At RMIT Gallery in Melbourne, Australia.
Visit the Photography 130 website.
In 2017 Photography at RMIT turns 130, making it the oldest educational institution to teach photography in the world. This exhibition will offer new perspectives on Australian photography by focusing on the important connections and contributions made by RMIT photography, its relationship to the growth of Melbourne as a city, and the ways our students and staff have reflected the shifting cultural and political climate of Melbourne and Australia over the last 130 years.
The exhibition is both a celebration of the University’s age and prominence within Melbourne, and an acknowledgement of the artistic, cultural, political and social impact RMIT photography has had on Melbourne and Australia.
Taking existing histories as a starting point, then adding specific RMIT contributions, the exhibition will include new concerns and bodies of work in order to create an account of RMIT’s ongoing and lasting contribution to Australian photography. The aim is to present a new way of considering photography’s history in Australia, through the ‘lens’ of not just any educational institution, but the oldest in the world.
Australian photography has an establishment history, through the works of Gael Newton, Ann-Marie Willis and Helen Ennis, however the emphasis of the institution is almost exclusively through the collections of museums and galleries, excluding those educational institutions that not only train photographers, but develop cultural strategies and personalities that have a lasting impact on way artists and photographers develop and consider their practice.
The exhibition seeks to respond to a core question about photography and Australia – How did the culture of RMIT as an institution inform the development of photography in Melbourne and Australia?
Sourced from the RMIT archives, the RMIT Gallery collection, private and public collections and artists, the exhibition will feature work by photographers and artists whose images have either reflected the changing social landscape of Melbourne or contributed to it.
Featuring over 100 photographs created by RMIT (ex)staff and alumni between 1887 and 2017, in the service of art, politics, news entertainment, commerce, discovery etc, the exhibition offers an expanded view of the role and contribution of RMIT in the photographic imaging of Melbourne and Australia.
Shane Hulbert Liberty, Wham Glam 2017
Archival pigment print, 105 x 135cm