Wes Maselli – This Man Can Predict the Price of Petrol

Wes Maselli was employed as manager of Tjarlirli Art in the remote community of Tjukurla, Western Australia between September 2009 and September 2011, during this period he produced a body of work in his preferred medium, oil paint on linen, based on the concept of a shamanic deity that can elucidate the price of different types of petrol based on its aroma.
Whilst not directly referencing the damage caused by the practice of ‘petrol sniffing’, the paintings allude to this and other factors relating to the consumption of petrol and petro-chemical products.
In a fossil fuel dependant world, who in fact sets the price of crude oil and its by-products? Which faceless shaman determines the cost to the individual, to the environment and to the collective psyche? What is the ‘true’ cost of petrol and its consumption? The recurrent theme of this exhibition revolves around alchemy, ceremony and worship in the context of a contemporary Western society that is engaged in a forced dependency on crude oil. An implied question then, is, what are the alternatives and how do we release ourselves from the current ‘spell’ in order to develop sustainable alternatives?

Opening Friday 12 July 6pm
Artist floor talk Saturday 13 July, 11.30am

Image: Skull in bag, 2010, oil paint on linen, 137 x 137cm

12 July18 August 2013
Araluen Arts Centre