The first chapter of the exhibition series, aptly titled Wish You Were Here, was a response to the pandemic where isolation became the new and unwelcome way of life. Two years later and we are gently stepping out to greet a new world, to see old friends and acquaintances, and to refamiliarise ourselves with culture as we once knew it. Wish You Were Here II is a 'welcome back' to the gallerygoer-back into the essential 'art conversation'-one that expands on the inherent beauty and joys of being alive, and on not taking life's small pleasures and connections for granted.
Where the narrative of the first exhibition was about longing and displacement, this second group of artists offers new perspectives on shared space and connection. Uncertainty is flipped like a coin, the other side revealing the delight of the unexpected. Here we see a sense of whimsy and curiosity about the world and the acknowledgment of the full spectrum of experience.
The artists on view also speak to the necessity for simple communion, of connecting through shared grief to recontextualise collective sorrows toward something resplendent and life affirming. The pandemic, horrific and unsettling in many ways, also extended the small opportunities for radical restructuring and growth, both on a community and individual level. Building upon the new through old experiences, the exhibited artists forge on.
Press release courtesy Roberts Projects.