Exhibition: 31 May to 1 July, 2006
Andrew Best's two and three-dimensional works are personal takes on the inner and outer possibilities of contemporary urban life. Drawing in part from movies, nature documentaries, video games, and the suburban landscape, he also draws from his own experience to create evocative and iconic works.
The works in his Fall Series inhabit both the world that immediately surrounds us and the world of the uncanny. We feel intimately aware of these subjects, not because we might know them, but because we know their sense of style so well. These young urban men fall languidly, happily to their deaths, as if in a movie, video game, or fashion magazine. Indeed their expressions seem almost orgasmic, as they self-consciously surrender to their cultural environment.
This world-view permeates all of Best's work. From the collages, photographic works, paintings to sculpture, the landscape of our visual experience is reflected to us, along with our very real longings (or fears) towards life, death, or love. None of these ingredients are ever very far apart in Best's work. Within these various reconstructions we can somehow make out a clearer reflection of ourselves. His projects have ranged from the exacting mimetic handmade weeds of Paradise to an imposing ten by five metre reproduction of the video game Donkey Kong. He creates works in which "the mundane just momentarily becomes fantastic".
Andrew Best is a multidisciplinary artist, working primarily in the areas of painting, sculpture, collage and contemporary photomedia. Since graduating from the South Australian School of Art with a MVA in 2004 his work has been included in exhibitions such as 2004: Australian Culture Now at The National Gallery of Victoria, Paradise, 2003 at the Experimental Art Foundation in Adelaide, Mirage, 2003 at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, Crimes Against Wisdom, 2004 at 24HR Art, Darwin and You Must Have Been in Strange Places, 2005 at the Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia, and Gertrude Contemporary Art Spaces, Melbourne.
Best was a co-founder of Downtown Art Space, an artist-run space in a converted dodgem rink in Adelaide, a SAYAB studio recipient at the Experimental Art Foundation and in 2004 the Adelaide Critics Circle's Visual Artist of the Year. In 2005 he was selected to attend the 51st Venice Biennale as a visiting emerging artist/curator, and was awarded an Anne & Gordon International Visual Arts Scholarship. His work has been featured in Australian newspapers in most capital cities, on local and national radio and television, as well as in Time magazine, Monument, and art magazines such as Broadsheet, Real Time, Artlink, un magazine, Eyeline, Photofile, Australian Art Collector, and Art Monthly Australia. His work is represented in private and corporate collections in Australia, the UK, UAE, Norway, Sweden and the USA, and public collections including the Art Gallery of South Australia.