Duncan Macarthur

Duncan Macarthur’s art practice explores notions of identity and how the idea of an inner self can be registered through painting. Of particular interest is the psychological framework of how viewers perceive and organise visual information, especially when confronted with imagery where the mimetic logic has broken down and how this can inform new painterly language. Representation, irreducibly bound to presentation, is not merely a copy of something formerly present, it presents something new.

In a contemporaneous culture inundated with fast-viewed images, presented in an endless, palm-sized stream, painting, perhaps more than ever, offers viewers an opportunity to take a more reflective approach to the act of looking, one that  induces a deeper, more vital understanding of the subjects presented. This body of work offers the portrait as both an imitative copy, pushed to its rational limit, and a subjecting of the sitter’s subconscious.

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Exhibition history

2024 Recent Portraits, Tacit Art, Melbourne
2016 The Atherton Marbles, Little Woods Gallery, Melbourne
Know Your Surface, C50 Gallery, Melbourne
Superstring, Signal Gallery, Melbourne
2015 Bricktraiture, C50 Gallery, Melbourne

2021 QCAD, Griffith University, Brisbane
2019 Formalism Now, Testing Grounds, Melbourne
2018 Soft Trash, Testing Grounds, Melbourne
Concrete Dream, Artist's Corner, Los Angeles
2017 Complete Garbage, Tank Gallery, Melbourne
2016 Colour, Tank Gallery, Melbourne
2015 Miniature Worlds, C50 Gallery, Melbourne