The Art Gallery of South Australia unveiled a new exhibition last week, an ambitious feat titled Dark Heart that consists of installations, sculptures, photography, paintings, and moving images.

There are some inspiring pieces from an impressive lineup of talent. (My personal favorites are Brendan Huntley, Martin Bell, and Dale Frank.) What really prompted a excitement jolts within me, however, was a series of three-dimensional card houses created by Aboriginal artist Tony Albert. An avid collector of vintage ephemera from the fifties and sixties, Albert incorporated souvenir matchboxes, Dreamtime picture books, and old-school playing cards to create nine triangular installations that towered over the one-meter mark.


He then combined text from popular culture—such as “I HAVE DECIDED TO STICK WITH LOVE, HATE IS TOO GREAT A BURDEN TO BEAR,” as well as “OUTTA SPACE” and “BEYOND BELIEF”—as a way of portraying the representation of Aboriginal people in Australian culture today. It’s a controversial subject at the best of times, but the artist’s crafty, semi-kitsch interpretation shed light on the matter while affirming his status as one to watch within the art scene Down Under.

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Photos: Courtesy of Linlee Allen


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Linlee Allen

Linlee Allen spent several years in Paris working as an international PR rep for Colette (even writing and rapping a theme song for the famed retail mecca) before relocating to ...