4 FEBRUARY - 12 MARCH 2017

Shaun Gladwell’s works of art are contextualised within The Lock-Up’s history as a police station and lock-up in his first solo exhibition in Newcastle, CONTROL.


4 FEBRUARY 2017 - 12 MARCH 2017  


For the full exhibition essay and catalogue click here.

CONTROL is the first survey of influential and pioneering video artist Shaun Gladwell’s work in Newcastle. 

Presented to reverberate with The Lock-Up’s spaces and its connections to the city’s colonial and recent history, this exhibition contextualises Gladwell’s works and key themes within his practice within The Lock-Up’s history as a site of actual and symbolic social control.

Developed in conjunction with Gladwell, The Lock-Up’s architecture and history underscore various works by Gladwell which explore law and order, civic spaces and their subversion, and mythical and actual individuals who exist on the boundaries of social control. Gladwell’s artistic practice has often explored the physical performance and mental processes inherent in particular subcultures, such as skateboarding. 

Drawing on a history of art and film, his “experimental portraits” - a term the artist often uses to describe his work - investigate relationships between the human body, landscapes, and images drawn from the contemporary world. The works in this exhibition are key Australian video works that have given an international profile to Australian video art as well as becoming hugely influential to a generation of younger artists. 

Curated by Warwick Heywood. 


Shaun Gladwell established his career as an artist through a series of meditative videos that represented the artist performing a range of activities on a skateboard, more often than not in slow motion, and staged within various dramatic landscapes. From 2007-2009 he created work inspired by the Mad Max films, which explored the interaction, and sometimes the collision, of people, animals, and vehicles traversing the Australian hinterland. In October 2009, commissioned by the Australian War Memorial, Gladwell went to Afghanistan as an official war artist. More recently he has started making and displaying virtual reality works of art. Gladwell has developed an international profile and in currently based in Sydney and London.

Shaun Gladwell is represented by Anna Schwartz Gallery. 


Warwick Heywood is Curator of Art at the Australian War Memorial, where he has played a key role in enhancing the Memorial’s collection of modernist art and invigorating the Official War Artist scheme through commissioning key Australian artists such as Lyndell Brown and Charles Green, Shaun Gladwell, eX de Medici, Ben Quilty and Tony Albert. He has curated exhibitions and presented curatorial papers in prestigious venues in Australia, the United States (Washington, DC) and Korea (Seoul). He is the exhibition curator for Reality in flames: modern Australian art and the Second World War, currently on display in the Memorial’s Special Exhibitions Gallery. 

Still from Shaun Gladwell Tangara 2003 Single-channel digital video, 4:3, colour, silent, 14 minutes © Shaun Gladwell. 
Courtesy of the artist and Anna Schwartz Gallery