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Gary Warner

Author 
Andrew Frost

Gary Warner is an artist, photographer, writer, curator, musician and media producer who was born in Brisbane, Queensland in 1957. His work across various visual media demonstrates Warner’s continuing fascinations with natural and man-made phenomena ranging from nature, cities, human interactions and Eastern and Western philosophies.

Warner showed a precocious talent for media when aged 13 he appeared on a children's television program on TVQ-O Brisbane (1971-73). From 1975 to 1977 he went on to work at the station as a camera operator, floor manager and then as a producer. 

Warner was intimately involved with the art and music scene in Brisbane in the late 1970s and early 1980s producing music, film, expanded cinema events, curating exhibitions for artist-run galleries and, for a short time, he was the proprietor of The Aleph, a specialist bookshop. He produced a number of Super 8 film works during this period including Dada-HaHa (1980) and Shorts Colour (1982).

Moving to Sydney, Warner joined the Sydney Super 8 Film Group helping to organise screenings, annual festivals, and contributing to the group’s publications. In the latter part of the 1980s he was one of the filmmakers whose work was included in Mark Titmarsh’s Metaphysical TV film programs for screenings and travelling program tours of North and South America. Warner made two films And It’s A Beautiful Day Today in Berlin (1985) and Resistance Today (1987) notable for their combination of appropriated and original materials.  Collaborating with the filmmaker Richard de Souza, Warner created the dual-projector single-screen film Translation (of a ghost story told me by Wassily shortly before his demise…) (1986) one of a number of expanded cinema projects from the period.

In 1985 Warner established and co-ordinated the Australian Film Commission’s No Frills Fund – a specialist fund designed to accommodate the then-burgeoning low budget Super 8 filmmaking scene. In 1988 he created the AFC's New Image Research fund for computer animation and interactive projects and assisted Australian new media artists to attend international conferences such as SIGGRAPH, Ars Electronica and the ISEA series. Warner worked as a project officer for the AFC’s experimental film, features and documentaries, video art and digital media funding programs until 1993.

From 1993 Warner developed all multimedia for the 1995 opening of the innovaive Museum of Sydney on the site of first Government House, then worked as a Creative Producer on the Melbourne Museum project [1995-96]. In 1997 Warner moved back to Sydney from Melbourne and established CDP Media to specialise in new media production for exhibitions in Australian cultural institutions and artist projects.

Warner’s long-held fascination with the possibilities of new media, and the combination of these technologies with analogue media, resulted in an ongoing sequence of works that began in 1989 with the work Confabulator a piece exhibited at the Fourth Sydney Video Festival that included a looped video projection, 35mm slide projection and a soundscape. Recent works such as Perpetual Motion of Ideological Affray (2009) exhibited at Peloton gallery comprised of 40 QuickTime movies, a custom software controller, a 27” iMac computer. Utilising online media platforms such as Fickr, Vimeo and YouTube, Warner continues to produce numerous short video works and photography.

Warner’s work as a curator includes From the Sky (Super 8 films, IMA Brisbane, 1985); Gulfstream (Super 8 films) for the 34th Sydney Film Festival and Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, 1987; an Australian Video Art program for SCAN Gallery, Tokyo and the Aarhus Video Art Festival, Denmark, 1988; Curator, Film and Video Art Program, Australian Perspecta, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 1989 and 1991, and a program of Japanese film accompanying the exhibition Zones of Love at the Museum of Contemporary Art 1992. In 1992 Warner was Curator/Coordinating Chair of the Third International Symposium on Electronic Art, Sydney.

Warner has collaborated with and assisted numerous artists in the production of film, video and digital media projects including production of John Nixon's 16mm film Work (1990) and Lyndal Jones' project Aqua Profunda at the Venice Biennale (2001). More recently he has worked with Fiona Hall for her projects at the MCA, GOMA, Roslyn Oxley9, the Museum of Economic Botany, Adelaide and Documenta 2012; Janet Laurence at Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation; and Maria Fernanda Cardoso for the 18th Biennale of Sydney.

Date 
b. 1957
Birth place
Brisbane, Queensland , Australia
Period of activity 
from 1974

Lives and works

Brisbane
Queensland
1974 - 1981
Sydney
NSW
1981 - 1995
Melbourne
Victoria
1995 - 1997
Sydney
1997
Selected works
digital mala - at peloton gallery sydney december 2009, – via Vimeo 
a lamellophone for The Donkey's Tail, – via Vimeo 
video tanka - rain, – via Vimeo 
motoroller, – via Vimeo 
melbourne walking, – via Vimeo 
Perpetual Motion of Ideological Affray : Papua, – via Vimeo 
See video
– via YouTube 
See video
– via YouTube 
From ... of everything, via d'archive
From ... of everything, via d'archive – from ... of everything, via d/Archive 
From Resistance today, via d'archive
From Resistance today, via d'archive – from Resistance today, via d/Archive 
From Editorial, via d'archive
From Editorial, via d'archive – from Editorial, via d/Archive 
From Editorial, via d'archive
From Editorial, via d'archive – from Editorial, via d/Archive