Wednesday, November 16, 2011

John Street featured on ABC arts online

John Street's current exhibition Slow photography at MGA is featured in this ABC arts online feature about the artist.

ABC arts online states:
In more than 50 years as a photographer, John Street has gone from shooting some of the 1960s' most iconic models to composing unique still-life images.
Street, who was born in England, began taking photographs after serving in the Royal Navy, using an Ilford Sporti camera he was given. After studying Rembrandt's use of lighting, he went on to photograph models such as Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton during the 1960s.
Street then moved to Australia in 1972, where he shot major advertising campaigns. He found an old wooden camera and customed it to develop a long exposure process. He fixes a 51 x 61 centimetre sheet of photographic paper to the camera and exposes it for up to 45 minutes to capture images of items such as foliage arranged on a glass plate.
During the extended exposures, various light sources are used to illuminate the subject from different angles and to modulate the spectrum of colour being captured by the camera.
His exhibition John Street: Slow Photography is on until 11 December, 2011.

Thanks to Mark Street and ABC TV Arts producer Klaus Toft.

Friday, November 11, 2011


Queensland Centre for Photography has announced the launch of its most recent publication, BEAUTIFUL LIES: Notes Towards a History of Australia by photomedia artist Peter Milne.

Edited by Maurice Ortega with Helen Frajman as photo editor and essays by Prof Michael Stone-Richards, Detroit, USA, Dr Courtney Pedersen, Brisbane, Australia and Prof Darren Tofts, Melbourne, this major project brings together 10 years of Milne's satirical photomedia projects.

The book will be launched by former Bad Seed Mick Harvey @ Loop Bar, 23 Meyers Place, Melbourne, 5.30 for 6pm on Tuesday 22nd November. You will need to RSVP by 14th November for this one to Michelle St. Anne

Published by Queensland Centre for Photography and T&G Publishing, Brisbane, 2011
120 pages
305 x 256mm
hard-cover with slipcase: $66 AUD (inc GST)
ISBN: 978-0-9775790-7-5

Peter Milne is represented in the Monash Gallery of Art, City of Monash collection.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Hijacked III artists just announced

Mark McPherson and fellow Hijacked III curators have just announced the artists involved for Hijacked 3 - AUS/UK.

The Australian artists involved are – Tony Albert, Warwick Baker, Bindi Cole, Christopher Day, Tarryn Gill & Pilar Mata Dupont, Toni Greaves, Petrina Hicks, Alin Huma, Katrin Koenning, David Manley, Jesse Marlow, Tracey Moffat, Justin Spiers, Michelle Tran, Christian Thompson, and Michael Ziebarth.

Work from these photographers will be shown alongside work from these British photographers – Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Natasha Caruana, Maciej Dakowicz, Melinda Gibson, Leonie Hampton, Seba Kurtis, Trish Morrissey, Laura Pannack, Sarah Pickering, Zhao Renhui, Simon Roberts, Helen Sears, Luke Stephenson, Wassink & Lundgren, and Tereza Zelenkova.

The exhibition will be launched at PICA during The Perth International Arts festival from 17 February 2012.

Congratulations to all photographers. Of course we are especially happy for the Australian mob. Two 2011 Bowness Photography Prize finalists are among them: Warwick Baker and David Manley.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

In camera and in public

CCP's latest exhibition charts scary territory: the disruption of the "contract" that exists between the camera/photographer and their subject. This is a juicy subject for our time, as we become increasingly anxious about where we can take pictures and of whom -- or even when and where we are able to use devices like phones that have the potential to make photographs.

So the exhibition asks the question: what does it mean to take someone's picture without them knowing? Across a series of at times extraordinary pictures, we are given the chance to think about what it means to allow our photograph to be taken, and what it might mean to have our picture taken unawares. The effect of this, in the evidence of the pictures, is complex and varied.

In Bill Henson's magnificent photographs of people in crowds Untitled 1980/82, the effect is melancholic poetry -- the magical rich blacks and silvery greys of the prints are cut through with the loneliness, boredome and distraction of the subjects. In Cherine Fahd's pictures of habituees of her local park (the homeless, the addled, the stoned...), taken from the safety of her sixth-floor apartment, the effect is something much more ambivalent. Each of the pictures in the series The sleepers 2005/08 sits on the edges of photographic propriety, which is an uncomfortable and challenging place to be situated by a photographer. Among the most striking of the pictures in the show are a series of surveillance photographs taken by ASIO officers between 1949/80: because they were taken covertly by intelligence operatives, the photographs -- often showing benign subjects such as a man entering a doorway or a group of men chatting in a street -- somehow become suspicious. (If you search hard in the photographs of street marches, you'll spot one of Melbourne's best-known photographers, but we can't reveal her name...)

The money shot in the exhibition, though, are the images from Kohei Yochiyuki's infamous series The park 1971/79 which document public sex acts in Tokyo parks and the endeavours of voyeurs to look and touch. In these pictures, the photographer, the voyeurs, the performers -- themselves often unaware of the voyeurs circulating around them -- and us as viewers are all drawn into a murky web of who has the right to look at whom and under what terms. Its confronting and weirdly titillating at the same time.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Vale Robert Whitaker

It is with sadness that we note the recent passing of great Australian celebrity photographer Robert Whitaker. Although born in England, Whitaker spent his teenage years and early twenties in Melbourne, where he became friends of the iconic Mora family.

