Interactive Christmas Conversations in collaboration with artist Jess Cook and IT experts MooresCloud.
Darling Harbour, Sydney. November 30th - December 26, christmasconversations.com.au For the first time you can choose a symbol and a colour to light the tree using your iPhone
ELVIS IN GOULBURN - Moody Blue, group exhibition, South Hill Gallery, Goulburn. 28 September - 13 October, 2013
SCULPTURE at SCENIC WORLD - Finalist,
LIfe is LIght - the spirits of the bush. Katoomba, 24 April - 19 May, 2013
ETERNITY group exhibition,
friends of Martin Sharp and Arthur Stace, Damien Minton Gallery, Sydney, 12 February - 23 February, 2013
MY LIFE AND LOVES - Tales from The Fogg -
retrospective exhibition. 107 Projects Gallery and Theatre, Sydney, 14 March - 1 April, 2013. Including works from Fogg's exhibitions since 1966.
Plans, photographs and production techniques for large and small multimedia happenings,
Light Sculptures, Lumino Kinetics and Events.
Costumes for Fogg shows by Madam Lash, Katie Pye and Linda Jackson
Psychedelic shoes designed by Fogg.
Posters for various Fogg Lightshows since 1968
Erotic Ceramics from 1974
Selections from the series "The Spirit of India" photographs of Lightshows/Exhibitions from and about India
Selections from the series "The Spirit of the Gija", photographs of Lightshows/Exhibitions from the Kimberley
Films of and about The Yellow House, interviews with Adrian Rawlins and others
Jim Anderson - London Oz, John Allen - Aquarius Festival, Madam Lash, Cabaret Conspiracy, Andrea Reece
Master of Ceremonies: Edwina Blush
SIXTIES EXPLOSION - group exhibition of a number of artists and others working in the 1960s. Macquarie University Art Gallery, Sydney, 18 September - 31 October, 2012
My 60s Explosion
a personal view
Roger Foley-Fogg also known as Ellis D Fogg
Albie Thoms, David Perry, Gary Shead, Ubu, Oz Magazine, Richard Neville, Richard Walsh, Martin Sharp, Mick Glasheen, John Allen, The Arts Factory, The Human Body, Rex Cramphorn’s Performance Syndicate, Willy Young now William Yang, Sydney University Underground Society, Victor Kay, Watters Gallery, Mike Brown and Vivienne Binns, and many other young people were all ‘happening’ in Australia during the 60s and the best of them were included in my evolving Elli D Fogg Lightshows and Lumino Kinetic work .
Like many others such as Albie Thoms, my work as an artist rebelled against the usual model of exhibitions of paintings and other work on white walled Galleries, we considered this to be boring and wanted a total multi disciplinary art theatre. Frank Watters chaged this in 1971 when I was asked to create a total environment “WOOM” with Vivienne Binns in his Gallery and was subsequently invited by Albie Thoms to create a room at The yellow House. The Capsule Room.
The press covered all this experimentation extensively and it became very popular and hip which encouraged many others to produce one off lightworks and theatre pieces with varying degrees of success. In my particular area of Light Sculpture, Environments and Lightshows, Albie Thom’s Ubu group were the only other innovators that consistently came up with new ideas and productions. To finance these developments both Ubu and Fogg offered our art to commercial businesses as long as we were still in control of our work and retained artistic integrity.
Our concerns as young people included: The Vietnam war, censorship, sexual liberation, state political and police corruption, the white Australia policy, republicanism, apartheid, the voting rights and civil rights marches in the USA and the treatment of our own black people. women’s liberation, the pill and contraception, abortion, sexual repression and the general repression, malaise and boredom of society. I worked at making my Lightshows reflect these concerns in a manner that was entertaining.
Our disrespect for authority figures and encouragement to think for ourselves came not only from Albie Thom’s obscenity trial, the trials of the Oz, nor from Timothy Leary’s writings but also from the fact that Nazi war criminals were denied the defence ‘only following orders’. The 1961 Eichmann trial was a reminder that you have a responsibilty to think for yourself and to not blindly follow authority.
I had been brought up by strong and artistic women, my mother Hazel Foley and my Aunt Eileen Foley, a musician, who had encourage my interest in art. I had wanted to be a sculptor since I was 12, and had played with anomalous light and colour and imagined that I would work in theatre, perhaps making sculpture that could be used on stage. When I left school in 1959 my Aunt advised that the coming big thing would be guitars and lights and my mother advised I should learn something that could support me financially so I worked in a factory learning to use hand and machine tools during the day, went to University and then Art School at night and worked in the Lighting departments of various theatres in my spare time.
