Ian Strange (b.1982) is a transdisciplinary artist whose work explores the home, site-specificity, and landscape. His practice includes collaborative community-based projects, architectural interventions, and exhibitions resulting in photography, film, sculpture, installation, site-specific works, research, and documentary works. His studio practice includes painting and drawing, as well as ongoing research and archival projects. Additionally, he has created collaborative projects with other practitioners and institutions in the fields of dance, music, performance, and film.
Strange is best known for his ongoing series of large-scale architectural interventions, film, and photographic works that subvert the archetypal domestic home. These works and exhibitions have been created in the United States (‘SUBURBAN’ 2011–13); post-earthquake Christchurch, New Zealand (‘FINAL ACT’, 2013); Western Australia and Victoria, Australia (‘SHADOW’, 2015) (‘TARGET’, 2017) (‘DALISON’, 2022); Katowice, Poland (‘ZŁOTY’, 2015); and in the United States throughout Ohio’s rust-belt region, (‘ISLAND’, 2015–17) ('PENUMBRA', 2022). This has resulted in exhibitions at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), the Canterbury Museum, FotoFocus Biennial, UCCA Centre for Contemporary Art, FORM Gallery, RMIT University, Standard Practice NYC, the John Curtin Gallery, Cockatoo Island’s Turbine Hall, the Fremantle Arts Centre (FAC), Moore Contemporary, and as a part of the 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art (‘LANDED’, 2014) at the Art Gallery of South Australia (AGSA).
These bodies of work have included a number of collaborative projects: ‘DALISON’ (2022), a site-based installation, film, and sound work with US-based musician Trevor Powers (Youth Lagoon); a collaborative series of works and installations with designer and artist Virgil Abloh, including major sculpture commissions for Off-White Melbourne, Sydney, and New York (‘Nothing is Finished’, 2017); ‘TRACES’, (2017–2020) a collaboration with contemporary dance company Chunky Move and their creative director, choreographer Anouk Van Dijk; and ‘345 Franklin’ (2016), a collaborative architectural intervention work with Detroit-based architect and artist Catie Newell and SiTE:LAB for ArtPrize 2016, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.
Since 2019, Strange’s site-specific public light works, ‘LIGHT INTERSECTIONS’, have been commissioned by Lyon Housemsueum for ‘Enter’, for the inaugural exhibition at the museum's new galleries (‘LIGHT INTERSECTIONS, 2019), and by the City of Sydney, Australia, for its 2021 "Art and About" public art program (‘LIGHT INTERSECTIONS II’, 2021).
Between 2020 and 2021 Strange was appointed and served as Guest Artistic Director of the Art Gallery of Western Australia (AGWA)—Western Australia’s largest public art museum.
In 2020, John Curtin Gallery exhibited 'Suburban Interventions: 2008 – 2020', the first comprehensive mid-career survey exhibition of Strange's film and photographic works, as well as archival materials from past projects. In 2022, the FotoFocus Biennial exhibited ‘Disturbed Home,’ the first North American survey exhibition of Strange's works, at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, curated by FotoFocus artistic director Kevin Moore. Damiani Editore subsequently released ‘Disturbed Home’ (2022), the first comprehensive monograph of Strange’s work. It included scholarly essays by FotoFocus artistic director and curator Kevin Moore, and Britt Salvesen, curator and head of the Wallis Annenberg Photography Department and the Prints and Drawings Department at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).
In 2022, Strange premiered 'PENUMBRA' (2022), a significant new commission for the 2022 FotoFocus Biennial. He released ‘TRACES’, (2017–2020), created in collaboration with contemporary dance company Chunky Move and Dutch choreographer Anouk Van Dijk, and opened a series of exhibitions and screenings of the work ‘DALISON’ (2022), including at the UCCA Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing.
In early 2023, Strange commenced work on a new photographic series tracing the shared histories of fireworks and explosives in landscape and photography, starting with a collection of new works created in Ferijaz, Kosovo, and Suhača, Bosnia.
In addition to these projects and collaborations, Strange maintains an active studio-based research and archive practice. This includes a 2017–2019 archival and research project ('The Corley Archive') commissioned by the State Library of Queensland and the Asia Pacific Design Library, working with the State Library’s Corley photographic archive. In 2017 he also developed a pilot vertical studio program with RMIT University to explore new avenues of artist/university collaboration and transdisciplinary studio practice.
Strange’s drawings, paintings, publications, and sculptures have been exhibited globally in spaces such as Whitewall Galleries, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, ThinkSpace, MCA, The Lyon Housemuseum, The Queensland State Library, Allouche Gallery, RMIT, Standard Practice Gallery, Strychnin Gallery Berlin, Fremantle Arts Centre, as well as at arts festivals including Underbelly, PUBLIC, RiSE, NuArt, Perth Festival, Auckland Festival of Photography, and SPRING/BREAK.
In 2017, ABCTV released 'HOME: The Art of Ian Strange', a 6-part documentary series looking at Strange’s career and work to date. He has been featured in numerous publications and journals including: ICON (2022); Document Journal (2022); The Politics of Public Space vol. 1 & 2 (2020); ABC Radio National (2022, 2020); Financial Times, London (2022); The Art Newspaper (2022); Houses (2022); Assemble Papers (2020); Architecture AU (2019); Grazia (2018); The Saturday Paper (2018, 2022); Hypebeast Magazine (2018); Street to Studio (2018); The Monthly (2017); Art Almanac (2017); Nowness (2017); Artist Profile (2017), Wallpaper (2016), OSMOS (2014) Kerb Journal (2014), Imagine Architecture (2014), Dazed and Confused Magazine (Dazed) (2014), and Hyperallergic (2013), among others.
Strange has spoken and lectured widely about his practice, including Melbourne School of Design, Harvard Graduate School of Design, RMIT University, TEDxSydney, Columbia College Chicago, Parsons School of Design, and the National Gallery of Victoria, among others.
Strange's work sits in museum and institution collections including: the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), the Art Gallery of South Australia (AGSA), the Art Gallery of Western Australia (AGWA), Canterbury Museum, State Library Victoria, State Library of Queensland, FotoFocus, John Curtin University, CMC, MAC yapang, City of Sydney, NGA Research Library Archives, and the Asia Pacific Design Library.