Things That Are Real: Alvaro Barrington x Dean Cross | Cement Fondu, Sydney, Australia

June 3 – July 23, 2023

More information on the exhibition

Things That Are Real
Alvaro Barrington x Dean Cross
Cement Fondu, Sydney, Australia 

Cement Fondu is pleased to present the 5th annual pairing of an early-career local artist with a celebrated international artist, featuring Dean Cross and Alvaro Barrington.

Following a series of breakthrough presentations (Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, Adelaide, Australia, 2022; Primavera, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney, Australia, 2021; Icarus, my Son, Goulburn Regional Art Gallery, Goulburn, Australia, traveled to Carriageworks, Eveleigh, Australia, 2021), this project will feature a major new commission by regional NSW-based artist Dean Cross. A Worimi man, born and raised on Ngunnawal/Ngambri Country, Cross’s work enacts First Nations sovereignty through expanded contemporary art methodologies. 

Cross will present alongside Alvaro Barrington, whose multimedia practice references a myriad of sources, from hip-hop to art history. Remarkably, his first solo exhibition was held at MoMA PS1, Queens, NY in 2017, and recent major exhibitions include an acclaimed solo show at South London Gallery, London, UK, and Mixing It Up: Painting Today, Hayward Gallery, London, UK, both in 2021. 

Building upon the success of Cement Fondu’s past “pairing” exhibitions, Alvaro Barrington x Dean Cross will be the most ambitious of this series to date, creating an unprecedented level of cultural and artistic exchange. The artists will co-create works between the UK and Australia during a development phase, and will collaborate in-person at Cement Fondu’s gallery during a creative install period to realize the public exhibition. This rich exchange of culture, ideas, and methodologies will embrace risk-taking, experimentation, and innovation. 

This exciting pairing celebrates the material and conceptual synergies between the two artists’ expansive and shape-shifting practices. Both artists embrace non-traditional methods and materials while interweaving personal, social, political, and art histories. Their spontaneous and richly layered contemporary “assemblages” are amassed with contradictions, often demonstrating an astute knowledge of Western art along with a complete disregard for hierarchy and dominant systems of value. Similarly, they imbue aesthetic currency on otherwise disregarded materials and crafts and give voice to social injustice and silenced histories.

The exhibition resulting from this creative collaboration will be powerful and poetic, DIY and refined, accessible and confounding, devastating and humorous. 


Public Programming 

June 3, 5–8pm
Opening Night and Artist Talk 

Join Cement Fondu for the opening of Things That Are Real, featuring an artist talk with Alvaro Barrington and Dean Cross from 5–6pm, and a First Nations Welcome to Country at 6pm, followed by opening night celebrations and refreshments. This event is free and open to all. 

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BLUM Los Angeles is closed for installation until Saturday, July 13.