The Theatre is Lying is the first in this series of exhibitions, and encompasses major works by Anna Breckon and Nat Randall, Sol Calero, Consuelo Cavaniglia, Matthew Griffin and Daniel Jenatsch.
Constructed as an exhibition in five acts, The Theatre is Lying brings together artists who create alternative narratives and worlds through illusionary, cinematic and theatrical devices, including installation, misé en scene, historical re-enactment, digital montage and compositions with video, light and sound. In a series of new commissions, participating artists explore the manipulation of information and images, notions of artifice and illusion, ideals of transparency, reflection and phantasmagoria, and an engagement with the representations and misrepresentations of cinema and media.
Through the white cube of the gallery and the black box of cinema, The Theatre is Lying proposes the gallery as a transformative threshold addressing ideas of truth and fiction, perception and abstraction, and the warping of time and space. The exhibition also considers the role of the spectator as an active agent in a world in which we are all actors, and the increasing interplay between subjective and objective, or psychic and social structures. Set against theatres of media and politics that are increasingly informed by trickery and sleight of hand, The Theatre is Lying offers a means to reflect upon, critique and even escape – if only momentarily – the everyday reality of our fictive life and times.
The Macfarlane Commissions series is presented by the Macfarlane Fund, a new philanthropic initiative (established 2017) to honour the life of respected Melbourne businessman Donald (Don) Macfarlane, who took immense pleasure in the arts throughout his life.