Situated between abstraction and representation, Ali McCann’s practice engages with the ideas of formalism, visual perception, and the aesthetics of pedagogy. Found objects, in the form of obsolete teaching aids, unfinished projects, discarded photographs and art materials, serve as departure points for explorations of colour, light, shape, form, and space. Her still life arrangements and video works undergo a succession of hybrid photographic processes to form uncanny renderings of the object within the picture plane. She draws inspiration from diverse sources such as foundational art history publications, outmoded art-and-design text books, 1970s amateur photography magazines, and also from her personal experience as a student and teacher. Her reimagining of educational aesthetics is imbued with a nostalgia for the objects and imagery once used to facilitate learning.
Ali McCann lives and works in Naarm / Melbourne. She completed a Master of Contemporary Art at the Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne, in 2017. She also holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography from the Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne and a Graduate Diploma of Education, University of Melbourne. Since the early 2000s she has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in Melbourne, Sydney and regional Victoria. Recent solo exhibitions include Οι νέοι, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne (2019), Masks for Magicians, Caves, Melbourne (2018); Polytechnic, Tristian Koenig, Melbourne, (2018); An Introduction to Liminal Aesthetics, c3 contemporary art space, Melbourne (2017); and Throwing off the Hump, Kings Artist Run, Melbourne (2017). Her work has previously been shown at West Space, Melbourne; Bus Projects, Melbourne; TCB Art Inc., Melbourne; Home@735, Sydney; Chalk Horse, Sydney; and China Heights Gallery, Sydney. She currently teaches at the Northern College of the Arts and Technology, Melbourne.
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All works ©Ali McCann