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Contemporary Australian Artists Embrace Diverse Photographic Approaches in New MOPA Invitational

  • Exhibit is part of initiative by the Museum of Photographic Arts to showcase and collect Australian works that reflect on global issues
  • Defining Place/Space showcases the diverse scope of artwork by photographers of Australia including indigenous heritage

San Diego CA—  The Museum of Photographic Arts (MOPA) presents Defining Place/Space: Contemporary Photography from Australia March 6, 2019 through September 22, 2019. The exhibition represents the best contemporary photography from Australia through the work of 13 artists, including several whose work is being shown in the United States for the first time.

Five curators of photography nominated the artists for doing exciting and dynamic work. Nominators include: Julie Robinson, Art Gallery of South Australia; Susan Van Wyk, National Gallery of Victoria; Dr. Shaune Lakin, National Gallery of Australia; Gael Newton; and Judy Annear.
The range of photographic approaches spans from large, one-of-a-kind artwork to 19th-century processes arriving at contemporary photography, including:
  • Large-scale photoshopped work of alien invasions in London reflecting the colonization of Australia
  • Lighthearted, Edenlike portraits
  • Politically charged images of aboriginal cultures
  • Camera-less photography
The exhibition showcases artists at the forefront of photographic image-making who are opening a global dialogue on the power of photography. The collection also expands on MOPA’s work toward exposure of photographers from the Pacific Rim.
“With globalization making possible the exchange of images across countries and cultures at the click of a button, the awareness of our differences becomes more evident, not less,” MOPA Executive Director and Chief Curator Deborah Klochko said.
The final list of artists includes: Hoda Afshar, Polly Borland, Pat Brassington, Rosemary Laing, Polixeni Papapetrou, Trent Parke, Patrick Pound, Jacky Redgate, Justine Varga, Michael Cook, James Tylor, Tracey Moffatt and Ricky Maynard.
The exhibition is made possible by the generosity of the Australian Consulate-General, Los Angeles, City of San Diego, Gardner Bilingual Fund, Olivia and Peter Farrell, Massey Charitable Trust.
The Exhibition Support Council is sustained by community leaders like Michele Comtois, The Joseph and Beverly Glickman Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation, Karen Kinney, Marion and David Knowles, Gail and Mel Mackler, Barbara Mandel, Julie Lorene Smith, Anita and Allan Sutton, Marie Tartar and Steve Eilenberg, Peggy Ann Wallace.
Australian Photography and MOPA
The exhibition is part of a larger initiative to share Australian photography with a wider audience. In 2016, MOPA established the Peter and Olivia Farrell Collection of Australian Photography in its permanent collection with the acquisition of 24 photographs and 100 photo books generously donated by the Farrells to the Museum. These 24 works will be showcased in Defining Place/Space.
Sydney photography collector and dealer Josef Lebovic donated the photo books and supported Peter and Olivia Farrell in their decision to gift their representative collection of Australian photography to MOPA.