Ann Shelton (NZ)

an invitation to dance

Image: Ann Shelton, [an invitation to dance] (detail), 2020.

Image: Ann Shelton, an invitation to dance (detail), 2020.




Royal Botanic Gardens, Anzac Station precinct [i]
Near the intersection of Albert Road and Domain Road, Melbourne
Outdoor work – accessible all hours


Wheelchair access

Radical. Courtesan. Legend.

The life of Lola Montez transcends truth and slips into desiring myth. A radical and mercurial figure Montez exceeded prescribed parameters of femininity and ignored limits and existing conventions controlling women’s bodies. Montez toured Australian gold rush towns during the 1850s as a performer—and was notably the first woman ever photographed smoking.

Drawing upon Montez’s own use of photography to promote her self-image, Shelton has created a new series of works. An Instagram feed (@elizagilbertandlolamontez) created by the artist allows audiences to engage with archival material relating to Montez.

Commissioned by Photo Australia and the Metro Tunnel Creative Program for PHOTO 2021

On display from 18 February 2021

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PHOTO Channel

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