Visual Artist Fellow to exhibit in January 2022

Cultural Fund

Visual artist Khaled Sabsabi’s first major survey exhibition in NSW, A Hope, opens on 4 January 2022 at Campbelltown Arts Centre. Co-curated with Adam Porter, Senior Curator of Contemporary Visual Art, the exhibition recognises almost three decades of Sabsabi’s multidisciplinary contemporary art practice.

In 2020 Sabsabi was awarded the Copyright Agency’s Fellowship for a Visual Artist, receiving $80,000 for his project to create new mixed-media artworks and present his first major survey exhibition, along with a comprehensive monograph.

Inspired by what may define us as a society, Sabsabi strives to create artwork that reflects human connectedness, while questioning ideological principles and complexities of identity politics. Campbelltown Arts Centre’s exhibition page states:

‘A hope is in essence an offering of the in-between space – the slow and unseen space where changes like life can pass us by without noticing… Hope itself is a possibility, something that is familiar and common to us all and something that lives deep down in our humanity. It is the belief and intent of a better reality or circumstance. It sometimes embodies anxiety and fear and in other times joy and will. Regardless, hope requires patience and perseverance.’

As part of his Fellowship, Sabsabi is working on a monograph with Campbelltown Arts Centre and Milani Gallery. This will assist in securing future exhibition opportunities and artwork commissions beyond the Fellowship period, projecting Sabsabi’s artistic career significantly.

‘This Fellowship outcome is most critical to mapping my practice and career as an Australian artist,’ Sabsabi says. ‘Few artists living and working in Western Sydney have been afforded this opportunity.’

Sabsabi’s new works will continue to expand on his personal investigations of social engagement, global activism and spiritual beliefs inspired by Islamic Sufism practices; in particular, relationships between the material and the immaterial, the physical and the spiritual, and how this shapes our world.

A Hope seeks to collapse the divides between such binaries, instead envisioning aspects of our world where the ordinary presents opportunities for moments of interaction and heightened states of spirituality.

The exhibition will run at Campbelltown Arts Centre from 4 January to 13 March 2022.

Copyright Agency’s Fellowship for a Visual Artist has previously been awarded to:

  • Wiradjuri artist Karla Dickens (2018) for her multimedia installation ‘A Dickensian Circus’, which celebrated the lives of Indigenous boxers and the famous Lismore acrobat Cornelius Sullivan. It exhibited as part of the 22nd Biennale of Sydney: NIRIN at AGNSW in 2020, and ‘A Dickensian Country Show’ was included in the 2020 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Monster Theatres at AGSA.
  • Western Australian artist Danielle Freakley (2019) for her virtual ­reality piece ‘Imagine Your Friends’, which will feature in a solo exhibition at the performance space HERE Art Centre in New York in early 2023. Freakley also features in the recently-opened group exhibition The View from Here at the Art Gallery of Western Australia.

Please refer to the Cultural Fund website in February 2022 for opportunities for visual artists in the new year.