MGA and the MGA Foundation are proud to introduce the inaugural Wai Tang Commissioning Award exhibition. Paula Mahoney is the first artist to be awarded the $10,000 commission who was selected from the 2021 Bowness Photography Prize. The award has been established by Wai Tang’s husband, Kee Wong, to recognise and honour her significant impact on the arts and preserve her legacy within MGA’s collection and exhibition history.
Mahoney's exhibition This landscape holds grief is the result of a residency at Q Bank Gallery in Queenstown Tasmania. This body of work explores the relationship between personal loss, our history and how grief can echo in the Australian landscape as an absence.
Mahoney’s work represents an ongoing examination of death and personal loss through the vehicle of performative photography and portraiture, frequently depicting herself, daughter, niece and sisters, wearing clothes of dead loved ones. She posits lamentation as a necessary yet optimistic viewpoint that suggests psychological shifts, creating both an awareness of our limitations and our connection to each other and to a greater whole. This landscape holds grief returns the image of death and mourning into public consciousness in a way that combines hope and despair.
Curator: Anouska Phizacklea, MGA Director
Together in the valley of death 2022
from the series This landscape holds grief
pigment ink-jet print
80.0 x 120.0 cm
courtesy of the artist and Fletcher Arts (Melbourne)
The Public Galleries Association of Victoria (PGAV) acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi-Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners of the lands where our office is located, and all Traditional Owners of country throughout Victoria and Australia. We recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples enduring traditions and continuing creative cultures. We pay our respect to Elders past, present and emerging.