Hand-drawn review: Portraits of Men at Verge Gallery

July 25th 2017

Illustration by Emerald Dunn Frost 

The power politics of portraiture are laid bare (in more ways than one) in this exhibition at the University of Sydney.

Very Important White Men are stripped nude (conceptually) at Verge Gallery’s current exhibition, Portraits of Men.

Works by artists Abdul Abdullah, Cherine Fahd, Shannon Field, Vincent Namatjira, Joan Ross – as well as portraits from the USU Art Collection, Sydney University Archives and Sydney University Museums – all coalesce in a space bursting with questions of power, patriarchy, collecting and portraiture.

Curator Siân McIntyre utilises unconventional modes of hanging and presentation to achieve this affect; in one case hanging the portrait of a Very Important White Man so that its subject’s gaze meets the eye level of the average Australian woman. Through these careful subversions, the power of such portraits is artfully undressed, leaving their authority bare (and bare-bottomed).

The show will close on July 29, so go see it(’s bits) before it ends.


WHAT: Portraits of Men
WHERE: Verge Gallery, University of Sydney
WHEN: Until July 29
HOW MUCH: Free! Find out more here.


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