In 1963 Whitaker took this striking double portrait of Mirka and Georges Mora -- an image that in turn inspired Nat Thomas and Concetina Inserra's 2008 Bowness Photography Prize-winning picture "Portrait of mother and daughter". Whitaker went on to become court photographer to Mick Jagger and the Rolling Stones, and was in many ways responsible for the cool image of the Stones, the Beatles and many of the 1960s' other cultural icons.

Victorian Indigenous Art Awards

Entries are also due soon for the Victorian Indigenous Art Awards. The deadline for entries is 28 October 2011. As well as the $25 00 Deadly Award, there are three $5 000 awards and a $2 500 People's Choice Award. The exhibition at fortyfivedownstairs generated terrific media interest last year.

The shortlist for this valuable prize always includes a good range of photographic practice. In fact, the last two winners presented photographic material: Bindi Cole won the Deadly in 2010 for one of her wonderful sistagirl portraits, while Ben McKeown won last year for a large Polaroid of a man holding two boomerangs. The exhibition of finalists for the 2012 Victorian Indigenous Art Awards will be held at fortyfivedownstairs between 10-30 March 2012.

NewNorth Photography Prize

You've got just under a week to get your entries in for NewNorth's annual photography prize. With $5 000 in prizes and a chance to exhibit and sell your work at NewNorth's Fairfield gallery, there's plenty of reasons for submitting your entry form to Michael and Suzanne at NewNorth by 4.00PM next Tuesday 11 October. The winner will be announced between 2.00-4.00PM Sunday 23 October. Ironically, last year's winner was Andrew Chapman, the subject of our last post!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Andrew Chapman's Shearer project

One of our favourite documentary photographers Andrew Chapman was featured on this week's Landline program (ABC) with his ongoing work on Australian shearers and shearing sheds. This now decade long project has seen Andrew travel across Australian documenting the arduous work of the country's shearers and also the sheds in which they do their work. As Andrew hints in the Landline feature, shearing sheds are surely among the most significant examples of vernacular Australian architecture and surely in need of photographic documentation.

Andrew's project is now quite vast in scale and increasingly highly regarded: the NGA in Canberra recently acquired photographs and a second book drawing on the series is about to come out. But this aside, the most striking aspect of the Landline story is its dramatic account of Andrew's battle with a life-threatening condition and recent liver transplant. It makes for a compelling portrait of an Australian photographer dedicated to and sustained by their practice. MGA exhibited 40 of Andrew's photographs of shearers in 2004.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Our billboard currently features a work by Claudia Terstappen, from her recent series Roadside memorials. Claudia has written a beautiful statement about the origins and intention of this series:

A photograph is both a pseudo-presence and a token of absence. Susan Sontag

My recent photographic series Roadside memorials focused on grief and loss, which was addressed through personal shrines created for loved ones that had been killed on the road. It was whilst working on this series that I also came across many other victims, dead animals that festooned many of our roads.

Over the last few decades the number of our roads has grown and with it the traffic. Consequently many animals’ habitats have been reduced to small corridors of natural forest or bush and their daily routines have become more dangerous. Also, roadsides are attractive to animals due to water in ditches, freshly slashed vegetation or food thrown from cars. In addition dead animals act as a food source and attract others. All of these factors have lead to an increase in the number of fatal accidents for animals as well as for humans.

About three years ago I began to collect images of roadkill, photographing the animals as they were, squashed on the road; sometimes flattened, sometimes reshaped in their moment of death. In their stillness I could look at them unhurried, observing closely their size, pattern and beauty (or what was left of it). It’s not often you have the opportunity to examine closely a wild animal because they either move fast or are too far away to be looked at properly. Their appearance was often surprising, making me question their identity and behavior.

In my images I sought to create a death mask – as used for identification during the 18th and 19th centuries – to permanently record the characteristics and distortions of the animals, like a true portrait. I therefore isolated the animal from the road, thus removing anything that could distract our attention. I also enlarged the image so that the animal’s presence becomes overpowering and can’t be overlooked.

It saddened me to imagine their suffering and loss. Several times I witnessed that one of a pair had been killed and its mate was still lurking, puzzled by the accident, returning to the dead body, touching it but not understanding what had happened: an almost heartbreaking observation.

People create roadside memorials in order to express their grief and perhaps also communicate their sorrow to a wider public than they could with a conventional grave. Handwritten notes and personal belongings that symbolise the deceased are carefully positioned on site. The majority of these memorials also show a photograph of the deceased. The photograph plays a crucial role: It makes the deceased a noninterchangable character and brings them back to life by showing us their face.

My roadkill portraits function in a similar way. They are witnesses to the animals’ existence and death and make them part of our life. Absence is reversed to presence.

Facing ongoing changes in our environment and a growing population with further demands on shrinking habitats, one wonders how long we will be surrounded by these animals – will they soon be history? Some people would argue that the presence of roadkill is a positive indication of the existence of animals. Their very presence means that there are animals around and an environment healthy enough to support them. What if there was no roadkill? What would that say about our environment?

