Contemporary artist and UNSW Art & Design graduate, Brook Andrew, is known for work that explores society, language, and Indigenous and non-Indigenous identities. His year-long exhibition, Evidence, presented by the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS) (Powerhouse Museum), offered perspectives on how objects can reflect, promote, and embody social change – acting as evidence of experience, need, choice, and purpose.
Andrew's exhibition Evidence took the form of large, immersive installation drawing upon the rich collections of contemporary and historical objects held by MAAS . The exhibition and research that underpinned is now available in a publication of the same name.
This new book (available for sale here) features an extensive range of images from the exhibition, exploring a diverse array of objects incorporated in the installation, such as ornamental chairs made for Governor Macquarie towards the end of his governorship by two convict artisans, a Maralinga novelty clock made from Australian mulga wood and cut in the shape of the continent, a Brown Bess musket used by British servicemen in the 1700s, a surgical table, colonial breastplates tailor-made for Aboriginal people signifying rank and position, 19th-century ethnographic photographs, and a ‘black box’ flight recorder.
In addition, the book includes an interview with the artist reflecting on his practice, an essay by legal academic Katherine Biber on the use of criminal evidence in art, and essays by MAAS curators that further explore the themes of evidence, stereotypes, interpretation and material culture through selected Museum objects.
Brook Andrew's work has been exhibited extensively nationally and intenationally at major institutions including; Tate Britain; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte - Reina Sofia; Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; Künstlerhaus, Vienna; Smithsonian Institute, Washington D.C; Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney; and the Jewish Museum, Berlin. He has worked with archival collections from Museo de América, Madrid; Museo Nacional de Antropología, Madrid; Musée d’Aquitaine, Bordeaux; Royal Anthropological Institute, London; Museum of Archeology and Anthropology, Cambridge; Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford; and the Anthropology Department of the University of Vienna.
More recently Andrew has been awarded a residency at the Musée du quai Branly, Paris as a Photography Residencies Laureate, investigating and making new work exploring the relationship between the colonial photographer and their subjects. He has also recently been awarded a prestigious three-year duration Commonwealth Government Australian Research Council grant for 2016-2018. This project titled Representation, Remembrance and the Monument is designed to respond to the repeated high-level calls for a national memorial to remember Aboriginal loss.