We wish to advise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers that this website may contain images and voices of people who are deceased

10 - 12 July 2020


Caption: Christian THOMPSON, Bidjara people, Born Gawler, South Australia,1974, Untitled #7 from the King Billy series  2010, C-type print, 100 x 100 cm. Private collector, Melbourne

QUEEN’S LAND BLAK PORTRAITURE: Late 19th century to the present

17th May - 12th August 2019

Opening Night

Wednesday 10th July 2019


Cairns Art Gallery,
Cairns QLD 4870

Presented in partnership with Cairns Indigenous Art Fair (CIAF)


This project has been assisted by the Australian Government's Visions of Australia program and is supported by the John Villers Trust. 

The notion of identity – who we are, how we see ourselves and how others see us – is a source of deep fascination. QUEEN’S LAND BLAK PORTRAITURE: Late 19th century to the present aims to explore how black identity in Queensland has been defined and visually represented through portraiture by both Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists.

The relationships between personal, cultural and national identity are examined in relation to portrait images that are framed by and perpetuate the dominant colonial, cultural and racial stereotypes, and images where black artists represent themselves and others as they want to be seen, contesting past discourses and engaging with new discourses around race and identity.

Displayed across the ground and first floor galleries, QUEEN’S LAND BLAK PORTRAITURE is a major exhibition curated by the Cairns Art Gallery and guest curators Djon Mundine OAM, and CIAF Artistic Director, Janina Harding.

Original artworks and archival images from a diverse range of artistic conventions have been brought together to form visual narratives that raise questions of identity and connection to country; the exotic; types and stereotypes; dis/empowerment; activism; and imagining ourselves as we want to be seen.

Opening Event

Wednesday 10 July 6.00pm

Liz Ann Macgregor OBE

Director, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney




Cairns Indigenous Art Fair Ltd is a not-for-profit company with Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) and Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission (ACNC) Status. All donations to the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair (CIAF) are greatly appreciated and will contribute to CIAF operational costs. Your support assists CIAF in continuing to attract and nurture national and international recognition for the appreciation of the vital cultural contribution of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

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