Cover image of the review
Reko Rennie, OA_RR, 2016-17, video still, three-channel video, sound, edition of 3 + 2AP. Image courtesy the artist and STATION.

No Easy Answers, Build Your Home, What Remains, Reko Rennie OA_RR

29 Apr 2023
Murray Art Museum Albury (MAMA) 10 Mar - 16 Jul 2023

Mum’s the word on the streets of Albury. It’s quiet, but there’s a hum around the Murray Art Museum Albury (MAMA), which was renamed as such during its 2015 redevelopment, joining a growing collection of maternally-monikered art museums. Originally built as the city’s Town Hall in the Victorian era “wedding cake rococo” style, the bride then underwent a facelift to match her fellow yummy-mummies MoMA and MUMA. The result? Glass prisms, white walls and double-height atriums that entice a renewed influx of urbanite acolytes.

Installation view of No Easy Answers, 2022. All works by Wilmer Wilson IV, Murray Art Museum Albury. Photo: Jeremy Weihrauch

Consider me enticed. Freshly alighted from a freshly discounted V/Line journey from Southern Cross station (a return trip now costs $7.20), the exhibition that I’m greeted with on the ground floor is What Remains. It centres on six recently acquired works by First Nations artists, made in response to the changing conditions of Country and the subsequent temporalities of erosion and death. Each artist included takes this on with specificity to their homelands, yet the show feels grounded, literally: it revolves around Remain (2015), a series of ceramic works by Nicole Foreshew that are sculpted and glazed using the surrounding Wiradjuri land’s clay and pigments. Their forms appear heavy, emanating a centrifugal force that holds the surrounding works from the permanent collection rapt in vigil. These wall works expand the photographic focus that MAMA’s collection has retained since the inception of their acquisitive National Photography Prize in 1983.

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