Michael Cook (AU)

Michael Cook is a Brisbane-based photomedia artist of Bidjara heritage. Cook’s photographs restage colonial-focused histories and re-image the contemporary reality of indigenous populations. Touching on the discriminatory nature of society, his images muddle racial and social roles ‘painting’ a picture of a societal structure reversed. Cook invites viewers to speculate Indigenous cultures living at the forefront, even a majority, rather than manipulated to live within the confines of a white man’s world. Cook’s images challenge our ingrained belief systems yet do not offer
judgement – they are observational, asking questions without proffering neat prescriptive conclusions.

Significant career highlights include The British Museum, London, UK; MOPA, San Francisco, USA; the Musee d’ethnographie de Geneve, Switzerland; National Gallery of Singapore; AAMU Museum of Contemporary Aboriginal
Art, The Netherlands; Musee de la Civilisation, Quebec, Canada; Fukiyama Musuem of Art, Japan, 13th Dong Gang International Photo Festival, South Korea; Oceanographic Museum of Monaco. Cook’s work was included in Personal Structures – Crossing Borders at Palazzo Mora during the 56th Venice Biennale. Cook’s work has been acquired by institutions including the British Museum, National Gallery of Australia, Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Art Gallery of New South Wales and Art Gallery of Western Australia.

PHOTO 2024 Events

Founding Partners
  • Bowness Family Foundation
  • Naomi Milgrom Foundation
Major Government Partners
  • City of Melbourne Arts Grants Program
  • Creative Victoria
Major Partners
  • Maddocks

PHOTO Australia respectfully acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands upon which we work and live, and the rich and diverse Indigenous cultures across what is now called Australia. For over 60,000 years, Indigenous arts and culture have thrived on this sacred land, and we honour Elders and cultural leaders past and present. This was, and always will be, Aboriginal land.

01–24 March