Self-Creation explores a nuanced area in the artform of drag and the idea of gender presentation through the medium of DIY and low budget self-produced music videos. This exhibition invites audiences to reconsider the popular imagination of drag as binary - men cross-dressing as women lip-syncing to pop hits - and used exclusively as a tool for subversion; to instead open up reflections about what these videos can offer contemporary understandings of gender, sexual identity, community care building, and self-creation of individual identity.
Popularised during the twentieth century, low budget or as artist Vaginal Davis often cites, “no budget”, self-produced video recordings were readily employed by artists due to their affordability. For many artists working in the context of modern socio-political oppression, this medium presents an opportunity for self-actualisation, self-determination and community connection; while drag performance specifically can be a tactical recognition various minoritised artists employ in an effort to resist the oppressive and normalising discourses of dominant ideologies. By directing the viewers gaze towards their own bodies, and non-gender binary bodies, each artist simultaneously explores and celebrates the limitless intersections of gender and identity while enacting a safer space for their bodies to exist.
Through the work of national and international artists, CHRISTEENE (USA); Vaginal Davis (USA/DEU); The Huxleys (AUS); Max Lawrence (AUS), and Dyan Tai (MYS/AUS), Self-Creation is a celebration of love, healing and human visibility.
Visitor and access information
A space for self-regulation has been created for the duration of this exhibition. Some themes, imagery and context may be visually, or emotionally triggering to some people. Having this space available assists those who often have additional barriers in accessing spaces that celebrate their diversities.