26 May 2012

Nathan Gray Score For Dance


Nathan Gray

Score For Dance

27 May and 31 May – 2 June 2012, 1pm-6pm

Opening drinks: Sunday 27 May 2012 1pm-6pm

97 Nicholson Street, Abbotsford, Victoria

In Score For Dance, Nathan Gray creates immersive situations that entice the audience into an action, making them performers in an unscripted dance of sorts. Large scale clear perspex panels with black vinyl stripes hang in layers, surrounded by walls similarly striped with black vinyl. The shifting configuration of these panels produce a moire effect: a strobing visual sensation that appears animated as the viewer moves backwards and forwards, in and around the work.

Score For Dance continues Gray's investigation of the moire effect, as seen in his solo exhibition In the year 2525 at Utopian Slumps in 2011; ‘Perception Vibration Threshold’ as part of New Pyschedelia curated by Sebastian Moody at the University of Queensland Art Museum, also in 2011; as well as a recent installation at Cemeti House, Indonesia, ‘Theorist Training Camp/Practice Piece’ in 2011, enabled by funding from AsiaLink, Arts Victoria and the Australia Indonesia Institute.

The encouragement to move is at the root of Gray's interest in the moire pattern: there is a sense in which the work can be viewed as a musical score or notation, one that inspires a kind of dance from the viewer. The notion of movement and dance is further emphasised by a new addition to Gray's installations from this series: the subtle amplification of the wooden floor, which supplies a simple user-generated soundtrack to the performance.

Score For Dance employs illusory techniques to foreground the individual perception of the viewer, but in doing so also encourages movement, externalising the experience and forming an interaction with the work. This creates a simple performance, blurring the lines between viewer and artist. The work speaks of the tensions between individual experience and ambitions of universal readings, or in avant-garde composition, the tension between the autonomy of the performer and the primacy of the score.

Nathan Gray's practice stems from a background in experimental music and avant-garde composition, investigating ways to apply these ideas to the production of visual art. Gray uses this background to create frameworks for composition and collaboration.

Nathan Gray blog: thebiclops.blogspot.com

Further information, artist interviews and print-ready images available on request. Contact co-directors: Jared Davis, +61 (0)404 190 646 and Helen Grogan, +61 (0)431 690 832



Open Archive is a curatorial project focussing on temporal and performative arts projects. Evolving through a program of events, performances, exhibitions, and collaborations, Open Archive is a frame for research and experimentation.  

Alongside public projects facilitated by Open Archive, artists, curators and writers also participate in the ‘archive’ though a range of unprescribed contributions, including discussion, documentation and responsive activities.

Open Archive was initiated in September 2011 with the launch of its Project Space, located on site at Schoolhouse Studios. From February 2012, Open Archive has begun operating within multiple contexts and sites.