STUDENTS at Wanganui Park Secondary College got a taste of ‘Soft Core’ last week, when Melbourne based artist and exhibitor at Shepparton Art Museum’s (SAM) latest exhibition, David Cross engaged the students in his inflatable artwork, ‘Trio.’
The piece, which is unlike any artwork I had ever seen before was developed by David to act as machines of communication, but not in the typical sense. The inflatable red, yellow and blue rectangles allow two participants to pop their heads inside and use an air pump each to keep a small slit inside open, so that they can view each other. If the air deflates, the participants cannot see one another.
David said, “I work with inflatables as an artist but this is the smallest works I’ve worked on. It was all about curiosity and drawing people in because they see others engaging with it and wonder what’s inside.
“It’s a difficult balance for an artist to find something that people want to engage in.
“These are machines for communication. They are not about talking or about appearance. We often judge people on how they appear or what they say and I like to dispel that.
“They are designed to be a work in the public sphere, meaning they are an outdoor, performance type artwork. Ultimately it’s hilarious.
“It was great to see the students be so curious and interacting with it.”
Soft Core is a newly commissioned and recent work by 12 Australian and international artists whose work questions the fluctuating meaning of softness and will be on exhibit at SAM until March 18.