Past Exhibitions and Events

Showcase #18: Alterfact
Friday 4 May 2018 - Wednesday 8 August 2018

Alterfact's candy coloured ensemble of teapots, milk jugs and drinking vessels reflects the intersection of new technologies with traditional ceramic techniques. Produced through digital printing processes, plastic clay the consistency of toothpaste is finely layered to produce three dimensional forms. Various components are then adjoined and finished, with some finer details such as handles or lids being hand built using raku clay before firing.

Exploring the boundaries between function and aesthetics, art and craft, the quirky idiosyncratic forms in Teapot Menagerie vary in their use value. Despite their industrial construction, the objects refuse to be categorised. Resisting their traditional templates they are neither functional design nor purely aesthetic object.

They ask how functional an object built for function needs to be, or if it can occupy this liminal space between design and art.  

Alterfact is an experimental design studio created by Lucile Sciallano and Ben Landau in 2014. Since graduating from Design Academy Eindhoven in 2013, the artists have collaborated on various projects in different mediums, culminating in the creation of Alterfact Studio. The studio conducts critical research with materials and data translated through the manufacture of utilitarian and aesthetic objects. Alterfact’s practice is currently focused on the use of 3D printing in clay as a small batch manufacturing process that pushes the boundaries of this traditionally plastic-based medium. Teapot Menagerie  was exhibited as part of Melbourne Design Week, 2017. Works from this series are held in the collection of the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne and in private collections.

SAM's Showcase presents exhibitions of new work by contemporary ceramicists in the glass display cabinet of the art museum's entry. Showcase is a unique opportunity for collectors and craft lovers to acquire work from established and emerging contemporary artists, as all pieces are available for purchase at the SAM shop.

Image: Alterfact, Teapot Menagerie, 2017, 3D printed from Southern Ice Porcelain with coloured stains. Image courtesy Alterfact. Photo: Ben Landau.

Drawing Wall #31: David Harley
Saturday 28 April 2018 - Wednesday 1 August 2018

Since the mid to late 90’s, David Harley has incorporated digital technologies and large format printing to produce his expanded ‘free-form’ abstract paintings. His practise draws on the traditions of Abstract Expressionism —a post-World War II painting movement that favoured abstract gestures over realistic representations of the world, used to convey emotive or universal themes.

Harley employs artistic techniques that evolved from our networked, digital age. Exchanging oil paints and canvas with a computer mouse and screen, he uses computer graphics software such as Photoshop, Blender and After Effects as artistic tools. His expressive approach to colour and line is then up-scaled and translated through digital printing processes onto adhesive wallpaper where the Drawing Wall becomes re-skinned. Sections of the work have been activated as live, digital abstractions, re-animated by motion graphics that generate implied three dimensional forms on two dimensional screens. The combination of digital media and art history allows Harley to explore space and materiality in new ways, while re-inventing tradition. 

Throughout his career, Harley has used classical music for inspiration. His painterly gestures conjure up the oscillating pitch and dynamic shifts of music, resembling a kind of graphic notation that might be read as a score. This is further amplified by the format of the Drawing Wall space with its long corridor that creates a kind of continuum. This said however, the linear progression usually implied by a musical piece instead folds and implodes into itself, as Harley’s expressive scrawl disrupts the progression of time. Likewise, with the introduction of moving paintings displayed on LCD screens, the artist moves beyond the facade of the two dimensional picture plane into three dimensional virtual terrain. 

David Harley has held over 25 solo exhibitions in both private and institutional gallery spaces. In 2015, he was awarded a practice-led PhD from the School of Art, Faculty of VCA&MCM (The University of Melbourne).  He has held sessional lecturing appointments at VCA, RMIT, Monash and VU. Harley has undertaken various artist residencies in Australia and Germany, at the VCA and RMIT University, Melbourne; and two at AtelierFrankfurt in Frankfurt Am Main. Harley has completed a series of large scaled commissioned artworks for buildings in Australia and Germany, including for the NAB and Deakin University in Melbourne. He is currently represented by Charles Nodrum Gallery, Melbourne. The artist would like to acknowledge the support of SAM staff, Professors Kate Buchanan and Andy Bennett, Simone Slee, Coco Harley and Judith Harley.

Image: David Harley. Courtesy Charles Nodrum Gallery © the artist.

