In Dreaming: Australian Aboriginal Art Meets de Chirico we ask you to imagine a conversation between a delegation of Australian Aboriginal artists who have come to meet the Italian modernist master of metaphysical art, Giorgio de Chirico. Accompanying them is a translator, Imants Tillers.
Metaphysical art traces mysterious correspondences between things and across time, as if there are invisible forces acting on the world. Aboriginal artists depict their encounters with a powerful cosmological reality, called ‘Dreaming’. In this their art parallels de Chirico’s experiences of deeper cosmological realities embedded in the Mediterranean’s classical tradition. For him this classical world of myth was also a kind of Dreaming. As an artist who has been deeply interested in the art of de Chirico and Aboriginal art, as well as the metaphysical issues that preoccupy them, Tillers’ paintings are well suited to act as a bridge between their very different backgrounds.
In asking what happens when these metaphysicians from different ends of the earth meet through their art, this exhibition addresses a question at the heart of contemporary art, as globalism forces us to ask not what just divides mankind, but also what unites it. As beings that feel a cosmological significance in the relations of the world, for us globalism is as much a metaphysical as it is a political or economic question.