2019 Program

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Sundari Carmody

Gallery 3
Opening 03.04.19 6-8pm
Artist Talks 25.04.19 6-7pm

How might we develop our senses so that they become attuned to things that are cloaked in mystery? Undoubtedly our universe is full of unknown unknowns. How do we even begin to contend with this confounding realisation? Perhaps we can start by reminding ourselves, of the revelatory sensation of our eyes slowly adjusting to the dark.

We are often right on the threshold of the awareness of such things, even staring straight at them but missing the critical characteristic. If we are just out of sync with it, perhaps a  different temporal dimension might reveal a hidden rhythmic aspect. A seemingly lacklustre plant that goes largely unnoticed by day might reveal a splendid bloom and a divine fragrance in the moonlight.

Sundari Carmody’s Fountain, consists of a series of aromatique vapours that are delivered into the gallery environment by a set of prototype misting devices. She has synthesised oils from flowers whose popular names (Moonflower, Evening Primrose, Night-Blooming Jasmine) attest to a nocturnal phenomenon and whose fragrances are evocative of the night. She combines these with other substances - melatonin and Poppy Seed oil, both of which are sleep inducing and luringly suggestive of the dark.

Fountain is informed by Carmody’s research in the fields of botany and cosmology. Her focus has been on the growth cycles (circadian rhythms) of medicinal and psychoactive plants, the history of observations of planetary and galaxy rotation, and the altered states of consciousness associated with both. It is often in the liminal state, between wakefulness and sleep that we might sense traces of things that lie beyond the threshold of ordinary perception. Fountain, subtly crafts an intoxicating atmosphere to usefully illustrate the possibility of such encounters.

- Matthew Bradley

You can read the exhibition essay by Madeline Reece here.


Sundari Carmody is an Adelaide based artist whose practice is primarily focused on the language of sculpture. She concerns herself with the question of how to engage with universal systems and aspects of being, which linger in the category of the unknown, in ‘the dark’. She attempts to find useful frameworks to give form to things that are invisible or which lie just beyond the limits of our perception. Relevant precedents to her methodology include research in the areas of dark matter, sleep and the study of nocturnal creatures. The scope of her investigations take into account the scientific, cultural, physiological and psychological aspects of ‘the dark’. 

Carmody spent her formative years in Indonesia before moving to Perth and then Adelaide where in 2011 she graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours) at the South Australian School of Art. Recent solo and group exhibitions include Churchie Emerging Art Prize 2018, QUT Art Museum; Steady Illiterate Movement, Seventh Gallery; Primal Site, BUS Projects; The Black Swan: Suite, FELTspace, March of the Black Swan, Constance ARI; CACSA Contemporary 2015, SASA Gallery. Beginning in May this year she will undertake a three month residency at Phasmid Studios in Berlin.

Later Event: April 13
Tender rip