Timothy Meakins

Pump Iron ‘Til You Are Iron is a new collection of work which aims to explore the relationship between the human body and, both the objects and process utilised to build body muscle. Through the work comparisons are drawn between the physical processes engaged to increase muscle mass and the resulting internal biological processes our body undertakes. Ideas of repetition, transformation and physical matter are explored with a humorous tone, resulting in a playful examination of the muscle building process.

This project is held at Tributary Projects from 04 March - 21 March 2021. This project has been supported by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries.


Tim Meakins is an artist and graphic designer based in Perth, Western Australia.

Working across sculpture, painting, print, animation and publishing, he employs a visual grammar drawn from the history (and present) of computer graphics/operating systems and cartoons to create intensely energetic propositions around the ever-mutating forms, limits, plasticity, optical register and possibilities of digital and analogue states-of-being. Solo exhibitions include Big Kicks (Smart Casual, Fremantle, 2018) and Low Energy (Cool Change Contemporary, Perth, 2019) and the upcoming Pump Iron ‘Til You Are Iron at Tributary Projects Canberra, 2021.

In 2019 he and fellow designer Simran Singh co-founded the studio TERMSOFSERVICE. TERMS take on and pursue design and brand projects which align with their individual practices. In addition, he is an inhouse designer for various art institutions in Perth as well as contracting for several design studios. Meakins graduated from North Metropolitan TAFE, Perth, in 2013 with an Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design, and received a Bachelor of Humanities, majoring in Graphic Design and Advertising, from Curtin University, Perth, in 2014.


Special thanks to Mark Walkden and the Artcom Fabrication team for fabrication, Xavier Burrow for Coding, Aaron Webber for Photography, Dee Parker for Text, Regan Mathews for Sound, Xavier and the Tributary Projects team and M16 Artspace.

Anterior Tilt
by Dee Parker

Ribcage: In the broad fish trap of myself the pain body is sleeping. He snoozes like Pan in a forest clearing. His gases expand to fill the limits of my container.

Chest: Lo, I am inflated.

Pelvis: I keep myself level to support this top heaviness. I think of myself as a bowl filled to the brim with stanky wet. If I ever tilt, I will spill onto our shoes. It’s stressful.

The figure: We hold ourself symmetrical and straight. Everyone is doing their bit. The legs walk as if the man is on a special secret mission.

Shoulders: Ambitiously we pull ourselves back so far, as if we want to meet each other at the spine and kiss chastely.

The figure: Regard, our choreography is precise, our shorts fall at the knee.

Hands: We close ourselves into tight balls, like we are gripping the handles of a wonky wheelbarrow filled with the man’s preciously finite reserves of love.

Shame: I remind the man again and again of well segmented bodies, stable on slippery surfaces. A hard figure is protected from the metalling of others. Let us raise rocks above our head.

Chest: And now I deflate!

Pain body: I am the man’s parasitic twin, a noble chronicler of all the man’s injuries and hurts. Torn ACL, dislocated hip, broken fingies and such.

Chest: A dormant volcano smoulders within and, yes, I inflate.

Fingies: We are the wise congress of ten. We count the man’s options.

Index: We imagine the bowl of the pelvis tipping.

Thumb: Pouring the hot sticky magma to the floor.

Pinkie: As if preparing a steamy bath within which the man can luxuriate in stigma.

Shame: That’s hot.

Abdomen: In me the vulnerable child has made its nest of sticks and mud and bits of string and hair and things. It draws from the prehistoric well of thinking and paints my insides with its war stories.

Ribcage: embracing one another in ballet, the chest and I reduce, Pan stirs.

Breath: Shhhhhh, I will warm the tundra of dad bods.

Legs: We are on a special secret mission, marching through frozen grief.