The Brisbane Sound

The Brisbane Sound

09 February–09 March 200809 Feb–09 Mar 2008

The Brisbane Sound mapped cross-pollination between the indie and experimental music scenes and the art scene in Brisbane during the post-punk years, 1978–83. The project concentrates on the role of key individuals, including Ed Kuepper, Robert Forster, and Eugene Carchesio, each of whom curate a concert for the project. In addition to receiving international critical acclaim for their music, Kuepper (founder of the Saints) and Forster (founder of the Go-Betweens) have consistently maintained a working relationship with visual artists and the art world, while Carchesio, who is primarily known as a visual artist, is a product of the same music/art milieu.

The Brisbane Sound builds on earlier IMA projects, in particular Ross Harley’s groundbreaking 1986 exhibition Know Your Product, which surveyed crossovers between the art and indie music scenes in Brisbane between 1976 and 1986. It was the first time the convergence of local art and music worlds was made visible in an institutional context. Harley’s project assembled a breadth of material, arguing that the sorting would come later, and that certain aspects would assume greater significance in the future. The Brisbane Sound offers itself as the fulfillment of this idea.

In addition to Kuepper, Forster, and Carchesio, The Brisbane Sound showcased the multifarious activities of Gary Warner (his graphic work, experimental sound works, Super-8 films, and contributions to local indie groups including the Leftovers, Zero/Xero, and Out of Nowhere) and the graphic work of Peter Loveday, Terry Murphy, and John Willsteed (which paralleled and often served as a critique of Brisbane’s dynamic alternative and experimental music/art scenes). The activities of John Nixon from 1980 to 1981 will also be addressed. Nixon’s exhibition program as Director of the IMA and his Anti-Music and Q Space projects challenged institutional orthodoxies and served to collapse the local experimental art and alternative music scenes into one another.

The Brisbane Sound also included commissioned contributions from Jenny Watson and Andrew Wilson, a rarely seen 1979 television commercial for the Toowong Music Centre featuring the Go-Betweens’s Robert Forster and Grant McLennan, and the McLennan-scripted short film Heather’s Gloves.

Concert dates: Friday 7 March at 8.30pm: Small World Experience, the Deadnotes, Ian Wadley, Peter Charles Macpherson, Gary Warner (Super-8 films), curated by Eugene Carchesio. Saturday 8 March at 8.30pm: Adults Today, the Apartments, Robert Forster and Adele Pickvance, and Trevor Ludlow and the Hellraisers, curated by Robert Forster. Sunday 9 March at 8.30pm: Ed Kuepper presents The Ascension Academy. A joint project with David Pestorius Projects, supported by Brisbane City Council, with additional support from RockingHorse, RMAX Rigid Cellular Plastics, Time Off, and Staging Dimensions.

Curated By
  • David Pestorius

The Institute of Modern Art acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land upon which the IMA now stands, the Jagera, Yuggera, Yugarapul, and Turrbal people. We offer our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the first artists of this country. In the spirit of allyship, the IMA will continue to work with First Nations people to celebrate, support, and present their immense past, present, and future contribution to artistic practice and cultural expression.