To our dismay this year NGV’s management decided to get rid of the Kids Space and Kids Corner at both of the galleries in order to provide a more ‘immersive’ experience for young visitors to the galleries.
Fortunately children haven’t been ignore altogether and Robin Rhode: The Call of The Walls is a new free kid-friendly exhibition at NGV International.
Robin Rhode is a South African artist living in Berlin and he is showing his first solo exhibition in Australia from 17 May to 13 September. There are two rooms with his work at NGV and his practice encompasses photography, animation, drawing and performance (you can hear Robin Rhode talk about his practice here).
The first room is the family-friendly part – as you enter there’s a video showing school kids using giant crayons to colour in shapes on the walls. Lady AB had fun trotting along the wall, naming the colours and shapes.
On the opposite wall is where the fun really happens as kids (and adults) are given free reign to wield rainbow-coloured crayons to draw whatever they like on the walls!
As you can see Lady AB didn’t need much encouragement to get going.
The colourful, interactive elements of Robin Rhode: The Call of The Walls reminded me of the highly successful Yayoi Kusama exhibition at Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art in 2012 which let kids stick coloured dots all over a white room.
Once you’ve had fun drawing on the walls you can plonk down on a huge beanbag and watch some projections by the artist, though Lady AB demanded I follow her into the second room of the exhibition.
It’s less kid-friendly there as the art is hung high, there’s no real explanation of the works and no interactive elements – though the videos and matching soundscapes are quite interesting for a little time.
Robin Rhode: The Call of The Walls, 17 May to 13 September 2013, NGV International, 180 St Kilda Rd, Southbank