When worlds collide: Local

Jonathan Mendez Baute and Robert Young have teamed up for an art exhibition. Photo by Joe Mastroianni

By Charlene Macaulay

Two artists, two mediums, one shared passion.

Point Cook photographer Robert Young has teamed up with Werribee sculptor Jonathan Mendez Baute in a unique exhibition that shines a spotlight on our changing planet.

The result, Local, opened at the Wyndham Art Gallery last week.

Young’s work includes a series of photos depicted the changing landscapes – due to both natural and man-made causes – at the black sand beach in Jokulsarlon, Iceland, and the sun-scorched sands of Coffin Bay in South Australia.

Robert Young his some of his work. Photo by Joe Mastroianni.

“Jonathan said something that brought it down to the essence for me. He said ‘change has consequences’, and I thought, that’s a pretty good description of what I’m trying to do, and it’s obviously what he’s been working on,” Young said. “It’s about change, and how things change over time, what makes them change. To me, things change on a minute-by-minute basis with the light and the weather, and the time of year.”

Mendez Baute has used clay to create a number of sculptures of people and animals, including reptiles and sea creatures.

“Art is part of my everyday life. I’m a father –my son just graduated from uni, my daughter’s in high school, I like to cook for the family, I work full-time, my wife works full-time – so my art really happens in the middle of life itself,” he said. “In my house, there’s the stand where I do my sculptures, and right next to it, I have the dirty dishes.

“I don’t call myself an artist yet – I don’t speak the whole language.”

The Local exhibition will run until October 28.

Jonathan Mendez Baute. Photo by Joe Mastroianni.