Ian Strange is a multidisciplinary artist whose work explores architecture, space, and the home. His practice includes multifaceted collaborative community based projects, architectural interventions, and exhibitions resulting in photography, sculpture, installation, site-specific works, film, documentary works, and exhibitions. His studio practice includes painting and drawing, as well as ongoing research and archiving projects.
Strange is best known for his ongoing series of suburban architectural interventions, film, and photographic works that subvert the archetypal domestic home. The work and exhibitions have been created in: the USA (‘SUBURBAN’, 2011–13); post-earthquake Christchurch, New Zealand (‘FINAL ACT’, 2013); Western Australia and Victoria, Australia (‘SHADOW’, 2015) (‘OPEN HOME’, 2017); Katowice, Poland (‘ZŁOTY’, 2016); and in the USA throughout Ohio’s rust-belt region, (‘ISLAND’, 2015–18). Strange’s practice has resulted in exhibitions at the National Gallery of Victoria, the Canterbury Museum, FORM, RMIT, Standard Practice NYC, Cockatoo Island’s Turbine Hall, FAC, Moore Contemporary, and as a part of the 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart at the Art Gallery of South Australia with ‘LANDED’ (2014) a commissioned sculptural installation on the forecourt of the gallery. Strange’s publication ‘ISLAND’ (PAM, 2017), based on the eponymous site-specific sculptural work, won the Bronze Medal for the NSW State Print Awards 2018.
In 2019 Strange was commissioned by the Lyon Foundation to create his large-scale light installation work ‘LIGHT INTERSECTION’ for ‘ENTER’, the inaugural exhibition at the Lyon Housemusem’s new gallery.
Strange has a number of ongoing collaborative works and projects, which include: ‘TRACES’, (2016–2020) a collaboration with contemporary dance company Chunky Move and their creative director Anouk Van Dijk; on-going collaborative works with designer and artist Virgil Abloh, including major sculpture commissions for Off-White Melbourne, Sydney, and New York; as well as ‘345 Franklin’ (2016), a collaborative work with Detroit based architect and artist Catie Newell for Artprize, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Strange’s drawings, paintings, publications, and sculptures have been exhibited extensively in spaces such as Whitewalls Gallery, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, ThinkSpace, MCA, The Queensland State Library, Allouche Gallery, Standard Practice, Strychnin Gallery, Fremantle Arts Centre, as well as at arts festivals including Underbelly, PUBLIC, NuArt, Auckland Festival of Photography, and SPRING / BREAK 2017.
In 2017, ABCTV released HOME: The Art of Ian Strange, a 6-part documentary series looking at Strange’s career and work to date. In 2018, Strange spoke at TEDxSydney with The Home, Art and Place.
Strange has been featured in publications including OSMOS Magazine, Art World, Dazed and Confused, The Atlantic, Art Monthly, Nowness, Hypebeast Magazine, Imagine Architecture, Street to Studio, ArtAlmanac, Artlink, Art Market, Artist Profile, Vault Magazine, Oyster Magazine, and The Financial Review. His work is featured in private and public collections including the National Gallery of Victoria, Art Gallery of South Australia, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Canterbury Museum, State Library Victoria, State Library of Queensland, NGA Research Library & Archives, and the Asia Pacific Design Library.
“… Strange has used a number of techniques and processes as part of his exploration, from spray-painting images directly onto facades to repainting entire houses in monochromatic colour schemes, transforming them from places for living into enormous and highly charged sculptural objects. Strange’s photographs and videos challenge the idea of the family home as a place of warmth and safety by simultaneously elevating and destroying it, both literally and figuratively. In doing so, Strange reveals his own antithetical relationship with the suburbs and invites us to explore our own response to them.” – David Hurlston – Senior Curator, Australian Art – National Gallery of Victoria.
“…. There is an acute awareness of the emotive connection the audience has for the home and Strange’s authorisation of these images and videos become a visual register for both the familiar and mysterious. He deconstructs the ‘site’ as landscape, ‘intervention’ as medium and ‘conceptual index’ as domestic experiences in these ubiquitous structures. From his early work, akin to graffiti and street art, there has been a psychological and aesthetic shift over the years but what remains central is recognition of the vulnerability of the house.” – Craig Malyon – Art Almanac March 2017.
“…. By introducing painting into the photograph Strange joins a lineage of photographers who push against the very limits of the medium. While a painting is understood as being the product of imagination, a photograph always implies an existential relation to reality, a feeling, as Roland Barthes says, of “that has been.” It is in this space of tension between presence and absence, tranquility and a cry for help that Strange’s photographs hold us.” – Sreshta Rit Premnath – Assistant Professor at Parsons, New York.
“…. Ian Strange joins other visionary artists, writers, film makers; Bill Henson, Tim Winton, Janet Frame, David Lynch to name but a few, who have reached into our suburban DNA and questioned the very notion of what is home. It is a significant human experience to know home, and in Strange’s work he powerfully suggests that the child disappeared, the shape shifter, the wolf, is in fact home.” – Simone Douglas – Director MFA Fine Arts Program, Parsons the New School, New York.