Three Weeks Ahead of the Opening of Australasia's Largest and Most Diverse International Art Fair from 12-15 September, Sydney Contemporary Announces Final Program Events

Sydney Contemporary
Aug 28, 2019 2:18PM

Movana Chen, Body Container Comes to Life in London, 2012. Courtesy the artist and Flowers Gallery, London, New York & Hong Kong

For 2019, Sydney Contemporary and Artspace announce Hong Kong based artist Movana Chen as the first performance recipient of the International Artist in Residence Program. The program is a residency opportunity is offered annually with a participating gallery proposing an international artist to live and make work in Sydney in the lead up to the Fair.

Movana will be based in the renowned artist studios of Artspace, Woolloomooloo over the coming weeks to develop a work to present as part of the Performance Contemporary program. The work titled ‘Body Container’ will involve the collection of old maps of Australia and the Woolloomooloo neighbourhood and weaving them into costume. Movana’s studio will become a performance space of making and interaction; whilst collecting she will experience the city through reading, exploring, knitting and performing.

Sydney Contemporary is pleased to announce three artists from Little Orange, the Campbelltown Arts Centre working studio for contemporary Western Sydney artists who identify with disability. Artists including Adam Jones, Joel Beers, and Imogen Jade will present performative work. Little Orange is facilitated by Western Sydney contemporary artist and curator, David Capra and has been running since 2014 to foster high quality artistic practice through the provision of materials, mentorships, business training and access to industry professionals.

Covenant Queen sees Adam Jones live tarot-card readings of visitors to the fair. The Tarot of Incubusis, a specially commissioned deck featuring family members, artists and facilitators of Little Orange, such as the artist's mother blindfolded in a nighty and blue slipper socks and a self portrait wrapped in silk curtains being adored by two male models. Join Adam to see what your future holds.

Imogen Jade’s Creamy Bar cocktail bar celebrates all things calypso, icy and fruity. Custom recipes Imogen has been workshopping include; Baby Koala broke-umbilical-cord glazed blue cocktail, Nesting Spider Rat Palm tree cocktail and a Bloody Mary bunk-bed blue-tongue-lizard cocktail. Be photographed with the artist and strike a glamour pose by the bar!

For the past 6 years, Joel Beers has been driven to Little Orange by Tony or "Toony-town” as Joel affectingly refers to him. Joel is often inspired by Tony’s homeland of Liverpool, England and his pet dashboard bubble-head English Bulldog Freddy. Joel will offer tours of the Fair in a transformed golf-buggy taxi bus whilst listening to Joel’s stories of adventures on Tony’s bus and the musical notes of Tony’s horn.

Contemporary artists Sarah Contos, Nadia Hernandez, Tony Albert and Louise Zhang will create month long exhibition and immersive artist suites at the Sofitel Darling Harbour in partnership with Sydney Contemporary.

Albert, Contos and Zhang will create a site-specific installation in an allocated suite featuring wall works and personal objects encapsulating their creative visions, inspirations and personalities. Each custom suite at the Sofitel will be available for guests to book to stay in as an immersive art experience throughout the duration of the month long installation until 4 October.

Launching this year exclusively for Sydney Contemporary are limited edition art T-shirts designed by leading contemporary artists Jess Johnson, Jason Phu and Darren Sylvester presented in collaboration with Alpha60 and screen-printed live by Ailse6ix. Jess Johnson’s work will be a monochrome graphic featuring post-human aesthetics depicting alternative realms; Jason Phu’s print is playful and humorous in its naïve style; and Darren Sylvester's print is a feminist call for action from the sixties. The T-shirts will be available for purchase from the Fair for $70 each with 130 editions of each artist print.

New for Sydney Contemporary in 2019, NEXT showcases cutting edge contemporary art by emerging artists aged under 35, priced at AU$5,000 or under. This dynamic new platform provides art lovers the opportunity to discover and acquire work by the next generation of talent from participating galleries. NEXT will be displayed salon-style in the environment of the Fair café – NEXT Kitchen – and present emergent trends in contemporary art. The selected artists are now online and include Ed Bats (Gallery 9), Joshua Bonson (Cooee Art), Nadia Hernandez (Blackartprojects), Ruth Ju-Shih Li (May Space), Kirtika Kain (Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery), ), Dane Lovett (Station), India Mark (The Egg & Dart), Amber Moir (Salon Ninety One), Prue Stent + Honey Long (ARC One Gallery) and Tira Walsh (Two Rooms, Full list online at

For its fifth edition, Sydney Contemporary will host its most comprehensive and diverse offering to the public and artworld to date with over 98 galleries from Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa and beyond exhibiting the work of over 450 artists from 34 countries.

The Fair program caters for collectors and the art loving public alike and will present engaging activities including; Talk Contemporary with a series of panels, workshops, performative lectures and events headlined by Gerda Taro from the original Guerilla Girls with the National Gallery of Australia; Installation Contemporary with an interactive VR work from Joan Ross, Gregory Hodge’s suspension painting, Michael Lindeman with a text-based sculpture and installations by artists Jacqueline Fraser and Movana Chen; Performance Contemporary with site specific works by Chun Yin Rainbow Chan, Leila El Rayes, Harry Pickering, Marcus Whale and Athena Thebus, and Kid Contemporary returns with multidisciplinary artist Jason Phu.

The 2019 program also includes a new site-specific commission for the Fair, Tower of Power created by collaborative powerhouse Claire Healy & Sean Cordeiro; the premiere of a new installation ROCK GATE and performance work GHOST SONGS for ROCK GATE by celebrated artist Nell; Tony Albert will deliver his first Sydney foray into performance with his Confessions booth; and the Fair welcomes Chinese-Australian guest artist Guo Jian with new works. Full program now online at

Sydney Contemporary opens from 12-15 September at Carriageworks with the Opening Night on Thursday 12 September from 5-9pm.

Deutsche Bank returns in 2019 as the Principal Partner for Sydney Contemporary.

Sydney Contemporary