Penguin Random House
Winner of the Archibald Prize, activist artist Ben Quilt has had quite a few of solo exhibitions, which I have been lucky enough to witness in different Australian state museums. No matter if it is his latter compelling art informing by his stint with Australian troops or in refugee camps or his formative artworks that channel the depiction of seemingly mundane everyday items through his own lens, you would agree that his oeuvre is idiosyncratic and recognizable once you have been exposed to it: Quilty is a master of distortion and highlighting intense emotions and dreads that rage inside one’s chest. His art is visual commentary on the, musing on current social and political events as well as the criticism of notions of patriotism, identify and toxic masculinity, which at times and more visceral moments carry trademarks and more than subtle nods to Francis Bacon’s work.
This beautiful tome is an ode to an Australian artist and social commentator that celebrates twenty years of his artistic emissions in an opulently illustrated manner, including e coverage of a wide variety of media, e.g. drawing, photography, sculpture, installation and references to his excursions into the world of moving images.
Embedded in illuminating essays and an insightful foreword, I would recommend this comprehensive book specifically to those interested in art yet unfamiliar with the work and world of Quilty.