Juno Gemes - The Quiet Activist : Survey exhibition 1979 -2019

Juno Gemes - The Quiet Activist : Survey exhibition 1979 -2019

Juno Gemes


Festival Year :


Exhibition Description

This survey exhibition is drawn from Juno Gemes extensive archive of photography, film, her national and international publications and artists books. This exhibition presents a rare opportunity to view her early experimental works in film and master prints contained within the celebrated publication The Language of Oysters, 1997 on view for the first time, offering a broader view of Gemes social justice commitments.

The Hawkesbury River is the oldest traditional river community in the country, known for its oyster farming, fishing, a secretive, closed community. Juno’s affinity with this area came from living there, exploring its tides over 15 years with local oyster farmers, fishermen and women and learning how to protect it.

The resulting luminous photographs of working river people & country reveal a strong sense of guardianship and connection to country parallel to that found in Aboriginal communities Juno has worked with over the last forty years. Robert Adamson's award-winning poems accompany these works from The Language of Oysters.

The spectacular forms of Bush Pieta, 2005 a finalist in the Blake Prize of that year, is mesmerising in its evocation of place, time and history − another five works from this series will be shown for the first time.  Her significant body of work Proof: Portraits from the Movement, 1979-2003 will be recontextualised within the survey exhibition linking Gemes early works to her current practice.

Artist talks and events

When: 1pm Thursday 9 May

Where: Macquarie University Art Gallery, 19 Easten Rd, NSW, 2109 

Poetry Reading in the Survey exhibition

Australia’s foremost poets Robert Adamson, David Malouf and Judith Crispin

Includes afternoon tea


When: 12pm Friday 17 May, Juno Gemes with Rhonda Davies, Senior Curator at MUAG

Where: Festival Hub, Paddington Town Hall: 249 Oxford St, Paddington, NSW, 2021

The Political Eye in The Quiet Activst :Juno Gemes Survey Exhibition 1979- 2019. A conversation between Rhonda Davis Senior Curator at MUAG  and Juno Gemes photographer /publisher discuss her archive the making of The Quiet Activist  exhibition and Macquarie University Art Collection.


When: 1pm Thursday 23 May

Where: Macquarie University Art Gallery, 19 Easten Rd, NSW, 2109 

In Conversation Panel in the Survey exhibition
The Politics of Seeing
Can activism in photography and in the visual arts affect social change?
Juno Gemes, Dr Catherine de Lorenzo, Rhonda Davis Senior Curator MUAG
Includes afternoon tea

Curator: Rhonda Davis
Co-Curator: Kate Hargraves

Exhibition Space

Dates and Times

Official Opening

Open Hours

Opening Hours
Monday - Friday: 10:00 am-5:00 pm

-33.772253, 151.115065