to be opened by
Weekends - 702 ABC Sydney
2.30pm-4.30pm Saturday 14 May 2016
Claudia Chan Shaw
Artist in Conversation
2.30pm-4.00pm Saturday 21 May 2016
Every day a poster is pasted to a wall. It has a limited amount of time to attract attention and convey its message before some one else’s message is plastered on top. The second message fights for exposure until it suffers the same fate, when anonymous hands come along and strip the posters away, leaving only a suggestion of what might have been.
It is what is left, that accidental abstract abbreviation and the patterns they create, that fascinates Claudia Chan Shaw. Claudia has been photographing street scenes for many years.
Her exhibition, Poster Boy, explores this process of accidental layering and the stripping away of messages. Some of the resulting photographs are purely abstract, while others offer suggestions of a message, reconceptualised by the camera’s intervention. The viewer is left to fill in the blanks. Torn edges of paper divide blocks of colour and typography. The photographs capture a moment in time, a graphic ballet with constantly changing contexts.
The Poster Boy series has been taken in the streets of Paris, Barcelona, Sydney, and Melbourne. Claudia travels everywhere with her camera, recording the ever changing language of the street. She revisits favourite walls and is constantly watching, waiting for the disintegration of the posters. New posters appear in the middle of the night and cover the old messages, and the defaced wall is gone forever. She has to be quick to capture that fleeting moment.
The final images are printed poster size, reverting to the look of street posters themselves. Claudia is fascinated by the transitory nature of the ephemeral urban environment and its relationship to memory, nostalgia and beauty. While the resulting photographs appear spontaneous and random, the framing of each image is no accident. Each is curated in the camera.
Sydney born Claudia Chan Shaw’s diverse career in the creative industry spans art and design, photography, curating, television and radio, arts commentary, collecting and lecturing. She is co-designer for the acclaimed fashion label, Vivian Chan Shaw. She is perhaps most recognizable as co-host of the popular ABC TV series Collectors. She is also an author and the curator of the Sydney Chinese New Year Festival. Claudia’s lantern installation of Rabbits at Customs House delighted Sydney siders during the 2016 Sydney Chinese New Year Festival. Her photography series Poster Boy is presented as part of the Head On Photo Festival, Australia’s leading photography Festival.
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