Paul Adair - A.S.S (Artificial Spatial Systems)
Exhibition: 3 August to 3 September, 2011
For Paul Adair, undertaking a residency in Los Angeles was an ideal opportunity, fascinated as he is by everything ersatz. His interest has been driven by the desire to replicate and repeat things, and to highlight the artificial. In earlier series Decoy (2005) and Three-Hole Mountain Inn (2008) each photograph's precise formal composition gave way to the crudeness of his self-made constructions. In these new works he is moving from photographic representation of things in space to explore the material based world as ‘total image’, or an expanded photographic space.
During the 3 months he spent in LA in 2009 he collated data for future works in the form of photographs. The sprawling geography of LA was overwhelming, so he embarked on smaller journeys to discover something else, if not the city itself. He started documenting water fountains he encountered, using traditional black and white photography - much like Ed Ruscha’s series of documented spaces around Los Angeles. His photographs document not-architecture, not-landscape and not-sculpture. His fountains consider the value and function of artificial spatial systems, which includes their pictorial space.
In addition to the photographs of fountains, Adair has cast a series of artificial rocks. Highly coloured, the pigmented polyurethane resin rocks bask in an unlikely magenta light. These rocks continue an investigation of production as a process of thinking, and of casting as a photographic condition. The production of a replica form which is grounded in its representation of the actual - but are ’other’ or ‘in between’ as non-functioning, functional things.
Paul Adair has enjoyed success early on in his career, exhibiting widely even before completing his BA Visual Arts with 1st class honours (2005). In 2003 Adair was included in the group show Fresh Cut, at the Institute of Modern Art, and the solo show, A Perfect Crime at Starter Space, Queensland Art Gallery. He has had solo shows in Queensland Centre of Photography & Logan City Art Gallery (2006) and was also included in the group show Hatched, at Perth Institute for Contemporary Art. More recently (2009), Adair has exhibited Three-Hole Mountain Inn as part of the Museum of Brisbane's Temperature 2 group show and at the prestigious Photo LA in 2007 and 2009. Adair's works have been acquired by both corporate and institutional collections.