With the Perth Cultural Centre (PCC) redevelopment commencing in 2024, PICA has temporarily relocated its foyer from James Street to the western façade and its Performance Space. Inaugurating this new entrance is a major new commission by artist Agatha Gothe-Snape.
Known for her distinct methodologies for mediating space and our relationships to it, Gothe-Snape brings the full force of her conceptual and formal rigour to this new threshold to address notions of space, site and hospitality. Gothe-Snape has been working with PICA staff, the organisation’s archives, previous program participants and the architecture to spatialise the new foyer as ‘a site of function, relation and history, creating a distinct environment of colour, form and expectation; a place of both conviviality and transition.’
In conceiving the new foyer, Gothe-Snape has used ‘colour as a bridge through time’, gleaning, gathering, rearranging and performing fragmentary remembrances, images, words and impressions from various moments in PICA’s early history. In particular, she ruminates on key works presented between 1988 and 1991. Of particular interest is A Spacious Central Location (1990) curated by John Barrett-Lennard, a landmark exhibition that addressed PICA’s geographical site in the Perth Cultural Centre and its role as a forum for the critical presentation of contemporary cultural practice.
Twenty-five years later, PICA’s history – experienced through Gothe-Snape’s embodied, interpersonal, and conceptual practice – is re-read. This commission makes use of the PCC redevelopment to create an important opportunity to consider the history of PICA, its relations with artists and the community of Perth, and address the building and its placement on Whadjuk Noongar Country. It’s a moment to reorientate, let the light into previously darkened spaces, and welcome people into PICA through a new doorway.