Imagine stepping inside an artwork. Imagine stepping inside a camera. Imagine seeing your world turned upside down. Welcome to Robyn Stacey: Cloud Land now showing at the Museum of Brisbane until 3 April 2016.
Robyn Stacey is one of Australia’s preeminent contemporary photographers. Containing 22 large scale photographs, Cloud Land was commissioned by the Museum of Brisbane, and reveals some of the city’s most familiar places, buildings and landmarks in a completely new way.
Her dreamlike works capture a moment in time, exploring both the history of the location and the personal stories of the subjects featured within these unique landscapes – offering an intimate and provocative look at our city.
Using one of the oldest photographic techniques invented more than 1,000 years ago – the camera obscura, Stacey gives this technology a bold and surprising reinvention as her work turns entire rooms into the surface of a photograph, casting the view from the outside in.
Her large and striking images have been exhibited widely in Australia and internationally since the mid 1980s. The early cinematic series, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (1985), Redline 7000 (1987–89), All The Sounds of Fear (1990–1992), and Let It All Come Down (1994 AGNSW) were based on film noir and use the collective archive of photography and film to connect with cultural memory.
This fascination with the possibilities of history to inform our present lead to her obsession with the vast archival repositories of museums and in 2000, Stacey began researching and photographing natural history collections in Australia and overseas.
Spending a number of years working with each collection Stacey’s pictorially sumptuous photographic images present the 18th and 19th century specimens, artifacts, and scientific models to a contemporary audience, revealing their aesthetic, social and historical value. Investigating each specimen’s material presence she groups and assembles them based on visual strategies drawn from the Dutch still life tradition to the scientific rationalism of taxonomy.
Robyn Stacey: Cloud Land
Museum of Brisbane – City Hall, 64 Adelaide Street, Brisbane
Exhibition continues to 3 April 2016
For more information, visit: www.museumofbrisbane.com.au for details.
Image: Robyn Stacey, Magistrates Chamber Childrens Court Tyrone Presiding, 2015