I was aware of the influence of Ghandi’s India and the colourful Hindi Gods on the counter culture movement then sweeping the Western world - young folk particularly liked the fact that multinationals such as Coca Cola were banned in India. I was also inspired by New York’s The Living Theatre - still performing in 2012, Albie Thom’s Theatre of Cruelty at Sydney University and the American West Coast Hippy movement which became Flower Power, the contrasting Andy Warhol Exploding Plastic Inevitable with Lou Reed and The Velvet Underground on the East Coast. And the power of Rock and Roll music and its message which I added to my theatre shows, first at a small hall in Kensington for The Psychedelic Party, Mixed Media and Banana Freakout show with Brian Robson’s band and then later at The UNSW Roundhouse with Tully where we had a full house with a thousand people who could not get in to the show watching through the glass walls.
I continued to make Light sculptures, first maquettes and then larger versions to use on stage. I devised designed and directed and produced the Lightshows utilising the best artists I could find. Ubu films, Victor Kay’s curved screens and handmade 35mm films, Aggy Read’s hand painted slides, Eddie Van Der Madden’s Wetshows and beautiful handmade Kaleidoscope projectors, Geoffrey Rose’s painted scenery, Alex Boyd’s stroboscopes, Vivienne Binn’s paintings, Christine Koltai’s dance, with some very impressive bands and musicians including Tully, The Nutwood Rug, Company Caine, Heart and Soul, The Turkish Green Electric band, Jeff St John, Wendy Saddington and the great Jean Lewis. This work led to later productions with Jazz men such as John Sangster and with composer Peter Sculthorpe and the Sydney and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras.
My shows are always sexy and pushed the boundaries because conservative attitudes to censorship and sexuality have never gone away. Beautiful girls were always coming up to me at concerts wanting to take their clothes off and dance around the band as living screens for our projections. I always said yes. Then late in 1969 I met Gretel Pinniger a beautiful arts student who earned money as an artists model, by making leather clothes and by working the strip club circuit at Kings Cross as Madam Lash. We struck up a friendship and determined to put her handmade costumes and her friends in our Lightshows which we did at the beginning of the following decade. So that is another story.
I acknowledge the archives of Albie Thoms for assistance with this memoir.
Roger Foley-Fogg September 2012
KINDNESS / UDARTA. Australia-India Cultural Exchange - group exhibition of 140 Australian and Indian writers, musicians and artists,
Visual Arts Gallery, Indian Habitat Centre, New Delhi, March 16, 2012
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Atrium Level 1, Canberra, ACT, May 31, 2012
RMIT Gallery, Melbourne, June 29 - August 25, 2012
ARTSPACE MACKAY - Regional public art gallery and museum, Director Michael Wardell, July, 2011.
lumino kinetic exhibition in the Cox Rayner Gallery and community work with 'Art by Night' for the MECC assisted by Edwina Blush.
CREATIVE SYDNEY - Fringe - two lumino kinetic installations, May-June, 2011:
“The title of this art exhibition - Racism and Reconciliation - will indeed go a long way in establishing friendship between our two countries. And yes you're right, art and the feelings artists bring out with their works will certainly help in bringing our countries together." Smt. Meira Kumar, Hon Speaker of the Lok Sabha (Indian Parliament)
RACISM and RECONCILIATION, a group exhibition of Indian and Australian artists in an attempt to better understand the recent strain in the relations between our two countries and start the first ever dialogue on this issue through art. Artists: Seemas Kohli, Dhiraj Singh, Tracey Deep and Roger Foley-Fogg. Curator Sahar Zaman. ART KONSULT GALLERY, Hauz Khas, Delhi, India. Jan 28 through March, 2011.
mandala one - four details as the work is played to music.
leds, rope light, timber frame, steel mesh, polythene, 240cm x 240cm
5 x psychedelic mandalas - 60s retrospective
Photo by Jon Lewis
farewell to - the last indeterminate and ephemeral fogg sculpture Photography by Jim Anderson and Wendy Shaw
I called this performance rather grandly: "The Last Ephemeral and Indeterminate Fogg Sculpture" - Fogg sculpture is an attempt to illustrate my belief that there is no such thing as objective reality...everything is subjective. You see what you want to see. Or not. Then there is consensual reality- the everyday. The song is Tiny Tim singing The Icecaps are Melting.
A great impromptu performance by Christa Hughes a wonderful and generous artistic spirit... Note in the background Louise Ferrier the great beauty of London Oz and with her shopping bags 70s performance artist Gretel Pinniger, also in the audience Jim Anderson and other 60s luminaries
The Wave of Stoke, lumino kinetic sculpture - Wax On - Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre.