My photographs are a place for safekeeping, they keep the visual mementos available and alive as much as they confront us with loss. Memory is coagulated and preserved in the images that refer to the animal itself, representative of nature and its fragility. Photography not only becomes a stabiliser of our memory but also recreates memory. It freezes time and helps us to both observe with precision and look back. It builds an interesting link between the past and the present, the living and the dead, us and our environment.

Claudia Terstappen 2010

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

An exhibition opening soon at RMIT's First Site Gallery features the work of students of RMIT’s traditional and historic photography program who have or are in the process of establishing “fine art” careers. RMIT’s BA Photography program continues to train many of our leading young commercial, fashion and scientific photographers. But as This is Not Fine Art will show, graduates also use the strong the strong technical training provided by the program as the basis for a fine art practice.

Among the eight exhibiting artists is Warwick Baker, whose Rocklea, QLD from the series After the flood (2011) is currently on display at MGA as part of the 2011 Bowness Photography Prize.

THIS IS NOT FINE ART: contemporary practice from the BA Photography

Warwick Baker, Phillipa Grenda, Ken Hughes-Parry, Kobie Nel, Damien Rudd, Hannah Spence, Lia Steele, Thomas Dallas Watson; curated by Daniel Stephen Miller

Opening night drinks: Tuesday 4 October 2011, 5:30–7:30pm

Exhibition continues 5-15 October
Artist talks: Thursday 13 October, 1pm
First Site Gallery, 344 Swanston St, Melbourne

Saturday, September 17, 2011


Janina Green's 1993 photographic series Vacuum will be shown at MARGARET LAWRENCE GALLERY from 20 May-11 June 2011.

Vacuum is a set of 14 vintage chromogenic prints made in 1993 and originally shown at the Centre for Contemporary Photography in Melbourne and the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts.

It has been suggested that the middle class white house-wife is the dominant model of femininity and her role has been constructed around domestic cleanliness. Her home has been the setting for her performance as virtuous wife and mother. But housework also taints the character of the woman, linking femininity with dirtiness and linking dirtiness to the "abject" and to those things we are constantly spitting out and wiping away.

This twin notion of the feminine as simultaneously pure yet intrinsically soiled is at the heart of Janina Green's densely collaged layered photographs with their richly retro modernist colour schemes of an idealistic era and a lone silhouetted figure in many of the works, drawing us into the present.


To be opened by: Naomi Cass,
Director Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne
6.00 pm, Thursday 19th May 2011

40 Dodds Street
Southbank Victoria 3006
T: +61 3 9685 9400
Gallery Hours: Tues - Sat, 12pm - 5pm
Saturday 1.00 - 4.00pm.

Exhibition dates: 20 May - 11 June 2011

Janina is represented by M.33

image:Janina Green
from the series Vacuum 1993
chromogenic print
courtesy of the artist and M.33

Thursday, July 28, 2011

In the spotlight: fashion and the swimsuit

Join Dr Christine Schmidt at 2PM this Saturday 30 July 2011 for the first in a series of 3 public programs developed in conjunction with In the spotlight: Anton Bruehl, photographs 1920s-1950s

Christine will discuss the influence of the fashion model and body revealing swimsuits together with women’s desire to imitate and conform to a feminine ideal. In addition, how fashion magazines and images created for editorial and advertisements, by photographers such as Steichen, Bruehl and Horst P. Horst, contributed to narratives knitted to beauty, physical fitness and the modern body.

Christine Schmidt worked as a fashion designer internationally for number of years and completed a PhD in fashion in 2009. She is a fashion and cultural historian and independent fashion and concept consultant. Her current research investigates the evolution of the modern swimsuit and Australia’s contribution to global fashion.
Her forthcoming publication in 2012 with Berg Publishers is titled: The Swimsuit: Fashion from poolside to catwalk.

2pm Saturday 30 July 2011

Anton Bruehl Swimsuit advertisement 1951
dye-transfer colour photograph
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
Gift of American Friends of the National Gallery of Australia Inc., New York NY USA
made possible with the generous support of Anton Bruehl Jr, 2006


Friday, July 22, 2011

Real photographer or phoney?

You may have seen copies of this poster around town. I've been thinking about it for days, and photographed it this morning with my iphone, driving down Toorak Road. The poster is a direct provocation to those of us who now use our smart phones, with their five-megapixel cameras, to record our daily lives. "Get a real camera!", it screams. Moreover, with its challenge to our virility (those limp two minute noodles...) and integrity (are you "real" or "phoney"?), it suggests a picture of the hard-nosed photographer that many of us assumed had passed away. I know it's an ad (for Olympus) and chock-full of irony, but it got me thinking: is the challenge posed by the smart phone to the veracity and identity of the photographer real, or simply a cute line thought up by clever marketers?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Chris Marker at 40th Rencontres d’Arles

One of the world's most prestigious photography festivals, Les Rencontres d'Arles this year presents a Chris Marker retrospective. Presenting 300 works, produced between 1957 and 2010, the show includes his ground-breaking work in Korea in the late 1950's to his Passenger series and films including La Jetée (1962). Curated by Peter Blum the exhibition also features a project by Marker on Second Life

Kimberley Munro at Obscura Gallery

Kimberley Munro exhibited as a VCE student in MGA's inaugural Topshots exhibition way back in 2008. Since then Kimberley exhibited in CCP’s Kodak Salon in 2009 and 2011, the National Gallery of Victoria’s Top Arts in 2008 and has had a solo exhibition at Queen Victoria Women’s Centre in 2010. She is an award-winning photographer and has had particular success in the Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) award season in 2011 with Gold and Silver awards, the VPPY Student Photographer of the Year and as the runner up APPA Student Photographer of the Year. Munro is in her final year of study at the Photography Studies College in Melbourne, phew!

