Monday, October 21, 2013

Meet the Town Hall Gallery Team: Marion Piper

Say hello to Marion, Gallery and Curatorial Support Officer at Town Hall Gallery.

Hello THGers! I'm Marion, your trusty Gallery and Curatorial Support Officer at Town Hall Gallery, nice to meet you!

In the lead up to our November 22 launch we thought you might like to meet your THG curatorial team. We are so excited to be back and ready to introduce you to our new spaces, retail store, Community Project Wall and all of the fantastic artists in our 2014 exhibition program.

We all asked one another a set of five questions designed to act as a bit of an ice-breaker. So pull up a chair, grab a coffee, and let's get to know each other a little better!

Marion Piper - Gallery & Curatorial Support

Marion began her THG journey back in 2007 as an exhibiting artist in an Art Nerds curated show titled With Music in Mind. She joined the team in January 2013 primarily to work on the publication for Marker: 10 Years of the Town Hall Gallery Collection. Mardi just couldn't get rid of her and she started as gallery & curatorial support in mid-2013.

Marion is 'Girl Friday' for THG, lending a helping hand where she can and penning editorial work for various publications across Melbourne. Holding an MA in Writing from Swinburne University, she is currently a PhD candidate with Southern Cross University, so you'll only see her three days a week for now.

Prior to Town Hall Gallery, Marion was on the committee for Blindside Gallery in the Melbourne CBD and has exhibited in numerous artist-run spaces nationally. For the past four years, she has worked at Buck's Rock Performing & Creative Arts Summer Camp in New Milford, Connecticut, USA, teaching digital video and administration. Her writing has appeared in Unmagazine (AU), Digital Americana (USA), VN FOLD (Argentina) and blogs both here and internationally. Needless to say, she likes to keep busy!


When you're not at the gallery, how do you spend your free time?
I've just started my PhD in arts education, so I'm spending most of my time reading! Otherwise, you can find me bending and stretching myself like a pretzel at Bikram yoga. It's important to exercise the brain as well as the body.

If you could have dinner with any artist, living or deceased, who would it be and why?
It would have to be Frida Khalo. Her life story is incredible and her artworks are truly unique, so I would love to share some Mexican food with her and talk about what it was like living in such uncertain times. Bed-bound for most of her adolescence, Frida used a mirror mounted to the ceiling of her wooden bed frame to paint self-portraits. She would then imagine-in the backgrounds. I visited her home, Casa de Azul, in Mexico City in 2009 and I'll never forget how it made me feel to see her paint tubes, clothing and books.

What superpower would you have and why?
I would love to have telekinesis, which is the power to alter or move objects with your mind. Just think of the creative capabilities! I could be painting or drawing without using my hands. There's something really poetic (and creepy) about objects that look like their moving on their own.

What three words would you use to describe the new Town Hall Gallery?
Alluring. Innovative. Inspiring!

What are you looking forward to the most in 2014 at Town Hall Gallery?
Aside from the fantastic exhibition program, I'm definitely looking forward to meeting you all when you come to see the gallery! I'm fascinated by how people view and perceive the meaning in art and how responses change from person to person. I'm also looking forward to the launch of our retail store, The Emporium at Town Hall Gallery. We've already sourced some beautifully crafted products and we can't wait to share them with you!

With the expanded exhibition spaces and a number of amazing public programs, there definitely will be something for everyone at THG. I encourage you all to come and see our first exhibition too, Marker: 10 Years of the Town Hall Gallery Collection as it will have a number of new acquisitions that we have never shown before. Exciting times ahead!

Stay tuned for another 'Meet the Town Hall Gallery Team' installment soon!

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