Wed, 15 Nov - 3 Dec 2023
Launch Event: Friday, 17 Nov 2023, 6-9pm
Lennox St. Gallery presents Reflections, an exhibition of recent paintings and works on paper by Adnate.
Renowned globally for his artistry, Adnate's journey began two decades ago in the world of graffiti. It has since evolved into a profound exploration of cultural fusion and expression. Throughout the career spanning 20 years, Matt Adnate has left an indelible mark on the global art scene. His portfolio includes a myriad of murals and exhibitions that have graced cities all over the world. His towering 20-storey mural in Collingwood, Melbourne, is a local landmark, while the majestic 25-storey mural on the eponymously named Adnate Hotel, in Perth, stands as a testament to his artistic prowess on a grand scale.
Adnate's portraiture endeavours have been central to his career, with a focus on capturing the essence of the human spirit. This passion has led him to meet and paint notable figures, including the Dalai Lama, Adam Goodes, and most recently, Daniel Johns, whose portrait was selected as a finalist in the 2023 Archibald Prize.
The exhibition at Lennox St. Gallery, featuring Adnate's collaborative works with Indigenous artists, showcases new developments in his artistic journey. With over twenty canvasses and works on paper on display, this exhibition highlights the harmony of cultures and artistic expressions within Adnate's oeuvre.
Between 2010 and 2017, Adnate held regular solo exhibitions in Melbourne, Sydney, and Berlin. In the intervening years, Adnate focused mainly on his international mural practice. This will be the artist's first solo exhibition with a gallery since 2017. The planned launch event is best described as an immersive experience, with a smoking ceremony and a welcome to country conducted by Indigenous community leaders.
The exhibition will include a series of works which excludes spray paint in preference for brushwork, showcasing the artist's emergent sense of looseness and expressiveness. The source of inspiration comes from photographs he has personally taken of individuals from diverse cultures across the globe. Through these portraits, Adnate skilfully captures the essence of these global encounters, infusing his art with the rich tapestry of human culture from different corners of the planet.
Collaborations with Gunditjmara, Wemba Wemba & Yorta Yorta Artist Tommy Day.
The two artists have embarked on a creative journey, crafting numerous artworks showcasing Tommy's rich heritage as a member of the Gunditjmara people and the Kerrupmara clan. These pieces blend portraiture of Gunditimara descendants with Tommy's intricate interpretations of the landscapes, shining a spotlight on the mesmerising water features, lush wetlands, and the ancient lava flow etched with the history of countless generations. These artworks pay tribute to their ancestors who sculpted the land across centuries, now globally recognised as the Budj Bim World Heritage Cultural Landscape - an enduring testament to the world's oldest human-engineered freshwater aquaculture system.
The Melbourne-born Adnate has gained international recognition for his large-scale murals that depict people from diverse cultures and backgrounds. His work is characterised by a hyper-realistic style that captures the essence of his subjects with a striking level of detail and emotion. Through his art, Adnate explores the themes of identity, community, and cultural heritage, inviting viewers to reflect on their own experiences and perspectives. As a teenager, Adnate was drawn to graffiti and street art, and began experimenting with different styles and techniques. He was particularly interested in the idea of using art as a form of social commentary and activism and saw the potential of murals to connect with people in a powerful and meaningful way.
Adnate's breakthrough came in the mid-2000s when he began painting large-scale portraits of people from his local community. He quickly gained a reputation for his technical skill and ability to capture the essence of his subjects, and his murals soon began to appear on walls and buildings across Melbourne. Adnate's artistic style is characterised by a hyper-realistic approach that emphasises the individual features and expressions of his subjects. His works often depict people from indigenous or marginalised communities and are intended to celebrate and honour their unique cultures and histories. Adnate works primarily with spray paint, but also incorporates other materials such as acrylics, oils, and markers to achieve the desired effect.
One of the distinctive features of Adnate's work is his use of intricate patterns and textures to create depth and contrast in his murals. He often incorporates geometric shapes, indigenous motifs, and other decorative elements that are inspired by the cultural traditions of his subjects. This attention to detail and symbolism helps to convey the richness and complexity of the human experience and invites viewers to engage with the stories and perspectives of the people depicted in his work. Adnate is a talented artist whose work has made a significant impact on the urban art scene and beyond. Through his hyper-realistic murals, he celebrates the diversity and richness of human cultures, and invites viewers to engage with the stories and perspectives of the people depicted in his work. With his commitment to social activism and philanthropy, Adnate has demonstrated the transformative power of art to inspire change and create a more just and equitable world.