Tonight her work can be seen in a group show at Obscura Gallery titled Non-Fiction with Gillian Fletcher and Cam Scale.

Opens Thursday 21st July
6:30pm - 8:30pm

Address: First Floor 285 Carlisle Street East St Kilda
Postal: Suite 11, 285 Carlisle Street East St Kilda VIC 3183
Phone: +61 3 9525 9377
Opening hours: Tuesday – Friday 12pm – 6pm, Saturday 2pm – 5pm or by appointment

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Selina Ou

With news that the current 200 Gertrude St building is up for sale and rumours of new premises circulating, Gertrude Contemporary seem certain to be on-the-move in the near future. With strong arts and government support Gerty is destined to remain one of Melbourne's most important contemporary art venues.

Support the gallery and one of our favourite contemporary photographers by getting along to Selina Ou's show in Studio 12, opening Friday 22 July 2011. Selina is currently a resident studio artist at Gertrude Contemporary.

MGA has two works from her 2003 series "Work" in the MGA Collection.

Selina Ou
"New York"
Studio 12, Gertrude Contemporary
200 Gertrude St, Fitzroy, VIC 3065
Exhibition Dates: 22 July - 18 August 2011
Opening: 6-8pm, Friday 22nd July 2011
Gallery Hours: Tue-Fri 11am-5:30pm; Sat 11am-4:30pm.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ballarat International Foto Biennale

The Core Program at the BIFB’11 includes photographers well-known to MGA audiences, Alfred Gregory, John Gollings and Chris Budgeon.

The program is supported by a publication with excellent essays by many renowned Australian and international writers, academics and curators. Included is MGA Director Shaune Lakin and local independent publisher and writer Dan Rule. Also included are:
Anthony Haden, guest British-American writer, reporter, cartoonist, art critic, poet and socialite who has contributed to magazines and newspapers including the Financial Times, Vanity Fair, the New Yorker and Rolling Stone.
Helen Trompeteler, Assistant Curator of Photographs at the National Portrait Gallery, UK.

Ballarat International Foto Biennale runs from 20/8/2011 to 18/09/2011. All info available from their website

Monday, July 11, 2011

Burrinja Community Celebration

Our favourite gallery in the Dandenongs, Burrinja is holding their much anticipated opening of a new theatre and gallery spaces on Saturday 30 July.

Designed by Gregory Burgess Architects, the new 400 seat theatre will be used by regional schools, professional and community theatre, music groups and children's theatre.

Additionally, the Art of Place Garden, created in the grounds surrounding Burrinja is an Indigenous cultural and environmental place for learning, reflection, gathering, creativity and celebration of local Indigenous culture and country.

On Saturday 30 July, Burrinja will be holding a free celebration with performances and activities from local performers and artists of the Dandenong Ranges.

Burrinja is a community cultural centre that encompasses arts activities and events including an indigenous gallery, collection and cultural education, contemporary arts gallery, performing arts, art studios, live music, youth arts and a cafe.

Burrinja was awarded The Archival Survival Award for Small Museums, 2010 by Museums Australia (Vic), for its Exemplary Public Programs.

More details from

Monday, July 4, 2011

Jesse Marlow takes out International Street Photography Award

Jesse Marlow is well known to MGA audiences through his photographs in the MGA Collection and the recent MGA touring exhibition Australian rules: around the grounds

Anna Pappas Gallery has just announced that Marlow won first prize in the International Street Photography Awards 2011. The award was announced last night (30 June) at the launch of the London Street Photography Festival. Marlow, whose image was chosen from 1600 international entries, won a return trip and accommodation to London, a cash prize of £1,000 as well as an Olympus PEN camera and a £100 Blurb voucher.

Marlow is a member of both The International Street Photographers Collective and Oculi, Australia's leading documentary photography agency. In 2006 he was selected to participate in the World Press Photo Joop Swart Masterclass in Amsterdam and in 2002 he was the inaugural winner of the Australian Hasselblad X-Pan Masters competition.

Marlow has published several books and he is represented by Anna Pappas Gallery.

White cat 2011
Courtesy of the artist and Anna Pappas Gallery, Melbourne

Friday, July 1, 2011

National Histories of Photography

The Australasian Photography Research Network present National Histories of Photography, a photography symposium at Monash University on 4 August 2011.

Prof Geoffrey Batchen, Victoria University of Wellington and Dr Tanya Sheehan from Rutgers University join locals Dr Melissa Miles, Monash University and Elizabeth Gertsakis, University of Melbourne to "reconsider what a nation-based history of photography might look like in the twenty-first century."

Date: Thursday August 4 2011, 1.30-5pm
Venue: Building S, 2nd floor, Room S232, Monash University, Caulfield Campus

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

As modern as tomorrow as SLV

As modern as tomorrow
Friday 1 July 2011
State Library of Victoria
Keith Murdoch Gallery

As modern as tomorrow opens Friday 1 July at the State Library of Victoria and features the work of Melbourne's post-war photographers - many of whom are also featured in the MGA collection such as Helmut Newton, Athol Shmith, Wolfgang Sievers, Mark Strizic, and Henry Talbot.

