gary deirmendjian selected works

avoca 2008



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:::: invited artist - 5 Lands Walk Festival,
site specific ephemeral installation held on June 21 (winter solstice) - Avoca Beach Rock Pool
:::: organised by Gosford Regional Gallery in conjunction with local artists
:::: 60 pearlescent white balloons, air breathed at site + mixed media support structure
:::: 3m x 3m


artist statement

A square blanket of pearlescent white balloons is held floating in the rock pool.

Although contained within the form of an implied square, individual balloons respond physically to the moment in a manner that is both immediate and unique.

The content of each balloon is the exhaled evidence of my breathing, an action carried out at the very site, on the very day. The Air is taken in with focus, held, then trapped - temporarily - into individual elastic prisons.

A challenging walk was undertaken a month earlier from McMasters Beach to Avoca, designed by the organisers to precipitate a woven awareness of the rich natural offerings of the region, as well as the spiritual and practical understandings of the traditional owners of the land. During the walk I became acutely aware of my own breathing. I realised the inherent "give and take" nature of this subconsciously easy process - upon which our existence so desperately clings, and how this very much reflected the natural balances and interdependence surrounding me - an ongoing concert of giving and taking. I also realised that the content of my air intake was itself site specific and that which was exhaled a very brief dispersible testament to my momentary presence.

Arriving at Avoca, having for some four hours travelled over headlands, through rainforest and rocky shores, revealed an urban scene that was in sharp contrast to sights and sounds just experienced.

The implied square may then suggest the degree of rationality that is peculiar to western culture and its exercise at Avoca. Momentary agitation - caused by wave and wind - of each balloon within the formation, may further suggest individual responses to the responsibilities that our presence must bare.


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