It’s safe to say that no contemporary Australian artist has struck such a deep and resounding chord with the public as Ben Quilty. His keen sense of social responsibility has come to the fore in recent years through work inspired by his meetings with child refugees in Lebanon, Lesbos and Serbia, and before that his passionate advocacy for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. His confronting After Afghanistan exhibition for the Australian War Memorial outraged many on both sides of politics but the visceral power of the painting is undeniable.
The Festival is proud to premiere this, the first major survey exhibition of his work, before its national tour. It’s exciting and compulsory viewing.
For the audio version of this event page, click here.
You can also see Ben Quilty speak in the Festival Forums on Tuesday 5 March at 12:30pm.
…when Quilty hits the mark, the results have a sense of rightness that feels almost supernatural. To hang one of these pieces on the wall next to the tidy, cautious works of more conservative artists is like blasting them with a laser beam.
The Sydney Morning Herald
Event additional information
Developed by the Art Gallery of South Australia
Curated by Assistant Director, Artistic Programs Lisa Slade.
National tour presented with support from the Neilson Foundation as Principal Donor.