Visitors who have also seen the Anton Bruehl exhibition at MGA are sure to pick up on commercial relationship between these photographers and their corporate clients such as the Australian Wool Board, Shell and Kodak. Until Sunday 5 February 2012

Friday, June 24, 2011

In the spotlight: Mad men

In the spotlight: Anton Bruehl photographs 1920s-1950s opens at MGA tomorrow 3pm Saturday 25 June.

Anton Bruehl was one of the most successful celebrity portraiture, advertising and fashion photographers in New York from the 1920s to the 1950s - and he was Australian.

Bruehl was at the top of his profession for 40 years, regularly producing work for the top Condé Nast publications and photographing the stars of stage and screen.

Bruehl was at the forefront of fashion and advertising magazines moving from illustration to photography. A generation of Australian photographers such as Max Dupain and Athol Shmith admired his work and dreamed of his success.

Gael Newton, Senior Curator of Photographs, The National Gallery of Australia says , “Bruehl pioneered a new colour separation process and produced hundreds of colour photographs for magazines such as Vogue and Vanity Fair.”

Some of Newton's favourite Bruehl images include a classic study of Marlene Dietrich in 1935 (pictured), and a 1938 portrait of Gene Tierney: "It's very evocative of the Mad Men era and a reminder that it started long before the '50s. It's also characteristic of his use of colour and his slightly strange, surreal composition."

Read more:

Portrait of Marlene Dietrich, Hollywood 1935
direct positive colour photograph
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
Gift of American Friends of the National Gallery of Australia Inc., New York NY USA
made possible with the generous support of Anton Bruehl Jr, 2006

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Time is short

You have only a few weeks left to catch the remarkable Sue Ford at MGA. We are open this coming weekend from 12-5pm but closed on Monday 13 June (public holiday).

Time machine: Sue Ford is attracting a strong following and critical praise. One of MGA's most memorable exhibitions recently, it has featured on ABC's, Art Nation and The Age.

Dr Marcus Bunyan has also written an extensive review on Art Blart; "...these fantastic photographs show a strong, independent women with a vital mind, an élan vital, a critical self-organisation and an understanding of the morphogenesis of things that will engage us for years to come. Essential looking"

Time machine: Sue Ford finishes on 19 June.

Self portrait 1961 1961
chromogenic print, printed 2011
26 x 19.9cm
courtesy Sue Ford Archive

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Georgia Metaxas at CCP

Georgia Metaxas' new exhibition The Mourners begins 17 May 2011 at the CCP.

Georgia recently presented the very popular series of photographic self-portrait workshops at MGA and works from her 2007 series Lower your ears are held in the MGA Collection.

CCP website states, "The Mourners is a series of portraits documenting the ritual of wearing black as a signifier of perpetual mourning. In remembrance of those they have lost, all that sit for a portrait in the series wear black everyday for the rest of their lives.

The controlled environment of a traveling studio replaces existing backdrops of nursing home corridors, living rooms and church halls. Stripped back to the point where only the faintest trace of the sitter's surroundings remain, the portrait brings the viewer to the periphery of an ultimately private space.

Deflecting the unflinching eye of the camera with an averted gaze, the women are absorbed by the void that is black, living mementos – vessels for mourning, fixed by a photograph, which in turn alludes to a double death."

Untitled # 1 from the series The Mourners 2010-2011
archival inkjet print
50.8 x 40.12cm
courtesy of the artist

Monday, June 6, 2011

Sue Ford on Art Nation

If you missed ABC's Art Nation episode yesterday about our current exhibition Time machine: Sue Ford you can still catch it on the ABC website and iview.
and on iview

Friday, June 3, 2011

Bowness Photography Prize 2011

Less than 3 weeks to go until closing date. Entries close 22 June 2011

There are no thematic restrictions and the competition is open to all analogue and digital photography.

Entries this year are coming in from a broad cross section of photographers - from documentary photographers to fashion photographers, as well as strong representation from contemporary artists.

Entry forms available from:

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Boys with guns: Prudence Murphy

Join us at MGA on Saturday 4 June for the opening of Prudence Murphy's new exhibition Boys with guns.

Murphy’s exhibition Boys with guns is a photographic series depicting children’s spontaneous weapon play, shot in Rhyl, a small coastal town in North Wales.

Murphy chose the location, cast local boys and allowed them to improvise their own games. Armed with plastic toy guns, sticks and water pistols, the boys played for several hours in the Welsh summer twilight.

Murphy has shown widely in Sydney and Melbourne including Future Forms, at Counihan Gallery in 2010, a typological series of photographs of found Lego structures, which emphasised their monumental and sculptural nature.

Intrigued? Hear Prudence talk about her work at 2pm this Saturday 4 June 2011 followed by the opening at 3pm

Prudence MURPHY
Rhyl #1 from the series Boys with guns 2011
archival pigment print
80 x 110 cm
courtesy of the artist

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Get off at the F-stop

F Stop photography competition

Ballarat International Foto Biennale and Fed Square are hosting a unique photography competition, F Stop, judged by the MGA's Curator Stephen Zagala. The top 3 entries will win a master-class with John Gollings. Entry is only $10, so don't pass up the opportunity to win this great prize!

