We acknowledge the traditional owners and sovereign custodians of the land on which Collingwood Yards is situated, the Wurundjeri people of the Woiwurrung language group. We extend our respect to their Ancestors and all First Peoples and Elders past, present, and future.

West Space
Surprised face; Heart eyes

18 March — 30 April
Free exhibtion

Realised through her experience of Tourette’s Syndrome, in her major West Space commission Grace Culley presents a dopamine-centric view of the world, to explore the nuanced ways in which the ‘surprise reward’ chemical exists within the body, and how this manifests in broader social patterns.

Presented as a series of labour-intensive drawings, sculptural assemblages and sonic experiments, Surprised face; Heart eyes will present architectural, everyday and more-than-human motifs that speak to a diversity of behaviours occurring in instances of dopamine-driven experience. Culley’s process-driven practice employs repetition and pattern as a working methodology, creating large-scale and labour-intensive works that require complex manifestations of dopamine in her body throughout the making process.

The result of an intensive period of research, Surprised face; Heart eyes extends beyond Culley’s immediate experience of Tourette’s Syndrome, to open up a space for thinking about the ways that those living with pronounced imbalances of dopamine are perceived and their behaviour moralised; and more laterally, how social systems reinforce ‘acceptable’ public behaviour. Speaking to our everyday connection to the ‘surprise-reward’ chemical, by locating the presence of dopamine in all kinds of behaviour, Culley looks to orient audiences towards an enhanced perception of dopamine in the self and in one’s community.

Surprised face; Heart eyes is accompanied by an extensive catalogue which expands upon Culley’s practice and the broader themes underpinning the show, published by Sonntag Press.

The development for this project was supported by Creative Victoria through their Creator’s Fund


Perry Street Building
Collingwood Yards
Collingwood, 3066


Floor access to the Perry Street Building can be made via the following paths. From 30A Perry Street, a footpath leads to the retail area of Perry St (UG) and courtyard. The Perry Street Lift can be accessed via 30A and 30B Perry Street, allowing access to levels 1 and 2 of Perry Street Building. From Johnston Street access to Perry St Building can be made by crossing the courtyard.

Accessible toilets are located in three areas within the Perry Street Building. On the Upper Ground Level (Level UG) the accessible toilets are located in the service corridor in the northern part of the Building. near the staircase. These toilets are open throughout event hours. On L1 and L2 the toilets are located in the northern part of the building, behind heavy manual blue double doors.  All accessible toilets are equipped with manual locks, exit buttons and grab rails.

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