Inner Worlds: Portraits & Psychology
6 May - 24 July 2011at Special ExhibitionsNational Portrait GalleryKing Edward Terrace, Parkes ACT 2600Admission: FreeOpen daily 10am - 5pmInfo: (02) 6102 7000
orhttp://www.portrait.gov.au/site/exhibition_subsite_innerworlds.phpCurator: Dr Christopher ChapmanThe uncanny timing of the current special exhibition,
the Inner Worlds: Portraits & Psychology,
at theNational Portrait Gallery does make one momentarily pause, reflect and wonder that if perhaps, DrChapman had any (insiders) knowledge of the lucrative government funding abound in mental healthservices prior to its surprised announcement for this years Federal Budget in early May; or in actual fact(as indicated on the Nick Mourtzakis statement of his work,
avid Chalmers 2011
) that the exhibitionwas predicated on the Gallerys commissioning of David Chalmers portrait (known among many with aneven a remote interests in psychology as
the world renowned philosopher of consciousness
based at theAustralian National University). But in all seriousness, who really knows and if truth be told; does it
matter, Anna?Whichever way you look at it, Inner Worlds attempts to explore the unique psychological phenomenonwhen key moments of connection between portraiture and psychology exists, or to put it moreeloquently, the merging of two disparate worlds: one of psychology, the other of portraiture; to form aneclectic collection of facial expressions depicting the relationship between mental processes andbehavior[s] :)Chapmans Inner Worlds voyages through the workings of the subconscious mind and intense mentalstates with pieces of its mnemonic remnants cast along the panes of gentle green sea. Showcasing theworks of portraiture from pioneering shrinks, to mental health patients (as part of the Cunningham DaxCollection), to Dr Chalmers (howdy), to the ever popular and influential artists of Sidney Nolan, AlbertTucker and Joy Hester (my favourites); as well as the more contemporary ones, in this instance, MikeParr and Dale Frank (also my favourites) and (not to mention) Anna Ferran; Inner Worlds befits amusingand insightful narratives of those who find themselves lost in the seas of consciousness with thosewatching them just drifting by. Or in the words of Anne Ferran, who poses the question in her work
Iam the rehearsal master 1989
Who might be photographed and for what purpose?
I pose the question to you, Anna.
does it really matter?!
This exhibition house only a sparing collection of works of this nature but covers the girth of eras fromWorld War I to the 1950s to the late 90s. Works worth mentioning are: Albert Tuckers
series of 1942 as well as his evocative masterpiece
in that same year; Joy Hesters
Face (with eyeon stalk)
(as part of her own therapeutic recovery from radiotheraphy for Hodgkins lymphoma);Dale Franks
The snail fleeing. Portrait of Paul Groot
[Dutch curator and writer]
with a smal snailportrait and self portrait 1983
; and (last but not least) Mike Parrs digital screening of