‘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.
Artwork: Isabella Duncan, Ophelia, 1998, acrylic on canvas, 175 x 144 cm. From the Cunningham Dax Collection
"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."
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