Inspiring learning with art and design

Darren Sylvester: Carve a Future, Devour Everything

Darren Sylvester: Carve a Future, Devour Everything, Become Something is the Melbourne-based contemporary artist’s first large-scale solo exhibition in a public institution. Bringing together works spanning the entire twenty years of his career, this exhibition is a timely and unique opportunity to review Sylvester’s practice and reveals his continued discussions on desirability, authenticity and mortality, all presented in a high-gloss finish.

Sylvester is a truly multidisciplinary artist who works in staged photography, sculpture, video, installation, performance and music. Everything he creates is the result of a detailed process of planning and research, with handmade sets and props photographed in studio to resemble high street fashion campaigns and sculptural fabrications that twist subjects ranging from fast food design to an astronaut space suit to the moon itself.

Sylvester’s practice is controlled, autodidactic and constantly evolving. It represents a detailed knowledge of and interest in pop culture, pop music, advertising, cinema, fashion, our relationships with each other and perhaps most significantly, our place in the universe.
Hopes and dreams, work conundrums, loss and longing, fear of death – these are subjects that appear time and time again. Aspects of his work appropriate and transform well-known products as ‘readymades’ as a way of looking at the ways we live with, and are shaped by, branding. NGV audiences will remember the artist’s pulsating dancefloor For you, 2013, presented as part of the Melbourne Now exhibition, that enabled people to dance within a stylised ‘make-up compact’.


Book your free self-guided school visit



Book a program with an NGV educator to introduce your students to key themes of the exhibition

Levels 7-10, VCE

View and discuss the multidisciplinary art of Darren Sylvester with an educator.  Consider themes and ideas explored by the artist over his twenty year career and become familiar with the artist’s practice, including the extraordinary lengths  Sylvester will go to realise his works.

Cost: $8 per student (1 hour)

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Behind-the-scenes at the NGV. View and discuss Darren Sylvester: Carve a Future, Devour Everything, Become Something  with a focus on developing key knowledge and skills required for Studio Arts, Unit 4, Area of Study 3 – Art Industry Contexts. Find out what curators, conservators, designers and marketers do to prepare and present an exhibition in Australia’s oldest and most visited public gallery.

Cost: $8 per student (1 hour)

Book now