The biggest ever display of Islamic art at the Art Gallery of South Australia holds breathtaking masterpieces, and important lessons for all.
Art Gallery of South Australia/Saul Steed
No god but God at the Art Gallery of South Australia looks at over 1000 years of Islamic art, from Indonesia to Spain. It is a magnificent and necessary exhibition.
The cast of The Golden Shield by Anchuli Felicia King, currently on at Melbourne Theatre Company, shows faces too rarely seen on stage.
New research shows less than 10% of Australia's artistic directors come from culturally diverse backgrounds – but many didn't want the research to be done at all.
Ben Quilty, Australia, born 1973. Margaret Olley 2011. Oil on linen / 170.0 x 150.0 cm.
Collection of the artist. Courtesy the artist. Photograph: Mim Stirling
Margaret Olley was known not only for her paintings, but her generosity. An exhibition of her work is currently on in Brisbane, alongside a survey of the work of Ben Quilty, her mentee and friend.
Detail from Fiona Foley Native Blood Type C photograph x cm Edition copy.
Art historians argue that the life of the artist should be viewed independently of their art but, for most Aboriginal artists, art is a cultural expression that encompasses their lives.
Rosslynd Piggott Double Breath (contained) of the sitter 1993–94 (installation detail) various media.
© The artist Photo: courtesy the artist
Rosslynd Piggott's artworks explore an uncanny, dream-like state. A new exhibition of her objects, installations and paintings is a memorable reflection of a major Australian artist.
Sam Cranstoun, Utopia, The National, Carriageworks.
The ambitiously named exhibition, The National: New Australian Art, lives up to its title as a visual examination of Australia in an age of uncertainty.
Artist Janet Laurence is ferocious and uncompromising in her work.
A new survey exhibition of contemporary artist Janet Laurence urges us to reconsider the relationship between art, nature and politics.
Nora Heysen, Self-portrait 1934 oil on canvas 43.1 x 36.3 cm.
National Portrait Gallery, Canberra Purchased 1999 © Lou Klepac
Nora Heysen was the first woman to be awarded the Archibald Prize, but for most of her life she was defined not by her art, but by her relationship to her famous father, the artist Hans Heysen.
Kathleen Petyarre looking across Atnangker country, Northern Territory, December 2000.
Photograph Ian North; courtesy Wakefield Press
Petyarre, who won the Telstra prize for Indigenous art in 1996, has died in Alice Springs.
Dorrit Black, The Bridge, 1930.
Oil on canvas on board,
60.0 x 81.0 cm.
Bequest of the artist, 1951, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide.
Dorrit Black, Grace Cossington Smith and Grace Crowley were some of many talented modernist women artists. But only with the advent of second wave feminism in the 1970s was their work properly acknowledged.
Visitors look at Blue poles (1952) during its trip to London for an abstract expressionism exhibition in 2016.
The 1973 purchase of Jackson Pollock's abstract expressionist painting – at a record price for the time – was a controversial moment in Australian art. Was it worth it?
S.T. Gill, Kangaroo Hunting, The Death, from his Australian Sketchbook (1865). Colonial hunting clubs were established across Australia in the 1830s and 1840s.
National Library of Australia
In the mid 19th century, kangaroo hunting was a sport. Colonial hunting clubs were established across Australia and everyone from Charles Darwin to Anthony Trollope tried their hand at shooting roos.
Detail from Brett Whiteley.
Sacred baboon 1975
brush and ink, wood stain, watercolour, gouache and cut printed colour illustration on cardboard 81.6 x 67.6 cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Purchased, 1978 (A23-1978) © Wendy Whiteley
Throughout his life, Brett Whiteley made images of apes and monkeys. He found much in their character and physiognomy to identify with.
Mirka Mora sitting surrounded by her colourful doll and soft sculpture creations and tapestries in 1978.
Courtesy of the Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive, State Library of Victoria.
Mirka Mora survived the second world war to carve out a unique place for herself in the Australian art world. Over six decades, her creativity was legendary.
Charles Blackman posed next to his work in Sydney in 2013.
Charles Blackman forged an urbanised image of Australia that for most, was more familiar than the mythic landscapes of Sidney Nolan or Arthur Boyd. Yet though familiar, it remains uncomfortable.
Detail from John Russell:
Almond tree in blossom c1887.
oil on gold ground on canvas on plywood 46.2 x 55.1 cm.
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. The Joseph Brown Collection. Presented through the NGV Foundation by Dr Joseph Brown AO OBE, Honorary Life Benefactor, 2004 (2004.216)
John Russell, who was destined to become an engineer, instead became an artist in fin de siècle France – and a friend of Van Gogh, Monet and Rodin.
Wladyslaw Dutkiewicz, 1954, Adelaide, For Stravinsky, oil and enamel on composition board.
Photograph Graeme Hastwell
As a young man, Wladyslaw Dutkiewicz joined the Resistance, helping Jews to escape Poland. After settling in Australia as a refugee, he became a pivotal artist, as a new show of his work attests.
Detail from Fred Williams You Yang Pond 1963.
oil on composition board
Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide Gift of Godfrey Phillips International Pty Ltd 1968 © Estate of Fred Williams
A new exhibition features more than 50 works by Fred Williams, centred on the You Yangs peaks, west of Melbourne. They illuminate a breakthrough moment in Australian art.
Rhonda Senbergs in 1977: her photographs are an important social document.
Rhonda Senbergs photographed the Australian art world for over 25 years until her death in 1998. From Fred Williams to Bob Hawke to Margaret Olley, many were captured by her lens.
Mitch Cairns’s Agatha Gothe-Snape, oil on linen, 140.5 x 125 cm.
© the artist Photo: Mim Stirling, AGNSW
This year's annual Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes both reaffirm traditions and confirm new directions in the arts establishment.