Ballarat International Foto Biennale

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Liu Bolin, 'In the Woods'
Photograph: Liu Bolin, courtesy of The Ballarat International Foto Biennale Liu Bolin, 'In the Woods'

Time Out says

A flotilla of exhibitions, talks, workshops and events is taking over Ballarat this spring

The Ballarat International Foto Biennale brings exhibitions, workshops, screenings, portfolio reviews, discussions and social events to the historic Gold Rush town of Ballarat once more. Over two months the town will host 30 exhibitions, 70 open programs, outdoor public art and special screenings.

This year, the festival will be jointly headlined by Chinese photographer-activist Liu Bolin and Indigenous Australian artist Dr Fiona Foley. Bolin is sometimes called “the invisible man” for his signature style of camouflaging himself within his images, prompting viewers to consider those who have been forgotten or marginalised. Foley’s work also brings attention to the disenfranchised, and highlights racial inequality in Australia. Who Are These Strangers and Where Are They Going? presents a mid-career retrospective of her work via site-specific installations and indigenous language soundscapes.

Other program highlights include Bauhuas Foto, an exhibit marking 100 years since the establishment of the iconic Weimar school, and To the Moon and Back, which explores all things lunar in recognition of the Apollo moon landing 50 years ago. While those exhibits examine the ongoing impact of historic events, others deal with urgent political issues of the present moment. A History of Misogyny, Chapter One: On Abortion is a stark look at women’s reproductive rights by Spanish photographer Laia Abril; while Adi Nes’s homoerotic portraiture, often featuring Israeli soldiers, delves into questions of gender, masculinity and humanism.

And for the second year, the Outdoor Program will bring large-scale photography to Ballarat’s streets, storefronts and buildings – including a celebration of Australian designer WH Chong’s book covers in the windows of Collins Booksellers.

Check out the full program and book tickets at the 2019 Ballarat International Foto Biennale website.

By: Time Out editors

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