Hours of operation

Octopus 17: Forever Transformed
Curator: Georgie Meagher

29 July -
9 September 2017

Gertrude Contemporary

21-31 High St, Preston VIC 3072

Opening: Friday 28 July, 6-8pm

Forever Transformed was the seventeenth incarnation of Gertrude Contemporary’s annual Octopus series and is the inaugural exhibition at our new home in Preston South.

Forever Transformed casted a critical eye to one of the most highly valued qualities of our time – resilience. Curator Georgie Meagher brought together works by Tony Albert, Rushdi Anwar, Sophie Cassar, Tabita Rezaire and Liz Linden to explore this concept. 

As chaos, disruption and uncertainty reign, disaster preparedness is a growth industry. The system that can withstand the most pressure is the most valuable, and the ability to bounce back from crisis is your best asset. The ability to recover quickly and seamlessly adapt to change has been widely accepted as necessary for successful bodies, minds, systems and technologies. But this growing focus on resilience simultaneously enables and justifies ever-increasing demands on humans, political systems, economies and the environment.

Contrasting works which both embrace and reject this concept, the exhibition challenged the efficacy of quickly bouncing back and explores alternative frames of reference that encompass resistance, decolonisation, perseverance, subversion and optimism, asking who is this resilience for? Why should we bounce back and get over it?

'Gertrude’s exhibition program in our new location begins with one of our most anticipated annual exhibitions, Octopus, which, since 2001, invites an independent curator to test out new forms of curatorial practices and exhibition models. Octopus 17 will be curated by the Artistic Director of Next Wave, Georgie Meagher, who brings with her a passionate interest in the work of early practice artists, a strong interest in new and hybrid practices and strong networks across the country,' says Mark Feary, Artistic Director, Gertrude Contemporary.

Octopus is a unique program that offers leading curators from across Australia the opportunity to extend their professional practice, developing exhibitions that enhance curatorial and creative debate within Australia and internationally. 

The Octopus series is generously supported by Proclaim.


  • Tony Albert
  • Rushdi Anwar
  • Sophie Cassar
  • Tabita Rezaire
  • Liz Linden

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Gertrude Contemporary

21-31 High Street
Preston South VIC
Melbourne, Australia

Opening hours:
Tuesday–Sunday 11am–5pm

Gertrude Glasshouse

44 Glasshouse Road
Collingwood VIC
Melbourne, Australia

Opening hours:
Thursday–Saturday 12–5pm