For more information head to

Printed & Bound at MGA Sunday 29 May

On Sadly our Bookbinding Workshop with VICTORIAN BOOKBINDERS GUILD is booked out, but there is still plenty happening at Printed & Bound on Sunday 29 May at MGA.

It's a great chance to pick up an artist-made book, learn new skills and hear from the publishers and artists who have been out there making it.

Panelists include;
Small publishers Dan Rule and Marc Martin from AND Collective, ERM Books and the newly opened perimeter books
photographer Louis Porter who has recently published Bad Driving through ERM books.
Self publisher Olga Bennett, a photographer who has self-published her first book Environments.

Pick up a great artist book directly form the artist.
See a fascinating bookbinding demo by Ort Bindery: The Melbourne School of Bookbinding.Have you made your own artist or photobook and want to sell it at our market? email to reserve a table – it’s free!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Greg Weight at Australian Galleries

Greg Weight's upcoming exhibition at Australian Galleries Formations in landscape will be opened by Hendrik Kolenberg, Senior Curator, Australian Prints, Drawings and Watercolours, AGNSW.

The exhibition brings together images from three different art trips that Weight made to the central desert region of Australia, between 2006 and 2010.

2-26 June, 2011
Opening Hours
Monday - Saturday 10am - 6pm
Sunday 12 - 5pm

50 Smith Street
Victoria Australia 3066
T +61 (03) 9417 0800
F +61 (03) 9417 0699

Formations in landscape 2010
pigment print on cotton rag paper
66 x110 cm
edition of 5

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Self-portrait workshop with Georgia Metaxas

Last chance to get into MGA's self-portrait workshop with Melbourne photographer Georgia Metaxas.

1-3PM SATURDAY 21 & 28 May 2011
$45 General;
$35 Friends of MGA, Teacher’s with valid VIT registration and Students.
Course cost includes both sessions.

In this two-session workshop photographic artist GEORGIA METAXAS will discuss self-portraiture and provide you with practical tips and techniques for successful image making.

The first session will explore the history of photographic self-portraiture. Participants will leave this week’s workshop armed with inspiration to produce a self-portrait prior to the second session.

In the second workshop participants will receive practical and useful advice on how to best approach a self-portrait and interpret the self-portraiture of others.

Perfect for: teachers and all those that are interested in photography as a tool for self-expression and looking for inspiration and practical advice.

Bookings are essential: please call 03 8544 0500

Lower your ears #5 2007
ink-jet print
Monash Gallery of Art, City of Monash Collection
courtesy of the artist

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Stand and Deliver: Andrew Chapman fundraiser

Come and join us at Monash Gallery of Art for Andrew Chapman's fundraiser for the Liver Transplant Unit Victoria.

All money raised will be donated to the Liver Transplant Unit Victoria

Show your support for an important person & photographer who has always supported us. I look forward to seeing you there at 2pm.

For further details regarding 'Stand & Deliver'
contact Susan Gordon-Brown at
(m). 0407 366 332

TIME: 2.00PM

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Where do art and politics meet?

Arena Project Space arts program launch and fundraising event TONIGHT!

Arena Project Space asks the question - where do art and politics meet?

Tuesday 17 May, 6 pm,
2 Kerr Street Fitzroy (between Nicholson and Brunswick streets)

Bookings are NOT required. Entry will be $5 at the door. Refreshments will be available.
Zoe Hatten and Jessie Boylan (coordinators)
For further information: 9416 0232 or 0437 960 510, or go to

Arena Project Space is a new exhibition and forum space, which has grown out of the work of Arena Publications, a broad left political and cultural project that has been running for over 30 years in Melbourne.

This space aims to widen Arena's critical sphere and to facilitate and create dialogue about political and cultural interpretation through arts practice. Arena Project Space has the potential to provide a focus for politics as a context for creative practice. In an age of managerialism, it offers a space beyond the business plan for alternative world views

To launch the arts program planned for this space, the Arena Project Space arts board is organising a forum to consider the relation between art and politics today.

Forum participants are Simon Cooper, Rayna Fahey (aka Kakariki), Lyndal Jones, Robert Nelson and Tom Nicholson. The session will be chaired by Kevin Murray.

Speakers will give a brief response to the questions:
How might artists respond to the social transformations occurring today?
Can artists take on a political agenda without compromising their creativity?

Simon Cooper teaches cultural theory at Monash University and is an Arena Publications editor and author of the 'Cooper's Last' column in Arena Magazine. He is a regular commentator on cultural issues on radio.

Rayna Fahey is editor or RADICALCROSSSTITCH: seriously seditious stitching, and co-founding producer of the Melbourne Craft Cartel.

Lyndal Jones is an artist with an interest in context, place and empowerment, involving performance and video installation. Her ‘Avoca Project' addresses climate change action from the perspective of a small country town.

Kevin Murray is a writer and curator with an interest in south-south dialogue. He is convenor of Southern Perspectives and on-line editor of the Journal of Modern Craft He is an adjunct professor at RMIT, where he coordinates the Ethical Design Laboratory.

Robert Nelson discusses cultural values in education at Monash University and is the Age art critic. His most recent book is The VIsual Language of Painting: An Aesthetic Analysis of Representational Painting.

