Boomtown

louise paramor

Boomtown

The exhibition Boomtown is comprised of sixty-four small-scale plastic assemblages and eight large gloss enamel painted paper collages.

It was shown with Karen Woodbury Fine Art at Deutscher and Hackett, Melbourne from 24 November to 17 December 2016.

Photography: single images - Christian Capurro, installation views - Simon Strong

Accompanying essay by Andy Gomez

Louise Paramor’s art practice is a study in world-building. Paramor has consistently fabricated an entirely unrealised world, from architectural renderings, to playful pitches for public sculptures, and the characters that inhabit these constructed worlds. Boomtown, the title of this exhibition, lingers upon the notion of the optimism of the urban sprawl. More often than not we are deluged with reports of concrete jungles, over population, the diminishing lifestyle and values of regional living. Paramor creates a colour-block utopia, occupied with vestiges of primary hues, spirited edifices, unified by a formal constructivist system.

“I just love colour and playing around with it, it makes me feel good. I get a kick out of harmonising colour in conjunction with form. I think if there was more finely tuned colour in the world it would be a better place. There exists a lot of untamed colour in the everyday and to me this is often creates a feeling that is the opposite of uplifting.”

The exhibition consists of 64 small scale sculptures, as well as a suite of constructed works on paper. Each work, three-dimensional or two-dimensional, is treated as a collage. Every component is carefully found, cut, sized, glued, welded, and balanced to become a whole other thing entirely. Paramor leads us through a visual reconditioning, forcing us to review our standardized notions of what something is, what something can be, and what something has been.

The genesis of the Boomtown series grew out of a former body of work titled Jam Sessions in around 2006, utilising contemporary plastic detritus to explore fundamental principles of modernism such as form, color, and spatiality. The vast number of works is itself a tool of intervening viewership, forcing us to wander physically through a mini-scape of would be public totems. Show Court 3, a three day installation of seventy five sculptures strewn across the surface of Rod Laver Arena, was similar. Paramor manipulates us visually and physically.

The works on paper employ a collaging production technique, constructing imagery from paper pre-painted with gloss enamel. The works feature an individual assemblage from the Boomtown series, scaled up and juxtaposed against a background of a single building. These are essentially complete architecturally accurate plans for public sculptures to inhabit Paramor’s fictitious reality.

“I decided it would be interesting to find some model homes or buildings to act as backgrounds for the assemblages to then make 2-dimensional works with....searching around (both physically and on the net) I stumbled across some fantastic real estate images mostly from India and Pakistan...renders of buildings to be built...what appealed to me was a slightly exotic feel these buildings offered, often interestingly coloured and peppered with unusual details”.

Louise Paramor invites us into her own fabricated domain, where colours are coherent and vivid, buildings are unique and non-conformist, where public sculpture exists for the sake of form, colour, line, and levity. There is an inherent optimism at work here, exalting the accomplishments and ingenuity of the urban sprawl and the enforced participation of a shared culture and experience that offers.

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