Bruno Booth Body Shots
- Image Credit
- Image by Daniel James Grant. Courtesy of Goolugatup Heathcote.
Bruno Booth Jam Jam , 2021
About the exhibition
Touring with ART ON THE MOVE 2023-25
Feline Good. Howabout Body Shots? brings together two major works by Bruno Booth, offering insight into the multidisciplinary practice of a significant Western Australian artist.
Body Shots is an audio visual installation presented on a custom-built sculptural frame. The screens show candid views of the disabled body – juxtaposed with familiar landscapes and scenes. A foot that looks like no other lies on a bed of green grass, a knobbly, scarred knee rests on a sandy beach gently washed by the tide. These views link across screens, forming unusual, unapologetic bodies that float in space. Each of the videos is nine minutes long, referencing the percentage of artists in Australia who identify as disabled, compared to the 20% of the full Australian population.
This work, originally presented as a discrete exhibition at Goolugatup Heathcote in Melville, is paired for tour with a series of day-glo coloured, tracksuit-wearing sculptural cats commissioned for the Art Gallery of Western Australia’s 2021 survey of Western Australian artistic practice, The View From Here. These bright and irreverent animal ambassadors are placed in unusual and surprising locations throughout an exhibition space, aiming to gently re-orient the viewer’s physical and psychological relationship to the gallery.
Galleries and venues can opt to loan either Feline Good. Howabout Body Shots? as a full exhibition, or loan only Feline Good for a reduced price.
Feline Good is suitable for display in a variety of secure indoor spaces – for example, workplaces, libraries, or the foyers of council buildings or performing arts centre foyers.
About the artists
Bruno has used a wheelchair for most of his life, interrupted by a short and unsuccessful career as an amateur stilt walker when he used prosthetic legs as a child. In his memory these leather and metal devices would not have been out of place on the set of some dystopian, apocalyptic epic – not in a cool and attractive Fury Road sort of way, more like the zombies in the original Walking Dead.
The experience of wearing restrictive equipment left him with a dislike of tight-fitting clothing, a love of speed and a need to reach over his head in supermarkets. As a child he made the decision to use a wheelchair as his primary mode of transport – and he’s never looked back (probably because he’s too busy looking out for sand pits on dark footpaths).
Having a disability has been a constant background hum throughout Bruno’s life. Kind of like a social tinnitus – you know it’s there but you try not to talk about it. It was only when he started to call himself an artist, without cringing too much, that he began to engage critically with what it meant to be categorised as disabled.
Recent solo exhibitions include Dead ends and detours Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, WA (2023), Body Shots Goolugatup/Heathcote, WA (2019), Push it, push it (real good) Firstdraft, NSW (2019). Bruno has also presented major public participatory projects for the Fremantle Biennale (TIGHTNESS x TOUGHNESS, 2021) and Testing Grounds (Hostile Infrastructure, 2019).
In 2022 he was a finalist in the John Stringer Art Prize and a Facilitating Artist for Performing Lines Kolyang Artist Hub and is currently working towards a major commission for the Art Gallery of Western Australia.
This project has been made possible through the Regional Exhibition Touring Boost managed by the Department of Local Government Sport and Cultural Industries, supported by Royalties for Regions and delivered by ART ON THE MOVE and the Art Gallery of Western Australia.