Art & Design

Art Beat | Every Art Show You Absolutely Need To See In October

By Emma O'Neill
4th Oct 2019

White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List
White Rabbit Gallery Then | Urban List

It’s the final long weekend before Christmas and if you aren’t going away, there are still some new sights to see in your own city.

Marvel at the weird and wonderful contemporary Chinese art treasures at White Rabbit Gallery, join the art world version of the Flat Earth Society or get lost in the abstractions of Gregory Hodge at Sullivan+Strumpf—Sydney’s galleries are always keeping our art scene fresh. And just for those who are heading out Byron-way, we’ve got a special out-of-towner exhibition here for you too.

Fictions: Gregory Hodge


You may have seen his giant hanging installation at Sydney Contemporary (or on Instagram via your mates who attended). Gregory Hodge’s lavish swirls of paint on aluminium cut-outs were suspended among bustling gallery booths at the art fair, and definitely caused a stir. This month Zetland gallery Sullivan+Strumpf will come alive with Hodge’s illusory large-scale pieces that are part-sculpture, part-painting.

And to pair with works that seem to ebb and flow before your eyes, Baden Pailthorpe’s hyper-real animations, video and sculpture engage with power, politics and the cultures of late capitalism in a simultaneous show at Sullivan+Strumpf called Asset Pack.

When: Until 19 October


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White Rabbit Gallery

Rabbits generally have a lifespan of seven - 10 years, but it's safe to say White Rabbit Gallery will last a great deal longer. The gallery is celebrating a decade since opening with a throwback to their very first exhibitions in 2009 and 2010.

THEN captures the excitement and delight of their founder and director, Judith Neilson on her first few visits to artist studios in Shanghai and Beijing. There is a giant blob like creature, dissected to reveal a treasure trove of jewellery and cosmetics by Chen Fei, a porcelain red car with a giant 11-metre tongue by Chen Wenling, and a flashing pair of enormous pink underpants. The exhibition is weird and wonderful enough to rival the likes of MONA (but you won’t have to catch a plane to get there).

When: Until 26 January 2020


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Flat Earth Society

Cement Fondu

Did you know there are still some who believe that the whole scientifically-proven, kind of blatantly obvious “earth-is-round” thing is a big conspiracy?

The Flat Earth Society was founded in the 50s and has gained momentum recently in the age of the internet. Thousands around the world believe that if you sail a ship far enough across the horizon you could fall into eternity and that pictures of a round Earth are scientists playing tricks on us. The latest exhibition at Cement Fondu riffs on how today’s technology bends and folds the truth but has also expanded possibilities of painting. Featuring artists Jonny Niesche, Rochelle Haley, Michael Staniak and Rachael Mipantjiti Lionel, the show will open on the 12th October with DJ’s, live performances and refreshments courtesy of Young Henry’s. We’ll see you there.

When: Opening Night Saturday 12 October (6-8pm). Exhibition continues 12 October – 8 December


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Michael Stiegler: On Bowery

Lone Goat Gallery

Fashion week paparazzi are more interested in capturing the sidewalks than the catwalks with good reason. New York’s pavement, in particular, has become known as the apex of street fashion. Photographer, fashion designer and illustrator Michael Stiegler has committed the many faces, flairs and graces he saw stalking the streets of NYC to a collection of painting, illustrations and mixed media. Just like the city itself, the works in his latest Byron Bay show On Bowery at Lone Goat Gallery possess frenetic, magnetic energy and present a gritty portrait of a place the artist once called home.

When: October 4 - October 29


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Chrissie Cotter Gallery

Variety is the spice of the latest exhibition at Chrissie Cotter Gallery. The show, Fourteen, is named after the number of emerging artists who will presents their ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking, and multimedia artworks this month at the Camperdown space. Among them is Cameron Stead, winner of the 2017 Kilgour Prize, well-known Sydney talent Allessandra Joseph and Insta-famous Neva Hosking. With most works prices under 1K and all under $5,000 the exhibition promises to draw emerging and savvy collectors alike. 

When: Opening Night Wednesday, October 9 (6-8pm). Exhibition continues October 10 - October 21


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These Walls Could Talk

Chandos and Atchison Street, St Leonards

It’s a big moment when men share intimate details of their internal struggles, but The Big Anxiety Festival is full of these kinds of moments. Initiated by UNSW, Australia’s largest mental health festival is on now with a range of exhibitions and activations across the city until Saturday 9 November. Head to St Leonards to see how artist Cameron Cripps-Kennedy has joined forces with renowned Aussie poet Omas Sakr and the kids at Bradfield College to create These Walls Could Talk. The large-scale installation brings important conversations about mental health to the fore and invites the public to get involved. 

When: Until 9 November  

While you're here, check out the best art galleries in Sydney

Image credit: White Rabbit Gallery

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