The third location on our Urban Walkabout Tour is the solo exhibition located at the Paddington Gallery by artist local Blak Douglas.
“In this suite of paintings, there’s I revisit one of my formative exhibitions when I first arrived in Sydney – a landmark show titled – A Sign of the Crimes. In that exhibition, I restyled generic road signs we are all too familiar with and gave them a satirical makeover.
In this exhibition, we see several pieces of a similar vein. Take for example ‘How fast are you going now?’. This piece came to mind when recently driving through a National Park in Western Sydney. As we drove down a dirt track in the middle of the bush, my dear friend who accompanied me commented: “That’s hilarious, you should paint that”. So with a twist, here we see a fictitious version. ‘230’ – the total years of Colonial occupation on Aboriginal Country. Given the amount of country highways I see, there are stretches where speed limits could definitely increase. In this piece, despite the ‘speed’ being 230, we are continually constrained and henceforth dealt the wrath of the law if disobeyed. The metaphor I see here is reflected in the Colonial law under which Aboriginal peoples have been forced to live. (As a developing ‘Nation’) WE ARE KEPT AT A PACE THAT IS GOVERNED BY A GROUP OF PRIVILEGED WHITE MEN IN ORDER TO PREVENT OUR WORLDLY EGALITARIAN ADVANCEMENT.” – Blak Douglas