Know the artist

ACU’s Dr Catherine Bell has paired with Arts Project Australia artist Cathy Staughton for the upcoming group exhibition Knowing Me Knowing You. The duo have come together to showcase their videos and paintings developed in collaboration over 2013.

Curated by Lindy Judge, Knowing Me, Knowing You matched 10 Arts Project studio artists with 10 contemporary Melbourne artists.  Each pair worked together over a year to develop new work.

Judge said Knowing Me Knowing You was about relationships between very different artists. “The Arts Project artists use visual media as a potent tool for communication while external artists have a sophisticated practice that’s enhanced by their ability to communicate verbally and in writing,” she said.

Dr Bell said she and Ms Staughton had wanted to produce a video that reflected their similarities rather than their differences.

“We both love animals, enjoy dressing up, have a wicked sense of humour and like performing,” she said. “The idea had been brewing for some time to do a performance with my dog Archie, and this was the perfect opportunity to explore it because I knew Cathy loved animals.  Sitting alongside Cathy while she painted my dog was the conclusion to a series of face-to-face meetings at Arts Project and Cathy’s home over the year.”

“We have built trust and that is an important part of the collaborative process. Cathy’s openness to working on different subject matter, letting me film and direct her performance at her home, look through her photo albums, take photos in her domestic space, and her willingness to let me observe her painting and make suggestions demonstrated this trust.”

The exhibition was opened on 8 February by The Hon. Heidi Victoria MLA, Minister for the Arts, at the Arts Project Australia Gallery in Northcote, Victoria, and will run until 15 March.

For more information and an interview with Catherine Bell visit the Arts Project website.