Artwork in image: Graeme Doyle, Untitled, undated, pen and coloured pencil on paper, 36 x 27 cm
Artwork in image: Peter Wegner, Medicated Man, 2017, oil on board, 31 x 28 cm. Private Collection
‘I’ve taken more out of schizophrenia than it’s taken from me.’ - Graeme Doyle
Graeme Doyle (1947- 2021) was a prolific artist, musician, poet, and performer. Doyle, who lived with schizophrenia, is an intriguing figure in the landscape and history of Australian art. Collaborating with portrait artist Peter Wegner, Doyle appeared in numerous guises, revealing his vulnerability as a subject and the impact of his illness. Doyle’s own artwork was uncompromising and thought-provoking, challenging people's perceptions and confronting them with hard truths. He was an early advocate for the reduction of stigma and education of complex mental health issues, leaving a legacy that continues to inspire and inform.
Schizophrenia affects approximately 1% of the population and is one of the most misunderstood and stigmatising mental health issues in society. It can be debilitating and damaging to people's lives without support strategies. However, with the right supports and care, people with the illness can thrive in society, as demonstrated by the life and art of Graeme Doyle. The Cunningham Dax Collection, which features over 80 of Doyle's works, only scratches the surface of the breadth and depth of his practice. For Doyle, art making was an integral part of who he was, his health, and his connection to society and its creative history. Featuring portraits of Doyle by Wegner, Graeme Doyle - medicated man traces the evolution of Doyle as an artist. The Dax Centre is proud to present his work and continue the joint purpose of education and stigma reduction.
6 April - 30 June 2023
Artists don't see themselves as finished after completing a project; they view their creative process as a continuous evolution which can include explorations, deviations, celebrations, challenges, and re-starts. It may include going back to the drawing board more than once, or perhaps throwing the board out altogether and drawing on the floor. Similarly, recovering from mental health issues is rarely a linear journey, and it's possible to experience relapses, forks in the road, obstacles, and setbacks. The creative experience of an artist parallels that of the experience of being human - we are all works in progress.
WIP, or ‘work in progress’, is a group exhibition of artists from The Studio Dax program at The Dax Centre. This program was established to create a supportive environment for individuals with a lived experience of mental health issues to engage in artmaking, learning and sharing. Having operated for just over a year, the program has succeeded in providing a nurturing space for artists to flourish. The program and the artists are still in the process of learning and growing, with their potential leading them forward. The aim of this exhibition is not to showcase fully resolved works, where potential has been fully realised, but rather to capture a moment in time of the artists and the program. As a result, the exhibition represents people, artists, and a program, all of whom are works in progress on a journey towards what they can become.
Artworks shown in image by: Callum Watson, Martin Weatherhead, Dori Regner, Lynne Kells
Alana Winter, Angelyka Nowak, Bronny Handfield, Callum Watson, Caron Boulter, Christele Brunet, Dori Regner, J.B, Joseph Terlikar, Liam San Jose, Lianne Yearbury, Lynne Kells, Maggie Bell, Martin Weatherhead, Megan Fallow, Michela Cardamone, Poppy Egan, Romy Durrant, Samantha Martin , Steven Groves, Svetlana Kuznanoski
Gallery open hours:
Wednesday to Friday - 11.00am to 3.30pm
30 Royal Parade, Parkville
"Your installation gave me a lot to think about, especially in relation to mental health and stigma. It is inspiring to see how you shine light on, and continue these important conversations."
The Dax Centre acknowledges the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as traditional custodians of the land on which it operates. We pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging, and value the rich history, unbroken culture and ongoing connection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to country. The Dax Centre values diversity. We are committed to proving a safe, culturally appropriate, and inclusive service for all people, regardless of their ethnicity, faith, disability, sexuality, or gender identity.
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