Heath Franco | Home Town & Home Town Two
22 October – 26 November 2016
Heath Franco (NSW) will present HOME TOWN (2014) and its sequel HOME TOWN TWO (2016) for the first time as a double bill presentation.
Heath Franco’s 2014 work HOME TOWN presents his boyhood home of Berridale, NSW, as a place of surreal potential where time and space seem infinitely malleable. The video uses material gathered during a visit to the area after an absence of 15 years. The grand, sweeping nature of the landscape on the outskirts of town is redrawn in the guise of classic Western cinema and the characters inhabiting the landscape performed by the artist as a direct response to the field trip.
In HOME TOWN TWO, Heath Franco returns to Berridale to take care of unfinished business. Where the premiere of HOME TOWN at Galerie pompom in 2014 saw Franco’s work presented with cinematic sensibilities in both content and installation, its sequel, HOME TOWN TWO acknowledges the ‘home video device’, that is: VHS>DVD>Blu-Ray(kind-of)>File-based delivery. With previously unused content, HOME TOWN TWO harks back to two times past to reveal a greater breadth and depth to the work’s initial iteration.
Heath Franco’s practice largely takes the form of video, although his process of production and exhibition is also concerned with photography, performance, costuming, sound, media, digital media, special effects and installation. He creates screen-based works that are structured with respect to flow and rhythm rather than traditional plot narrative and that in turn attract and repulse through a mix of curious aesthetic, catchy jingles and absurd, at times grotesque, performances.
Repetition is a consistent feature of Franco’s works produced in recent years, along with a psychotropic sensibility and use of himself as sole performer. His practice is conceptually informed by explorations into Western popular culture and desires, domesticity and notions of ‘home’, the chaos of existence, and contemplations on the nature and possibilities of space-time.
Recent solo exhibitions include ALTERLAND, Australian Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide, and HOME AGAIN, Wagga Wagga Art Gallery. Recent institutional group exhibitions include Antiques Roadshow, Gertrude Contemporary; NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (Emerging), Artspace, Sydney; Patternation, Hazelhurst Regional Gallery; DEADPAN, Goulburn Regional Gallery; Art as a Verb, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne and Artspace, Sydney; Sideshow, UTS Gallery, Sydney; Impact, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth; and Primavera 2013, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. Franco was the recipient of the 2012 Churchie National Emerging Art Prize, and the 2015 NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (Emerging). Franco’s video works have been screened at GOMA, Brisbane, Sydney Contemporary, Art Stage Singapore, and Art Fair Tokyo. Franco’s works are held in the public collections of Artbank, the Art Gallery of Western Australia and Griffith University Art Gallery.
Courtesy of the artist and Galerie pompom, Sydney