Justine Varga

When we think of photography we naturally think of a camera, even if it is just as an icon on our smart phone. The two go hand in hand. But we can take the camera out of the equation and still have photography. All we need is light. Indeed, the Greek roots of the word literally mean ‘drawing with light’. – Anne O’Hehir, Curator, Photography, National Gallery of Australia, 2016

Varga… has, in essence, updated the metaphysical angst of mid-century action painting for our own chaotic age, when renewed anxieties around the politics of mass media have put pressure on the fidelity associated with photographic representation. Her works dismantle the expectations that those forces cultivate by breaking down the conventions that we otherwise expect to see in photographs. In so doing, she reasserts the photograph as a trace of the world. Her rubbed, scratched, and stained surfaces have been exposed to today’s disintegrating social and ecological climate, resulting in a grand mix of personal inscription and environmental trace. – Andrés Mario Zervigón, Professor of the History of Photography at Rutgers University (USA), 2020

Read Tachisme exhibition catalogue essays by Andrés Mario Zervigón (2020) and Susan Best (2021), Professor of Art History and Theory at Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.

Read the Justine Varga Artist Profile cover story.

Read exhibition essay, Justine Varga, End of Violet by Saul Nelson