– Highlights

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Exhibition

Tatsuo Miyajima

03 Nov - 05 Mar

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Mca Collection

MCA Collection: Today Tomorrow Yesterday

01 Sep - 31 Dec

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Exhibition

Primavera at 25: MCA Collection

19 Dec - 19 Mar

– Learning Events

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Pop-Up Bar

Sakura Sundays

05 Mar, 3.00pm, Ground Floor: Outdoor Terrace

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Workshop

Contemporary Art Studio

09 Mar, 10.30am, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

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Conference

Educators conference: 6-7 April

06 Apr, 6.00pm, Level 3: National Centre for Creative Learning

– News from inside the MCA

Ode to typography: Interview with Will Lynes

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5 tips for applying for the MCA Zine Fair

Want to show your zine-work at the 2017 MCA Zine Fair? Here we share our tips for applying more

Louise Zhang's horror infused ARTBAR

Navigating the space between attractive and repulsive, Chinese-Australian artist Louise Zhang kicks off the ARTBAR year in suitable style with a night entitled ‘New Year’s Rot’. more

– Spotlights from the collection online

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MCA Collection

Works from the MCA Collection

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Collection Artist Interviews

Watch our latest interviews in the MCA Video Portal

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Joint acquisitions by MCA and Tate

The Program promotes Australian art globally, helping Australian artists reach new audiences.

Real Fictions

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA)

Duration

01 Sep 1996 to 01 Dec 1996

Artists:

Stan Douglas, Robert Houle, Ken Lum, Liz Magor

Curator:

Linda Michael

about the exhibition

Real Fictions featured work by four artists from Canada that examined contemporary experiences of identity. In different ways, they explored the shifting relationships between personal and public identity, subjective and mass-mediated experience.

Works by Stan Douglas, Robert Houle, Ken Lum and Liz Magor did not so much depict the world, as articulate the complex social and historical forces that shaped contemporary life. While their works were fictional constructions, they were always documenting something real. This oscillation between fact and fiction characterised a contemporary version of realism, a socially engaged art which explored the contradictions of lived experience.

Using techniques of staging, doubling and juxtaposition, identity was presented as a changing set of roles, projections and masks, and the uncertain relationship between fiction and reality in a media-saturated society was explored. Many of the works used photography to highlight this seeming paradox.

The exhibition did not present a singularly ‘Canadian’ perspective, but the parallels between Australian and Canadian society were evident in issues such as the relationship between indigenous and colonising cultures, the relatively recent colonisation and independence of each country, and the colouring of local experience by a dominant mass-media – a particularly relevant issue in a diverse, multi-cultural Australia with a strong indigenous culture, where media was still dominated by white European authors, actors and personalities.

Featuring Works from the MCA Collection

Robert Houle
  • Parfleches for Sydney