With the majority of the world’s population dwelling in cities, it is not just our bodies that are contained within urban commercial and industrialized zones – but our imaginations as well. City Within the City examines how through activating urban spaces, we might engender them as sites for creative expression, transgression and resistance.

Co-curated by Gertrude Contemporary and Artsonje Center, Seoul City Within the City, features seventeen Australian and international artists whose works reveal the personal, fictional, composite and re-purposed narratives that arise when human subjectivity encounters the built environment.

Presented initially at Art Sonje, Seoul in November 2011, City Within the City at Gertrude Contemporary includes major new installation works by Australian artists Ash Keating, Alicia Frankovich and Andrew McQualter, as well as a selection of key works from the estate of Emil Goh. City Within the City also comprises significant works by internationally acclaimed artists Haegue Yang, Kim Beom and Minouk Lim, among many others. The works draw on literature, architecture, landscape urbanism and cinema history in their examination of  political and social theory that underscores the relationship between human subjectivity and the urban environment.

City Within the City was first presented at Artsonje Centre (11 November 2011 –15 January 2012) as a flagship cultural project for the diplomatic Year of Australia – South Korea Friendship. This second iteration of the exhibition is a site-specific reimagining of the City Within the City curated for the Melbourne International Arts Festival 2012. 

We gratefully acknowledge the support of ARKO funding to support collaborative group Part-time Suite's 4 week residency in Australia to make new work for the exhibition.

This exhibition has also been made possible with the support of Russell Investments and Cake industries.