Fiona Tan
Saint Sebas­t­ian

8th – 22nd October 2005
Anna Schwartz Gallery

The del­i­cate wisp of hair, an eye­lash bash­ful­ly low­ered, the throat, erot­ic and poised. Blink­ing con­cen­tra­tion, slight per­spi­ra­tion. The antic­i­pa­tion. Saint Sebas­t­ian is Fiona Tan’s remark­able visu­al essay on sus­pense and sen­su­al­i­ty. Tan cap­tures the ten­sion of the annu­al Toshiya cer­e­mo­ny in Kyoto, Japan, a fes­ti­val that brings togeth­er the finest young female archers from around Japan to cel­e­brate the pass­ing from child­hood into adult­hood. Lying some­where between still pho­to­graph and mov­ing pic­ture, the com­ing into being that is enact­ed as part of the rit­u­alised cer­e­mo­ny is riv­et­ing and all-absorb­ing. Tan has encap­su­lat­ed the cap­ti­va­tion of beau­ty, colour and eroti­cism in this exquis­ite work.

In con­junc­tion with the Mel­bourne Inter­na­tion­al Arts Festival.