Safe Space - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Safe Space

SAFE SPACE contemporary sculpture

20 November 2021 to 15 January 2022

Safe Space contemporary sculpture brings together three-dimensional artworks by twelve Australian artists that explore psychological aspects of physical space.

It features a range of figurative elements and narrative themes with social, and sometimes political, resonances. Many of the works in this exhibition take as their point of departure: the human body, its dimensions, the spaces it occupies, the narratives that contain it and the theatre or spectacle that unfolds around it.

Works reflect a wide range of approaches that represent the breadth of contemporary sculpture in Australia, spanning: colourful, pop, smooth, clean, commercial finishes to more subdued, monochrome, textured and rough aesthetic styles. The artists also use materials as diverse as concrete, stone, plastic, wood, wax, air, neon, bronze, steel, feathers, lead and leather.

The tone of the exhibition ranges from humour and playfulness, nurturing and warmth, through to unease, psychodrama and melancholy. The social themes touched on include privacy versus public space, refuge and sanctuary, agoraphobia and claustrophobia. These blur into psychological themes of risk, exposure, harm, frailty, isolation, suffocation and protection. Political themes include sexual and labour exploitation of Aboriginal women in Australia’s colonial history and the fate of refugees who come to Australia in boats: being turned back, detained or drowned at sea.


Abdul-Rahman Abdullah, Claire Healy and Sean Cordeiro, David Cross, Karla Dickens, Franz Ehmann, Will French, Rosie Miller, Michelle Nikou, Alex Seton, Keg de Souza and Tim Sterling.


To support the exhibition, Museums & Galleries Queensland have developed a range of resources including videos with artists Abdul-Rahman Abdullah and Alex Seton discussing their work in the exhibition, panel discussions and an education resource.


Christine Toussainte Morrow


An initiative of Museums & Galleries Queensland developed in partnership with Logan City Council through Logan Art Gallery. This travelling exhibition is supported by the Visions regional touring program, an Australian Government program aiming to improve access to cultural material for all Australians; the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland; the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory governments and is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

Someone else’s problem 2015
Marble dust, epoxy resin, Tasmanian Oak, cable ties
Dimensions variable, approx. 300.0 x 200.0 x 200.0 cm
Photo: Mark Pokorny
Image courtesy of the artist and sullivan+strumpf


Franz Ehmann

With exhibition curator Christine Toussainte Morrow and exhibiting artist, Franz Ehmann on Saturday 11 December at 11am.