Cabinet of CuriositiesArtist's comment
Antoinette de Morton ANTOINET_small.gif 2.54 K

ART_ANTO_small.gif 8.86 K

Winning weapons and beyond

The perspex box contains small works, in varying media, and shapes. There are a series of works on paper, made with the idea of fragments which allude to radio astronomy, optics and WW1 and WW2 with images of old aircraft, ship's radar, diagrams etc.

There are two books, the small red book refers to the notion of scientific formula and discovery with each of the paper fragments being a part of a whole formula. Each paper fragment has a small diagram and the corresponding letters which make up part of the whole formula. The other book like piece is a direct reference to the idea of samples, and comprises diagrammatic works on wax and transparent paper, photographs and drawings and reductive images of navigational aids. These are all placed in plastic bags and mounted between two perspex sheets.

The lead like box, with the title 'New Era' is filled with assorted objects. On the lid of the box is a gum leaf worked to appear like a metal substance, this lead look is again repeated throughout the box and is a metaphor for contamination and relates to the atomic tests by Britain in Australia. The box is filled with wax, with objects embedded in the wax. There are two small bottles filled with natural ochres from the desert of Australia and which Aboriginal artists use to create bark paintings, a negative of an old sailing ship which reflects our colonial past, an old valve and fuses which relate sound waves and radio etc. On the inside of the lid is a small work on paper with a diagram and old eyepiece with gold, which is mined in Australia, and which represents the notion of both vision and foresight and the field of optics developed in Australia.

The other small box is filled with fuses in a grid-like pattern, the outside of the box is covered with references to Pawsey, astronomy, diagrams and planetary motion.

The perspex box was made with the idea of transparency and being able to see at a glance objects and assorted pieces that will be filed away for future sorting and labelling, so there is no set arrangement. The pieces in the box are interchangeable so that different viewers will see different things at different times. One book can fold out, the other left open at a particular place. One box can be seen open, the other, open or closed. The works on paper can be placed in layers and moved about, or just a fragment can be shown.

- Antoinette de Morton

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Prepared by Tim Sherratt (
for publication on ASAPWeb. Last modified 22 June 1997.