ferretti
RRP $49

The idea of duality is hardly a new one in the scope of art history. The threshing of tensions between lineages, aesthetics, references, techniques and their various counterpoints is at the core of art’s continual re-imagining and manifestation, especially in the context of the contemporary. During a career that has spanned the last decade, Melbourne-based artist Emily Ferretti has pieced together a convincing painterly vocabulary, only to gently rephrase, remold and recast it, time and time again. Walking in Both Directions arrives at a pivotal time for the artist. Bookending a three-month residency in the Australian Council’s Greene Street studio in New York City in 2015, the paintings, drawings and (in one case) major installation that feature in this book not only explore her work’s increasingly abstract, complex and faceted terrains, but her growing fascination and research into the aesthetic, compositional and philosophical underpinnings of American folk art.

Emily Ferretti will present a solo presentation with Sophie Gannon Gallery. These are a suite of new landscape paintings. Ferretti is currently in the prestigious Ramsey Art Prize at the Art Gallery of South Australia.


by Laith McGregor
RRP $64.99

Taking the major 2012 work ‘S-O-M-E-O-N-E’ as both its title piece and a point of embarkation, this book offers the first substantial overview of the recent practice of Australian artist Laith McGregor. The book assumes the similarly rigorous and rambling quality that has come to characterise McGregors scroll-like drawings, idiosyncratic sculptures, and painted gestures, honing its focus on a selection of key works created during the last five years. Made in close collaboration with the artist, it offers an at once critical and playful expression of a practice that is psychic, layered, and highly personal in its scope.


519ebomWTfLYayoi Kusama: Festival of Life
by Yayoi Kusama
RRP $74.99

Documents the artist’s exhibition in New York in late 2017, featuring a selection of paintings from her iconic My Eternal Soul series, new large-scale flower sculptures, a polka-dotted environment and two Infinity Mirror Rooms. Includes new scholarship on the artist by Jenni Sorkin, as well as a special foldout poster.




9780714870434Sterling Ruby
by Sterling Ruby
RRP $64.99

A comprehensive study of one of the most versatile artists and acute observers of our time, who fuses art and fashion American artist Sterling Ruby works in a large variety of media, including sculpture, ceramics, painting, and video art. Ruby is influenced by a wide range of sources, including marginalized societies, maximum-security prisons, modernist architecture, artefacts and antiquities, graffiti, waste and consumption, and urban gangs. Through these, he examines the psychological space where individual expression confronts social constraint.


41V7Ere5GOL._SX356_BO1,204,203,200_William Kentridge: Triumphs and Laments
by William Kentridge
RRP $70

“Triumphs and Laments” is not only a celebration of William Kentridge’s monumental frieze drawn along the banks of the Tiber River in Rome and the performance which inaugurated it, but a guide to one of his most memorable and ambitious projects. Designed with the early Baedekers in mind, this bilingual book acts as an essential component to viewing Kentridge’s erased-graffiti figures and understanding the process of their creation, with useful foldouts, a poster, and a leporello of the frieze to accompany the texts. These include a conversation between Carlos Basualdo and the artist and two essays, by Salvatore Settis and Gabriele Guercio, which explore the meaning behind the work and its resonance with the millennia-long history of the city of Rome.


61AJPAhh1XLBrett Whiteley: Art & Life
by Brett Whiteley
RRP $70

Brett Whiteley was one of the most dynamic and talented artists in the history of Australian art, an artist whose recognition had spread worldwide before his untimely death in 1992. Early in his career he established a name for himself in London, exhibiting at the Whitechapel Art Gallery and coming into contact with many British painters – Francis Bacon and David Hockney among others. His early paintings startled critics and fellow artists, but even at that point, two basic subjects were evident: the landscape and the nude, elements which became the mainstay of his oeuvre. At the root of all Whiteley’s work was a draughtsmanship of stunning virtuosity, capable of capturing all the poetic arabesque of a river in a single sweeping line of brush and ink, or the erotic curves of the human body in a few searching strokes of charcoal.

This volume presents an illuminating evaluation of Whiteley’s achievement. Works dating from the 1950s to the last years of his life, illustrated in over 180 colour plates, allow Whiteley’s career to be surveyed in its entirety. Barry Pearce, Head Curator at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, provides a comprehensive overview of Whiteley’s life and art; Bryan Robertson offers an impression of the artist’s years in London; and Wendy Whiteley, the artist’s wife and companion for over three decades, contributes an intimate portrait of the man behind the work. Superbly illustrated and produced, Brett Whiteley: Art & Life is a fitting tribute to one of Australia’s most significant artists, a man whose outstanding work excites, amazes and impresses us no less now than it did when first created.


For more details about this year’s Sydney Contemporary and to purchase tickets, visit their website.


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