SAM Education Lab 
Saturday 31 March 2018 - Sunday 13 May 2018

SAM’s Education Lab will provide a diverse range of students and teachers (both primary and secondary) the opportunity to work directly with an artist and create an immersive installation within SAM’s exhibition spaces. Directed at school kids of all ages, SAM’s Education Lab will cater to a wide demographic. 

The Education Lab will be an evolving exhibition process that will see a range of schools and educational groups work with an artist to transform the gallery space on a weekly basis. Students' work will remain in the gallery space over six weeks, providing them with the opportunity to see their work displayed in the galleries in an open lab-style mode of display. 

Masato Takasaka will be the first practicing artist to take up residency in the Education Lab for six weeks from March 31 – May 13, 2018. 

Masato will be present and working in the gallery for two days a week for the duration of the SAM Local / Education Laboratory exhibition period. He is a Melbourne based contemporary visual artist, who likes to think about his studio practice in musical terms, describing his aesthetic as an iPod Shuffle on endless repeat: playing the greatest hits of 20th century avant-garde art, with references to Constructivism, Dada, Pop and Minimalism alongside the back catalogue of his own greatest hits. 

Primarily working with found objects and materials to construct his gallery-based installations, art and design history collide in Takasaka’s mini-cities. Described as “techno-contemporary”, the exuberant chaos of his sculptural practice involves a process of working and re-working everyday materials in inventive ways to make something new.

In the final week students will have a chance to see their work with Masato Takasaka accumulate in an exciting large scale installation.

Join us for the closing party of SAM’s inaugural Education Lab on Monday 7 May, 6 to 8pm. RSVP essential, by Friday 27 April:

Masato’s artwork has featured in a range of museum exhibitions such as TarraWarra Biennial 2016: Endless Circulation, TarraWarra Museum of Art and Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2013), Roppongi Crossing 2013: OUT OF DOUBT, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2013), and Reinventing the Wheel: the Readymade Century, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne (2013).

Schools are encouraged to book their groups in early to participate in this exciting artmaking and exhibition opportunity. Contact SAM Visual Arts Educator, Catherine Read to discuss booking in your school to participate. 

Why a Lab?

After extensive consultation, SAM is shifting our education focus to an inclusive project that enables students to be involved in a curatorial process. The decision to move from a VCE focused exhibition to an Education Laboratory approach considered a number of key influencing factors: 

•    SAM now offers a range of specifically targeted VCE and senior secondary educational opportunities. The change in direction for our Education programming has seen a major re-focus on providing opportunities for senior secondary students to be involved with SAM, for instance the SAM Scholars program and VCE Exam preparation workshops are new additions to opportunities SAM provides for the senior secondary students in our region.
•    SAM Education wants to make this opportunity available to many students of all ages. This is an opportunity that is inclusive for primary school students, secondary school students and the broader educational community.

•    Working directly with an artist is inspiring and exciting. SAM Education wants to provide the opportunity for regional students to work directly with a practicing artist to experience and understand firsthand the artist’s studio processes and artistic practice.

•    SAM is Local and our SAM Local Friends exhibition will be exhibited alongside the Education Laboratory project. VCE students with exemplary work are encouraged to become a friend of SAM and exhibit their artwork in our Friends of SAM show. 

•    In response to New SAM’s Education and Community opportunities, which will include an Artist in Residence, further practical workshops and an education and community gallery space, an Education Laboratory project is the perfect opportunity to trial new ways of engaging with the community of students and educators within our region. 

For further enquires and bookings please email SAM Visual Art Educator, Catherine Read on


Image: ANOTHER PROPOSITIONAL MODEL FOR THE EVERYTHING ALWAYS ALREADYMADE WANNABE STUDIO MASATOTECTURES MUSEUM OF FOUND REFRACTIONS 1994-2016 (r)eternal return to productopia-almost everything all at once, twice three times (in four parts…TWMA BIENNIAL: ENDLESS CIRCULATION 2016 remix), 2016. Mixed media, foam-core, perspex sheet found objects , mdf composition board, light box. installation view Tarrawarra Biennial 2016: Endless Circulation. Photo: Andrew Curtis.

SAM Local Spotlight: Kate Hill
Thursday 29 March 2018 - Sunday 13 May 2018

From 29 March to 13 May 2018, Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) will go local, spotlighting artistic practice from the region. SAM Local Spotlight is an opportunity for an artist to exhibit a body of work at SAM. 

