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What to see and do as 2017 comes to a close, and 2018 begins

Art Lovers | 4 November 2017

With only 2 months left to go of 2017 and 2018 a stones throw away, it’s a time of year that many of us have plans a plenty. Be it for holidays, Christmas, New Years Eve or various other social occasions, remember, there’s many amazing and wonderful exhibitions that are happening that you may kick yourself for missing. So we are here to let you know about what you may not want to miss.

Yayoi Kusama

Yayoi Kusama – Life is the Heart of a Rainbow

4 Nov 2017 – 11 Feb 2018


Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama is an international phenomenon. Her beguiling creations and unique perspective, irrepressibly expressed across a career of more than 60 years, have made her a pre-eminent figure in 21st century contemporary art.

The exhibition includes early painterly experiments, a multi-decade presentation of her celebrated ‘net’ paintings, performance, soft-sculpture, assemblage, the iconic ‘infinity rooms’ and large-scale installations of her later career. It culminates in an encompassing presentation of Kusama’s most recent paintings from the visually arresting ‘My Eternal Soul’ series (2009 – ongoing).

Image result for robert mapplethorpe

Patti Smith –  photograph by Robert Mapplethorpe

Robert Mapplethorpe – the perfect medium

27 Oct 2017 – 4 Mar 2018

Art Gallery NSWSydney

Robert Mapplethorpe: the perfect medium celebrates one of the most renowned photographers of the 20th century, an artist who understood the medium’s ability to alter perceptions and push boundaries.

This comprehensive survey of Robert Mapplethorpe’s career features over 200 works, including floral still lifes, portraits, figure studies and erotic imagery that charts his involvement in New York’s gay scene, as well as a selection of archival material providing insights into his working methods and life.

An icon who photographed other icons, Mapplethorpe captured and shaped an era with portraits that immortalised the cultural idols of the 1970s and 1980s, including lifelong muse Patti Smith, fellow artists Cindy Sherman and Louise Bourgeois, actor Isabella Rossellini and musicians Debbie Harry and Philip Glass.

Image: Betty Kuntiwa Pumani, born 1963, Perentie Bore, South Australia, Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara people, South Australia, Antara, 2017, Mimili, South Australia, synthetic polymer paint on linen, 300 x 200 cm; Courtesy the artist and Mimili Maku Arts. photo: Rhett Hammerton

TARNANTHI – Festival of Contemporary Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art

13 Oct 2017 – 28 Jan 2018

Art Gallery of South AustraliaAdelaide

Presenting the art of Australia’s rich and diverse Indigenous cultures on an unprecedented scale. This is a platform for important stories from across the country to be seen and heard, TARNANTHI offers an unmissable opportunity to experience the best of contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art.

Heath Ledger

Heath Ledger – a life in pictures

14 Oct 2017 – 29 Jan 2018

Art Gallery of Western AustraliaPerth

Film legend Heath Ledger was a charismatic movie star who pushed the boundaries of acting in his iconic roles. This unique exhibition has been curated by the WA Museum in partnership with AGWA. From his teenage years in Western Australia to his final role as Tony in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (2009), the exhibition follows a career driven by the actor’s passion for creativity.

On display for the first time, will be Ledger’s research journals revealing the actor’s deep commitment to his profession and how he developed key roles. Awards such as his Best Supporting Actor Oscar and BAFTA for The Dark Knight highlight his achievements in the film industry. Ledger’s celebrity status is reflected in portraits by noted international photographers such as Karin Catt, Platon and Bruce Weber.

A chronological narrative of his acting career will be intertwined with his creative investigations into image-making under the influences of visionary directors Ang Lee, Terry Gilliam and Todd Haynes. Photographic stills and moving images will offer a glimpse of Ledger behind-the-scenes and reveal his creative projects as a director.

Photograph by Otto Tschirn

A Frontier Journey – photographs by Otto Tschirn 1915-18

9 Sept 2017 – 14 Jan 2018

The Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern TerritoryDarwin

The photographs of Otto Tschirn give a remarkable insight into the social world of the changing Central Australian frontier during the early years of the 20th century. His captivating and skilfully composed images represent a comprehensive visual record of everyday interactions between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in Central Australia 100 years ago. Refuting assumptions of violence and oppression toward Aboriginal people, instead there is evidence in the photographs of people living and working together in close association with a sense of community and purpose. Otto’s subjects are clearly relaxed in the presence of a camera and appear willing participants in the process and his rapport with them is visible; a skill he likely developed as a freelance photographer while living in South Australia.

**Warning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visitors, please be advised that deceased people are represented throughout this exhibition.

Woman and Child – Sam Jinks

Hyper Real

20 Oct 2017 – 18 Feb 2018

National Gallery of Australia – Canberra

A levitating man, a genetically engineered baby, towering giants – welcome to humanity amplified. Featuring uncanny figures with painted silicon skin, glass eyes, human hair and cutting-edge digital art, Hyper Real provokes reflection, fascination, fear and joy. From eerily lifelike sculptures to out-of-this-world virtual reality, this major exhibition charts the evolution of hyperrealism into the 21st century. A compelling chronicle of the cycles of life and our constant need for connection, Hyper Real explores the fundamental question: ‘what makes us human?’

The exhibition presents major works from early American pioneers George Segal, John De Andrea and Duane Hanson, celebrated Australian artists Patricia Piccinini, Ron Mueck and Sam Jinks, international masters Maurizio Cattelan (Italy), Berlinde de Bruyckere (Belgium), Evan Penny (Canada), Sun Yuan and Peng Yu (China) and many more.

AC/DC – photograph by Tony Mott

What a Life! – Rock Photography by Tony Mott

26 Aug 2017 – 28 Jan 2018

Wollongong Art Gallery – Wollongong

A major retrospective on Australia’s premier rock photographer Tony Mott. The exhibition collectively tells the story of rock n’ roll life in Australia over the last 30 years, including the enormous changes to the live music scene from the 1990s and the impact of digital on the art of rock photography.

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