Curated by Nell Schofield. 5 Dec 2009 - 31 Jan 2010
Australian Boofhead - Australian Ethical Art Show for World Environment Day, Tap Gallery, June, 2009
Lumino Kinetic Sculpture - RAINBOW - over two paddle steamers in the Harbour of Light Parade, Sydney, New Years Eve 2009. This sculpture was later used on a truck, the RAINBOW FREEDOM and POSITIVITY FLOAT in the SG&L Mardi Gras Parade up Oxford Street , Sydney on March 7th, 2009. Photography by John Morris
Photo by Wendy Shaw
Our Mardi Gras Float was about Justice, Freedom and Equality for all. Photo by William Yang.
Research “LED EXPO 2009” – DELHI.
Research “SPIRIT OF INDIA” project, visiting Delhi, Vadodara - Baroda, Agra and Mumbai.
DIWALI Lightshow for the Children of Saikripa Childrens Home, Noida. India.
and CNN-IBN interview about "racist" attacks in Oz, Video courtesy of CNN-India
SEVEN ASPECTS of LIGHT continuing work on multimedia - film, lumino kinetic sculpture, installation, happening now including -The Spirit of India- and meaning of Diwali
NEWSREEL MOVIE - Makara Sankranthi Kite and Firework Festival from the terrace roof of Mr and Mrs Shah’s house in Vadodara, Gujarat, India. Celebrating the movement of the sun to the Northern Hemisphere, the beginning of Uttarayana. Makara Sankranthi refers to the sun entering the zodiac sign of Makara or Capricorn and the accompanying positive thought and inspiration - may you go higher & higher, to more & more light.
NEWSREEL MOVIE- The enduring light of love reflected from the Taj Mahal and filmed from different locations under the full moon from dusk to dawn and day.
Continuing work on artist’s studios and a collection of 60s Dreams and Aspirations and the compilation of 60’s popular art in The Blue Mountains.
Continuing work - Ghana Project – Art Action Accra - on hold while Ms Afua Alando studies in Sweden.
CHRISTMAS TREE OF LIGHT 2009
3 x ‘LIGHT’ Maquettes – Gallery de l'Ordure – Lawson, 2008
Gaadmungungardi - Light and sound for the private, indigenous and sacred KALACC FESTIVAL 2008 – for the Arnbarda Community at old Mt Barnett Station, Gibb River Road, The Kimberley, Western Australia.
JOY to the World 08 - Darling Harbour, Sydney
art directed by Fogg
“Joy to the World 08” - Our symbol for an Australian Christmas - The Christmas Tree of Light - Sydney, Australia
(i) a Christian celebration,
(ii) a time for family to come together sharing food and gifts and
(iii) when an evergreen tree is a symbol of hope during the northern winter and a symbol of fun in the sun down under.
Design and Production of Australian themed Events for several private clients.
Research trip to: Amsterdam, Accra, Beijing, Shanghai and Jiangmen. Investigating the latest developments in bright LED lighting for the solar powering of trees in public spaces for the City of Sydney.
Continuing development of the expanded animated Australian Christmas Tree of Light for Darling Harbour – Sydney
Consultant – Parramatta Park Christmas Celebrations
Upgrade and renewal of the Lumino Kinetic Sculpture “COSMOS” for Sally and Will Baillieu of Portsea, Melbourne.
“Spirit of the Ghanaians” finalist, BLAKE PRIZE for Religious Art, 2007
Love All, 90cm x 90cm, archival print on board, Spirit of the Ghanaians, detail.
Our favourite Oz symbol is the hopping kangaroo.
We combine this kitsch symbol with cleverness and humour
as in this animated display on the roof of the Sydney Convention Center
Victorian National Gallery, Melbourne, group show "Victorian Vision 1854-1984”
The Yellow House, installation, and multimedia, group shows, Sydney 1971-3
Watters Gallery, "WOOM" multimedia environment with Vivienne Binns. Sydney 1971
"The most stimulating art event of the season may well be the Environmental Happening arranged by Roger Foley, Vivienne Binns and Ellis D Fogg in the upper room of Watters’ Gallery... One is left with the impression that art has taken on a new dimension and that in the future it will involve the spectator as a much more active participant in the experience." wrote James Gleeson, artist, writer and Australia's greatest surrealist. The Sun, Feb 1971.
Pictures left to right:
- The Big Question, 450x700, domestic light bulbs on painted marine ply.
- OP/EN. Projected Installation on the Museum of Contemporary Art utilising just 5 x 2Kw Follow Spots.
- Neon Installation for Futureworld Design.
And LIGHTING for ARCHITECTURAL THEMING, THEATRE AND SPECIAL EVENTS
"Christmas Lights", Darling Harbour - Sydney, Design and Construction and annual upgrade. World’s Brightest Xmas Tree 1995 -2006.