Exhibition opening celebration: Wednesday 28 March, 5.30 -7.30pm

SAM Local Spotlight is an exciting, profile-raising exhibition for a regional artist. The aim of the show is to encourage, stimulate and promote local and regional cultural activities as part of SAM’s annual program. This is also great opportunity to gain professional experience working in an art museum context - working with SAM's team across curatorial, marketing and communications, registration, education and public programs, and much more.

In a work that takes her directly back to her childhood farm in Boorhaman, North East Victoria, and to the banks of the Goulburn River, Shepparton, Kate Hill continues her investigation of local clays, industry and the intersection of waterways.

In Hill’s work, the notion of ‘local’ is considered through the lens of the personal and material, incorporating clay, water, native grass species, introduced agricultural grass species, and the artist’s hair. This suite of materials also explores a temporal experience of place, hinting at past and present forms of agriculture, both indigenous and European, as well as episodes in the artist’s life. 

For SAM Local, Hill’s work will culminate in a series of traditional and experimental clay forms, including objects and finishes suggestive of earthen architecture, and ceramic tableware bowls with unique glazes. 

Feature image: Kate Hill. Courtesy and © the artist.

Proposals for SAM Local Spotlight were accepted from artists living in or originally from the north central Victorian region including the Goulburn, Campaspe, Benalla and Wangaratta, or who maintain strong connections with these locations. Applications have now closed. 

SAM Local: Best of Friends
Thursday 29 March 2018 - Sunday 13 May 2018

SAM goes local in March. During this time we’ll be showcasing artistic practice from the region with three exhibitions: SAM Local Spotlight; Best of Friends; and the SAM Education Lab (see details on following page). Local artists are encouraged to share their creativity and get involved!

Best of Friends is an open access exhibition and it's purpose is to open a window onto the creative practice of many artists working in a range of media in the Goulburn Valley. It is a great way to see what other people are creating and to gain insights into the regional arts sector.

The Friends of Shepparton Art Museum are invited to submit recent examples of their works of art or craft for the 2018 members’ exhibition, which will be held at SAM from Thursday 29 March to 13 May 2018. Opening night will occur on Wednesday 28 March from 5.30 -7.30pm.

If you're not yet a Friend of SAM you can download a membership form here under the Friends of SAM section.

Image: Kaye Poulton, All Ears, 2016, fine stoneware and porcelain, 50 x 40 cm. Photo: Amina Barolli.

Drawing Wall #30: Rosa Purbrick
Saturday 10 February 2018 - Wednesday 18 April 2018

Nagambie-based artist Rosa Purbrick draws on the wetlands and waterways of her local environment to produce abstracted visions of the landscape.

The Goulburn, its River Red Gums, billabongs and wildlife are depicted using vibrant tones and reductive shapes that are applied with adhesive vinyl on a painted ground.

Purbrick’s graphic compositions are overlayed with linear mark making that conjures up the constant flux of the seasons. Also resembling topographical maps or the indentations of human fingerprints, they express a reverence and connection with nature.

Rosa Purbrick has exhibited in a number of group and solo exhibitions, both in Australia and internationally. Her work is included in private and public collections such as U.S.A. Embassy, Canberra; Shepparton Art Museum, VIC; Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Melbourne; Victoria National Art School; Sydney; and Ontario College of Art Toronto, Canada.

IMAGE: Rosa Purbrick, Mud Bridge 1, 2016, acrylic on linen, 76cm x 102 cm. Courtesy and © the artist.

Showcase #17: Kaye Poulton
Friday 2 February 2018 - Wednesday 2 May 2018

Kaye Poulton is a local ceramicist based in Mooroopna who has been working with clay since the late ‘70s.

Produced for Showcase #17 and aligned with the Shepparton Festival, this body of work explores the seasonal shifts and fluctuating water levels of the Goulburn (Kaiela) River as it sculpts the landscape, leaving its residuous traces.

Waterline is comprised of a series of stoneware vessels that are wheel thrown. Modulating in form and scale, the vessels are realised as a linear sequence that evokes the strength and verticality of the nearby River Red Gums. A continuous horizontal line intersects the surface of each piece, revealing the bare textures of unglazed clay and suggesting the vestiges of inundation.

Poulton’s work can be found in the Shepparton Art Museum Collection, and at Craft Victoria, Melbourne and Bendigo Pottery, Bendigo.

Showcase presents exhibitions of new work by contemporary ceramicists in the glass display cabinet of SAM’s entry. Showcase is a unique opportunity for collectors and craft lovers to acquire work from established and emerging contemporary artists, as all pieces are available for purchase at the SAM shop.

Soft Core
Saturday 27 January 2018 - Sunday 18 March 2018

Soft Core presents artistic practices that explore the many facets of ‘softness’ - from large-scale inflatables to forms made from soft materials to materials that simply look soft. These artists are making works that demand attention - forms that are not simply bumped into while looking at paintings.

In the 20th Century, artists began to disassemble the notion of traditional sculpture by adding and subtracting constructions, incorporating found objects and designating everyday items as art. These adaptive and divergent methods of form making continue today in a generation of artists who define sculpture in the negative condition: not bronze, not stone, not the macho force of the blast furnace.

The materials in this exhibition encompass air, inflatable nylon, unfired clay and plastics bags – materials that have been co-opted for their versatility and their mutability between function and emotion. Some of the works require activation – such as electricity or inflation to become whole while others inhabit their softness quietly.

Soft Core investigates these practices by presenting existing works and newly commissioned works from 11 Australian and two International artists who question the fluctuating meaning of what it means to be soft.

Artists: Tully Arnot, Mikala Dwyer, Tully Moore, Tony Oursler, Michael Parekowhai, Patricia Piccinini, Todd Robinson, Koji Ryui, Kathy Temin, Louise Weaver, Simon Yates and Paul Yore.

Opening night: Friday 2 February, 6 to 8pm. 

Opening night will feature a special participatory installation of soft sculpture called 'Trio', by opening speaker, David Cross, artist and Professor of Art and Performance, Deakin University.

An exhibition curated by Micheal Do, in conjunction with Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre and toured by Museums & Galleries of NSW. This project has been assisted by the Australian Government's Visions of Australia program.


Image: Koji Ryui, HAVE A NICE DAY, 2014, unfired clay, polyethylene bag, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist and Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney.

Cover Versions: Mimicry and Resistance
Saturday 11 November 2017 - Sunday 14 January 2018

This exhibition explores ideas around mimicry and impersonation, re-performance or reiteration, as artists and collectives expand on the notion of the cover version and its subversive potential within the digital age.

Cover Versions: Mimicry and Resistance quotes from the histories of music, popular culture and the internet, ethnography and the natural world. This is expressed through a range of mediums that include sound art and instrumentation, video, photography, installation and robotics. In music the cover version is realised as the re-performance, sampling or development of an existing piece, creating an expanded version or new original. In the natural world, animals use mimicry as a mode of camouflage for the purposes of survival, while humans employ it for social commentary or political subversion. In contemporary net culture and social media this is signalled by the repost, retweet or meme: in homage or critique, or towards the construction of identity. Mimicry has been equated with camouflage but also like holding up a mirror. Through the artifice of their construction, these works reveal something about the nature of our times.

Arthur Merric Boyd and Neil Douglas, Michael Candy, Maria Fernanda Cardoso, Marco Fusinato, Percy Grainger and Burnett Cross, Yuki Kihara, The Kingpins, LOUD+SOFT (Julian Day and Luke Jaaniste), Frédéric Nauczyciel, Soda_Jerk vs The Avalanches, Super Critical Mass, Christian Thompson, Jemima Wyman.

Curator: Anna Briers

Exhibition Catalogue

Cover Versions catalogue

The Cover Versions: Mimicry and Resistance catalogue is available to purchase from the SAM Shop for $10, with essays by Joel Stern (Liquid Architecture) and Anna Briers (SAM Senior Curator).

Special events

PAST EVENT - Saturday 23 September - Michael Candy's synthetic pollenizers: a talk and viewing at Tallis Winery

PAST EVENT - Friday 10 November, 6 to 8pm - exhibition opening with special performance by Super Critical Mass. FREE. Register your attendance here

Thumbnail image: The Kingpins, VERSUS, single channel video, 2001, 5:30. Courtesy the artists and Neon Parc.

Jemima Wyman artwork featuring protest figures arranged in a circular pattern
 Above image: Jemima Wyman, Aggregate Icon (RBW) from center to periphery clockwise: Free-Gaza protester, Palestine, 5th May 2012 (Che Guevara t-shirt), Anti-government protester, Milan, 14th December 2010 (screaming skull), Union member protester against labor and fiscal reform, Madrid, 31st March 2012 (striped t-shirt), Indigenous land rights protester, Caledonia, 28th February 2006 (camo hoodie), Protesters occupying city hall against the shooting of Michael Brown put a keffiyeh on the George Washington Statue, Chicago, 11th August 2012 (Statue), Supporter of the Syrian uprising recording fellow protesters, Beirut, 15th August 2011 (mustache facemask), Protesting NATO at summit, Chicago, 20th May 2012 (badge), Anti-government protester in solidarity with jailed freelance photographer Ahmed Humaidan, Bahrain, 1st March 2013 (black keffiyeh), College student stages performance against air pollution, Xi'an, China, 5th December 2013 (dust mask), Anti-austerity protester clashing with police, Greece, 29th June 2011 (sling-shot) May Day Protester, Bogota, Colombia, 1st May 2013 (Che Guevara flag), A ‘Sister of perpetual indulgence’ at the hunky Jesus contest, San Francisco, 24th April 2011 (spotted nun), University student against Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, Caracas, 26th January 2010 (red fabric over eyes and mouth), Supporter of Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, 10th August 2014 (dreadlocks), Zapatista Children protesters, Chiapas, 5th May 2015 (Six at a desk), G20 protester, Canada, 26th June 2010 (heart glasses), Pro-government supporters, Thailand, 30th November 2013 (Yingluck and Thaksin printed shirts), Zapatista, Chiapas, 8th March 2011(black belt), Albanian celebrating 100 years of independence from the Ottoman Empire, 28th November 2012 (red and black face paint), Protesting grand jury decisions in police-involved death of Eric Garner, Berkeley, California, 6th December 2014 (holding donut), Protesting the disappearance of 43 students, Chilpancingo, Mexico, 11th November 2014 (profile red bandanna), Palestine youth protesting Israel’s military occupation, Beit El settlement, 28th January 2016 (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine headband), Anti-NATO protestor, Prague, 21st November 2002 (Che-Guaver Mask), Pro-Palestinian protesters, West Bank, 11th October 2015 (Group wearing keffiyehs), May Day protester, Oakland, California, 1st May 2012 (occupy mask), Zapatistas, Chiapas, 15th August 2013 (red and white spotted cape), Anti-Fascist protester, Bulgaria, 17th November 2013 (Anti-Fascist flag), Anti-Nuclear protester at Tokyo Electric Power Co. headquarters, 27th March 2011 (Nuclear No Thanks), Anti-government protestor, Bangkok, Thailand, 9th June 2013 (bandanna Guy Fawkes mask), Protester against the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, 13th August 2014 (white t-shirt mask), High school student protests lack of quality education, Santiago, Chile, 15th March 2012 (red t-shirt mask), Unknown (hoodie with patches), Millions Mask March, London, 5th November 2015 (Guy Fawkes mask with Camo), Protesting at the RNC for good jobs, healthcare, affordable education, equality and peace, Tampa, Florida 27th August 2012 (A’s painted on shirt), Free Pussy Riot supporter at the Russian Embassy, London, 17th August 2012 (rabbit mask), Black Block group defending anti-Morsi protesters, Egypt, 11th February 2013 (red face on black masks), 2016. Hand-cut digital photographs collage. Image courtesy the artist, Sullivan + Strumpf, Sydney and Milani Gallery, Brisbane.

Drawing Wall #29: Jon Campbell
Saturday 28 October 2017 - Wednesday 31 January 2018

Jon Campbell is known for his irreverent humour and his explorations with text and design. His subject matter is eclectic, borrowing from Aussie slang, colloquialisms and well-worn phrases.

Campbell often abstracts these words and phrases to reflect a range of influences lifted from popular culture and advertising signage, 1960s counterculture and suburbia. By drawing on everyday culture and the world around us, Campbell creates a visual language that speaks to our times.

Campbell’s works frequently take the form of painting, flags, neons and banners. He employs stylised lettering to explore the formal qualities of typography and the relationships between forms in space. For Drawing Wall #29, the artwork’s readings can be found the abstracted text which is left for the viewer to decipher.

Solo exhibitions include Just Sing What You Feel, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2012); Stacks on 2010, Melbourne Art Foundation Artist Commission (2010); yeah yeah yeah, The Physics Room, Christchurch, New Zealand (2007); Greatest Hits Vol.1, CSA Gallery, Australian National University School of Art, Canberra (2002). Group exhibitions include The End of Time. The Beginning of Time, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne (2017); I heart rock (rock is the total work of art), Arts Project Australia, Melbourne (2016); Painting. More Painting, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2016); it’s gonna take a lotta love, Franklin Street Works, Stamford, US (2015); Art Tram, Melbourne International Festival, Melbourne; Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2013); Basil Sellers Art Prize, Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne (2012). Campbell’s work is held in a number of Australian collections including Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne; Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney; National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne.

 Exhibition runs Saturday 28 October to Wednesday 31 January.

IMAGE: Jon Campbell, Yeah Flag, 2004. Exhibited as part of the exhibition, Ahoy, Hamilton NZ, 2004. Image courtesy of the artist and Darren Knight, Sydney.

Showcase #16: Susan Frost
Saturday 28 October 2017 - Wednesday 31 January 2018

Susan Frost’s minimalist forms explore subtle gradations of colour and tone.

Through meticulous glazing techniques, she creates an evolving spectrum of hues that span rich creams and lemon yellows, through to vintage greens and inky blues. This palette is applied to the surfaces of an unfolding progression of functional vessels in varying sizes that have been wheel thrown in Lumina porcelain. Frost uses the evocative properties of colour to highlight the sculptural qualities of form, which she exploits to its fullest potential with interlocking works that stack and nest together.

For Showcase #17, Frost has expanded her practice with the introduction of surface decoration. Geometric structures, repetitive patterning and grids are executed with a restrained precision and used to create a cohesive whole.

 Follow Susan on Instagram: @susanfrost

Showcase 2017 presents exhibitions of new work by contemporary ceramicists in the glass display cabinet of SAM’s entry. Curated in partnership with Bree Claffey of Melbourne based gallery and retailer Mr KitlyShowcase is a unique opportunity for collectors and craft lovers to acquire work from established and emerging contemporary artists, as all pieces are available for purchase at the SAM shop.

Image courtesy the artist. Photo: Michael Haines.

Resolution: New Indigenous Photomedia
Saturday 26 August 2017 - Sunday 29 October 2017

This exhibition creates an experience of photomedia and Indigeneity that is physical, embodied and thought-provoking. It features work made since 2011 from across the country and brings together some of Australia's most critically acclaimed artists, whose careers stretch back decades, with some of our most exciting emerging talent. Many of the artists featured in Resolution work across a broad range of media; perhaps as few as one third identify as specialist photographers or photomedia artists, an eclecticism which reflects the diversity and dynamism of contemporary practice. Similarly, the artists often possess complex cultural identities which complicate any straightforward categorisation of their work.

Artists include Michael Aird, Tony Albert, Brook Andrew, Ali G. Baker, Daniel Boyd, Megan Cope, Brenda L. Croft, Nici Cumpston, Robert Fielding, Nicole Foreshew, Ricky Maynard, Danie Mellor, Steaphan Paton, Damien Shen, Darren Siwes, Christian Thompson, Warwick Thornton, James Tylor, and Jason Wing.

The foundations of contemporary Indigenous photography were laid in the late 1980s with a generation of politicised and provocative artists who documented their experiences around the events of the Bicentennial marking 200 years of European settlement. The last 30 years has seen its maturation and the emergence of artists who engage critically, thoughtfully, sometimes forcefully, with the present and the past. They decide how they negotiate their way in the world, making work which reflects the challenging, hybrid nature of contemporary society.

Official Exhibition Opening - Friday 25 August, 5.30 to 7.30pm

With opening remarks by Kirsten Paisley, Deputy Director, National Gallery Australia and Paul Briggs, Yorta Yorta, Executive Director, Kaiela Institute and President of Rumbalara Football Netball Club.

Special events

Thursday 28 September, 5.30 to 6.30pm
SAM Out Late! September - Curatorial Floortalk with Kelli Cole and Belinda Briggs
Free. More information here, bookings here.

Friday 13 October, 6 to 8pm
Mixer & Mingler: GV Young Professionals at SAM
$25. Book via

Saturday 28 October, 9am to 12pm and 1pm to 4pm
Tour de Shepp: Photography & Cycling Workshop
Free. More information here, tickets for morning session here, afternoon session here.

Image: Christian Thompson, Gods and kings, 2015, (from the series Imperial relic), chromogenic colour photograph National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, purchased 2016, courtesy of Michael Reid, Sydney © the artist