PULSE: Reflections on the Body, Canberra Museum + Gallery

Curated by Mark Bayly

18th October 2014 - 22nd February 2014

PULSE: Reflections on the Body asks us to consider three vital questions:
What are the constituent elements of the human body? What relationship do these have to our health, and to pathology? What drives us to define what is a ‘normal’ body? And ultimately, how do our views on the body inform what we think it is to be human?

PULSE is a Canberra Museum + Gallery project incorporating the work of twenty five contemporary Australian artists. Consisting of an exhibition, a performance program, and a series of floor-talks and public conversations, the project is curated by Mark Bayly, CMAG’s Assistant Director, Exhibitions and Collections.

The artists who are collaborating to realise this project all reflect on the body and its functions – as physical as well as spiritual phenomena.  Some artists focus on system failure and our eventual mortality while for others the body is a vehicle for contemplation of an interior, or spiritual, life.  Other artists respond to the challenge of living out their personal cultural and sexual journey in societies where values such as tolerance and inclusiveness cannot be taken for granted.

On one level every artist who takes the body as their theme invites their audience to become a participant in their work. This is often via a process of assessment; where the values modelled in the work on display are assessed against our own values.