Artist. Dale Harding
Organisations. IMA, Liverpool Biennial
Dale Harding – b. 1982, Moranbah. Lives and works in Brisbane, Australia.
In 2018 Dale Harding created a new wall-based work for Tate Liverpool, UK on the occasion of the Liverpool Biennale. This work was inspired by rock art sites in Queensland, he employed a stencilling technique practised by his ancestors. Reckitt’s Blue, an ultramarine pigment and optical whitener is the main material used in the work, it possesses a strong symbolic power. This pigment was produced in the UK and used in Liverpool’s public washhouses, it also travelled along the colonial frontier to Africa and Australia, where Harding’s mother used it in her job at a laundry. This new work tells stories of female labour in the UK and Australia, connecting histories from different parts of the globe.
In 2019, Harding’s solo exhibition Current Iterations occurred at the IMA Brisbane from 9 Feb – 30 Mar, this exhibition brought together new and recent works by Dale Harding that focus on the dislocation of objects by museum practices, as well as the living culture of Australian Aboriginal people activated in and outside the confines of art. The show carefully addresses the relocation of objects, the creation of architecture and landscape in sculptural form, and the learning and activation of culture through carving and stenciling with mouth-blown ochre by Harding and other members of his community. Harding’s practice of cultural continuity is both urgent and constantly evolving; it creates opportunities for shared expression.
For the past five years, Harding has realised many complex and large-scale projects in Australia and around the world. His practice is grounded in stories that continue the cultural lineages of Harding’s Bidjara, Ghungalu, and Garingbal ancestry. He also references and destabilises European and American art historical traditions, including Colour Field painting, Minimalism, and performance. Some works involve stories from the artist’s maternal family line, and others draw on the techniques, tools, and iconography that are present in Carnarvon Gorge—a significant cultural site for the Indigenous peoples of Central Queensland.
Harding’s continually evolving practice shifts and re-centers meanings within his previously shown works, as such, Current Iterations includes both a newly commissioned work and previously created works that have been re-created, re-enacted, and imbued with new layers of meaning reflecting the changing landscape of the artist’s practice and the pressing issues arising from the world around him.
Dale Harding has exhibited in Beautiful world, where are you?, the Liverpool Biennial (2018), Soon Enough: Art in Action and Art and shops, Tensta Konsthall (2018); From will to form, the TarraWarra Biennial (2018); Continental Drift, Cairns Art Gallery (2018); Documenta 14, Athens/Kassel (2017); The National: New Australian Art, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney (2017) and many more.
The Keir Foundation is delighted to have supported Harding’s exhibition at the IMA Brisbane and his participation in the Liverpool Biennale 2018.