Ten Artists Offer Their Take on Australian Kitsch
A contemporary spin on the colourful tea towels, flasks, stubby holders, and bottle openers of old.
Patriotism is problematic, but there's nothing controversial in the colourful kitsch of a Luna Park bottle opener. Put on by Third Drawer Down Studio in collaboration with the National Gallery of Victoria and Arts Project Australia, AUSTRALIANA is a collection of practical works of art designed by ten of Arts Project Australia's artists. The collection marries the long tradition of Australian kitsch with a genuine love of the country's culture, icons, flora and fauna, sporting everything from tea towels and cooler bags to pot holders and pins.
These everyday materials make the art inherently accessible and public—they exist beyond the gallery. So, while you might not be able to make it to one of the venues where the collection is sold, it is not unlikely that you will run into Cathy Staughton's loud portrait of The Luna Park Sydney Harbour Bridge on the end of your friend's bottle opener or a steal a sip from a scenic hip flask by Peter Francis.
You can find AUSTRALIANA at the Design Store at the National Gallery of Victoria and at Arts Project Australia, or online at on Third Drawer Down Studio. Arts Project Australia will also be exhibiting a selection of the original artworks until March 11.