New work by Australian artist Ricky Swallow is showcased in The Bricoleur, now showing at the Ian Potter Centre, NGV. Swallow’s work explores themes of mortality and immortality, with the inexorable passage of time a common thread that connects his sculptures and watercolour paintings. Painstakingly and beautifully forged, his sculptures poignantly record the discarded and mundane objects that may survive us, revealing their participation in the construction of our identity and illuminating the temporality of our own lives.
Transforming wood, bronze and plaster into old boots, barnacled skulls and balloons, Christo-inspired wrappings and dismembered body parts, Swallow’s work enthrals, delights and repels simultaneously — a sure sign of art that has true longevity. This major exhibition is well worth a trip to Melbourne over summer.