Art Director "Mr Fogg’s Music Hall” for Australian artists
Production and development of UNUSUAL all AUSTRALIAN shows for visiting tourists and guests such as "AUSTRALIA PRESENTS" for 3000 members of Société International d'Urologie and "A DAY ON SYDNEY HARBOUR " for Jim and Lynnette Gaza of Chicago.
“Christmas Lights Festival” Parramatta Park, 2004,2005. Design and Construction
Development of the lightshow component of "Fire Fire Burning Bright" at Bow River Artists Camp WA for the Neminuwarlin Performance Group, 2001. Performed at the Perth International Arts Festival, 2002.
Lightshow for "Junba Nyangarriyu Biya Yuwa 2001” Corroboree for Big Mob at Twelve Mile. For KALACC, Fitzroy Crossing WA.
Lightshow for "Majarraka Festival of Law and Culture 2005" at Ngumpan, The Kimberley, Western Australia For KALACC, Fitzroy Crossing WA.
"? - The Big Question", Lumino Kinetic Installation, Observatory Hill, Sydney for The National Trust of Australia, 2000
"The Magic of Light", Installation, Singapore, 1999 and many other ‘son et lumiere’ projects in Australasia.
"Stars on Princes Bridge" Melbourne International Arts Festival, AD Leo Schofield, 1996
"Chill Out Room" Installation with Edwina Blush for Michael Chugg’s "Alternative Nation Tour", 1994
"The Face of Luna Park on Hyde Park Barracks", Installation, Historic Houses Trust, 1993
Producer/ Designer/Director "Artists for Labor" concert of Australian talent for the Prime Minister of Australia, Paul Keating, 1993
"OP / EN", Lumino Kinetic Installation and projections on The Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 1991
Producer/Designer for all major Qintex Special Events & The Mirage Resorts, 1984-1989
"FOGG in FOG" Installation with Fujiko Nakaya (EAT) The Biennale of Sydney 1978
Lightshows with The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Peter Sculthorpe, John Hopkins & the ABC, Melbourne and Sydney.
Lightshows and Lumino Kinetic sculpture performed with many Australian musicians and dancers from Rock and Roll to Jazz, percussion and strings over a period of experimentation from 1966 and in public performance from 1967 to 2007
Produced the first Australian Psychedelic Lightshows in Melbourne with John Pinder and in Sydney with Aggie Read and Albie Thoms’ UBU Films.
"a superbly restrained happening of great beauty and sensitivity. " Rennie Ellis, 1970.
Hotel Bondi. pea light framing for Bondi Lights Festival
Mr Foggs Floating Music Hall, cabaret programme by Jim Anderson
Edwina's Table Hopping Kangaroos delight overseas visitors
Mirage Resort, Port Douglas and Gold Coast. Design and Production of two weeks of opening events
Although we don’t usually enter competitions we have won the following awards:
ENTECH AWARD for Lighting Design / Architectural Theming, 1997
BEST FLOAT AWARD, Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras 1989.
Received two grants from the then Australian Council for the Arts for experimental theatre work.
NOTES about definitions
Technology in the service of Art
In the early 60s Fogg worked the lights on children's theatre productions for The Pocket Playhouse, Tempe. Then to 1966 Fogg worked in theatre, attending some university lectures, and continued playing with light in a shared student house in Darlinghurst. Note that in those days theatre lighting people mainly fixed the fridges in the dressing rooms. However Fogg decided that it might be possible to survive as an independent light artist provided he could retain his integrity in the arts establishment and the commercial world and not compromise with either. In a Fogg production the Lighting People are in charge.
This allowed Fogg and his fellow light artists the luxury of paid research time as well as the time for pro bono work for other artists and to experiment with the new 60s liberated freedoms producing interesting and spiritually uplifting, positive events. Psychedelic events in the original sense of the word - mind enriching, expanding ones knowledge and awareness. This income stream allows Fogg and his associates to remain independent and to stay innovative in technology as well as in art.
The term "Lumino Kinetic Art" was first used in 1966. by Frank Popper, then Professor of Aesthetics, Paris University and the author of the defining publications about Kinetic Art.
A "Lightshow" is the use of lighting, fx, video, film, action & staging usually but not always in an improvised manner.
The word "Psychedelic” was first used in a letter from Humphrey Osmond to Aldous Huxley in 1956. As commonly used the word has two meanings:
1) Mind manifesting, expanding ones knowledge and awareness.
2) Bold abstract images using vivid contrasting colours.
In "Traditional Theatre/Film" the creative controlling force is called the "Director" however this role is often called "Producer" for many other theatre forms.