Rainbow Chan + Nonsemble @ GoMA, 29.05.2015


I was supposed to be at GoMA last week for Sky Needle & McKisko but managed to get my times wrong and couldn’t make it.  It was a lot earlier than all of the other Up Late shows I’ve been to and there was no way I could get there in time by the time I saw the playing times advertised.

I’ve no idea what the audience for Sky Needle and McKisko was like but tonight it’s claustrophobically busy.  The David Lynch exhibition is surprisingly in the smaller of the two downstairs galleries and the way the space has been configured, the rooms aren’t very big, making it difficult to spend much time looking.  I would have liked to have spent a lot longer than I did but moving between the rooms was slow going.  I went back for a second attempt after I’d finished photographing but it was just as packed as before.  Although they did the Xiu Xiu plays Twin Peaks nights, I’m surprised that only did three of the more traditional up late Friday nights that GoMA normally does for its major exhibitions.  I had planned on going to see Xiu Xiu but managed to wait too long and then it sold out.  Tickets were on sale for ages before the exhibition started but as soon as David Lynch did the Q&A session at QPAC, it sold out.

The lighting is terrible, it’s so low and there’s so much LED, that I’m essentially having to go to cameras setting that I’ve never ventured into before. It goes down to the depths of ­3200 and sub 1/25 shutter speeds at times, although I quickly decided that anyone stood in this much darkness wouldn’t have a lot of time spent on them.  Photographing Rainbow Chan is an incredibly frustrating experience. You can only really photograph her when she’s stood in the light near her laptop.  As soon as she stands back to dance, it’s too dark to focus and the light drop off just made it even worse.

The Lynch exhibition is great, despite not really being able to spend much time admiring, what with the business of the galleries.  Brisbane doesn’t have an awful lot going for it culturally and GoMA is the cities brightest shining light.  Getting an exhibition like the David Lynch one is a big deal and, to be honest, a bit of a risk given the conservative nature of Queensland.  You would have expected the exhibition to have gone to Melbourne or Sydney rather than Brisbane.  The day after the show I fly up to Darwin for a one night stopover on my way to Kununurra for work and thanks to the exhibition they’re showing Inland Empire as one of the films on the inflight entertainment.  It’s typical Lynch fare in that it all makes perfect sense until that point where it doesn’t anymore and by the end you really have no idea what’s just happened.  Looking forward to the Twin Peaks sequel, hope it’s more like the first half of the series more than the second half.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.