Archive | September 2012

On his birthday Endora gave Darrin a magic mirror which the owner can use to swap lives…

On his birthday Endora gave Darrin a magic mirror which the owner can use to swap lives with anyone he captures in it. When Aunt Clara delivers the mirror she crashes the van and the mirror shatters into thousands of pieces and so everyone in the neighbourhood can swap lives with somebody else, by Cameron Hayes, 1999-2003, oil and glitter on wood, polyptych, 56 x 87 inches overall.

On his birthday Endora gave Darrin a magic mirror which the owner can use to swap lives with anyone he captures in it. When Aunt Clara delivers the mirror she crashes the van and the mirror shatters into thousands of pieces and so everyone in the neighbourhood can swap lives with somebody else with unsatisfying consequences.

Darrin is sick of his life in the suburbs and thinks to himself he is possibly sick of his wife Sam as well. He wishes he could have been a football star instead of being stuck in this life. However, he can not identify any other life which he is certain is a better life than his own; and equally difficult to face is the prospect of abandoning his own unique potentials and “special-ness”. He is doubly thwarted by his own doing, as the successful advertising slogans thought up by himself for the company he works for, McMahon and Tate, have made it more difficult for him to identify a suitable life swap by making everybody feel fat, inadequate, and boring with bad skin.

After many attempts Darrin decides the best way to use his magic mirror is to lean it against his house and run circles around it thus producing thousands of Darrins younger than he is in the present and having the opportunities to improve his own past rather than take another life he is unfamiliar with. In this way Darrin can explore all the possible life choices he didn’t take.

However, this plan is discarded as he becomes obsessed with finding the adult women which were once the young girls he had crushes on before he reached puberty, and uses most of his younger self Darrins for this purpose. He is also desperate to have his younger Darrins re-enact episodes of his childhood where he was personally cruel or allowed cruelty to go unchallenged and victims to go unhelped. Using McMahon and Tate billboards Darrin paints the scenes from his childhood he wants corrected. One important victim of his childhood was a girl with a bowel disorder called Carty Farty, who used to get her clothes from the lost property box and as a child Darrin gave her a grubby old tennis ball for a birthday present as a joke.

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Mengele in Argentina

Mengele in Argentina, 2002-2003, oil on linen, 66 x 100 inches.

After the war in Argentina the infamous Nazi doctor Joseph Mengele is fast asleep in his caravan. He wanted to develop his research about identical twins in his lounge room, kitchen, and bathroom of the caravan that he shared with his maid/lover and her daughter. His patients’ eyes all come from the same gene pool; therefore, they see the world and themselves in a common way. Dog shows – big in Germany at the time – now take off in Argentina, as a way for people to differentiate themselves from one another. Most people try to develop their only remaining physical differences. People try to grow the world’s longest fingernails or nose hair, the world’s strongest beard or stretchiest ear. Ironically in Mengele’s eugenic paradise people walk the streets proudly displaying their intentional deformities cultivated to achieve a sense of individuality and self esteem. People look for skills that would set them apart from the Mengeleian Argentineans, like growing the world’s largest vegetables, taking the world’s longest bath, building the world’s smallest ladder, or the world’s longest backwards walk. The Guinness Book of World Records becomes the most important institution in Argentina. Scoreboards are more common than traffic lights, and unofficial world record attempts (like the longest tooth brushing) are on every street corner – until the Guinness police (wearing uniforms and armbands) move them on.

Because everyone sees things the same way, it is impossible to lie, so there is no art, no movies, and no books. Thus, the Guinness Book of World Records is able to store their records in abandoned art galleries, theaters, libraries, courtrooms, and hospitals. The lack of diversity means that there are no longer schoolyard bullies to take children’s lunch money, chase them, and fight them, so children become fat and lazy. Men can only apply for the one job, so most are unemployed, sitting on park benches, and feeding pigeons – which become fat and aggressive.

The misery of his lover’s daughter is inescapable even in her own home; scientific equipment share power points with the household items. Her discarded netball gear lies on the floor while her school friends are selecting their teams through the window. Her step-father’s world of judgement and evaluation exists inside and out.

When people share the same personality type, individual idiosyncrasies are elevated to the status of pop culture and are celebrated with mass rallies, like spoon collecting, bucket types, and playing with the Rubik cube. On this day a crowd has gathered for a bucket signing by the world famous bucket maker, Gabriel Battistuta.

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Officially Filed under ART CONTROVERSY

It’s official – Art Controversy! Prince, we need you to write the score!

Although it feels like it could just keep going Cameron Hayes’ show finishes tomorrow! Two further articles on the final stretch officially confirms this show has been an ART CONTROVERSY! Who would have thought? Apparently no-one for the past 8 years, but who knew? Melbourne City Council joined in on the act by informing the artist that his exhibition listing was taken down from their website ‘What’s On’ as it breached the Code of Conduct for “appropriated Indigenous ceremonial styles and clan motifs”. However, no-one from the council visited the show, they couldn’t explain how it appropriated styles or motifs, they couldn’t provide an explanation of due process, nor could they provide any recourse for rebuttal. Interesting! But at any rate, it provided further media attention, an extension of the show, and more visitors.

Read the article below!

The article appeared in Melbourne’s MX Newspaper, Friday 31st August, 2012

It continues! Hayes’ show at Dark Horse Experiment has been extended so you still have this week to go and see it. It’s attracted great attendance, media attention, academic interest – not bad for a cancelled show!

The gallery is open Wed – Sat 12 – 6 at 110 Franklin St, Melbourne. 

cameronkhayes

Cameron Hayes’ extensive body of work created over the past 8 years – The Incomplete History of Milikapiti – will be on show at Dark Horse Experimentgallery in Melbourne from tonight until the 2nd September.

Come and visit the show. If you have any thoughts or questions, contact Cameron. He might even be in the gallery some days.

Have a read of this article about the body of work before you go. It’s pretty interesting. And, if you can’t get to Melbourne to see the show check out this blog and the Dark Horse Experiment website for the full catalogue.

The Incomplete History of Milikapiti

When all the Whites came to Milikapiti, they gave all the Tiwis sugar, flour, beer and the dole. The Tiwi hunters – famed for their ferocity and courage – were no longer needed to hunt and kill food for the community. The Tiwi…

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