Tom Nicholson is an artist who lives in Melbourne and teaches Drawing at Monash University. One of his recent collaborative projects was Camp Pell Lecture, with Tony Birch. He is represented by Anna Schwartz Gallery.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Annemieke Mein at Ararat Regional Art Gallery

The popular Annemieke Mein will be showing her extraordinary textile works at Ararat Regional Art Gallery from 19 May - 3 July 2011. Recognised for her meticulous representation of the natural world through textiles the exhibition will also include samplers and drawings that provide an insight into Annemieke’s creative process.

Image: Annemieke Mein, 'Pink Emperor Gum Moth' (detail), 1982, silk, wool, satin, emu feathers, rabbit fur, dacron filling, sewing threaads, covered wire, 13 x 60 x 50 cm. Purchased with the assistance of an Australia Council Crafts Board Grant, 1982. Collection: Ararat Regional Art Gallery

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Andrew Chapman Benefit and Print Swap

Our friends at Gallery New North are hosting an exhibition to raise funds for the Austin Hospital's Liver Transplant Unit and photographer Andrew Chapman. Andrew recently received a liver transplant at the Austin -- a unit that has now saved the lives of at least two of our best photographers, since Paul Cox received a life-saving liver transplant there last year.

The exhibition opens Sunday 29 May at 2pm and there is also a print swap on Sunday 19 June.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter weekend

MGA will be closed from Good Friday 22 April and will re-open Wednesday 27 April 2011.

Our current shows Time machine: Sue Ford and Age of Aquarius: the photography of Paul Cox run until 22 June.

Don't miss the next generation of photomedia artists at the opening and award announcement for Topshots!10, Outstanding photomedia works from VCE art, media and studio arts students completed in 2010 on Saturday 30 April 3:00pm


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Head On Photo Festival & Head On Seminar

Sydney's Head On has quickly become one of Australia's biggest photographic festivals. Held annually, Head On covers the diversity of photographic practice in Australia, and last year featured over 80 events held at almost 70 venues. At the heart of the festival is the Head On Portrait Prize , one of the nation's major photographic portrait prizes.

This year's festival will feature the inaugural Head On Seminar , which will take place on 14-15 May 2011. Scholarships are available for Indigenous photographers to attend this industry seminar program and take part in workshops. Recipients will receive funds towards the costs of flights, accomodation, transport and seminar fees.

Download the application form here.

Applications close 5pm, 1 April 2011.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

2011 MGA Fundraiser on-line

Is this one of MGA's best fundraising auction's yet?

With a list of generous donations from some of Australia's best photographers (some of who are donating new work) MGA's annual fundraising auction for 2011 is proving to be one of the most anticipated auctions in years.

Support shown towards MGA by Australian photographers is extraordinary. We are delighted this year to have works from Bill Henson, Robyn Stacey, Sue Ford, Charles Green and Lyndell Brown, Matthew Sleeth, Robert Owen, Lee Grant, Julie Millowick, Clare Rae, Claudia Terstappen, Rennie Ellis, Donna Bailey, Tim Handfield, Jo Daniell and Peter Milne.

The 2011 Fundraising preview exhibiton runs in MGA's Focus gallery from 22 March-2 April 2011

MGA's gala Fundraising auction night is at MGA on Saturday 2 April 2011. The fabulous Bryan Dawe will be our host, and the event will feature a spectacular dinner, excellent entertainment and outstanding art for auction on the night.

This is a great opportunity to support the work of MGA, one of Australia's only insitutions dedicated to collecting, preserving and displaying Australian photography.

Our auctioneer Paul Sumner will our guest auctioneer on the night.

All works and information can be viewed on MGA's Flickr page

Tickets are $130 for Friends of MGA/$150 for general public
For bookings 8544 0500

Proudly sponsored by
Art & Australia, Neoz Lighting and Montalto Vineyard

Clare RAE
Untitled #6 from the series Testing 2010
pigment ink-jet print
50 x 60 cm
artists proof
courtesy of the artist
est. $1 000–$1 300

Tracey Moffatt: narratives - art preview from The Blurb

Tracey Moffatt: narratives - art preview from The Blurb

Friday, February 25, 2011

Photography killed performance art

One of Australia’s most significant performance artists Mike Parr will show his influential work Breathless(2008) at MGA tomorrow, Saturday 26 February 2011 as part of Photography killed performance art – a public event hosted by MGA in conjunction Afterglow: performance Art and photography.

This is a FREE event but please call MGA before so we can have a seat ready for you.

PANEL DISCUSSION: 2pm Saturday 26 February 2011
Professor ANNE MARSH, Monash University
The panel will respond to the question ‘Does photography kill performance art?' from 2pm. Come and join the discussion!
FREE EVENT! limited seats so bookings are essential to avoid disappointment email or call 03 8544 0500

Thursday, February 24, 2011

National Photographic Portrait Prize

Last year's Bowness Photography Prize winner Lee Grant is among the 55 finalists for this year's National Photographic Portrait Prize. This year's judging panel, National Portrait Gallery curators Sarah Engledow and Christopher Chapman, Director of Adelaide’s Experimental Art Foundation Domenico de Clario, and National Portrait Gallery Director Louise Doyle, whittled down the 1,200 photographs submitted to just 55 - some really brave choices among them. The winner of the $25,000 prize will be announced at the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra at 6pm, 24 February 2011. Good luck Lee, and each of the other finalists on being selected for this important prize.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Photography & place

Photographers familiar to MGA audiences such as Bill Henson, Paul Ogier (Bowness finalist 2009), Rosemary Laing, Ricky Maynard and David Stephenson are part of Photography & place, Australian landscape photography 1970s until now at AGNSW from 16 March to 29 May 2011.

