Queer PHOTO: This free exhibition brings evocative, intimate art to Melbourne’s west

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Queer PHOTO: This free exhibition brings evocative, intimate art to Melbourne’s west

Photo: Matto Lucas
Photo: Matto Lucas
Photo: Matto Lucas
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words by staff writer

The beauty of photography as an artistic medium is it allows us to view the world through someone else's eyes, one snapshot at a time.

On from January 27 to March 24, Queer PHOTO puts the camera into the hands of LGBTQIA+ artists throughout Australia and across the world.

Featuring a collection of free public events, world-first collections and both indoor and outdoor displays, the exhibition is eye-opening and enthralling.

Queer PHOTO 2024

  • On until March 24 at Footscray Community Arts
  • Mar 2 – Pet Portraits with Elvin Lam (Sold Out). It’s pet photoshoot time! What cuter way to celebrate your love for your pet than with a photoshoot?
  • Mar 3 – Film Screening and Q&A with Clifford Prince King (USA). Open discussion with Clifford Prince King following an exclusive screening of two of their short films that explore queerness, HIV, and intimate relationships.
  • Mar 10 – Cyanotype Photography Workshop with Isabella Capezio (Sold Out) Artist and RMIT Lecturer, Isabella Capezio, is your teacher for this hands-on photography workshop!
  • Mar 16 – Daniel Jack Lyons (USA) Artist Talk. Join Daniel Jack Lyons and hear him discuss his work and photographic practice.

Stay up to date with what’s happening in and around Melbourne here.

Presented by PHOTO 2024 and Midsumma, Queer PHOTO is the largest collection of its kind, taking over venues and streets in Melbourne’s west, with a central hub at Footscray Community Arts.

“Indigenous, Black identity and People of Colour have always been at the heart of queer activism and culture,” says Daniel Santangeli, Artistic Director of Footscray Community Arts.

“Queer Photo is an act of re-enculturation – recentering and celebrating visual artists who are continuing to shape LGBTQIA+ culture here and internationally.”

One of the highlights of the program is the world premiere of Australian-Fijian artist Salote Tawale’s work Exquisite Corpse, showing at the Roslyn Smorgon Gallery until May 26. Featuring sculpture, photo and video work, the large-scale installation touches on themes of Indigenous knowledge and layered narratives.

On the lawns of the Footscray Arts site, visitors can view The Zizi Show, UK media artist Jake Elwes’ study of the fusion of Al and drag and Black & Blur, Lilah Benetti’s portraits of migrant and Indigenous peoples.

African American photographer Clifford Prince King’s explorations of queer joy, vulnerability and intimacy are on display at Henderson House, alongside Derik Lynch and Matthew Thorne’s Marungka Tjalatjunu (Dipped in Black), following Derik Lynch’s journey from oppressive white city life in Adelaide to his remote Anangu Community (Aputula).

Along the Footscray Wharf, US photographer and anthropologist Daniel Jack Lyons, showcases his project Like a River, featuring trans and queer communities living in the Amazon. At both Footscray Community Arts and the Substation, Aotearoa-based queer Polynesian arts collective FAFSWAG presents Alteration – a fusing of digital technology, traditional storytelling and archival practices.

The events program is also littered with gems, including a pet photoshoot, a hands-on cyanotype workshop, artist Q&As and panel discussions – all free (with mandatory registration).

For more information on Queer PHOTO and RSVP for public events, head here.