The Day The Machine Started
In this new body of work Juan Ford draws from botanical illustration and images from Australiana books from the 60’s and 70’s to create a new format of Australian landscape painting by utlising the portrait format. The outcome are aberrant gatherings of indigenous flora, like bouquets trussed by a supremely insensitive and perhaps blind florist.
When placed amongst Natalie Ryan’s Still born calves and Charles Robbs Tvek sculptures, Fords paintings become studies of the outside world, juxtaposed by a white and clinical environment.
“Line honours go to the sharp display of Dianne Tanzer Gallery. Chilly paintings by Juan Ford, showingly prickly leafy perches bound with tape labelled “fragile”, sit in a slick white cube, which contrasts with the rich Victorian building. Upon the shiny white floor, however, silicone herbivores by Natalie Ryan slump in meltdown, perhaps mortified by radiation or a sinister baboon lurking behind a rear partition. The whole installation is ingenious and unsettling.”
Robert Nelson, The Age, Upscale fair, scaled-down range, 6 August, 2010