The AGNSW is also hosting a symposium (9 April 2011) that will explore current ideas of place and culture by posing the question, "What do subject and object mean (or what can they mean) in photography in the 21st century?"

Speakers include:
Associate Professor David Stephenson, University of Tasmania School of Art
Dr Kyla McFarlane, Centre for Contemporary Photography
Dr Martyn Jolly, Australian National University
Dr Daniel Palmer, Monash University

The symposium is the first in a new annual series of symposia dedicated to photography, exploring new ways of thinking about the medium in the 21st century.

The exhibition includes work from eighteen artists such as Bill Henson, Jon Rhodes, Lynn Silverman, Simryn Gill, Ricky Maynard, David Stephenson, Rosemary Laing and Paul Ogier.

Paul Ogier
Blue Sky I (South Australia) 2009
courtesy of the artist.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Castlemaine State Festival

This year's Castlemaine State Festival (1-10 April) is a multi-arts celebration that draws on the distinctive culture of the central Victorian goldfields region.

Apart form a series of knockout shows by Rose Nolan and William Kentridge it also includes The Artists Rooms, a series of site-response works where local and international visual artists stretch the contemporary art boundaries through performance, installation, prints, film and paste-up.

Jill Orr, currently featured in MGA's Afterglow: performance art and photography is included as well as Emily Floyd, Aleks Danko and Melissa and Steven Proposch (artists and editors of TROUBLE magazine). Working from the Steven Proposch narrative, collages form the basis of Melissa Proposch's monotype etchings and collagraph paste-ups (pictured).

A parallel performance will accompany the installation by Aleks Danko Saturday 2 April 11.30am-12.30pm.

Check out the festivals website for full details.

Castlemaine Continuing Education
30 Templeton St Castlemaine

Friday 1 & Saturday 2 April 10am-6pm, 3-10 April 10am-5pm


Wheelchair - Limited

Melissa Proposch
Hedony and her hounds


MGA's favourite camera supplier LOMO is about to begin two months of Diana Madness in Australia and New Zealand.

Hosted once every few years, the Lomography World Congress is responsible for uniting Lomographers from all over the world that share one common interest-an immense love for analogue photography.

No Vacancy Gallery is hosting the Melbourne leg of the tour with an exhibition, a great range of workshops and events. Check out their site:

Don't forget, MGA's shop stocks a range of LOMO cameras and accessories.

No Vacancy Gallery
34 – 40 Jane Bell Lane, QV, Melbourne.
Exhibition Running: 24th February – 12th March 2011
Trading Hours:
Monday: Gallery Closed
Tuesday – Friday: 11:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday: 11:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday: 12:00am – 5:00pm

Tracy Moffatt: Narratives at AGSA

MGA’s touring collection show, Tracy Moffatt: Narratives, is about to open at the Art Gallery of South Australia.

For this instalment of the exhibition, AGSA’s Associate Curator of Prints Drawings and Photographs, Maria Zagala, has augmented the show with four additional series of works and an installation of the video montages that Moffatt has produced with Gary Hillberg.

The exhibition is being presented as part of the BigPond Adelaide Film Festival, and screenings of Moffatt’s films will also take place during the course of the show. Until 20 March 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

Jodi Beiber wins World Press Photo of the Year 2011

Eminent South African photojournalist Jodi Beiber has won the 54th World Press Photo Contest for her portrait of Bibi Aisha -- a woman from Oruzgan Province, Afghanistan, whose nose and ears were cut off by her husband with the support of the Taliban, who had accused her of abandoning her husband. The photograph appeared on the front cover of Time magazine in August 2010, and even before this significant award came to embody the violence suffered by Afghan women under Taliban rule. Beiber's picture was selected by the World Press jury from over 108,000 entries.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hijacked III

You may have seen Hijacked II: Australia and Germany at MGA recently. The exhibition is about to open at Queensland College of Art Gallery, Griffiths University, before heading to the Samstag in Adelaide. The show is accompanied by a spectacular publication.

Mark McPherson, the man behind the Hijacked project, is now looking for entries for its third installment. Photographers from Australia and Britain are encouraged to submit entries. Mark and his selection panel are looking for material that suggests the "future of photography", in both conceptual and technical terms. As with Hijacked I and II, a book and exhibition will follow.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Afterglow: performance art & photography

MGA’s major exhibition, Afterglow: performance art & photography, is now on display until 3 April. This exhibition examines the relationship between photography and performance art, highlighting the different ways performance artists have used photography to document their temporal activities and extend the audience for their performances beyond the event itself.

While Afterglow focuses on Australian artists, similar themes are explored internationally in the Museum of Modern Art’s current exhibition, Staging action: performance in photography since 1960, which is on display in New York until 9 May:

For more information on Afterglow, the artists included and the exciting program of events scheduled to coincide with the exhibition, visit MGA’s website: