Who is John McRae?
A country boy, raised on a dairy farm near Horsham, now living and working as a visual artist and commercial photographer, opposite a disused asylum in the urban sprawl of Lilyfield, Sydney.
What would you do differently to what you do now?
Being a photographer who primarily focuses on issues of identity which include concepts of gender, sexuality, freedom, religious tolerance and the idea of change… it’s not so much about what I would do differently. It’s about speeding things up.
Who inspires you and why?
So many people inspire me… I’m looking for inspiration all day and I generally find it, even in the simplest day-to-day human contact. Like today for instance I was enthralled by the latest music clip by Janelle Monae for her song Make me feel – amazed by the originality, persistence and talent of Grace Jones, saw new meaning in the paintings of Francis Bacon and enchanted by the openness and generosity of the waiter at lunch.
What would you do to make a difference in the world?
I suppose I would attempt to be the best version of myself that I can be, challenging myself and others as to what defines us… and we’ll go from there.
Favourite holiday destination and why?
Malta… I love that little island. Malta is amazing!
When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
Depends on which town I’m in. In Sydney, where I live for example, I would take my out-of-town friends to Lakemba for a hearty Lebanese lunch.
What are you currently reading?
A book on Arabic calligraphy.
What are you currently listening to?
Diane Dufresne – Live in Montreal, Mathasbnish by Sherin and re-mixed soundtracks by Dutch photographer / DJ Fritz Kok.
A sleep-in followed by a good coffee.
What does the future hold for you?
John is currently presenting the exhibition, Spot the Arab at Ballarat’s Backspace Gallery until 18 March 2018. For more information, visit: www.johnmcrae.com for details.
Image: John McRae – photo by Fadi Fawaz