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A New Perspective


Mon 25 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Tue 26 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Wed 27 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Thu 28 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Fri 29 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Sat 30 Sep 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm
Sun 1 Oct 2017, 10:00am–6:00pm

Where: The Laneway Artspace, 148A Barkly Street, St Kilda, Victoria

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free
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Listed by: thesandpitstkilda

Our Spring/Summer 2017 Season launches with the stunning ‘A new perspective’, a photography exhibition by Alan Cotton.

"I suppose I have what I call melancholic nostalgia…a fascination with the old leaning Aussie backyard fence with all its texture, cracks and organic breakdown from age…weathering the elements over the years, defiant in its stance not to be blown down—to stand up proud. I’ve always found these sorts of visuals appealing. I feel it comes from a respect for strength and resilience, a common thread we see and experience everyday and have done throughout history…like I see in older people who lived through World War 2, just like my mum and dad, real battlers who never whinged and always gave a helping hand because that’s what you do. Yes? Not many of them are around now, just like our beautiful heritage buildings in St Kilda, they’re being transformed into investment properties rather than homes.

I lived at The Gatwick Hotel back in 2000–2001 after returning from London. It was close to the nursing home my mother was living in, and I had flown back to be with her and the family. My mother’s mind was sadly ravished by Alzheimer’s and dementia…and the hotel was convenient. And affordable.

I always remembered standing in the bathroom on the third floor, looking out the broken louvre windows to the old drain pipes and cracked walls with peeling paint above the little side courtyard—thinking I have to photograph this one day. After some time, I rented a flat a couple of doors down from the Gatwick and kept in touch with the girls, Rose and Yvette, until I moved into my own home five years ago.

When I heard the’ Gatty’ was being sold, I contacted the owners, Rose and Yvette, to record my memories. The walls of The Gatwick Hotel. Imagine if they could talk! It is amazing to think it was 17 years ago since I first looked out those broken louvre windows. Time sure has flown and so much has changed.

I was so tired of hearing negative stories about The Gatwick Hotel and Yvette and Rose, who had great compassion for what I was experiencing back when I lived there. They had just lost their mother, and the residents who lived there had great compassion too. It was, and truly did feel like, a family… hilarious, crazy, sad and wonderful…the common thread we call family…humanity. I wanted to create a body of work that reflected the colour and fun nature of the place along with the beauty of light and shade.

My work has always been informed by themes of social, environmental and intercultural awareness. Throughout history, art has always had the capacity to spark social awareness and create social justice. It still does, yes? That is why I do it. Expression and Freedom. Enjoy!


Alan Cotton