26 October - 15 December 2011

Curators: Rhonda Davis and Andrew Simpson

Effy Alexakis
Will Ashton
Margaret Benyon
Stephen Birch
Arthur Boyd
Iain Brew
Margaret Coen
Lexodious Dadd
Shay Docking
Fan Dongwang
Stevie Fieldsend
Louise Fowler-Smith
Michael Gillings
Roland Hemmert
Hens Heysen
Deborah Kelly
Rosemary Laing
Janet Laurence

Arthur Murch
Ron Oldfield
Axel Poignant
Alexander Seton
Kate Shaw
Garry Shead
Patrick Shirvington
Jon Rhodes
William Robinson
Peter Solness
Chris Tobin
Leanne Tobin
Fred Williams
Ken and Julia Yonetani and Kasia Zieminksa
Fiona Lowry
Alexander McKenzie
Barayura Mununggurr and Ruark Lewis
Chris Tobin & Lexodious Dadd

Arboreal explores the way trees are more than just biochemical entities but living cultures within their own right and capable of collecting narratives of historical and contemporary importance. The exhibition designed as vignettes, will incorporate the indoor museum space with that of the outdoor Arboretum museum to engage viewers with the different ways we understand and interact with nature

Taking a social history view of art, tree narratives, which have touched diverse and connected themes of exploration, colonialism, exploitation, environmental degradation and indigenous sacred sites and knowledge, are of vital importance to our current understanding of the environmental crisis we now all face.

The changing depiction of the tree over the historical period will be explored in relation to the changing views about national identity. In the current climate we feel contemporary artists have extended the dialogue to make us aware of the importance of protection to safe-guard trees as sacred eco-spiritual objects which is of contemporary socio-political relevance. The exhibition will comprise a variety of media including painting, photography, holography, video and installation art.

Trees - Fred Williams
Fred Williams (1927-1982), 1963, oil on board,
Macquarie University Collection
Copyright estate of Fred Williams
Photography Effy Alexakis, Photowrite