Environmental edge to Emma Hack’s new Eden exhibition

Emma Hack is the only solo artist on the Adelaide City Council’s Emerging Curator’s program for 2014. The opening of Eden will be marked by a keynote speech by Dr Jonathan Trent. 

Eden and Wallpaper Mandala, two exhibitions by wildly successful local artist Emma Hack, will round out the 2014 Adelaide City Council’s Emerging Curator Program. Carollyn Kavanagh, the outgoing inaugural emerging curator, tells The Adelaide Review she had always planned to close her year’s program with Hack. “She’s the only solo artist on the program all year. She can fill a room; more than fill a room,” says Kavanagh. The Emerging Curator is tasked with programming both the Adelaide Town Hall and the Art Pod, and the Pod is getting something a little bit different for Kavanagh’s final exhibition. Hack has been branching out from the bodypainting that made her name, going into collage, textiles and upholstery. Chairs designed by Hack will be placed in the window space, along with cushions and Florence Broadhurst wallpaper. Councillors will then hold meetings in the window space, using the chairs as functional furniture, more than art. “We wanted to play with that voyeuristic idea,” Kavanagh says. “You can see what it’s like, living in a goldfish bowl.” To open Hack’s Eden exhibition at the Town Hall, Dr Jonathan Trent will present a keynote speech. Dr Trent is a world-renowned scientist and an expert on biofuels. His project at the moment is convincing people that algae could be used as fuel. The choice of keynote speaker is quite unique, particularly for an art exhibition opening. Kavanagh says this has been in the works for a long time. “Emma is really into conservation, ethical concepts, and looking after the earth,” she explains. “She always wanted a conservationist to speak at her opening.” Dr Trent’s arrival in Adelaide for Enviro’14 was “fortuitous”. “I chased him for about four months,” says Kavanagh. “It’s very fortuitous that he’s here at the right time, and he is very generously volunteering his time.” Kavanagh explains that the scientist is a “frustrated photographer” himself, when he has time between convincing the world to adopt more environmentally friendly approaches to living. The exhibition will run until Friday, November 14.

Emma Hack Eden exhibition

Opening: Thursday, September 18, 5.30pm – 8pm. Artist talk: Tuesday, October 7, 12.30pm. Exhibition dates: Thursday, September 18 – Friday, November 14. Where: Adelaide Town Hall (Level 1, 128 King William Street) and Art Pod (25 Pirie St, Adelaide)

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