# 16186

HABY, Gracia and JENNISON, Louise [Gracia & Louise]

Your nimble tread

$750.00 AUD

[Melbourne] : the artists, 2016-17. Artist’s book, consisting of title card, six cards of text, 8 original nineteenth century cartes de visite with individual collages, paint and pencil additions by Gracia Haby, 8 accompanying original pencil drawings on card by Louise Jennison which follow the photographs, colophon sheet with artists’ initials, all housed in a custom fabric box with collage screenprint. Unique edition of one copy.

In this unique artwork, the collaborative pair of Melbourne artists Gracia & Louise adorn discarded cartes de visite from another century with a wild assembly of creatures, while dressing the sepia figures in colourful costumes from the Ballets Russes. With accompanying delicate pencil drawings returning the animals and birds to their natural world, the artists create a work of incongruous whimsy, when photograph and drawing are placed side by side they form a duo of surreal realism.

‘We are besotted with paper for its adaptable, foldable, cut-able, concealable, revealing nature. In our artists’ books, prints, zines, drawings, and collages, we use an armoury of play, humour, and perhaps the poetic too, with intent to lure you closer. The animal is oft present and easily detectable, the centre of our paper stage. Hard to miss, over here and over there, the animal runs up hills, scales rooftops, and sometimes appears to take flight. Gliding through a scene it is too large to be contained within or perhaps too manmade to call home, that it has a tail or feathers or furred muzzle is not solely why its form appears. For us, the animal is there to question our very behaviour, those moral principles one governs the self by, and to explore our relationship with the natural world. The words of Gogol whisper in the ear, “the longer and more carefully we look at a funny story, the sadder it becomes.” And so, we leave our scenes open-ended, inviting you to ponder and perhaps find that things are not always as they first appear.’ – Artists’ statement

The contemporary artists’ books of Gracia & Louise Our are represented in the collections of Artspace Mackay; Bibliotheca Librorum Apud Artificem; Deakin University Library; Melbourne Museum; Melbourne University Library; Monash University Library; Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery; National Gallery of Australia; National Gallery of Victoria; National Library of Australia; RMIT University Library; State Library of New South Wales; State Library of Victoria; State Library of Queensland; Tate (UK); University of the West of England (UK).